evince PDF viewer 'hangs' and crashes 'RythmBox' while it's playing.

Asked by jude dawson on 2009-03-21

Hi Guys,

The PDF viewer which comes with OpenOffice.Org frequently 'hangs' and crashes other applications such as 'RythmBox' while it's playing.

This usually happens when I export a OpenOffice.Org Wordprcessor document to pdf & then open the newly created pdf document.

What happens next is that the pdf-viewer will launch but takes a VERY long time to load the document. Sometimes, the pages on the left column show but the test on the main-screen does not.
For both these scenarios, what happens next is that the PC becomes unresponsive. I cannot toggle between apps on the same screen. I can sometimes toggle to other screens at first but later can't . Also, if Rythmbox is playing a CD, it will start skipping & jamming and eventually will just crash. I need to try closing the pdf document several times before it finally closes.

I notice this will happen on pdf documents with more than 5 pages and/or with pictures & diagrams in it.
It's quite frustrating.

I'm using OpenOffice.org version 2.4.1. The Operating System is Ubuntu Release 8.04. The machine is a Desktop PC with an 80G SATAR-HD, an AMD Athalon processor and 512MB of RAM.

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, all.


Question information

English Edit question
Ubuntu evince Edit question
No assignee Edit question
Solved by:
jude dawson
Last query:
Last reply:
Andre Mangan (kyphi) said : #1

I do not understand why your system is crashing but I can tell you that Open Office does not open pdf files.
Evince Document Viewer opens pdf files.

I am also using Ubuntu 8.04 and am unable to replicate your problem.

Perhaps you can supply some further observations.

jude dawson (judedawson) said : #2

HI Andre,
Thanks for the response.

Yes, OpenOffice does not open pdf files. I didn't know the name of the pdf document viewer. Now I know :)

Well, here's one example. I just downloaded a pdf file from my Gmail account to my PC's desktop just now. When the downloaded finished. I double-clicked on the pdf document on the desktop.

The Document viewer apps launched & for a good 20sec showed only a blank page. Later on, the left-hand-side (LHS) column showing the pages of the document appeared but the full-screen page was still blank.
So, I clicked on page 5 (which showed text on the LHS column. When I did that, the full-screen page was still blank.

From this point on, things got worse.

The workspace which I had the pdf-viewer running had both the pdf-viewer & FireFox running. Rythmbox was on another workspace.

Rythmbox which was playing a CD started to skip & jam.

The workspace with the pdf-viewer & Firefox became 'grey' in colour. I could not toggle to FireFox on the same workspace.
I could at first toggle to the other workspace with Rythmbox running ( to see why it was jamming) but later could not toggle between workspaces as the PC became sluggish. After about 30sec of inactivity from the the pdf-viewer, Rythmbox suddenly quit. About 10secs after that, the pdf-viewer apps also closed. The workspace changed from grey back to normal.

I could then toggle & reopen the Firefox window.

Hope this description gives you a clearer picture.



Please make a deep test of your RAM memory...

Please be sure your RAM memory is good:

To test your pc RAM memory chips:

- boot your pc press ESC when you see the GRUB row and jump to step "**"


- boot from Ubuntu live cd main menu and at first showed menu and

**) select the item "Memory test" to test your pc ram memory

Please run memory test for many hours or stop it and replace your memory chip if you get errors (the errors usually are rows in red colour)

If you have more than one memory chips plugged on your motherboard, to know which is the damaged
chip please run the memory test with only one chip plugged a time.

Hope this helps

Please also force a filesystem check:

Open a Terminal from the menu Applications → Accessories → Terminal and type:

sudo touch /forcefsck

give your user password when requested, you don't see nothing when you type it, then press enter.

Then at next reboot of your pc the hard disk will be checked.

Hope this helps

jude dawson (judedawson) said : #5

Hi marcobra,

Thanks for the suggestions and instructions.

I'll do the suggested memory & hard disk checks & place an update here in the coming 2 days.



jude dawson (judedawson) said : #6

Hi Guys,
I upgraded to Intrepid yesterday. I also installed Adobe Reader. It is able to open my documents faster that Evince. I will use both apps.
Thanks very much for all your comments.
This ticket can be closed.