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Old 07-02-2010, 03:59 PM
Ronald B Cadby
 
Default 10.4 minimums

I'm a *heavy* user, so I don't have a lot of time for debugging. Sorry.

I monitor and benefit greatly from this group, but it seems that I see a
lot of 'well it never happens to me'. Well, s... does happen.

I have had just about every 'fault' mentioned here by others with
10.4...mouse, booting, freezing...you name it. Today, I rebooted 3 times
in the first 15 minutes of operation.

Then, I realized that the update manager was downloading and installing
almost 100MB of updates, so I'm now waiting for that to finish before
doing anything else.

Bottom line: I think in my case I'll have to buy a new system to
accommodate 10.4's ravenous appetite for system resources. Of course, a
newbie setup primer might help.

Don't get me wrong. I really do like the good intentions of 10.4, but at
this point I'm getting those same feelings I had about Windows which is
why I went Linux in the first place.

So, how about a recommendation for a minimum system hardware requirement
for 10.4 that will make everyone's life, especially mine, easier to use it?

Thanks........Ron

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Old 07-02-2010, 04:41 PM
J
 
Default 10.4 minimums

On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 11:59, Ronald B Cadby <RCadby@roncadby.org> wrote:
> I monitor and benefit greatly from this group, but it seems that I see a
> lot of 'well it never happens to me'. Well, s... does happen.

You also have to remember that this list does not represent a majority
of the Ubuntu community in any way. It only represents the percentage
of the community that joined this group and contribute to it...

A lot of these weird problems are seen by a small (very small)
percentage of users, hence a lot of the "I have never seen that"
comments. This group is a small microcosm of the community at large,
so take that into consideration.

> I have had just about every 'fault' mentioned here by others with
> 10.4...mouse, booting, freezing...you name it. Today, I rebooted 3 times
> in the first 15 minutes of operation.

See, about the only problems I've had are occasional freezes, and that
USUALLY occurs when I've got a ton of FF tabs open (and usually
several of those have badly crafted Java widgets that just suck the
system dry). My own experience with Ubuntu has been relatively error
free for a long time, with the exception for when I run betas...

> Then, I realized that the update manager was downloading and installing
> almost 100MB of updates, so I'm now waiting for that to finish before
> doing anything else.

Strangely, Update Manager will drag a system to a crawl. There are
many times when I can't do anything for several minutes while U-M is
installing some update package or another... I just experienced that
about 15 minutes ago, actually. There were recurring instances of
about 30 - 60 seconds at a time where I could do nothing on my system
while the updates were being installed.

> So, how about a recommendation for a minimum system hardware requirement
> for 10.4 that will make everyone's life, especially mine, easier to use it?

You mean something like this (from the 10.04 User Guide)?:

https://help.ubuntu.com/10.04/installation-guide/i386/minimum-hardware-reqts.html

FWIW, here are the systems I run right now:

Asuka: Lenovo S10 Netbook, 1.6GHz Atom, 1.5GB RAM
Klaatu: Alienware M15x Quad Core i7, 4GB RAM, nvidia GT260 Video
Deathstar: Scratch Built 10 year old AMD Athlon XP1600+, 512MB very
slow ram, Matrox G400 video.

And other than very minor issues, (the occasional freeze) I have had
mostly no problems at all with 10.04.

One of the reasons (a big reason) that people have all these different
issues that no one else can replicate (or at least very few people
comparitively) is that there is a near infinite number of hardware
combinations in the world, especially when you throw in the varying
age of each component; the difference between an nVidia XX card bought
last week and the same model bought 2 years ago can be quite
significant.

But there's the minimal requirements for Desktop 10.04LTS 32 bit,
similar info should be located in the user manual for 64bit as well,
for each release.

Cheers,
Jeff

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Old 07-02-2010, 06:14 PM
Ronald B Cadby
 
Default 10.4 minimums

Thanks J.

I appreciate the input and you've sort of reaffirmed that I need better
hardware.

Is there a reference you could pass on re adjusting the /var space
upward (or any other tips to improve swap space or whatever might
improve my performance)?

Thanks again........Ron


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Old 07-02-2010, 06:42 PM
J
 
Default 10.4 minimums

On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 14:14, Ronald B Cadby <RCadby@roncadby.org> wrote:
> Thanks J.
>
> I appreciate the input and you've sort of reaffirmed that I need better
> hardware.

That always helps... :-)

For what it's worth, the Athlon XP box I have used to run RHEL, but
Ubuntu seems to be far and away faster on that old hardware than RHEL
5 was.

> Is there a reference you could pass on re adjusting the /var space
> upward (or any other tips to improve swap space or whatever might
> improve my performance)?

Don't know what you mean by "adjusting the /var space" That has
little to nothing to do with performance, unless you have a separate
/var partition and that ran out of space, but then you'd more likely
have issues with OS stability than you would actual performance.

If, for example, you have a 40GB hard disk, and you have allocated 1GB
for Swap and 39GB for /, there's nothing you can do aside from
installing a new hard disk... which IS an option. In that case, I'd
do something like move /home to the 2nd hard disk, which will free up
whatever space /home is taking up on the current disk.

Otherwise, install just a larger disk and re-install to that... but
again, all that does is get you more disk space, not more performance
and depending on how you utilize that disk, it could degrade
performance (for example, taking an already slow system and throwing
the overhead of software RAID on top of everything else.)

As for swap space, are you using swap? If you look at the output of
the command 'free' you'll see how much swap you are using... in the
best case scenario, you really should never be using swap space (swap
in Linux is not used like it is in Windows). If you're actually using
Swap, you've either got some serious computing going on, like
rendering large images or video, or you're running more stuff than you
have RAM for. (that does not necessarily apply to server scenarios,
though, but even then you'd want to avoid the performance hit of swap
usage).

I've always considered swap more as an emergency fund than anything
else. If you don't use a swap partiton and you run out of memory, the
oom_killer runs which starts killing off running processes until it
frees enough to meet current demand. If you DO use swap, there's a
chance that the kernel will be able to swap existing memory pages to
disk, freeing up space temporarily.

Also, if you're using swap space consistently, then you probably DO
have a performance issue.

You can google for things like performance tuning (there are a good
number of sites that have info on that), but I'm more inclined to fix
the hardware deficiency first. Max out the RAM, then start looking
for tuning.

What kind of system are you running on, anyway? What kind of specs
does it have? Because, honestly, without knowing that basic info, it's
really hard to give a useful suggestion.

Cheers,

Jeff

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Old 07-02-2010, 07:53 PM
Ronald B Cadby
 
Default 10.4 minimums

Thanks again J.

On 07/02/2010 02:23 PM, ubuntu-users-request@lists.ubuntu.com wrote:
> .............
> 8. Re: ubuntu forums (Johnneylee Rollins)
>............

> On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 14:14, Ronald B Cadby <RCadby@roncadby.org> wrote:
>> > Thanks J.
>> >
>> > I appreciate the input and you've sort of reaffirmed that I need better
>> > hardware.
> That always helps... :-)
> ..........
>> > Is there a reference you could pass on re adjusting the /var space
>> > upward (or any other tips to improve swap space or whatever might
>> > improve my performance)?
> Don't know what you mean by "adjusting the /var space" That has
> little to nothing to do with performance, ............

/var space was referred to in the unbuntu min requirement link you
mentioned::

https://help.ubuntu.com/10.04/installation-guide/i386/minimum-hardware-reqts.html

"Notably, the /var partition contains a lot of state information
specific to Ubuntu in addition to its regular contents, like logfiles."

Is that only manageable at install time?

> Otherwise, install just a larger disk and re-install to that... ....

Oh, no! Not another install! Pleas, not that!............

>
> As for swap space, are you using swap? If you look at the output of
> the command 'free' ..........

total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 895484 834964 60520 0 26364 220748
-/+ buffers/cache: 587852 307632
Swap: 2620408 4268 2616140

Looks good at this point....need to check it when I'm 'loaded' with my
usual operating programs. I mostly do a lot of PHP program editing using
BlueFish and always have FF open with its FireFTP and FireBug open, as
well, along with Thunderbird, Terminal, PuTTY, Gedit, and NoteTab Pro in
Wine and other 'stuff' like image editing, OpenOffice spreadsheet data
manipulation, file downloads, video viewing.......... Any wonder I
have crashes?

Most disturbing, though, are the boot and mouse failures when there's
nothing loaded, yet.

> If you're actually using
> Swap, you've either got some serious computing going on, like
> rendering large images or video, or you're running more stuff than you
> have RAM for..........

No doubt.

>
> ....... If you DO use swap, ........

Does the 'free' output above indicate that I am?

>
> Also, if you're using swap space consistently, then you probably DO
> have a performance issue.

It will be interesting to do the 'free' command while I'm all 'loaded' up.

> .........I'm more inclined to fix
> the hardware deficiency first.........

That's my guess, too.

>
> What kind of system are you running on, anyway? .........

My main workhorse, because of the convenience of mobility is my Dell
laptop, a Vostro 1000, w/AMD64 (I avoid the 64 bit operation as seems to
be mostly recommended) , with single boot to 10.4.

Specs:
1.9 GHz Athlon 64 bit X2 AMD processor, a 15.4 inch Widescreen WXGA
(1280x800), 874.5MB 667 MHz DDR2 RAM, and a 120GB hard drive .

..........Ron

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Old 07-02-2010, 08:28 PM
J
 
Default 10.4 minimums

On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 15:53, Ronald B Cadby <RCadby@roncadby.org> wrote:
> "Notably, the /var partition contains a lot of state information
> specific to Ubuntu in addition to its regular contents, like logfiles."
>
> Is that only manageable at install time?

Right, but as I said, if you only have a / (root) partition and a swap
partition, there is no adjusting to do, beyond deleting stuff
elsewhere, And be that as it may, the stuff in /var does nothing to
make your computer run faster... as they say, it holds state files,
caches, spools, logs and stuff like that. And yes, I supposed if you
run out of space on a /var partition or your hard disk itself, you'll
definitely see a performance and stability problem...

BUT, if you don't know whether or not you have a separate /var
partition, you probably don't. The default partitioning scheme for
Ubuntu (for a while now) is a / partition and a swap partition. To
double check this, you can run the 'mount' command and see what's
mounted...

if you see an entry in the output that says /var, then you have a var
partition, otherwise, /var is part of the / partition, thus, if you
fill up your root FS, things won't be able to write to /var and thus,
hilarity ensues.

>> As for swap space, are you using swap? *If you look at the output of
>> the command 'free' ..........
>
> * * * * * * *total * * * used * * * free * * shared * *buffers * * cached
> Mem: * * * *895484 * * 834964 * * *60520 * * * * *0 * * *26364 * * 220748
> -/+ buffers/cache: * * 587852 * * 307632
> Swap: * * *2620408 * * * 4268 * *2616140

Roughly 2GB swap space there... you're only using about 4 MB, and
that's probably about right for a system that just started or hasn't
been running long (or isn't loaded).

> Looks good at this point....need to check it when I'm 'loaded' with my
> usual operating programs. I mostly do a lot of PHP program editing using
> BlueFish and always have FF open with its FireFTP and FireBug open, as
> well, along with Thunderbird, Terminal, PuTTY, Gedit, and NoteTab Pro in
> Wine and other 'stuff' like image editing, OpenOffice spreadsheet data
> manipulation, file downloads, video viewing.......... Any wonder I
> have crashes?

That's a lot of stuff to be running with only 800MB of RAM... Firefox
alone, especially with a few plugins, can easily start chewing up 200
- 400 MB after it's run for a while...

For example:

bladernr 2113 16.2 22.0 2074352 863256 ? Sl Jul01 304:22
/usr/lib/firefox-3.6.3/firefox-bin

my single firefox instance is currently using up more RAM than your
system has in total... it's been running for about 24 hours straight
now and has about 15 open tabs, using some Java, and it's also
probably got some memory still used up with old Flash data from
watching some videos...

OpenOffice can also use up a good bit of RAM, as can Thunderbird.
Putty and Gedit, AFAIK are fairly lightweight, no idea on NoteTab, but
wine is also a huge resource consumer, anything that handles image
editing (it as to keep the program and the full decompressed image in
memory as well as use more memory when it's doing things edity like
scaling, masking, coloring, filtering, etc...)

Seriously, if you're running all that stuff concurrently, you need to
invest in a bigger machine. heh... but I know what you mean, I often
have many many things open. Right now, I have XChat, Firefox, 8
xterms, a couple self organizing tools, calculator, Evolution, gtodo,
gimp, transmission, and totem...

> Most disturbing, though, are the boot and mouse failures when there's
> nothing loaded, yet.

You still haven't actually said WHAT you're seeing, beyond vague
references to "others have seen" something... What specific mouse
failures? What specific boot failures?

Those, though possibly two completely separate issues...

>> *If you're actually using
>> Swap, you've either got some serious computing going on, like
>> rendering large images or video, or you're running more stuff than you
>> have RAM for..........
>
> No doubt.
>
>>
>> ....... If you DO use swap, ........
>
> Does the 'free' output above indicate that I am?

Not yet, theres a little used, but that could be just normal
overhead... when you start seeing more than 10 - 15% swap used,
you're using it... which in your case, the Used column for Swap should
show 200MB or more in use... (and that's really conservative, in
reality more than maybe 20MB could be considered really in use... it
just depends).

>> Also, if you're using swap space consistently, then you probably DO
>> have a performance issue.
>
> It will be interesting to do the 'free' *command while I'm all 'loaded' up.

Yeah, I'd be interested in that too, just for kicks :-)

>> .........I'm more inclined to fix
>> the hardware deficiency first.........
>
> That's my guess, too.
>
>>
>> What kind of system are you running on, anyway? *.........
>
> My main workhorse, because of the convenience of mobility is my Dell
> laptop, a Vostro 1000, w/AMD64 (I avoid the 64 bit operation as seems to
> be mostly recommended) , with single boot to 10.4.

With only 1GB of ram, you probably don't need a 64bit OS. I have 4
with the possibility of 8GB if I ever buy the big DIMMs, so I am
running the 64bit... but my AthlonXP and netbook both run 32bit just
fine...

> Specs:
> 1.9 GHz Athlon 64 bit X2 AMD processor, a 15.4 inch Widescreen WXGA
> (1280x800), 874.5MB 667 MHz DDR2 RAM, and a 120GB hard drive .

I'm not intimately familiar with the Vostros, but I am pretty sure you
have 1GB of ram and roughly 128 or so shared for Video... if at all
possible, if you're running that much stuff, you need a bigger system,
and if you can't do that, you need to max the ram in that machine...

As for stability issues, as I said, what SPECIFICALLY are you seeing
WRT boot and mouse issues?

If you're running that much stuff and your mouse issue is that the
screen/UI just completely freezes, it's a good bet that it's because
you're just running way too much stuff for the resources you have. As
far as booting, as I said, that's a different issue alltogether, and
probably needs it's own thread.

Cheers
Jeff

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Old 07-09-2010, 02:14 PM
Sandy Harris
 
Default 10.4 minimums

On 7/3/10, J <dreadpiratejeff@gmail.com> wrote:

> ... the stuff in /var does nothing to
> make your computer run faster... as they say, it holds state files,
> caches, spools, logs and stuff like that. And yes, I supposed if you
> run out of space on a /var partition or your hard disk itself, you'll
> definitely see a performance and stability problem...
>
> BUT, if you don't know whether or not you have a separate /var
> partition, you probably don't. The default partitioning scheme for
> Ubuntu (for a while now) is a / partition and a swap partition. To
> double check this, you can run the 'mount' command and see what's
> mounted...
>
> if you see an entry in the output that says /var, then you have a var
> partition, otherwise, /var is part of the / partition, thus, if you
> fill up your root FS, things won't be able to write to /var and thus,
> hilarity ensues.

At least for some servers, a separate /var is often recommended.
Then if you get some rogue process, or buggy script, or someone
breaking into the box producing massive log files or spool files,
/var fills up but / and /tmp are OK so your system may stay up.

I use a separate /var on my desktop box, just for safety, but
this is almost certainly unnecessary for most users.

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