npviewer.bin seems to be killing my system

Robert P. J. Day rpjday at
Sun Nov 25 06:27:46 UTC 2007

  recently, my fedora 8-based gateway laptop will, for no obvious
reason, suddenly go berserk in terms of disk activity, to the point
where it effectlvely becomes unusable -- that is, simple keyboard
activity takes over a minute to get a response.

  it just happened again, at which point i switched out of my gnome
desktop (it took over two minutes to get back to a virtual console),
where "top" showed nothing in particular hogging either memory or CPU,
but it also showed a 5-minute load average of over 20!

  "free", on the other hand, showed both memory and swap to be maxed
out in terms of use.  the standard disgnostic tools didn't identify
anything as the culprit, so i just killall'ed firefox-bin, and
everything returned to normal, at which point "top" showed that two
instances of npviewer.bin were now hogging over 50% of the CPU.

  at this point, i'm convinced that npviewer.bin is an evil, evil
piece of software and i'm sorely tempted to get rid of it.  is anyone
else seeing this kind of bad craziness?


p.s.  firefox, in general, has been impressing me less and less as
time has gone by.  after i finally killed it above, once again, it
left a youtube image embedded firmly in my desktop, which could only
be cleared by logging out of X entirely.

i think it's finally time to switch browsers.

Robert P. J. Day
Linux Consulting, Training and Annoying Kernel Pedantry
Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA

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