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#1 2018-03-07 12:27:52

jaimet
Member
Registered: 2018-03-07
Posts: 3

Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

Hi all.

I'm running XFCE v4.12 on Debian 9 (Stretch), and I've just experienced a strange bug. I was running (as I normally do) 8 workspaces with approx 40 terminals (xfce4-terminal), 4 firefox quantum windows containing in total about 120 tabs, and perhaps 20 or so other windows, with all the windows scattered semi-randomly across the 8 workspaces.

Then, all of a sudden, workspaces 2-8 disappear and all the windows end up on workspace 1. I open "Workspace Settings" (via "Workspace Switcher") and I attempt to increase the number of workspaces back up to 8, but when I click on the "up-arrow" to increase the number of workspaces, I can see "Workspace 2" appear very briefly in the workspace list, but then it disappears again. If I click and hold on the "up-arrow", I can get as many as 5 new workspaces added to the workspace list, but they all rapidly disappear again, always leaving me with only 1 workspace.

After 5 minutes of trying (unsuccessfuly) to add workspaces, I give up, and start closing down my work (shutting down terminals, firefox tabs and windows, and the other various windows that are on my now-one-and-only workspace. Once I've closed down every open window, I try again to add a new workspace, but this time I am successfull. I can now increase the number of workspaces back up to 8.

I've searched through bugzilla.xfce.org and I've looked at the 276 bugs (open and closed) which contain the word "Workspaces", and only https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=10253 ("Workspaces Are Reset To One Randomly At Boot") seems related. That bug report does not contain a lot of useful info, (and the last activity on it was 3 years ago) but it does mention that *that bug's cause* may be in xfwm4, xfsettingsd, or maybe the workspace switcher panel plugin. Also, this is not the first time that this has happened to me, but it is rare.

My question is: how do I find out what is causing this? Where's the best place to look? Thank you for your help.

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#2 2018-03-08 14:08:25

alcornoqui
Member
Registered: 2014-07-28
Posts: 258

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

Can you reproduce it or has it only happened once?

edit: Oh, I see you mentioned that, nevermind.

Last edited by alcornoqui (2018-03-08 14:18:40)

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#3 2018-03-08 15:41:40

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 619

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

Can you supply info on the graphic setup? For instance (f you have it installed):

inxi -G

MX-17 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.12.

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#4 2018-03-08 16:42:26

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 4,372

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

Also of interest would be any log entries when the problem occurs. I believe in Debian Xfce writes to the ~/.xsession-errors log file - a dump of the entries when the problem occurs would be helpful.


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#5 2018-03-09 10:46:48

jaimet
Member
Registered: 2018-03-07
Posts: 3

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

alcornoqui wrote:

Can you reproduce it or has it only happened once?

That's a very good question. I haven't yet tried to intentionally reproduce the "bug", but I think perhaps I should...

Jerry3904 wrote:

Can you supply info on the graphic setup?

$ inxi -G
Graphics:  Card: Intel Mobile 4 Series Integrated Graphics Controller
           Display Server: X.Org 1.19.2 driver: N/A
           Resolution: 1920x1080@60.00hz
           GLX Renderer: Mesa DRI Mobile Intel GM45 Express
           GLX Version: 2.1 Mesa 13.0.6
ToZ wrote:

Also of interest would be any log entries when the problem occurs. I believe in Debian Xfce writes to the ~/.xsession-errors log file - a dump of the entries when the problem occurs would be helpful.

I've had a look, but it's not that easy since there are no timestamps (other than those when the session starts, and for me that's about one per week!) Interestingly, debian 9 (stretch) uses systemd - I wonder if there's a way to get all the .xsession-errors log messages piped into the systemd/journald journal. At least I now have a place to look next time that this happens.

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#6 2018-03-09 11:01:25

alcornoqui
Member
Registered: 2014-07-28
Posts: 258

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

Maybe

journalctl -u session-${XDG_SESSION_ID}.scope

as seen here?

Other views here. I can't find more info right now...

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#7 2018-03-12 14:04:19

jaimet
Member
Registered: 2018-03-07
Posts: 3

Re: Temporarily unable to increase "Number of workspaces" above 1 - why?

alcornoqui wrote:

Maybe

journalctl -u session-${XDG_SESSION_ID}.scope

as seen here?

Other views here. I can't find more info right now...

I've tried:

journalctl -u session-1.scope

but the only program logging there is pulseaudio (I guess that kind of makes sense: .xsession-errors is just a place to capture everything's stdout & stderr, while programs have to be edited to use systemd/journald. Also, systemd *and* pulseaudio are both lennart's progeny, so the fact that they talk to each other is not surprising).

I'll just have to dig through .xsession-errors the next time it happens. Ho hum...  roll

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