OS (e.g. Win10): Win7/Win10
PsychoPy version (e.g. 1.84.x): 1.84.2
I use PsychoPy for all of my experimental needs, and until this month I was perfectly happy with that. However, suddenly and simultaneously, all of my PsychoPy experiments have started (sporadically) crashing. The experiments do disparate things (some involve movie files, some involve sound files; all involve keyboard responses), and are housed on disparate computers (one a very old Win7 computer with poor memory that hasn’t been updated since last summer, one a very new Win10 computer with excellent memory that is constantly up to date). Despite those differences, the sequence of events that leads up to the crash is roughly the same:
- I input participant information and start the experiment.
- The experiment starts up fine.
- Within a couple of minutes, after the participant gives a keyboard response to advance to the next Routine, the experiment hangs, and a message pops up saying that python.exe has crashed. No error messages are generated in PsychoPy; Windows points the finger at ntdll.dll, in a message that looks something like this:
Faulting application name: python.exe, version: 0.0.0.0, time stamp: 0x56634a05
Faulting module name: ntdll.dll, version: 6.1.7601.23572, time stamp: 0x57fd02d3
Exception code: 0xc0000005
Fault offset: 0x0002e43e
Faulting process id: 0x1244
Faulting application start time: 0x01d298105bf977a9
Faulting application path: C:\Program Files (x86)\PsychoPy2\python.exe
Faulting module path: C:\Windows\SysWOW64\ntdll.dll
ntdll.dll is always the problem across computers. The experiments don’t always crash; one experiment has crashed only once (out of the 5 or so times I’ve run it) but a different version of the same experiment where the only difference is in the stimuli crashes almost all of the time. When they do, though, they are relatively consistent on where they crash within the experiment; for example, in the fourth Routine that displays instructions for one experiment, or during the first or second video stimulus for a different experiment. However, it’s nothing about the individual instruction Routine or any individual video; the program still crashes after deleting all of the instruction Routines (just sometime during the trials), and the order of presentation in the other experiment is random (so it’s not the case that any one video sinks it). If the experiment doesn’t crash within the first couple of minutes, it always completes and saves the data without any issue.
I’m at wit’s end, to be honest. I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled PsychoPy plenty of times, restarted the computers in between crashes, gone through and basically eliminated each Routine one by one, and nothing seems to help. Furthermore, this is new and without any obvious cause. The best example is for the video experiment, where I just finished collecting data in a very similar experiment in the middle of February; I never saw similar errors for the previous one, and the only difference between the two experiments is in a handful of the stimuli (which were encoded identically). PsychoPy was already at 1.84.2 at that point. The experiment that crashes the most was working without issues in December, and neither the OS nor PsychoPy were changed between then and when I started trying to run it again last week.
Oddly, I’ve never had a similar experience on my (Win10) laptop, although the only time I run experiments on my laptop is when I’m programming or when the experiment has crashed on the experimental computers, so that might just be a sample size issue.
Any thoughts? I’m happy to try anything.