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FS#79764 - [xreader] 3.8.2 does not display EPUB text

Attached to Project: Arch Linux
Opened by Bernard Michaud (polaris6262) - Saturday, 23 September 2023, 20:16 GMT
Last edited by Toolybird (Toolybird) - Friday, 29 September 2023, 21:33 GMT
Task Type Bug Report
Category Packages: Extra
Status Closed
Assigned To No-one
Architecture All
Severity Low
Priority Normal
Reported Version
Due in Version Undecided
Due Date Undecided
Percent Complete 100%
Votes 0
Private No



After a webkit upgrade:

webkit2gtk (2.40.5-2 => 2.42.0-1)
webkit2gtk-4.1 (2.40.5-2 => 2.42.0-1)
webkitgtk-6.0 (2.40.5-2 => 2.42.0-1)

Xreader no longer displays any text for an EPUB document. The screen is a large grey area. Document opens fine and the chapter list is as expected, but no text. Even a find works and reports text found, but on a blank screen.

Downgrading webkit immediately fixes the problem:

downgrading package webkit2gtk (2.42.0-1 => 2.40.5-2)
downgrading package webkit2gtk-4.1 (2.42.0-1 => 2.40.5-2)
downgrading package webkitgtk-6.0 (2.42.0-1 => 2.40.5-2)

Additional info:
* package version(s)

Xreader 3.8.2

* config and/or log files etc.
* link to upstream bug report, if any

Steps to reproduce:

Simply open an EPUB file. As previously mentioned, this works fine, including the proper table of contents. This appears to be strictly a display problem, which makes sense as it seems to be related to a new webkit version.

This task depends upon

Closed by  Toolybird (Toolybird)
Friday, 29 September 2023, 21:33 GMT
Reason for closing:  Duplicate
Additional comments about closing:  Merging into  FS#79783 
Comment by loqs (loqs) - Saturday, 23 September 2023, 20:31 GMT
Closed issue for upstream xreader [1].
Possibly related [2].

Comment by Bernard Michaud (polaris6262) - Sunday, 24 September 2023, 01:17 GMT
Issue [1] was mine. I was told they could not reproduce it and suggested I report the problem instead as an Arch Linux bug, which I did.

Issue [2] does seem to be the same problem. I also downgraded to 2.40 and will not upgrade again until a fix is forthcoming. I use EPUB extensively instead of PDF documents as an alternative to straight text.
Comment by Toolybird (Toolybird) - Sunday, 24 September 2023, 07:40 GMT
Works fine here i.e. cannot repro. I just set up a fresh Cinnamon VM and all works well.

There must be some other factor at play on your system. You'll need to do some deeper debugging to try and find the root cause.
Comment by Bernard Michaud (polaris6262) - Sunday, 24 September 2023, 17:00 GMT
The problem manifests itself the moment webkit2 is upgraded from 2.40.5 to 2.42.0, and immediately disappears when it is downgraded.

Check out issue [2] in the previous comment by loqs; it seems it might also affect the lightdm webkit2 greeter. There is a problem either in the webkit2 2.42.0 upgrade itself, or caused by it in other software using webkit2. This might possibly need to be reported as a webkit2 problem; I lack the resources to know which is which. It seems I’ll have to delay upgrading webkit2 indefinitely until further notice.
Comment by Toolybird (Toolybird) - Friday, 29 September 2023, 07:59 GMT
Nvidia drivers? See  FS#79783 
Comment by Bernard Michaud (polaris6262) - Friday, 29 September 2023, 20:44 GMT
Many thanks for providing this link. I do indeed use NVIDIA drivers (latest version being 535.113.01-2); this is not by choice, as the Hewlett Packard Z2 Workstation I’m using has an NVIDIA graphics card preinstalled as standard. There are too many performance and stability problems with nouveau to use it.

This seems a complex issue occurring somewhere between new rendering code in WebKitGTK 2.42 and the NVIDIA driver. Things got difficult as to there the problem actually lies, with the WebKit people implicating NVIDIA and others mentioning that it would be surprising that simply rendering HTML code could crash the graphics driver.

Anyhow, I can report that adding WEBKIT_DISABLE_DMABUF_RENDERER=1 to ‘/etc/environment’ does allow Xreader to properly render under WebKitGTK 2.42.1.

I’m going to try following further development on this issue, hoping a permanent solution is forthcoming. I am wary of continued use of workarounds, this from personal experience.

Again, thank you for your help.