File crashing while opening during "Creating render chains"

Hello all. I am pretty sure only Steinberg can solve this, but I hope a post might be helpful for any unlucky others searching the forum in the future.

I am working on a relatively large file (an opera: 16 flows, around ~40 players) that has become very unfriendly in the last 36 hours.

Friday morning I reopened my saved file and tried to switch from the visible part to the Full Score. The program crashed. I could reopen the file and look at any other part—including a custom “Percussion Score” that contained the three percussionists—but switching to the Full Score caused the program to crash. I tried deleting the audio data from the Dorico file using the technique from this forum post but that didn’t help. I tried changing the paper size and staff size of the full score in Layout Options, but that didn’t help. (I think I tried all the obvious stuff too: rebooting the computer, etc.) The last command in the application log, every time:

Executing command: Window.SwitchToLayout?OpenScoreID=0&ScoreLayoutViewContainerID=0&LayoutID=0

Miraculously, the file came back to life at about 1am, and I continued working on it last night and for much of the day today. It was probably about 80% as stable as in the previous few weeks; more crashes than I expected, but more alarmingly, after crashing, Dorico now would occasionally crash while re-opening the file. The last command in the application log:

Creating render chains

This is the first thing after “Opening file: /file/path.dorico”, so it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with VST stuff.

Earlier today, when this happened I just stubbornly tried repeatedly and after a few tries, Dorico succeeded in opening the file. It just crashed 10 times in a row trying to open my file. And right as I was about to post this message, it succeeded on the 11th try in opening it! So I can keep working for the moment, but obviously I live in fear of the whole thing stopping again.

I can’t attach the file here because it’s too big and I’m not allowed to post it publicly, but if you are a forum superhero working on a weekend and want to check it out, I’m happy to share it confidentially. If it stops working for good, I’ll email it to Daniel on Monday for some professional help. :slight_smile: I’m hoping somebody else on here has seen a similar situation and has some magic trick toward making things more stable. My most recent Dorico Diagnostics report is attached.
Dorico (1010 KB)

Hi Jeffrey, I’d be glad to take a look. dan dot kreider at gmail dot com.

Thanks so much, Dan, I sent it a few minutes ago! If nothing else, maybe it will provide some comic relief for your weekend! :slight_smile:

Just a follow-up to say that I opened the file successfully (in full score) three times in a row.

If it’s pertinent, I’m running Windows 10 Pro, the latest Dorico, and Note Performer. Not sure what else to suggest, sorry!

I would suspect your PC has an intermittent hardware problem, like a failing memory chip or disk drive, or an over-stressed power supply.

From my experience with Dorico, the number of crashes you should be expecting over a period of “a few weeks” is zero. I can only remember ever having one crash on Dorico 2.2.20, and that was after making a user error when I did something that didn’t make any sense, on a very big project, so IMO “I got what I deserved.”

I don’t think there’s a hardware problem here. Jeff already sent me this file, which he did on Friday night (and I got back to him on Friday night, too). I was able to reproduce the crash, but unable to debug it. My colleagues are generally not stupid enough to spend the weekend working, so unfortunately there’s nothing further I can do until one of my colleagues is able to look at the project tomorrow. Even then I am not hopeful that there will be a solution that would not involve us fixing a bug of some kind, but we’ll see.

Thanks for trying the file, Dan, and Rob, for your thoughts. My Mac Pro (including ECC RAM) is pretty stable other than this experience, so I tend to agree with Daniel (superhero par excellence). (Memtest reports no errors as well.) Rob, out of curiosity, how big was your “very big project”?

I’m about to send Daniel the latest version of the Dorico file, which opens intermittently but crashes on a variety of actions (applying a changed a master page, trying to adjust print settings and printing to PDF, misc. editing tasks) and then usually crashes multiple times while trying to open the file. Assuming things remain this unstable, I can’t imagine I’ll be able to finish these parts (~1000 pages) in Dorico.

I could try running the Windows version of Dorico in a Parallels Windows 10 installation, or I could split the opera into three act files, but I’m going to wait to see what Daniel says.

If the unintentional command that caused the crash had actually worked, it would have had about 160 or 170 staves, and more than 200 layouts :slight_smile:

Aside from the user error, it has about 80, and a few hundred bars, which “just works.”