Optimal Power Management Settings

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trope
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Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by trope » Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:37 am

For the "Power Management" window (ac power, battery, general), what are the optimal settings for a laptop? Eg to maximize battery life, or keeping Mint working optimally.

Is it better to keep the laptop plugged into AC power at all times, or to shut down Mint and the laptop at the end of each day?
Is it better to use suspend vs. hibernate?

If these questions depend on use, what are the factors to consider?

gm10
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by gm10 » Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:52 am

trope wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:37 am
Is it better to keep the laptop plugged into AC power at all times, or to shut down Mint and the laptop at the end of each day?
Is it better to use suspend vs. hibernate?
1. Keep it plugged in - while keeping a battery at full charge isn't optimal, constant charge/discharge cycles are worse and wear it down quicker
2. Suspend is a convenience feature, but it keeps drawing power. If you want to minimize power usage then hibernate or shut it down

trope
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by trope » Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:25 am

Should have asked it as 2 questions. Ok, so better to use AC power always if available rather than battery.

Is it better to leave the computer/mint on all the time, or to shut off the computer periodically, and at what frequency?

gm10
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by gm10 » Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:27 am

trope wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:25 am
Is it better to leave the computer/mint on all the time, or to shut off the computer periodically, and at what frequency?
The environment, your electricity bill, and to some small extent general wear on the parts say to shut it off or at least suspend it when you're not using it. This isn't really a serious question, is it? Are you worried about something in particular?

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I2k4
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by I2k4 » Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:12 am

I'd say the biggest laptop concern is battery wear and damage. Having a nice ten year old Dell laptop in the bedroom as a media player and casual use PC, it's plugged in 24/7. I've removed the battery entirely, and only cycle a charge to it once or twice a year and then store it again at about 40% charge. On that basis the original battery is still good for several hours use if/when wanted. Having a battery perpetually on a/c charge will damage it over time. Obviously if the laptop is being constantly relocated, then the battery is needed, and it may be worth investing in a spare.

All PCs, regardless of operating system benefit from being rebooted. Full stop. I'll suspend Mint boxes which are in daily use, but switch them off otherwise. I also reboot after every major system update (e.g. point releases or Level 5 kernel releases) or any large or complicated software installation (e.g. browsers, LibreOffice, or long lists of small stuff.)

I've never bothered with power management settings. I do like a little (Cinnamon) taskbar applet called "Inhibit" that is a handy toggle on/off for power management and notifications - it stops the system from dimming the screen or popping unwanted notifications without mucking around with permanent settings.
TRUST BUT VERIFY any advice from anybody, including me. M18.3 XFCE (Dell 1520) 64 bit. Dual booting M19.1 XFCE / W7 (Acer netbook) and M19.1 Cinnamon / W7 (Lenovo desktop) 64 bit. Persistent live USB pretesting M19.2 Cinnamon and XFCE.

carum carvi
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by carum carvi » Tue Sep 18, 2018 2:20 pm

I2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:12 am
I've removed the battery entirely, and only cycle a charge to it once or twice a year and then store it again at about 40% charge. On that basis the original battery is still good for several hours use if/when wanted. Having a battery perpetually on a/c charge will damage it over time.
That's a smart move and a great tip. My girlfriend uses her laptop as a desktop, always connected to a/c power. After about 7 years of using it that way, the battery only has got 20 minutes power left. Therefore the above tip from I2k4 is very helpful in order to save your battery from draining to zero.

I personally always use suspend edited by "dconf-editor", set at a 1 minute suspend time. I save weeks of electricity use over the period of one year cumulatively. Notebooks only use about 30-60 Watts. My desktop however uses well over 150 Watts. A strict suspend time will save me many dollars in my electricity bill.

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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by rickNS » Tue Sep 18, 2018 2:42 pm

"Eg to maximize battery life"
One very important thing keep your laptop clean, at least once a year (twice better) get the dust out. A warm laptop that the fan is always on is a big power user / waster.
Set brightness level to minimum comfortable level, (I'm at 69% plenty bight for indoors). Turn off screen after X minutes.
Mint 18 mate on 2 identical Thinkpad T420's

ud6

Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by ud6 » Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:31 pm

Found a nice site for general advice (I didn't pluck this out the air, I work alot with batteries and just found something that is good advice, as sometimes advice on batteries is wrong - or at least outdated)..
https://www.techrepublic.com/blog/five- ... tery-life/

trope
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by trope » Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:27 am

carum carvi wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 2:20 pm
I2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:12 am
I've removed the battery entirely, and only cycle a charge to it once or twice a year and then store it again at about 40% charge. On that basis the original battery is still good for several hours use if/when wanted. Having a battery perpetually on a/c charge will damage it over time.
That's a smart move and a great tip. My girlfriend uses her laptop as a desktop, always connected to a/c power. After about 7 years of using it that way, the battery only has got 20 minutes power left. Therefore the above tip from I2k4 is very helpful in order to save your battery from draining to zero.

I personally always use suspend edited by "dconf-editor", set at a 1 minute suspend time. I save weeks of electricity use over the period of one year cumulatively. Notebooks only use about 30-60 Watts. My desktop however uses well over 150 Watts. A strict suspend time will save me many dollars in my electricity bill.
Is there a way to tell in Mint how much watts the laptop is using? And is there a big difference in electricity between suspend and hibernate?
Why not use the power management settings in Mint and set suspend to 1 minute, instead of "dconf-editor"? Is it achieving something different?

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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by I2k4 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:11 am

trope wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:27 am
...
Is there a way to tell in Mint how much watts the laptop is using? And is there a big difference in electricity between suspend and hibernate?
Why not use the power management settings in Mint and set suspend to 1 minute, instead of "dconf-editor"? Is it achieving something different?
A quick google turns up this terminal command:

http://manpages.ubuntu.com/manpages/bio ... tat.8.html

I just tried "powerstat -a" on a M19 Cinnamon live USB (i.e. no risk to an installed system). The little package has to be installed first, the required install command is shown. It requires battery power since it apparently measures discharge rate and a unit on ac power isn't discharging. Can't vouch for accuracy.
TRUST BUT VERIFY any advice from anybody, including me. M18.3 XFCE (Dell 1520) 64 bit. Dual booting M19.1 XFCE / W7 (Acer netbook) and M19.1 Cinnamon / W7 (Lenovo desktop) 64 bit. Persistent live USB pretesting M19.2 Cinnamon and XFCE.

carum carvi
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by carum carvi » Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:39 pm

trope wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:27 am

Is there a way to tell in Mint how much watts the laptop is using? And is there a big difference in electricity between suspend and hibernate?
Why not use the power management settings in Mint and set suspend to 1 minute, instead of "dconf-editor"? Is it achieving something different?
Some forum members have tested their laptops with LM19 and LM18.3. They had more than half an hour extra battery power with LM18 compared to LM19. That 's a lot. The desktop version LM18 Xfce had the best battery performance, LM18.3 Mate was second and LM18.3 Cinnamon finished last.

Trope, unfortunately Linux does not let users choose a very energy efficient suspend setting. Windows does. That's about the only thing in which I prefer windows to Linux. 5 minutes is the best standard option in LinuxMInt for suspend. 1 minute automated suspend time is only configurable with the help of dconf-editor. See below how to achieve that.

viewtopic.php?f=90&t=255025&start=20&hi ... ed+suspend


1 minute automated suspend time might sound overly energy conscious but when one uses the computer all day, all those little savings easily add up to a saving of 1 hour less electricity use per day. Over a period of a year this adds up considerably.

Laptops (30-60W)do use a lot less energy than desktops (100- 300), almost 3 to 5 times less. But your laptop will use more battery power in suspend then in hibernate. I guess around 5 -10 watts for suspend and below 5 Watts for hibernate. Unfortunately hibernation doesnt work properly on most machines with Linux installed and therefore it has been totally removed from LM19. Although there seems to be a very complicated workaround.


75% of standby consumption of household machines can be avoided by simpling shutting down the machines and unplugging them. Some household applications use more power while being in standby then when they are being used. This is mindboggling, but true. I have calculated that if I would trade in my high energy consuming desktop for a 15 Watt MInt Minibox 2, I would earn back the total purchase price just in savings of the electricity bill over a period of 10 years. That is calculated by european energy prices, which are way much higher than the american energy prices.

trope
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by trope » Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:30 pm

I2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:12 am

All PCs, regardless of operating system benefit from being rebooted. Full stop. I'll suspend Mint boxes which are in daily use, but switch them off otherwise. I also reboot after every major system update (e.g. point releases or Level 5 kernel releases) or any large or complicated software installation (e.g. browsers, LibreOffice, or long lists of small stuff.)
So how often should a Mint laptop be rebooted? Eg, I use it as a desktop and have it on all the time. I have been suspending it at night. But would it be better to shut it down at night and then start it up again in the morning?

trope
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by trope » Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:51 pm

Also discovered my laptop battery is internal so will probably just leave it in.

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kevin987
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by kevin987 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:55 pm

Laptops are very special creatures. They're not meant to run constantly like a desktop.

I would shut it down each night unless you have a special reason to keep it on.
Linux Mint 19.1 (Cinnamon)
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by I2k4 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 11:51 pm

trope wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:30 pm
I2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:12 am

All PCs, regardless of operating system benefit from being rebooted. Full stop. I'll suspend Mint boxes which are in daily use, but switch them off otherwise. I also reboot after every major system update (e.g. point releases or Level 5 kernel releases) or any large or complicated software installation (e.g. browsers, LibreOffice, or long lists of small stuff.)
So how often should a Mint laptop be rebooted? Eg, I use it as a desktop and have it on all the time. I have been suspending it at night. But would it be better to shut it down at night and then start it up again in the morning?
I can say from thirty-five years of PCs and twenty years of Dell laptops that rebooting daily or more doesn't hurt anything, but won't do any good. Given my removal of the battery (which is the least durable component and suffers from constant external power) if a PC's not being used every day I'll shut it down and reboot when wanted again. If it's in main use, I just suspend overnight and will only reboot for system or software updates. (Increasingly an Android tablet is taking over routine daily stuff and even Chromecasting media to a large screen, which is downtime for the PCs.) Everybody has their personal use case.
TRUST BUT VERIFY any advice from anybody, including me. M18.3 XFCE (Dell 1520) 64 bit. Dual booting M19.1 XFCE / W7 (Acer netbook) and M19.1 Cinnamon / W7 (Lenovo desktop) 64 bit. Persistent live USB pretesting M19.2 Cinnamon and XFCE.

carum carvi
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Re: Optimal Power Management Settings

Post by carum carvi » Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:32 pm

trope wrote:
Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:30 pm
I have been suspending it at night. But would it be better to shut it down at night and then start it up again in the morning?
Yes, it would be better to turn if off at night. The suspend mode during the night is draining your battery empty BIG TIME. Suspend mode, still sucks up a couple of watts of battery power every hour it is in suspend. Your battery will last much longer if you turn your computer OFF at night. As a consequence of turning it OFF you will have the pleasurable benefit of being able to use your laptop's battery way much longer!

Simply turn it completely off when you dont immediately need it. Biggest benefit for your batteries power over the long run.

Rebooting is mostly beneficial when you have done kernel upgrades or other large updates. For battery power management rebooting isnt of any use.

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