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We are experiencing freezes in our XNA games. The last played sound loops and the computer completely freezes. It does not even respond to ctrl-alt-del. It mostly happens when running fullscreen, but has been known to occur in windowed mode as well.

We reduced the total size of game content by using the DxtCompressed texture format for most of the sprites. We now have almost no freezes anymore, however it still locks up once in a while.

The boundary for too much content seems arbitrary and dependent on memory use of other programs. How can we avoid freezes or detect whether we are loading too much content at once?

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closed as off-topic by Anko, Seth Battin, Josh Petrie Feb 26 '14 at 4:05

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions about debugging a problem in your project must present a concise selection of code and context so as to allow a reader to diagnose the issue without needing to read all of your code or to engage in extensive back-and-forth dialog. For more information, see this meta thread." – Anko, Seth Battin, Josh Petrie
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how exactly do you know this is a loading content issue? – dan369 Apr 18 '12 at 12:14
Aren't you just running out of memory? In that case the computer can become very unresponsive because it has to constantly swap between RAM and HDD. Try to load content on demand and not all at once. Also try to make more of a separation between levels where you unload what you don't need anymore and load what you do. How much memory is your app using anyway? In Windows press cltr+shift+esc go to the processes tab, select view-> "select columns" and enable "Peak Working Set (Memory)" now you can see the max memory your app uses. – Roy T. Apr 18 '12 at 12:17
There is a difference between becoming unresponsive and a complete system freeze. It does not respond to anything anymore. Unfortunately our games are not level based, all content is needed all the time. Therefor I need to know what our limits are. I will check the peak working set. – Wouter Apr 18 '12 at 12:29
@Wouter which means that even the mouse cursor becomes immovable? – AgentFire Apr 18 '12 at 13:12
Try to make the game freeze each time, then compile it and test it without IDE, and on another machine. It sounds a bit like you might have some faulty memory or other hardware issues with that machine so some comparisons would be useful to find the problem area. – Daniel Carlsson Apr 18 '12 at 13:32