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  1. femanuele's Avatar
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    #26  
    Just noticed I have forgot to underline something maybe obvious but very important, when I posted the solution I've found: that one isn't a real solution because, naturally, you can't be forced to uninstall apps; it is acceptable to have a quota on "active" background tasks, not apps in general.
    I was lucky 'cause I had a couple of apps I didn't really care of, but it's gonna soon arrive the moment that I install a new app and everything freezes again. Of course the app will have to use a background task, but the really good apps always do (and it doesn't matter if I want to use that feature, it's enough to install the app and run it to find a new task in your list).
    That's why I'm helping Windows Phone support to understand this problem (though I don't have great hopes considering they can't test it themselves).

    F.
  2. thed's Avatar
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    #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by femanuele View Post
    That's really a bad sign, when you uninstall apps they must disappear from the background tasks list. Maybe this changes from phone to phone. On my Lumia 800 they disappeared as soon as I uninstalled them, and the live tiles I was actually using have gone back to work almost immediately (without restarting the phone).
    Eventually it updated and the deleted apps disappeared from the list. But it did take a long time. I'm not sure when it updated but it took several hours at least.
    Quote Originally Posted by femanuele View Post
    Just noticed I have forgot to underline something maybe obvious but very important, when I posted the solution I've found: that one isn't a real solution because, naturally, you can't be forced to uninstall apps; it is acceptable to have a quota on "active" background tasks, not apps in general.
    I was lucky 'cause I had a couple of apps I didn't really care of, but it's gonna soon arrive the moment that I install a new app and everything freezes again. Of course the app will have to use a background task, but the really good apps always do (and it doesn't matter if I want to use that feature, it's enough to install the app and run it to find a new task in your list).
    That's why I'm helping Windows Phone support to understand this problem (though I don't have great hopes considering they can't test it themselves).

    F.
    Now that I have things working, I'm slowly reinstalling some apps with background tasks that I had disabled in the hopes that I can at least figure out what the limit is. But it could take a while. Testing this is a painfully slow process.

    Good to know that someone at MS is listening. Be sure to let us know if they discover anything!
  3. SouthpawJosh's Avatar
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    #28  
    With my phone it just must have been a delay with the Me tile. My Weather Flow app still hasn't updated in over 24 hours.
  4. SouthpawJosh's Avatar
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    #29  
    Just to update again: my Weather Flow app did not update on the Live Tile from Friday morning until Sunday early afternoon. It updated twice, and has since stopped again. It hasn't updated in 18 hours now.
  5. femanuele's Avatar
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    #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by SouthpawJosh View Post
    Just to update again: my Weather Flow app did not update on the Live Tile from Friday morning until Sunday early afternoon. It updated twice, and has since stopped again. It hasn't updated in 18 hours now.
    SouthpawJosh: I can't be sure that my solution will work on every phone, but if I were you I'd try some other live tile; WeatherFlow can be stuck with a completely different problem (not necessarily their bug, maybe some other rare fault of the OS). If you already have other third-party live tiles that work then your problem is definitely with WeatherFlow and I would insist with the developer to find a solution.
    What I can tell you about WeatherFlow is that they did something around the usual mechanism of the background task; I know this 'cause my WeatherFlow live tile updates exactly every hour and, as a developer, I'm sure that the OS doesn't offer such an option (if you use background tasks in your app you will be called every half hour); so, it's clear they've done something clever to limit the amount of data used by their app (in fact frequent updates on weather forecast are useless), that is: they do something in their background task only half the times they're called, thus they check for something before executing the update...and maybe there's a problem there. To do this they have to save their state and maybe they don't save anything when your storage has less than 10% free space (I don't know, I'm just imagining a scenario).
    Anyways, my point is: one live tile that's not working is probably a different problem than the one we're having here. Also: my live tiles (WeatherFlow included) stopped completely (for a week) until I found that solution, it didn't happen that they worked for a brief moment and then went dark again.

    F.
  6. SouthpawJosh's Avatar
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    #31  
    Quote Originally Posted by femanuele View Post
    SouthpawJosh: I can't be sure that my solution will work on every phone, but if I were you I'd try some other live tile; WeatherFlow can be stuck with a completely different problem (not necessarily their bug, maybe some other rare fault of the OS). If you already have other third-party live tiles that work then your problem is definitely with WeatherFlow and I would insist with the developer to find a solution.
    What I can tell you about WeatherFlow is that they did something around the usual mechanism of the background task; I know this 'cause my WeatherFlow live tile updates exactly every hour and, as a developer, I'm sure that the OS doesn't offer such an option (if you use background tasks in your app you will be called every half hour); so, it's clear they've done something clever to limit the amount of data used by their app (in fact frequent updates on weather forecast are useless), that is: they do something in their background task only half the times they're called, thus they check for something before executing the update...and maybe there's a problem there. To do this they have to save their state and maybe they don't save anything when your storage has less than 10% free space (I don't know, I'm just imagining a scenario).
    Anyways, my point is: one live tile that's not working is probably a different problem than the one we're having here. Also: my live tiles (WeatherFlow included) stopped completely (for a week) until I found that solution, it didn't happen that they worked for a brief moment and then went dark again.

    F.
    Good points. What caused me to notice this issue in the first place, is that WeatherFlow was not my first weather app where the live tile stopped working. First it was AccuWeather, then it was Weather Channel. I decided to buy WeatherFlow and now it seems to suffer the same issue. I think I'm going to re-try the other weather apps I mentioned and see if it's still an issue moving forward.
  7. jimski's Avatar
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    #32  
    Interesting theories. I have 23 apps that "can" run background tasks. And 8 apps that are set to run background tasks, including Weather Channel. All of my tiles update regularly on my L900 since pre-launch day. And they all worked fine on my Surround. I also have two push apps, SportsScores and ProSportsScores, which all also update regularly.

    Apps can run a background task at any (fixed) interval they deem necessary, just not more often than every 30 minutes. Urban Dictionary for example, only updates its tile once per day. And CleverToDo does not check your device database every 30 minutes for new "daily" tasks.

    As my 8 tasks are close to the L900s limit of 9 active background tasks, occasionally one will become disabled if I run a media app that temporarily uses a task or I install a new app that activates a background task by default. But otherwise, they all just work.

    Urban Dictionary did stop updating for nearly a week, but I noticed it started working again last night, with no interaction on my part. They have had these problems in the past so I wasn't concerned about something going wrong on my device.


    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express Pro
    Nokia Lumia 900 - OS: 7.10.8112.7 - Firmware: 2175.1002.8112.12084
    HTC Surround - OS: 7.10.8107.79 - Firmware: 2250.21.40500.502
  8. femanuele's Avatar
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    #33  
    Quote Originally Posted by jimski View Post
    Interesting theories. I have 23 apps that "can" run background tasks. And 8 apps that are set to run background tasks, including Weather Channel. All of my tiles update regularly on my L900 since pre-launch day. And they all worked fine on my Surround. I also have two push apps, SportsScores and ProSportsScores, which all also update regularly.

    Apps can run a background task at any (fixed) interval they deem necessary, just not more often than every 30 minutes. Urban Dictionary for example, only updates its tile once per day. And CleverToDo does not check your device database every 30 minutes for new "daily" tasks.

    As my 8 tasks are close to the L900s limit of 9 active background tasks, occasionally one will become disabled if I run a media app that temporarily uses a task or I install a new app that activates a background task by default. But otherwise, they all just work.

    Urban Dictionary did stop updating for nearly a week, but I noticed it started working again last night, with no interaction on my part. They have had these problems in the past so I wasn't concerned about something going wrong on my device.


    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express Pro
    jimski: apparently this problem is very uncommon, we still don't know what triggers it (but we're sure it's not the background agents limit).
  9. thed's Avatar
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    #34  
    Quick update. I've been reinstalling all the apps with background tasks one by one over the weekend, waiting each time to see if everything was still working. I'm now up to 20 total with 4 enabled (one of those is the homebrew Battery Status app with 15 minute interval). Background tasks still appear to be working. I'm gonna keep going to see if they break at any point.
  10. femanuele's Avatar
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    #35  
    Quote Originally Posted by thed View Post
    Quick update. I've been reinstalling all the apps with background tasks one by one over the weekend, waiting each time to see if everything was still working. I'm now up to 20 total with 4 enabled (one of those is the homebrew Battery Status app with 15 minute interval). Background tasks still appear to be working. I'm gonna keep going to see if they break at any point.
    Good to know, Thed. Did you just remove them all? I mean, without resetting your phone to factory settings? 'Cause if this is true then we can hope that when background tasks reach zero count maybe the OS executes a "clean all" of the stuff that broke it in the first place.

    F.
  11. thed's Avatar
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    #36  
    Quote Originally Posted by femanuele View Post
    Good to know, Thed. Did you just remove them all? I mean, without resetting your phone to factory settings? 'Cause if this is true then we can hope that when background tasks reach zero count maybe the OS executes a "clean all" of the stuff that broke it in the first place.

    F.
    I didn't actually uninstall them all. I uninstalled everything but the 4 apps I had with active background tasks. At that point I noticed they were working again so I didn't bother to uninstall those 4. So I'm afraid that what you said isn't the case. Nice idea though.
  12. jfa1's Avatar
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    #37  
    Quote Originally Posted by SouthpawJosh View Post
    Good points. What caused me to notice this issue in the first place, is that WeatherFlow was not my first weather app where the live tile stopped working. First it was AccuWeather, then it was Weather Channel. I decided to buy WeatherFlow and now it seems to suffer the same issue. I think I'm going to re-try the other weather apps I mentioned and see if it's still an issue moving forward.
    I am using weatherview its from Sweden and free and seems to work well for me on my focus 1.3 and now the Lumia 900
    Your smartphone is only as smart as YOU let it be!
  13. SouthpawJosh's Avatar
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    #38  
    Quote Originally Posted by jfa1 View Post
    I am using weatherview its from Sweden and free and seems to work well for me on my focus 1.3 and now the Lumia 900
    Thanks for the tip! I'll check it out.
  14. SouthpawJosh's Avatar
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    #39  
    Quote Originally Posted by SouthpawJosh View Post
    Thanks for the tip! I'll check it out.
    Ok I downloaded this app and its live tile doesn't work either. I can't imagine all of my now four weather apps have unrelated issues with the live tile updating.
  15. thed's Avatar
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    #40  
    One more update. I managed to break all my background tasks again, but I have things figured out now. For me, it looks like the "magic number" of total background task apps is 22. If my list gets up to 22 apps, all the background tasks stop working. I uninstall one to get down to 21 and they all work again.

    I still have no idea why but at least I sort of have things figured out, at least for my phone.
  16. femanuele's Avatar
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    #41  
    Quote Originally Posted by thed View Post
    One more update. I managed to break all my background tasks again, but I have things figured out now. For me, it looks like the "magic number" of total background task apps is 22. If my list gets up to 22 apps, all the background tasks stop working. I uninstall one to get down to 21 and they all work again.

    I still have no idea why but at least I sort of have things figured out, at least for my phone.
    Nice to know, Thed. Then it changes every time (my number is 13/14), which in fact is a more likely scenario 'cause I suppose the real problem is in something that's left in the phone's registry after uninstalling apps (apps that use background agents, of course), so something we can't see in the Background Tasks list. Perhaps you installed more (or maybe less?) than me before that happened.
  17. #42  
    Its funny how you guys bring this up now... Because... http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=1396222

    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express
  18. jimski's Avatar
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    #43  
    @thed: Are you sure. I just checked and I have 23 background tasks (seriously), with 8 active and they all work fine. Only one that stopped for a while was Urban Dictionary and got an email from the dev the other day apologizing for the issue, so nothing to do with my phone. Based on the list I have probably been at 23 for about two weeks.

    Just as an FYI, pull Like Tiles (scheduled), which are now called Background Tasks, never touched the registry or had an Endpoints issues. That's why apps like Weather Channel an Urban Dictionary continued to work pre-Mango, when all the others stopped. Anyone with Samsung device and root access can check the registry and clear this up. But I don't expect they will find anything.

    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express Pro
  19. netoak's Avatar
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    #44  
    Quote Originally Posted by thed View Post
    One more update. I managed to break all my background tasks again, but I have things figured out now. For me, it looks like the "magic number" of total background task apps is 22. If my list gets up to 22 apps, all the background tasks stop working. I uninstall one to get down to 21 and they all work again.

    I still have no idea why but at least I sort of have things figured out, at least for my phone.
    I was in the same situation and I could resolve in the same way. Tiles stop work suddenly, all of them in the same day, I uninstal some of them and now with 21 apps with background apps (only 9 active, the limit of my Lumia 800) everything start to work correctly.
  20. thed's Avatar
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    #45  
    @jimski: Yes, I'm sure about this. It's really easy for me to reproduce. Happens like clockwork. I like to try new apps from the marketplace pretty often, and every time I download one that uses background tasks (to get to a total of 22) they all stop working. I uninstall something from the list and they all start working again. Happens every time. I'm fully convinced that it's an OS bug, albeit an obscure one. BTW, I'm not saying that 22 is the number for everyone. As femanuele said the "limit" for his/her phone is 14, so it's very possible that this is different for everyone.

    And regarding the endpoints, I wasn't necessarily suggesting that it's somehow caused by issues with the registry, just that it kind of reminds me of that old issue.

    Sent from my HTC Trophy using Board Express
  21. AngryNil's Avatar
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    #46  
    I can't find where I first found out about it, but I've known for a long time that there is a manufacturer-specified limit to the number of active background tasks possible on our devices. Here's an article I've dug up from Google:

    Background Task On Windows Phone Have A Limit - myWindowsPhone

    Personally, I feel like I've had issues with my Omnia with over 12 tasks.
  22. jimski's Avatar
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    #47  
    @thed: Ok, now I get it. Thanks for clearing that up. So how many active background tasks can you have. My L900 limit is 9. Maybe there is a ratio.

    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express Pro
  23. veii's Avatar
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    #48  
    I get this on my HTC Titan! No matter what I do my live tiles will stop working eventually. I've learned to live without them now, I'm not resetting my device any more because it just happens again. Maybe Microsoft can fix this issue at some point, if not then they need to stop advertising Live Tiles as a feature of Windows Phone.

    Background Task On Windows Phone Have A Limit - myWindowsPhone

    That link was very helpful, but does that mean that applications run in the backround like they do in Android? One of the reasons I switched back to WP7 from Android was because I was fed up of having to press the back button constantly to back out of applications. I use Windows Phone like I use ios on my iPad - I just hit the home button when I've finished with an app, could that be causing me problems with the live tiles maybe?
  24. thed's Avatar
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    #49  
    Quote Originally Posted by jimski View Post
    @thed: Ok, now I get it. Thanks for clearing that up. So how many active background tasks can you have. My L900 limit is 9. Maybe there is a ratio.

    Sent from my Lumia 900 using Board Express Pro
    I currently have only 5 active bg tasks. I'll try to do some testing this weekend to see how many I can have active, and if the number of active tasks has any effect on whether they work or not.
  25. R0bR's Avatar
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    #50  
    I've never had this issue before on my HD7 since I got it last year and suddenly all my non Microsoft Tiles stopped updating a few days ago. Based on the info in this thread I've started uninstalling Apps to get my disabled background task off my list which was up to 28 applications. It's pretty ridiculous to have to uninstall Apps to get Live Tiles to work. I'm down to 22 and just waiting to see if any update. As far as active tiles I only have about 4 or 5.
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