"The system detected a problem, do you want to report it?" dialog

Peter Flynn peter at silmaril.ie
Sat Aug 25 19:00:07 UTC 2018


On 25/08/18 00:49, Robert Heller wrote:
> I'm getting this "The system detected a problem, do you want to
> report it?" dialog. It does not say what the problem is.  

I've had these from time to time and they're a pain in the OSS.

> How do I find out what the problem is?  I am not interested in
> reporting it. 

I always assumed that clicking "Report" would auto-generate a report and
send it, but it doesn't. It opens a browser window onto whatever
report-a-bug web site the developers use, where you have to create a
username and password (and go through the email confirmation loop) and
then write your own report on what went wrong — when in all likelihood
you don't know what went wrong. If the devs want people to report 
errors, which I assume they do, they MUST create a better system for 
doing so.

I *would* be interested in sending an auto-generated report, and I 
wouldn't mind adding a note about the state of the system when it 
happened, but I'm an end user, not a developer (these days). 
Unfortunately the current developers assume everyone is running a full 
suite of dev analytic tools and that they are able to pinpoint the cause 
of the error themselves. In this they err.

> I suspect it is something stupid that I can fix, but I
> cannot figure out how to find out what is wrong.

If you know the date/time, look in /var/log/syslog or /etc/messages or 
wherever your system logs its messages and see if there is anything 
unusual happening. It's probably not wise to ignore it: those messages 
tend only to appear when something serious is happening.

I've also had them come up when there's a hardware problem that the 
software can't identify, so the next time you bring the system down, don 
a grounding wrist strap, open the box and reseat the cards, clean the 
fluff, and make sure it all looks OK.

> This is with Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. I am used to CentOS and used to a less
> pointy-clicky user interface, where one gets real error messages, not
> these silly "idiot light" dianostics.

14.04 is getting a little long in the tooth but should still be stable.

I had many CentOS systems in my last job, but CentOS was hopelessly out 
of date for what we wanted to do, although it was stable. Fortunately 
they were servers, so there weren't any popups: all access was command 
line and all error messages were on the console.

///Peter



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