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Logging into a character crashes to the login screen - ESOUI
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07/22/20, 12:04 AM   #1
TagCdog
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Logging into a character crashes to the login screen

Hi All,

I know this is remarkably similar to my earlier post about logging out and crashing to the login screen, but I created a new post because it is technically a different issue.

At some point today the game started crashing to the login screen 100% of the time when I tried to load into any of my characters.

I manually update all my addons (with Minion) and this issue occurred mid-day (with previous successful logins) without any updates to my addons or game settings.

I wanted to post my solution here (I resolved the issue) because of how oddly extreme it was and to see if anyone has any guesses as to what happened and/or what precautions to take so that it doesn't happen again.

I will try to be concise, but I think it important to describe certain troubleshooting details so my apologies for the length of this post.

During this issue, the game would load fine without any addons but would crash to the login screen with my addons enabled. I tried all the generic troubleshooting steps including the game’s repair tool to no avail.
  • I tried disabling addons to discover which one was causing the issue. The problem was that this method was inconsistent. Sometimes I would eventually get to an addon that when disabled would allow my game to run, however when I re-enabled all the others (except the offending one) the game would still crash to the login screen. I kept narrowing down my list, but again the results were inconsistent. Sometimes previous offenders would allow me to login again and there was a “new offender”.
  • I then deleted everything related to addons and saved variables and re-downloaded fresh copies of some "core" addons and their respective prerequisites (Skyshards, Lorebooks, HarvestMap, Craftstore, Bandits UI, etc...). Again, I got crashes with the fresh addons and inconsistent results when disabling/re-enabling addons one-at-a-time.
  • Finally, I uninstalled the game, deleted the game's install directory (files were still left over), deleted any leftover ESO related registry entries, rebooted, re-downloaded the game from scratch, and did a fresh install.
  • I then restored a zipped copy of my Addons and SavedVariables (zipped/backed-up when things were still crashing). In other words, all my addons and their previous settings (when the game kept crashing) were restored.

The game works now with no issues.

This likely means the game and/or game settings were corrupt despite using the repair tool and attempting all the “generic” troubleshooting steps that ZOS had me do.

What are your thoughts? Re-installing this game cannot be the only solution.

Last edited by TagCdog : 07/22/20 at 12:07 AM.
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07/22/20, 12:34 AM   #2
Sharlikran
 
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Originally Posted by TagCdog View Post
What are your thoughts? Re-installing this game cannot be the only solution.
It is unlikely that people would have any clue why reinstalling the game would change things. People don't go around trying to break things and then test what happens when you reinstall the game because that takes time to reinstall. There is no reason to do that just so they know for the rare occasion that someone will ask.

So if your game works now then just play and enjoy.
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07/22/20, 02:22 AM   #3
Baertram
 
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About reinstalling the game: Yeah in most cases this does not help at all but somehoe "eases the mind"
Kind of a "placebo".

Crash at login screen can be any addon causing an endless loop, or any savedvariables file which is corrupt as you crashed to desktop and the files were not updated properly, orthey got too big meanwhile (too many characters in them).

Maybe your antivirus or firewall block some folders in <your users harddrive letter>:\users\documents\elder scrolls online\ meanwhile and thus write protection is enabled and crashes the game. Check your antivirus whitelists.

Maybe even Minion did not update properly and left some half-empty addon folder (only extracted half of the files properly).
We even had it happen that files were extracted but only were at the size of 0kb or half of the files were missing...


I'd always disable all addons and try if it works first!

If it doesn't:
Close the game, backup the files /live/AddOnSettings.txt and UserSettings.txt
Remove them afdterwards.
Remoive the file shader_cache.cooked (no need to backup at it will be rebuild and only contains the textures cached).
Try again then.

If it still fails:
Close the game, check in your live/SavedVariables folder for ZO_*.lua files and backup them, then remove them.
Try again.


If this all does not help remove the total AddOns folder or rename it, and try again.
If this does not help remove/rename the total SavedVariables folder.
You can also check the SavedVariables folder for the last changed files and their size. If some of thema re really big (like 5-10 or > MB) try to rename them so they will be rebuild by their addons (the name of the SavedVariables normally is the name of the AddOns/<folder>).

Last edited by Baertram : 07/22/20 at 02:24 AM.
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07/22/20, 10:24 AM   #4
TagCdog
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Thanks for your responses!

I still don't know how the addons are to blame considering I restored them by extracting a zip backup I created (not via Minion) while things were still crashing.

In any case @Sharlikran has a point that if everything works again to keep playing and have fun.

Hopefully if someone experiences this issue in the future they can find this post and your troubleshooting steps of some use!
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07/22/20, 01:31 PM   #5
Baertram
 
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I still don't know how the addons are to blame considering I restored them by extracting a zip backup I created (not via Minion) while things were still crashing.
Addons -> create/update SavedVariables
2 different folders.
If your backup did not contain both folders, restoring only the AddOns folder could still make your game crash as the SV files are the same like before.
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07/22/20, 04:40 PM   #6
TagCdog
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Yup, my zip backup contained both the SavedVariables and Addons folders. That is why I am confused.
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07/23/20, 03:23 AM   #7
Baertram
 
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Well, either one file was corrupt and auto-repaired it via addon methods
Or your antivirus / Windows defender blocked the eso live folder last time and that was crashing the game due to missing write rights-> add the live folder to the whitelist of windows defender/your antivirus product.

Else it might just have been some other issue only related to ESO code, or not related to eso or the addons, maybe just windows (driver, firmware/other software ...)related.
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08/09/20, 02:43 AM   #8
TagCdog
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Hi All,

I wanted to post an update because I unintentionally reproduced this problem and realized that I left out one piece of important information that I didn't think relevant but was what actually ended up being the cause.

Immediately before this crash to login screen thing started happening (both times) I attempted to use ESO Profiler to profile a UI reload.

While reloading the UI, the game crashed to the login screen and I could not login to a character after that.

I have more information/troubleshooting steps in ESO Profiler's comments page so I won't list them here, but I did want to post the update here.

As of now I haven't fully gotten everything working again and am still troubleshooting. The odd thing is that everything worked before attempting to profile a UI reload and then isn't working after. I wonder what broke?
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08/09/20, 06:25 AM   #9
Baertram
 
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Info from the addon/tool's description:
Warning:
If you capture traces over multiple minutes, the resulting file will become very large and opening it will consume multiple gigabytes of ram. In case the viewer crashes while loading the file you can try to increase the allowed heap size. Just change the value "--max-old-space-size=4096" in package.json from 4096 (MB) to a higher one, but be warned that it can consume all your memory and slow down or crash your system!
The same applies to the ESO information that needs to be stored somewhere -> SavedVariables. If they get too big - Crash.

ESO profiler writes a lot of data (functions names, their data & time called, runtime info about variables etc.) and thus, if the files get too big as said before in my one post, the game crashes at logout/login, or maybe before logout it will crash to the desktop sometimes as well.
Be sure to ONLY enable ONE addon (and needed libraries), or at least only a few to test together, if you run ESO Profiler!
Be sure to only profile a decent short time (your use-case/test case) and not several minutes!

The more addons + libs you enable -> the more data read and written to SV -> the earlier the max file sizes are reached -> the more obviously you get these problems.
Else you'll always run into such problems with big SV files.

To fix this it should be enough to remove big SV files *.lua, or rename them to e.g. *.lua_backup, so they are not loaded at login anymore.
Maybe some game settings files got damaged as well so try to rename the files in the SavedVariables folder which start with ZO_*.lua
(backup them before).-
Maybe also backup and rename the AddOnSettings.txt (in your live folder) and re-setup the addons to use for your characters at the login screen.

Last edited by Baertram : 08/09/20 at 03:44 PM.
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08/09/20, 01:16 PM   #10
TagCdog
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Baertram, you are the best!

Pruning some of my SavedVariables files seemed to work (which is odd because it didn't work last time).

I have 32GB of memory so I had changed "--max-old-space-size" to = 8192. I think while my computer could maybe handle it, the game couldn't.

In any case it is good to know the proper use of ESO Profiler. I think I will leave it alone for now!
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09/19/20, 05:33 PM   #11
Attizh
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 1
Same problem with Lost Treasure addon

Before using Minions I installed Lost Treasures on my Mac, which worked fine on my main and crashed on my alt. Disabling the newly added addons: LostTreasures_v14, LibSavedVars-6.0.1 & LibNotification_r9 and I could play my alt fine.
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ESOUI » AddOns » AddOn Help/Support » Logging into a character crashes to the login screen

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