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IDL falls to sleep!

Back in May, several users (myself included) reported problems
with IDL 5.2 literally falling asleep.  (Most of us were using 5.0.3
as a result.)  I talked at length with RSI and my local support people,
who claimed that it was not a problem, they couldn't reproduce it, it
was a coding error, and/or that it was not fixable.  The symptom was,
under Solaris, that CPU usage would drop to zero and IDL would stop
responding to any commands at all, and the process had to be killed.

I finally got RSI's attention when the following program reproduced
the bug consistently, stopping after ~ 1 hour.  (Biking down
to their office and walking up to the tech support cubicles didn't
hurt, either):

pro hang_bug
  for i = 0LL, 90000000LL do begin
    a = dist(50)+randomu(seed,50,50)
    a = a^2 + a
    if (i mod 1000 eq 0) then print, i

With this in hand, one of the RSI support people -- although still
unable to reproduce it -- suggested we try a different license
manger.  I'm not familiar with the nitty-gritty of licenses, but I
believe it has to do with switching from a FLEX_LM license to a GENVER
one.  The problem was apparently that IDL was hanging when it was
unable to successfully ping the license server, decided the license
was bad, and stopped.

Bingo -- no 5.2 problems since!

The computer people here apparently had to change every one of LASP's
100+ licenses, but I've not heard problems since then.  I'm not
sure whether the issue's been fixed in 5.3, but I thought I'd pass this
on to anyone still having problems.


| Henry Throop  throop at broccoli.colorado.edu  303 492-1628 |
|       Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics          |
|      University of Colorado, Boulder      80309             |

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