Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Discussion about: tracktion.com
HansP
KVRist
188 posts since 9 Sep, 2017

Post Sat Sep 14, 2019 3:24 pm

it's a general crucial issue that the "featuremania" in popular software at the end of the day ruins too much. it is more like a mechanism to lock out newcomers and let the biggest companies survive.
so I would recommend to invest in stability, and while going through the modules, do slight clean-ups with some GUI issues.
the plugin problem is on a different page, and also costly, but tools for checking compatibility seem to have greatly improved.
I'd like to remind about the switch from T6 to T7 (the version I downloaded this year), that brought massive improvements in stability. done very well!

vitocorleone123
KVRist
299 posts since 30 Jun, 2014 from Pacific NW

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sun Sep 15, 2019 7:35 am

My hope is that they stick to the usual pattern and that Waveform 11 will be more stable - or that plugin developers will FINALLY get around to addressing issues in their plugins to be more compatible. The even versions have, for a number of years, been the least stable for me vs. the odd ones. Waveform 10 crashes regularly and almost always says it's the fault of a plugin.... but it's a different plugin every time. Or different list of them. And these are quality, professional plugins like Pro-Q2.

EDIT: I'm guilty of assuming "professional" plugins are "professionally coded" - which, as Jules rightly pointed out in the post below, is NOT a safe assumption. My humble apologies, and I appreciate you calling that out. Thanks for taking the time to write. Signed,

- Long-time Customer, Occasional Grumpy Old Man


If Waveform 11 + plugins is NOT more stable, I'd have to start saving up for, and looking for, a new primary DAW. That would be sad, as I've been using Tracktion since T3. But now I've gone invested quite a lot of money in music software and don't relish having Waveform crash at least once per session while I'm trying to make the most out of it. That said, I'm clearly a believer and even a bit of a fan. As a hobbyist, I can afford to have things crash. I will say that Waveform has become really good at recovering from crashes - vast improvement and I'm vastly thankful.
Last edited by vitocorleone123 on Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:44 pm, edited 3 times in total.

jules
Chief Tracktioneer
480 posts since 14 Nov, 2002 from London

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:38 am

vitocorleone123 wrote:
Sun Sep 15, 2019 7:35 am
Waveform 10 crashes regularly and almost always says it's the fault of a plugin.... but it's a different plugin every time. Or different list of them.
Sigh... the frustrating thing for us is that it IS almost always the fault of a plugin. But we end up getting blamed!

This has always been a massive annoyance, so we added code to detect where a crash happens, so that we can at least tell the users when it's not our fault, and tell them which plugin crashed...

..but nobody believes it! They still blame us, as you've just demonstrated!

The misunderstanding is this: If you load a plugin in Ableton, Logic or Cubase, you can bet that the plugin company tested it heavily in those DAWs, and fixed all the bugs they found, so you'll probably not see many problems in those hosts.

However, that plugin could be riddled with undetected bugs which only get triggered by tiny differences in the way other DAWs use them, but which never got spotted because plugin makers simply don't have the time or patience to test them in every single DAW and host that's out there. I bet most plugins are released without EVER been loaded in Waveform at all.

So then, maddeningly, when a user sees a plugin that crashes in Waveform but not in Ableton, Logic, etc, they (understandably from their point of view!) blame Waveform, and moan to us rather than the plugin company, so the people who could fix the bug never even get told about it!

Dave has done huge amounts of work over the last couple of years to try to get us out of this situation - he's created tools for plugin manufacturers to use to test their plugins better, he's done loads of work on making Waveform recover more robustly when things do go wrong, and made many other stability fixes internally, as well as adding analytics to help us quickly find and fix problems, and we're aiming to have sandboxing at some point before too long, so I really feel I need to step in here and put the record straight!

And please believe us: if Waveform tells you that a plugin has crashed, it's not making that up!
vitocorleone123 wrote:
Sun Sep 15, 2019 7:35 am
And these are quality, professional plugins like Pro-Q2.
I've seen the insides of many codebases in my long career, and I can assure you that there is ZERO correlation between how "professional" a plugin appears to be, and how well-written the code actually is. Some of the most highly respected plugins out there are full of horrifyingly poor-quality code!

vitocorleone123
KVRist
299 posts since 30 Jun, 2014 from Pacific NW

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:55 pm

I 100% believe you, and edited my prior post. :oops:

All that said, I do still see 2 problems.

1) Ignorant/forgetful people like myself who make the assumption the host DAW is responsible. I liken this to always blaming Windows for BSODs. I can say that plugin developers, even big ones, eventually get around to replying if you provide them with proof their plugins is to blame. Slower reply if it's just an issue you as the user cannot diagnose (plugin vs. DAW). And some have told me they don't have Waveform available to test on :(

2) Regardless of which code base is to blame for the crash, it still happens. A lot lately, for me, though I figured it'd be the case with an even numbered version. As someone who has worked in software (UX Design + User Research) for 20 years, I understand many of the challenges, and know it's really hard. On the other hand, as a paying customer, to some extent, I don't care as much why the crashes happen, especially if I can't solve it, so much as they DO happen. My user experience is the sum of the parts - even though so many of those parts are way outside of Tracktion's control (a price of making such an incredible DAW?). I've always hoped Tracktion/Waveform would grow in popularity - and, hopefully, it has been - to the point where the system as a whole would be more stable.

You can see those 2 sides of me, tech worker vs customer, warring in my posts, here :D

It's a bit of a thankless position to be in, but I've done what I can to say "thanks" with my wallet since getting Tracktion free from Mackie and becoming a paying customer ever since. I'm just getting older and less tolerant of tech issues, perhaps. Aka grumpy old man syndrome.

I can say, without zero doubt, I'll order a Waveform 11 upgrade as soon as it's available (and I have the $). I also can say that I always leave the crash reporting feature enabled because, otherwise, it makes it that much harder for Tracktion to resolve and urge everyone reading this to leave that kind of reporting feature enabled.

Kott
KVRist
87 posts since 12 Mar, 2013 from Russia, Vladivostok

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sun Sep 15, 2019 6:07 pm

Dave has done huge amounts of work over the last couple of years to try to get us out of this situation - he's created tools for plugin manufacturers to use to test their plugins better, he's done loads of work on making Waveform recover more robustly when things do go wrong, and made many other stability fixes internally, as well as adding analytics to help us quickly find and fix problems, and we're aiming to have sandboxing at some point before too long, so I really feel I need to step in here and put the record straight!
I really appreciate all of your work guys. But WF need a plugin sandboxing/bridging badly. I have little hope that opening engine may make things go further, but just a little.

AGreen
KVRist
175 posts since 2 Feb, 2015

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Mon Sep 16, 2019 2:29 am

Interesting post Jules. If plugins are the problem, implementing a sandboxing solution should be a priority because sadly you are being blamed for the crashes as you say and this is not good for sales or reputation. It's sad to see an interesting DAW like Waveform getting the blame for things that are not it's fault.

jules
Chief Tracktioneer
480 posts since 14 Nov, 2002 from London

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:03 am

Thanks - to be fair, it's not always the plugins at fault, Tracktion has had its share of stupid bugs over the years!

But as our own codebase has got more robust, and we've added better analytics to help track down and fix our own mistakes, the plugins have become more and more the main culprits. (I don't know the numbers about what the split is, but we do count this)

Yes, sandboxing is a great solution, but it's incredibly difficult to implement and has drawbacks in terms of performance and some clunky UI interactions. We'll hopefully be able to add it at some point.

Of course this will all be a historical problem in the future when all plugins are written in SOUL/javascript where it'll be impossible to write anything that crashes :)

Kott
KVRist
87 posts since 12 Mar, 2013 from Russia, Vladivostok

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Mon Sep 16, 2019 5:52 am

jules wrote:
Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:03 am
Thanks - to be fair, it's not always the plugins at fault, Tracktion has had its share of stupid bugs over the years!
:)
I'd wanted to add, that there some very less popular hosts that plugins (which breaks WF) do not harms. Many of them are open source, as the Tracktion Engine.

FigBug
KVRist
380 posts since 3 May, 2005 from Victoria, BC

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Fri Sep 20, 2019 8:38 am

The issues reported by OP are now fixed in latest beta.

AGreen
KVRist
175 posts since 2 Feb, 2015

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sat Sep 21, 2019 2:12 am

Thanks. Just tested the new beta and the reported problems seems to be fixed.

GearNostalgia
KVRist
306 posts since 28 Dec, 2017

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Sun Sep 22, 2019 10:03 am

Thank you, this was informative, but I have to admit I am like most users. I was very eager to use waveform, but when it crashed on me using my most used instruments I gave it up right away. It does not matter where the fault is. If the DAW just shuts down, there is no way to work with it. So I stopped at WF9. If this gets better in the future I will upgrade.

PierreG
KVRist
200 posts since 24 Sep, 2005

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:01 am

AGreen wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:22 am
Go to the settings page in Windows 10, click on "System" then "Display". Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on "Graphics settings", make sure "Classic app" is selected then browse to the Waveform 10 folder in "Program Files" and select the Waveform 10.exe file. Once selected, click the "Options" button and select "High performance".
I discovered this feature a while back, which is indeed helpful. Thanks for sharing this tip!

PierreG
KVRist
200 posts since 24 Sep, 2005

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:03 am

AGreen wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:53 am
It's Windows 10, 1903, build 18362.329
I've been holding off on installing this Windows build. Have you had any other issues with it?

AGreen
KVRist
175 posts since 2 Feb, 2015

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Tue Oct 01, 2019 2:32 am

PierreG wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:03 am
I've been holding off on installing this Windows build. Have you had any other issues with it?
I've not had any problems with it myself but my usage is fairly light. Web browsing, email, libre office, audio recording etc.

PierreG
KVRist
200 posts since 24 Sep, 2005

Re: Crashes and graphics problems with Waveform 10

Post Tue Oct 01, 2019 9:33 am

AGreen wrote:
Tue Oct 01, 2019 2:32 am
PierreG wrote:
Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:03 am
I've been holding off on installing this Windows build. Have you had any other issues with it?
I've not had any problems with it myself but my usage is fairly light. Web browsing, email, libre office, audio recording etc.
Thanks for the feedback, good to know.

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