Video freezing on Dell XPS15

Hey peeps.I have a Dell XPS 15 9550 with Intel and Nvidia 960M graphics and am having a video freezing issue on both GPU’s.Video’s are freezing for a few seconds and then play for a few seconds and then feeze again and so on.Audio is playing fine though and it is happening on video’s on hard drive and streaming.I am running another distro at present due to this but hope to fix the issue because I was really enjoying my first Budgie experience and hope to make Ubuntu Budgie my go to distro…Thanks in advance.

Chrome or chromium? Is this YouTube videos?

What happens if you use Firefox?

Same on all browsers.It’s a problem with every video no matter what the source is even my own little movie clips on the hard drive.I am running at present Ubuntu Gnome 18.04 and everything plays fine.

… and are you using nouveau open-source graphics drivers or the nvidia proprietary drivers?

What happens if you swap?

Thanks for your answers.
I have tried all drivers and there is no change.

I have tried Solus Os Budgie and all is fine there.It just seems to be happening on Ubuntu Budgie.From my search about this it seems quite a few people are having the same experience but I have not yet found a fix.

try the latest 4.18 kernel - installing using via ukuu is the easiest way here

If that doesn’t work you can boot via grub using the standard 4.15 kernel then remove the 4.18 kernel via ukuu and finally purging the ppa

Sounds like a plan.It was something I was thinking of trying.I will keep you posted.Thanks

I just did a new install and all was fine until I added the windows preview applet needed for expose hot corners.I can with all certainty say it looks like that windows preview applet is causing the issue.Hopefully this can be fixed as the hot corners for windows preview is one thing on my must have list,it just suits my way of working and find it more productive for me.
Edit : Also updated to 4.18.5 kernel and no change

Hi @mandala1111 , weird issue. Just to confirm, is the pausing exactly periodic, and if so what is the time between the breaks? Also: is the issue gone after you disable the previews applet?

Hi Vlijim.The video pausing is a bit sporadic.I tested on a 46 second clip I have and it froze 7 times for a second each time.I have tested this 6 times with adding and removing the windows preview applet and every time the applet it added the video freezes and every time it is removed the video plays perfectly so I can say 100% that the windows preview applet is causing the issue.What is running expose ? is it skippy and brightside ? maybe these are causing the bug.

Hi @mandala1111, Window previews is an applet of our own. It maintains a set of prepared images of existing windows to be used in the called previews windows. This is done by an algorithm that is “smart”, and on some points variable, to make it low on juice. In general, combinations of drivers, gpu’s and commands can cause issues. On my previous laptop e.g. froze for a second or 5 if I ran a (any) xrandr command.
Could you run a video (previews disabled), then, while running, open a terminal window and run the command sleep 10 && wmctrl -lG, the immediately switch back to the video and see if it freezes after these 10 seconds? If so, we can probably fix it, if not, we need to look further to find out what exactly is the cause and see if we can fix it in the current concept of the applet.

…Secondly, could you run (again) a video and run it for longer than 90 seconds? the backgrounder stops updating window previews after 90 seconds without keyboard- or mouse input, Only the process to check if any action occurs remains. This gives us again more information of where the issue exists.

Thanks again vlijm.I will do the tests shortly but just wanted to add that I just played a youtube clip and it’s freezing pretty badly on Chromium with no windows preview applet installed and every time I move the cursor with my touchpad the video starts playing again,very strange.

Ai, sorry to hear that. Random issues are the worst to find out.

I know,it makes it hard to track down the problem.In my 8 years of using Linux this is my first experience of video freezing.