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Old 07-11-2010, 03:24 PM   #1
Fuzz Bucket
 
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What Is Your Experience Like? Crashes?

My experience with the Steam client has been dismal. On top of things such as those listed in Bugs and Misbehavior (Most of which are just ridiculous), I am finding that the client is using an unprecedented amount of system resources and crashing numerous times a day, often when I am not even interacting with it. It is rather obnoxious to be playing TF2 or KF and having Steam crash in the background, causing whatever I'm playing to become unresponsive.

As I said earlier, the client usually crashes when I am not around my computer. That is, I return to my desk to find a nice crash report waiting for me.

Some people seem to think that these crashes are related to memory leaks with the client's chat functionality. However, I have found that the client will crash regardless as to whether or not I am signed in to friends, have private chats open, have group chats open, or have the main window open.

What is your experience with Steam like? Do you have issues with the client crashing?

System information.

Last edited by Fuzz Bucket: 07-11-2010 at 03:32 PM.
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Old 07-11-2010, 05:51 PM   #2
Mangr0v3
 
 
 
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My experience has been rather unpleasant. During the beta, I use Steam almost exclusively on my Macbook for beta testing. Now that it's released, and apparently not getting any better, I'm using Steam exclusively on my desktop (except when I want to play a game on my Macbook, e.g. at a friends house).

It doesn't look like a Mac application. (OK, not that big a deal.)
It doesn't behave like a Mac application.
It doesn't follow almost ANY of Apple's Human Interface Guidelines.

It's using a proprietary UI layer (VGUI) that causes more problems than it solves. Features of applications using native toolkits (e.g. Copy and Paste in Cocoa/Win32, OS setting in windows for lines-to-scroll-per-movement-of-the-mouse-wheel) need to be reinvented and rewritten into the Steam client, rather than simply using what's already publicly available.

If Valve had used Model-View-Controller - and from what Valve employees have said on the forums I take it they haven't - it wouldn't have been hard at all to maintain a native Windows client completely separately from a native Mac client (if Valve have any Cocoa developers) - especially since C++ and Objective-C can work happily together as Objective-C++.

Instead, Valve seem to be either wasting time fixing bugs that should simply have never been an issue, or are ignoring or taking ages to fix bugs that also should never have risen.

If you don't care about user experience, you're going to lose a whole lot of customers. I've stopped using or looked at but never adopted several applications because of the UI/UX alone, (most of which were FOSS) such as GIMP.

Rob Barris has mentioned several times that it's simply a game launcher and not worth complaining about, however it's more than that. Apart from being the only chat client for Steam Community, which has grown to become a small social network, it's also the gateway into all of Valve's games.If the doorway to a building is rotting, faded and falling apart, what would the rest of the building be like inside? Steam and especially Steam for Mac gives a very bad first impression for anyone coming to Steam for Steam games for the first time.

</rant>

I don't often have client crashed, but then again I don't often use the Steam client on my Macbook. I do (or did if they've actually fixed it since last week) still have copy+paste issues, issues with the UI getting stuck, issues where the UI doesn't load fast enough or gets displayed before it's fully loaded, issues where the data being displayed is inconsistent in several areas, etc.

The Steam client also does have abominably high resource usage - approx. 15-25% of a Core 2 Duo P7550 core and more RAM usage than Chrome with 8 tabs when Steam is simply idling.

System Information.

Last edited by Mangr0v3: 07-11-2010 at 05:54 PM.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:16 PM   #3
johnston9234
 
 
 
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i use both mac and pc for steam and i find the PC version to be far superior. Boot up time is much faster on PC for the steam application and game speeds for PC are also much faster. All things considered everything is faster on the PC version.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:21 PM   #4
Mangr0v3
 
 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnston9234 View Post
i use both mac and pc for steam and i find the PC version to be far superior. Boot up time is much faster on PC for the steam application and game speeds for PC are also much faster. All things considered everything is faster on the PC version.
I actually find that the Mac client starts up and logs in an order of magnitude faster than the Windows client.

So every time it crashes, you can get back to what you were doing faster.



The only crash I've seen in the past few months that was not directly caused by Steam or Adobe Flash was a taxi crashing into the car in front of it a couple of weeks ago.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mangr0v3 View Post
I actually find that the Mac client starts up and logs in an order of magnitude faster than the Windows client.

So every time it crashes, you can get back to what you were doing faster.



The only crash I've seen in the past few months that was not directly caused by Steam or Adobe Flash was a taxi crashing into the car in front of it a couple of weeks ago.
For me, the client "logs in" faster on OS X, but after the main window is drawn, it locks up for a few minutes while it does god-knows-what before becoming responsive again.
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Old 07-15-2010, 07:57 AM   #6
jp_bl_68
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnston9234 View Post
i use both mac and pc for steam and i find the PC version to be far superior. Boot up time is much faster on PC for the steam application and game speeds for PC are also much faster. All things considered everything is faster on the PC version.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mangr0v3 View Post
I actually find that the Mac client starts up and logs in an order of magnitude faster than the Windows client.
This pretty much sums up my experience so far.

Once logged in Steam itself is very slow to respond, even more so than its windows equivalent, and the games don't perform as well as they did on my windows partition.

Hopefully this is something that'll get better with time, not holding my breath though.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:28 PM   #7
Mangr0v3
 
 
 
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Only does that for a couple of seconds for me, and considering the out-of-place UI when that does happen, I think that's the client loading the games and friends lists.

http://cl.ly/239ad813391ae0de4aa3
http://cl.ly/7366ae91b0fad5d5a8d4
http://cl.ly/663eca7550034478131c

Last edited by Mangr0v3: 07-11-2010 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 07-12-2010, 01:32 PM   #8
Fuzz Bucket
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mangr0v3 View Post
Only does that for a couple of seconds for me, and considering the out-of-place UI when that does happen, I think that's the client loading the games and friends lists.

http://cl.ly/239ad813391ae0de4aa3
http://cl.ly/7366ae91b0fad5d5a8d4
http://cl.ly/663eca7550034478131c
Yep. That's what it does for me.

This is getting old:
Code:
Last login: Mon Jul 12 16:26:28 on ttys000
simba:~ seirmubsa$ ls -la /Users/seirmubsa/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports 
total 4824
drwx------  48 seirmubsa  staff   1632 Jul 12 16:31 .
drwx------  29 seirmubsa  staff    986 Jul  9 20:58 ..
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  47266 Jul  9 19:41 Safari_2010-07-09-194144_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  44671 Jul  7 03:29 Screenium_2010-06-30-212539_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  39836 Jul  8 15:12 hl2_osx_2010-07-08-151255_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  52111 Jul 10 17:26 hl2_osx_2010-07-10-172632_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  37085 Jul 10 18:28 hl2_osx_2010-07-10-182830_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  46081 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-28-181707_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  49284 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-28-213949_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  48320 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-29-012423_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  49195 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-29-143553_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  51643 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-29-192713_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  51850 Jun 30 03:13 steam_2010-06-29-233318_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  48237 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-06-30-090907_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  48610 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-06-30-164534_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  45237 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-01-050247_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  45435 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-01-185201_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  58077 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-02-002040_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  46778 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-02-082042_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  51949 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-02-144837_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  84802 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-03-020605_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  46777 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-03-131104_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  64428 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-03-171952_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  49859 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-04-021745_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  57689 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-04-182722_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  61151 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-05-020852_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  60121 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-05-171251_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  46604 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-05-201448_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  61902 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-06-000006_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  61846 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-06-070333_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  57133 Jul  7 03:29 steam_2010-07-06-185037_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  52750 Jul  7 05:23 steam_2010-07-07-052318_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  60469 Jul  8 01:47 steam_2010-07-08-014742_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  28380 Jul  8 17:34 steam_2010-07-08-173439_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  47440 Jul  8 20:24 steam_2010-07-08-202455_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  60086 Jul  9 00:29 steam_2010-07-09-002906_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  59074 Jul  9 05:00 steam_2010-07-09-050026_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  44271 Jul  9 16:48 steam_2010-07-09-164854_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  64724 Jul  9 23:32 steam_2010-07-09-233241_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  57050 Jul 10 03:27 steam_2010-07-10-032714_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  55785 Jul 10 15:22 steam_2010-07-10-152224_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  53244 Jul 10 20:42 steam_2010-07-10-204205_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  55528 Jul 11 02:13 steam_2010-07-11-021333_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  43289 Jul 11 18:06 steam_2010-07-11-180621_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  54862 Jul 11 20:17 steam_2010-07-11-201721_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  52960 Jul 12 00:05 steam_2010-07-12-000527_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  40733 Jul 12 03:17 steam_2010-07-12-031706_Simba.crash
-rw-------@  1 seirmubsa  staff  44207 Jul 12 16:31 steam_2010-07-12-163106_Simba.crash
simba:~ seirmubsa$
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:51 PM   #9
NSGod
 
 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzz Bucket View Post
Yep. That's what it does for me.

This is getting old:

Last login: Mon Jul 12 16:26:28 on ttys000
simba:~ seirmubsa$ ls -la /Users/seirmubsa/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports
total 4824
drwx------ 48 seirmubsa staff 1632 Jul 12 16:31 .
drwx------ 29 seirmubsa staff 986 Jul 9 20:58 ..
[SNIP]
simba:~ seirmubsa$
Can you at least make these available so they can take a look at them to see what's causing the crashes (I'm kind of curious myself)?

I've found it to be relatively stable (though I did get a crash yesterday while installing Day of Defeat: Source), but I'm on a Mac Pro that's set to never sleep, and is hooked up by Gigabit ethernet (in other words, relatively stable compared to situations you could arrive at on a laptop). What I mean is, perhaps Steam isn't able to deal as well with waking from sleep or a momentarily dropped Airport connection as well as other apps (if in fact that's what's happening). Oh, and I also don't have 175 friends, lol, I'm sure that could be taxing.

I've never seen RAM usage get as high as I think you have, usually under 400 MB. Running leaks on Steam shows "109182 leaks for 8678304 total leaked bytes". Most of the "leaks" are just C-strings. For example

Code:
MacPro:~ mdouma46$ leaks 5871 | grep -c '/Applications/Steam.app/Contents/MacOS/package'
228
MacPro:~ mdouma46$ leaks 5871 | grep -c "steam://"
1682
CPU% usage at idle is by far the most disturbing thing, more so than anything else. With almost 70% of their Mac users on laptops, I can't imagine that using 5 to 15% of the CPU while just idling is an acceptable user experience. Even that figure fails to take into account how Steam's % CPU usage can spike while its windows are obscured in the background, merely by happening to move your mouse over top of the window. For example, say you have Steam's main window open and positioned in the upper left hand corner of your screen. Next to that you have the Friends list window. In the Finder, you have 4 Finder windows open which are arranged in a way such that those windows cover Steam's windows which are behind them. If you move your mouse within those Finder windows to copy files or browse to different folders, if any of your mouse movements happen to be over an area Steam's windows are interested in, Steam's CPU usage can spike to 15% - 30% even though you can't even see them.

Now, while you're playing games, obviously, it doesn't matter as much about CPU usage in that context. But I have chat apps like iChat, Adium, and my own branch of BlackFire which I helped (re)write myself (it's a Mac-native clone of Xfire that's based off MacFire) open 24/7/365 and they all use little to no CPU usage on idle. If a user's laptop is idling, or they're browsing the web, or something else, it's perfectly reasonable to want to be able to keep Steam open to talk with friends without it needlessly eating up their battery life. (Yes, you can say "well just quit it then", but that obviously misses the point).

Last edited by NSGod: 07-13-2010 at 07:09 PM.
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:32 PM   #10
Fuzz Bucket
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NSGod View Post
Can you at least make these available so they can take a look at them to see what's causing the crashes (I'm kind of curious myself)?

I've found it to be relatively stable (though I did get a crash yesterday while installing Day of Defeat: Source), but I'm on a Mac Pro that's set to never sleep, and is hooked up by Gigabit ethernet (in other words, relatively stable compared to situations you could arrive at on a laptop). What I mean is, perhaps Steam isn't able to deal as well with waking from sleep or a momentarily dropped Airport connection as well as other apps (if in fact that's what's happening). Oh, and I also don't have 175 friends, lol, I'm sure that could be taxing.

I've never seen RAM usage get as high as I think you have, usually under 400 MB. Running leaks on Steam shows "109182 leaks for 8678304 total leaked bytes". Most of the "leaks" are just C-strings. For example

Code:
MacPro:~ mdouma46$ leaks 5871 | grep -c '/Applications/Steam.app/Contents/MacOS/package'
228
MacPro:~ mdouma46$ leaks 5871 | grep -c "steam://"
1682
I've sent them in before (or tried to).
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Old 07-13-2010, 12:25 AM   #11
Mangr0v3
 
 
 
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(cross-post)

Call me crazy, but I used to not mind Valve time. Products were delayed simply to make them better - for example, L4D2 (or was it the demo?) was delayed because a game-crashing bug was discovered at the last moment.

It seems to me that Valve is now taking advantage of the trust we place in them. Valve are delaying products, and then delivering almost total garbage.

Steam for Mac, whilst vastly better than the first beta builds that shipped, is still horrible.
Team Fortress 2 has had many bugs fixed since it first went into beta, but still has functionality missing, still is crash-prone, and still has poor performance (although that's mostly not Valve's fault).

Please don't screw up the Left 4 Dead series on Mac.
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Old 07-13-2010, 03:41 PM   #12
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My li'll iMac (8.1 I believe) with a meagre 128mb ATI radeon 2400HD XT have managed steam without a problem. I'm a bit of a neat-freak and I defrag my drive (with iDefrag) a bit more than needed. Oh, and I'm not one for multiplayer but I tried a bit of TF2 (since it came with the orange box) just to see what all the malarkey was about (loved the "meet the…" clips), and yes… I had no problems whatsoever. Mind you I had to mixture with the settings a tiny bit.

Also, I like the steam interface… it's a nice idea (in my mind) that they kept the OSX version so similar to the WinTel version. … it makes it easier and less of a reset of the proverbial mindset when switching OS… err OSes (?) to play something else in bootcamp (i.e. fallout 3). As for the seemingly long wait… well… I don't mind it… I love the Valve-thing of everything being a surprise…

… my two cents of nonsense.

Damn… I'm not usually this cheerful… I must be drunk or sick or something…
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:55 PM   #13
ultramalakian
 
 
 
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Few bugs and imperfections, but overall, almost as good as on Windows.
I'm NOT talking about game performance, of course...
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:06 PM   #14
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I have had zero crashes. Game performance is good. I don't think it's quite as good as when I run Steam in Bootcamp, but I haven't actually checked frame rates or anything to be sure. Suffice to say, performance has been good enough that I'm not concerned about whether it's running 3% faster in Bootcamp or whatever. I don't run with all the settings maxed out; I've just left them on the default settings. My MacBookPro is 11 months old and I'm running Snow Leopard 10.6.4.

Model Name: MacBook Pro
Model Identifier: MacBookPro5,3
Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
Processor Speed: 2.66 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 2
L2 Cache: 3 MB
Memory: 4 GB
Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
Boot ROM Version: MBP53.00AC.B03
SMC Version (system): 1.48f2

NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT:
Chipset Model: NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT
Type: GPU
Bus: PCIe
PCIe Lane Width: x16
VRAM (Total): 256 MB
Vendor: NVIDIA (0x10de)
Device ID: 0x0647
Revision ID: 0x00a1
ROM Revision: 3448
gMux Version: 1.8.8
Displays:
Color LCD:
Resolution: 1440 x 900
Pixel Depth: 32-Bit Color (ARGB8888)
Main Display: Yes
Mirror: Off
Online: Yes
Built-In: Yes
Display Connector:
Status: No Display Connected
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:11 PM   #15
d10sfan
 
 
 
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Ive had very little crashes. CSS works pretty well, DODS works alright, but TF2 runs horribly. Getting not even a steady 30 fps on medium with a 8600m.
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