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Thread: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

  1. #21
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    I'm thinking it is hardware still. Work through the log files and correct each warning and error
    or understand why they aren't important.
    Hardware can still work, but be failing. HDDs do this all the time - just much slower. Poor network connections due to a crimped cable or wifi interference can have similar performance implications.

  2. #22
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    Unhappy Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Please check this out:
    VIDEO - Windows launching Firefox faster than Kubuntu
    https://youtu.be/PAy0bOF5H1o

    Okay, I went ahead and installed Windows in order to install the BIOS/UEFI update, but Firefox still takes about 15 seconds to launch in Kubuntu.
    I decided to do a little experiment.
    While Windows was still on the SSD, I took a video of Firefox opening from Windows, and timed it vs. the speed on Kubuntu.
    When I hit the quick key for Firefox in Windows, I kid you not, the Window is open in one single second. Loading the Firefox New Tab page takes an additional eight seconds, but whatever.
    The surprising thing is that Kubuntu takes ELEVEN seconds for the window to even appear, and additional four seconds to load the New Tab page.
    Why on earth is this happening??

    {EDIT}
    One thing I noticed, which seems important:
    Windows was slow too, but only at first. I went to Lenovo's website, and downloaded every driver they had. Card reader, chipset, Bluetooth, etc., until nothing in Device Manager had an exclamation point next to it. It was only then that the laptop felt like it "came loose." Like it became unchained or something. I'm wondering if there is hardware in this laptop that a default Linux install just doesn't know how to efficiently handle. How would I look into something like that? Should I bother? Am I on to something, or should I just sell this thing with Win 10/11 on it, and buy something made specifically for Linux? I really like this thing (when it works).
    Last edited by bradleypariah; 4 Weeks Ago at 05:39 PM.
    Oh, Linux... if only I had known.

  3. #23
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Windows has something called the "pre-cache". Look that up.
    There is also the pre-fetch loader. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prefetcher It is a trick to make things seem faster than they really are.

    Virtual memory management on Unix is very different from Windows. It can be massively tuned on Linux, if that is your need. Most tuning will make it worse, however. Experts only, but give it a shot.

    Some laptops have special, Windows-only hardware. That is true. Intel added a disk cache on some of their systems a few years ago and only make Windows drivers. There isn't much we can do about that.

  4. #24
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Have you tried disabling "Baloo" (file indexing)? Sometimes, that thing goes crazy with disk usage due to bugs.
    EDIT: I think it's under KDE's "Search" Settings
    Last edited by Yellow Pasque; 4 Weeks Ago at 07:17 PM.

  5. #25
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Quote Originally Posted by Yellow Pasque View Post
    Have you tried disabling "Baloo" (file indexing)? Sometimes, that thing goes crazy with disk usage due to bugs.
    EDIT: I think it's under KDE's "Search" Settings
    Thanks for the suggestion. I tried that, rebooted, and let everything settle. The Firefox window still takes 8-9 seconds to appear, and the home page isn't loaded until 14-15 seconds.
    No notable change.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheFu View Post
    Some laptops have special, Windows-only hardware. That is true. Intel added a disk cache on some of their systems a few years ago and only make Windows drivers. There isn't much we can do about that.
    I'm becoming more and more convinced that's what happening with this laptop. It's not Ubuntu's fault. Even though I don't use Arch, I went ahead and installed Manjaro KDE, and it acts exactly the same.

    Unfortunately, my actually faster laptop, the HP, has issues too. It keeps randomly right-clicking when I'm typing, even though I have "disable touchpad while typing" enabled. I'm not trying to ask for advice for that on this thread, I'm only pointing out that it looks like I'm in the market for a laptop now.

    I guess I'll install Win10/11 on the Flex and sell it, then use the money to help pay for something designed for Linux.

    Thanks for everyone's help. Sad day.
    Last edited by bradleypariah; 4 Weeks Ago at 08:46 PM.
    Oh, Linux... if only I had known.

  6. #26
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Okay, hold the phone. I created a post on the Lenovo forums, and someone told me to switch to Pop!_OS.
    I though they were just blowing smoke, but DUDE, Pop launches the Firefox window in under one second, and has the New Tab page loaded in about two and a half seconds.
    That's total time. 2.5 seconds from desktop to homepage.
    What kind of sorcery is this?? Does System 76 really add that much to the Ubuntu base?? -or is this rare for there to be such a difference?

    Only "problem" is that I strongly dislike Gnome, and Cosmic is no better IMO. I have nothing installed on this laptop, as it's been nuke'n'paved four or five times in the last couple days, so I'm halfway tempted to install Plasma on it and find out if that slows it down.
    I'll stick with Pop!_OS if it means I can keep my laptop. It's quite positively faster than it was with Windows now.
    It's exactly as fast as I would expect an i7 with 8GB of RAM and an Nvidia mobile GPU to be.
    I press Super, the Dashboard opens/closes instantly. Every app's window opens within one second of clicking its icon or shortcut. I am floored.

    I guess I'll mark this thread as solved?? I'm still on an Ubuntu base, so I guess I'm cool with switching distros. I honestly don't feel good that the solution to my problem was switching distros though.
    Anybody have any closing thoughts? I appreciate everyone's willingness to help.
    Oh, Linux... if only I had known.

  7. #27
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    I don't restart by systems or a browser all that often, so I honestly don't know how quickly that specific test is.
    Comparing a bloated KDE to a lite-gnome2-ish isn't really fair, but for most users, switching distros is a good way to see what's possible. Most Ubuntu systems are bloated.

    My main desktops begin with Ubuntu Server that has no GUI, only gets ssh install, then I build up the specific applications and services that I want.

    From time to time, I'll load a stock version of Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Mate or the stock Ubuntu (gnome3) just to see what each team has done. Canonical definitely has an agenda to ensure every system has snap packages on it. The slightly different drivers could easily be why PopOS is working better for you. It would have been interesting to see the differences (for someone, not me), then perhaps we'd uncover what made it faster.

    Many things go into choosing a distro. We are each different.

    For fun, a few days ago I loaded Xubuntu 20.04 for a different need (actually trying to setup automatic desktop pushes for 50 clients). I didn't do anything related to performance testing. I think that system is still around somewhere. 2 CPU, 2G of RAM. SSD. I don't know if it has firefox.

    11 seconds from boot to a login window.
    4 seconds from password entry to full desktop.
    4 seconds to start firefox until the full screen "Start here" was show.

    Not really a high-power system:
    Code:
    $ inxi -b
    System:
      Host: xubu-2004 Kernel: 5.4.0-86-generic x86_64 bits: 64 Console: tty 1 
      Distro: Ubuntu 20.04.3 LTS (Focal Fossa) 
    Machine:
      Type: Kvm System: QEMU product: Standard PC (i440FX + PIIX, 1996) v: pc-i440fx-bionic 
      serial: <superuser/root required> 
      Mobo: N/A model: N/A serial: N/A BIOS: SeaBIOS v: 1.10.2-1ubuntu1 date: 04/01/2014 
    CPU:
      2x Single Core: AMD Ryzen 5 2600 type: SMP speed: 3394 MHz 
    Graphics:
      Device-1: driver: bochs-drm v: N/A 
      Display: server: X.org 1.20.11 driver: modesetting unloaded: fbdev,vesa tty: 91x45 
      Message: Advanced graphics data unavailable in console. Try -G --display 
    Network:
      Device-1: Intel 82371AB/EB/MB PIIX4 ACPI type: network bridge driver: piix4_smbus 
      Device-2: Red Hat Virtio network driver: virtio-pci 
    Drives:
      Local Storage: total: 10.00 GiB used: 4.43 GiB (44.3%) 
    Info:
      Processes: 203 Uptime: 14m Memory: 1.94 GiB used: 591.0 MiB (29.7%) Init: systemd 
      runlevel: 5 Shell: bash inxi: 3.0.38 
    
    $ free -h
                  total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
    Mem:          1.9Gi       500Mi       759Mi       9.0Mi       726Mi       1.3Gi
    Swap:         1.0Gi          0B       1.0Gi
    Using some tools that are built into all Ubuntus (systemd really) ...
    Code:
    $ systemd-analyze  | tee perf.log
    
    Startup finished in 2.758s (kernel) + 7.194s (userspace) = 9.952s 
    graphical.target reached after 6.347s in userspace
    
    $ systemd-analyze blame  | tee -a  perf.log
    1.407s systemd-udev-settle.service               
    1.118s dev-mapper-ubuntu\x2d\x2dvg\x2droot.device
    1.081s systemd-networkd-wait-online.service      
     915ms udisks2.service                           
     821ms cloud-init-local.service                  
     682ms cloud-config.service                      
     622ms accounts-daemon.service                   
     477ms cloud-init.service                        
     472ms networkd-dispatcher.service               
     464ms NetworkManager-wait-online.service        
     450ms ModemManager.service                      
     450ms cloud-final.service                       
     307ms NetworkManager.service                    
     280ms systemd-timesyncd.service                 
     279ms systemd-modules-load.service              
     257ms polkit.service                            
     240ms systemd-logind.service                    
     234ms lvm2-pvscan@252:3.service                 
     216ms avahi-daemon.service                      
     215ms keyboard-setup.service                    
     209ms apparmor.service                          
     186ms systemd-resolved.service                  
     181ms switcheroo-control.service                
     171ms lvm2-monitor.service                      
     143ms systemd-sysctl.service                    
     142ms rsyslog.service                           
     139ms multipathd.service                        
     129ms systemd-journal-flush.service             
     126ms systemd-udevd.service                     
     112ms apport.service                            
     110ms wpa_supplicant.service                    
     106ms grub-common.service                       
      99ms e2scrub_reap.service                      
      90ms dev-ubuntu\x2dvg-swap.swap                
      82ms user@1000.service                         
      77ms systemd-udev-trigger.service              
      75ms systemd-networkd.service
    ....
    $ systemd-analyze critical-chain
    The time when unit became active or started is printed after the "@" character.
    The time the unit took to start is printed after the "+" character.
    
    graphical.target @6.347s
    └─udisks2.service @5.370s +915ms
      └─basic.target @5.270s
        └─sockets.target @5.269s
          └─uuidd.socket @5.268s
            └─sysinit.target @5.252s
              └─cloud-init.service @4.728s +477ms
                └─systemd-networkd-wait-online.service @3.643s +1.081s
                  └─systemd-networkd.service @3.567s +75ms
                    └─network-pre.target @3.565s
                      └─cloud-init-local.service @2.743s +821ms
                        └─systemd-remount-fs.service @855ms +19ms
                          └─systemd-journald.socket @789ms
                            └─-.mount @767ms
                              └─system.slice @767ms
                                └─-.slice @767ms
    There's other stuff, but those are main things people can do something about without too much effort. I typically purge network-manager and avahi and all snap stuff, since I don't need/want them and they slow boots greatly.

    You can see that with just 10G of storage, there won't be any data local to these systems.

    lshw is useful to look for differences in hardware and settings and drivers. Just boot the fast system and save the output to a file, then boot the slow system and save the output to a different file, then use either system to compare the files - diff, sdiff, meld are all nice tools. People seem to really like meld. It is good to compare text files.

  8. #28
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    If Pop! helped that much on your slower computer, I wonder what it would do on the other faster one?

  9. #29
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Well guys, I hate to do this, but I retract saying Pop!_OS was the solution. It definitely isn't.

    I did find the reason this laptop is throttling though.

    It's because it's charging.

    Have any of you ever heard of such a thing before?
    I don't have different Charging/Battery settings in Power Management.
    I did not come by this latest revelation lightly. I have benchmarks. I ran repeated back-to-back tests. Check this out:

    Launching Firefox, from the desktop to fully loading the New Tab page:


    • It takes 11 seconds when the laptop is charging.
    • It takes 2 seconds while on battery.


    I installed sysbench, and ran [sysbench --test=cpu run].

    • While charging, the score is 1678 events with an average of 5.96ms latency.
    • When on battery, the score is 9,992 events with an average of 1ms latency.


    Booting up:

    • It takes 42 seconds to get to the login screen while charging.
    • It takes 16 seconds to get to the login screen on battery power.


    Loading the Plasma desktop

    • After pressing Enter, it takes 42 seconds for Plasma to fully load while charging.
    • After pressing Enter, it takes 6 seconds for Plasma to fully load while on battery.


    This is seeming quite conclusive. The reason my laptop was always slow is because it was always charging. When I got sick of it, and started troubleshooting, installing Windows for the BIOS/UEFI update, and trying Solus, Clear Linux, Pop!_OS, etc., I was walking around the house. It just so happens I was on battery power when I tried out Pop!_OS.

    Mystery solved.... BUT Do any of you know why this might be happening? I searched all over in System Settings > Power Management, and I see nothing. It should not be forgotten, this happens on Windows, on Pop!_OS, you name it. This is the hardware's fault, not the OS/DE, but is there a way to tell the laptop not to throttle itself while charging?
    (I am also going to ask the Lenovo Forums, in case they know)
    Oh, Linux... if only I had known.

  10. #30
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    Re: Older CPU out-pacing newer one

    Welp, no sooner did I come to the conclusion that charging was the issue than I found this reply to a similar question on Quora:
    https://www.quora.com/When-I-plug-the-power-cable-into-my-Lenovo-laptop-it-slows-down-the-CPU-speed-drops-Ive-taken-my-laptop-to-tech-support-several-times-but-nothing-Can-you-help-me-find-the-problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr One in a Million
    As per both the current answers.
    Check settings and also check the psu.
    My Lenovo has TWO psu options; a lower power one that CANT run the laptop at full power and be able to charge the battery - only one or the other; and a high power psu that can do both.

    In my case they are a 65W psu and a 95W psu.
    I just ordered a 90-watt PSU off eBay for twelve bucks. Here's hoping that'll be the end of it.
    Oh, Linux... if only I had known.

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