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Guide: Why is your iDevice crashing while playing Blitz?

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CptCheez #1 Posted 05 January 2015 - 08:46 PM

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Figured I'd post a little guide here on figuring out what's causing your iPhone/iPad/iPod to crash while playing Blitz.

 

In IOS7: Go into Settings -> General -> About -> Diagnostics & Usage 

In IOS8: Go into Settings -> Privacy -> Diagnostics & Usage

 

From there, tap on Diagnostic & Usage Data and here you can find the crash reports of why an app is crashing.  If you're doing this right after something crashed, then the one you want should be called "LatestCrash.ips". You can tap on that and scroll through to see what caused it.  It's a flat text file, so you don't need any special app to read it.  You can also select it to Copy/Paste.

 

On older devices like an iPad2 or Mini with only 512 MB of RAM, an app like Blitz typically crashes due to low RAM. If it's a Low RAM crash, the crash report will tell you which process was using the most RAM at the time, and 90% of the time (yes that % is completely made up) it'll be Blitz if you're looking at it right after Blitz crashed.  I did see sometimes on my iPad2 when there was another process using up all the RAM, and it was usually a game that I had been playing right before I loaded up Blitz (Clash of Clans was a frequent culprit, VainGlory another).  The crash report is pretty clear in calling out which process was the RAM bully.

 

Keep in mind that RAM is NOT THE SAME THING as storage space.  Right now you might be saying, "But Cheez, I have a 64 GB iPad3!".  That's not RAM.  That's flash storage space where apps and data are stored.  Think of that like the Hard Drive in your computer/Xbox/PS3.  RAM is system memory and is a limited precious commodity compared to flash storage.  Here's a handy list of how the different iPads stack up against each other regarding RAM.

 

iPad 1st generation: 256 MB DDR RAM
iPad 2: 512 MB DDR2 RAM
iPad 3rd & 4th generation: 1 GB LPDDR2 RAM
Air: 1 GB LPDDR3 RAM
Air 2: 2 GB LPDDR3 RAM
Mini 1st generation: 512 MB DDR2 RAM
Mini 2 & 3: 1 GB LPDDR3 RAM

 

There are a few things you can do to mitigate this happening.  Any time I knew I'd be playing Blitz for more than 5 games or so, before I started it up, I would kill all background processes (click for instructions) and then fully reboot the iPad2.  Hold the Power button until the "Slide to Power Off" thing appears.  Slide it.  Wait until it shuts off and then turn it back on again.  If you're using a Jailbroken device, you can also just add a "Reboot" button to your Control Center with a Cydia tweak called "CCToggles", which makes it a lot easier to reboot any time.  Then start up Blitz.  Once I started doing that, I never had a single in-game crash again.  Turning off things like Background App Refresh (click for instructions) can free up some system resources as well.

 

If you have a crash report that you can't decipher, feel free to post it here.  I or someone else should be able to help you figure out what's causing it.

 

Disclaimer: If you're using an Android device, none of the instructions above will likely apply to you and I won't be able to help you read a crash report from that OS.


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Static2k #2 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:05 PM

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Would you know why the game occasionally freezes on the loading screen? Playing on iPad 3...

 


king123440 #3 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:09 PM

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View PostCptCheez, on 05 January 2015 - 08:46 PM, said:

Keep in mind that RAM is NOT THE SAME THING as storage space.  Right now you might be saying, "But Cheez, I have a 64 GB iPad3!".  That's not RAM.  That's flash storage space where apps and data are stored.  Think of that like the Hard Drive in your computer/Xbox/PS3.  RAM is system memory[...]

 

Disclaimer: If you're using an Android device, none of the instructions above will likely apply to you and I won't be able to help you read a crash report from that OS.

 

Technically, RAM is "Random Accessible Memory" and it is required to run any software.


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Venemy #4 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:10 PM

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View PostStatic2k, on 05 January 2015 - 09:05 PM, said:

Would you know why the game occasionally freezes on the loading screen? Playing on iPad 3...

 


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CptCheez #5 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:15 PM

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View Postking123440, on 05 January 2015 - 04:09 PM, said:

 

Technically, RAM is "Random Accessible Memory" and it is required to run any software.

 

Technically, it's "Random-Access Memory", and often just referred to as "memory" or "system memory".  But yes, having been an IT professional for well over 15 years, I'm well aware of what RAM means and what it does.  I wasn't trying to get into detail about exactly what RAM does, just clarifying for people that often confuse it with storage.

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DrWylde #6 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:27 PM

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View Postking123440, on 05 January 2015 - 02:09 PM, said:

Technically, RAM is "Random Accessible Memory" and it is required to run any software.

 

Yes, you are correct.  I think Cheez is just trying to use the vocabulary that most will understand.   Btw, very well done Mr. Cheez.  +1


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king123440 #7 Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:38 PM

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View PostCptCheez, on 05 January 2015 - 09:15 PM, said:

 

Technically, it's "Random-Access Memory", and often just referred to as "memory" or "system memory".  But yes, having been an IT professional for well over 15 years, I'm well aware of what RAM means and what it does.  I wasn't trying to get into detail about exactly what RAM does, just clarifying for people that often confuse it with storage.

 

I know. I'm just trying to define it for the people who don't know. Although they probably won't ever use it lol. Also, is it "random-access memory"? Hmm, I always though its random accessible memory. Ah well, won't make much difference.

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tjohn6041 #8 Posted 05 January 2015 - 10:55 PM

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Well written!  I used to have an old 4S so any processor heavy game would require my closing down the background apps.  

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HisMaj #9 Posted 05 January 2015 - 10:58 PM

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fyi you can delete iPad 1 because that doesn't support blitz anyway.

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Spinee #10 Posted 06 January 2015 - 12:08 AM

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Can't find Diagnostics and Usage when going in to Settings > General > About. I'm on iOS 8.1 Jailbroken.

 

Edit: To find it on iOS 8, go to Settings > Privacy. Diagnostics and Usage will be there.


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CptCheez #11 Posted 06 January 2015 - 12:59 AM

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View PostSpinee, on 05 January 2015 - 07:08 PM, said:

Can't find Diagnostics and Usage when going in to Settings > General > About. I'm on iOS 8.1 Jailbroken.

 

Edit: To find it on iOS 8, go to Settings > Privacy. Diagnostics and Usage will be there.

 

Yeah I had just noticed that myself on my new Air2 and was coming here to update the original post (which I just did). :)

 


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CptCheez #12 Posted 06 January 2015 - 01:10 AM

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Here's an example of a Blitz crash report that is NOT due to Low RAM:

 

Spoiler

 

This is just the top portion, there's a lot more info in the acutal report.  As you can see, it's fairly obvious that this is a Blitz crash dump, since it clearly identifies wotblitz as the app that crashed.  This one happens to be an exception that appears to be due to the application trying to read/write an address in RAM that doesn't exist.  This is the kind of crash dump you'd want to send to WG in a Support Ticket, not post here. :)


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Delta256 #13 Posted 06 January 2015 - 01:23 AM

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View PostCptCheez, on 05 January 2015 - 08:10 PM, said:

Here's an example of a Blitz crash report that is NOT due to Low RAM:

 

Spoiler

 

This is just the top portion, there's a lot more info in the acutal report.  As you can see, it's fairly obvious that this is a Blitz crash dump, since it clearly identifies wotblitz as the app that crashed.  This one happens to be an exception that appears to be due to the application trying to an address in RAM that doesn't exist.  This is the kind of crash dump you'd want to send to WG in a Support Ticket, not post here. :)

 

Yeah, I'm getting quite a few segfaults. I kill my apps when I play, so it doesn't seem to be a RAM issue.

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Asiaticus #14 Posted 06 January 2015 - 01:40 AM

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Nice summary for non-technical users. A lot of people don't seem to understand the difference between memory and storage.

 

I would also point out that some people run with their storage capacity almost completely full (I've even seen play videos with "out of space" warning messages popping up during games). The system does need some free storage space as well as free RAM to work properly (not to mention install updates). Since apps tend to do things like modify files and use temporary files while running, I'd be surprised if having little to no storage free didn't have a negative effect on performance and stability. I always try to keep a couple of gigs of storage space available. 



SkiFletch #15 Posted 06 January 2015 - 02:45 AM

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Thanks Cheez.  I play on an iPad Mini (original) and crash far more than I'd like.  I'd say it happens every other day.  I run zero other apps and do the whole close out, reboot thing a lot.  Just tried the background app refresh thing, so maybe that can help.  If nothing else it will turn off in game popup notifications of various type.  Screw those.

 

Anything else I can do to free up more RAM?  I do notice that crashing TYPICALLY happens during RAM/process intensive events.  Initial map loading, all tanks in one space, big maps in general, and especially when trying to chat.  Support doesn't offer "real" help other than what I've already done.  Send them crash reports all the time though just to keep them busy.



SkiFletch #16 Posted 06 January 2015 - 04:27 AM

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Just crashed :(


CptCheez #17 Posted 06 January 2015 - 05:02 AM

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View PostAsiaticus, on 05 January 2015 - 08:40 PM, said:

I would also point out that some people run with their storage capacity almost completely full (I've even seen play videos with "out of space" warning messages popping up during games). The system does need some free storage space as well as free RAM to work properly (not to mention install updates). Since apps tend to do things like modify files and use temporary files while running, I'd be surprised if having little to no storage free didn't have a negative effect on performance and stability. I always try to keep a couple of gigs of storage space available. 

 

Absolutely true.  Many computers will use a portion of primary storage (the Hard Drive, SSD, or flash storage in the case of tablets) as "swap space".  That is, as applications copy more and more stuff into RAM, the OS will copy some of the lesser-used stuff onto a temporary place on primary storage.  Paging files, swap files, these are all common names for it.  Windows calls it "Virtual Memory".  But primary storage is always going to be slower to access than main memory, so if this copying in & out happens too much because you don't have much space left for the OS to use as swap space, you get what's known as "thrashing", which can severely degrade performance of the device/computer/server/etc.  It's always a good idea to keep a few GB free on any computer-like device to prevent this from happening.

 

View PostSkiFletch, on 05 January 2015 - 09:45 PM, said:

Thanks Cheez.  I play on an iPad Mini (original) and crash far more than I'd like.  I'd say it happens every other day.  I run zero other apps and do the whole close out, reboot thing a lot.  Just tried the background app refresh thing, so maybe that can help.  If nothing else it will turn off in game popup notifications of various type.  Screw those.

 

Anything else I can do to free up more RAM?  I do notice that crashing TYPICALLY happens during RAM/process intensive events.  Initial map loading, all tanks in one space, big maps in general, and especially when trying to chat.  Support doesn't offer "real" help other than what I've already done.  Send them crash reports all the time though just to keep them busy.

 

As far as popups, any notifications that I have enabled from other apps I set to "Banner".  NONE of them get to use the "Alert" style notification that gives you a big ol' annoying popup in the middle of a tank battle.  For freeing up RAM, there are some apps in the store that can do a little cleanup of RAM files that haven't been accessed in a while.  Search for something like "Memory Cleaner" in the App Store.

 


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CptCheez #18 Posted 06 January 2015 - 03:25 PM

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View PostSkiFletch, on 05 January 2015 - 11:27 PM, said:

Just crashed :(

 

Wanna post the first section of the latest Blitz crash dump on your device?  We can take a look at why, although I suspect with a 1st generation Mini having the same low RAM as my old iPad 2, that's probably going to be the cause...

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DrWylde #19 Posted 06 January 2015 - 04:26 PM

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View PostCptCheez, on 05 January 2015 - 06:10 PM, said:

Here's an example of a Blitz crash report that is NOT due to Low RAM:

 

Spoiler

 

This is just the top portion, there's a lot more info in the acutal report.  As you can see, it's fairly obvious that this is a Blitz crash dump, since it clearly identifies wotblitz as the app that crashed.  This one happens to be an exception that appears to be due to the application trying to an address in RAM that doesn't exist.  This is the kind of crash dump you'd want to send to WG in a Support Ticket, not post here. :)

 

That app crash is usually due to allocating some memory and not checking for failure when an address of ZERO is returned from the call... very common, but sloppy - a bug in Blitz.


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