System load in LMDE with kernel 3.2.0-3

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System load in LMDE with kernel 3.2.0-3

Postby mark1mint on Tue Oct 02, 2012 12:35 pm

Hi there,I've been paying a bit more attention lately to system load and observed that in LMDE is way higher than the other distro I use on this computer (Ubuntu Lucid with 3.0.0-12 kernel),even more so with the 3.2.0-3 new kernel included in UP 5.
I haven't done real tests,but I can definitely tell that in Ubuntu after a peak of around 1.5 after start up,it settles down to ridiculously low values even with several programs running simultaneously,it basically hangs in between zero and 0.20 most of the time,whereas in LMDE the start up peak is well above 2 ( I think I've seen maybe 2.7) and,especially with the latest kernel,never gets as low as Ubuntu, with the same programs running it always lingers around 1 or more .
With 3.0.2-2 after a while it gets more reasonable,although never as low as Ubuntu,but with 3.0.2-3 it's way higher all the time:I must say that overall LMDE has always been snappier and more responsive than Ubuntu,and it has never crashed so far,but what does this high system load mean,if it does mean anything at all ?
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Re: System load in LMDE with kernel 3.2.0-3

Postby DrHu on Tue Oct 02, 2012 2:29 pm

mark1mint wrote:I must say that overall LMDE has always been snappier and more responsive than Ubuntu,and it has never crashed so far,but what does this high system load mean, if it does mean anything at all ?

It means something, of course
--but to a user not that much..
    To change it, you would have to examine your system very carefully
  • Optimize your application loads
  • Optimize your kernel scheduler
  • Optimize you IO (hard drive/device operations
  • Perhaps make a custom kernel, instead of the generic kernel supplied by the OS distribution
    --however with modern kernels (generic) it seems to make little real difference, since you can manage the loading of services and modules

For a normal user, I don't think the RAM (memory) load is important; as long as the system keeps running well; it really helps Linux to have more RAM, I think RAM optimization is a Linux priority not processor (cores etc ) management
--so having more RAM than you need, some spare capacity (and probably no swapping to the hard drive) should give you a reliable responsive system, almost no matter which desktop you prefer to use.

I also recently installed lmde 13, and did find the RAM use being higher than the previous edition (lmde 12x), but based on my view, it doesn't matter that much to me: I know the Linux OS will manage the processor + RAM (memory) usage as necessary in oder to run the system
--I would only worry about it if I notice a great slowdown in menu responses or applications
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Re: System load in LMDE with kernel 3.2.0-3

Postby mark1mint on Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:58 am

So in short,you think that the higher (than Ubuntu) system load in LMDE is mainly related to a more aggressive use of RAM ? I have to admit I have no clue as to which parameters account for the total system load.

Edit: In the mean time,I've been keeping an eye on it,and now I can tell for sure that I have a significantly higher system load in LMDE with the latest kernel than with the older one, while using the same applications.With the 3.0.2-2 kernel,after a while (when it's much higher than Ubuntu) it eventually settles down to very low levels,which never happens with the latest LMDE kernel 3.2.0-3.
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