SUMMARY: ncdware 3.0 memory loss

From: Andrew Heaps (
Date: Tue Oct 26 1993 - 03:46:24 CDT

The solution is to either upgrade to ncdware version 3.1 where this problem has
been "mostly fixed". I am without maitenance so really needed a workaround.
Gene Rackow put me onto who were very helpful and got our
x-terminals functioning correctly. (Thanks Cheryl!)

Many thanks to all who responded:

Danny Johnson <danny@com.ti.dseg.ews7>
Edsel Adap <>
Gene Rackow <rackow@gov.anl.mcs>
Thomas Ploss <plossts@de.d400.uni-stuttgart.informatik.trick>
Richard.Hellier <>
Fernando Dias <fmmd@pt.silvac>
Nelson Fernandez <aluxpo!nlf>
Stan Barber <sob@edu.tmc>

The Problem:

> From andy Mon Oct 18 13:02:58 1993
> To:
> Subject: ncdware 3.0 memory loss
> Content-Length: 1211
> Details:
> --------
> ncdware 3.0
> ncd 19cr, 17c with 6Mb memory
> IPX with xdm ( same problem with X11R5, openwindows or NCD xdm )
> Problem:
> --------
> Recently I upgraded the software for our ncd x-terminals to ncdware 3.0. One
> problem with the new software is that the screen blank sometimes causes the
> message
> "Low on Memory -- Backing store has been discarded
> You may free memory by terminating a client to avoid
> one being terminated automatically in the future"
> to pop up on the screen. This seems to be linked to the screenblank process
> sucking up all the memory (although I am not sure on this yet). If the user is
> logged onto another off-subnet computer at the same time then he loses his
> window surrounds as well with the message
> "TCP login manager on "hostname" not responding"
> and then the window manager for taht x-terminal gives up the ghost. He can
> still type in the windows that he has but loses the surrounds and the ability
> to open new ones.
> xdm has not died on the host sun and other people's x terminals attached to
> that sun still function fine.
> Does anyone have a workround for this problem?
> Cheers
> Andy
> Please reply to:
> ----------------
The solution:

Article Title : screensaver_memory_bug
Creation Date : 09/17/93
Message ID : PGBNQ
Last Update :
Expiration Rules : unknown

NCDware 3.0 has a known bug in the screensaver which causes it to eat
up all available memory when left running. This bug has been mostly
fixed in the 3.1 release. For 3.0 there is a workaround which sets
the screensaver to a state where it is fully functional but does not
accidentally eat memory. To set this up on a Unix system:

1) Install the "ncdprefs" binary on your login server, or on a
   supported host platform if the login server does not have
   supported binaries in the NCDware distribution.

2) Set up a file called ".ncd.prf" in the user's home directory
   which looks like this, or includes these statements among others:

pref-screensaver-style = bitmap
pref-screensaver-exposures = true

3) Add this command to the user's .xsession file:

ncdloadprefs $HOME/ncd.prf

   You may need to specify the full pathname for ncdloadprefs. If
ncdloadprefs resides on another host, add "rsh <hostname>" in front of
the command as well.

Setting the above screensaver parameters in the terminals config
files will not work because "pref-" parameters, unlike the other
configuration parameters, are reset after each X session (i.e. after
each time a user logs out). They need to be reset at login time.

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