Does Text-Only Nostalgia Pay Off?

Can anybody please come up with an explanation for this phenomenom? (other that coincidence, paranoia or selective perception, please. ;-) It is quite reproducible) It's freaking me out.

In Linux, I keep a sticky xload open to monitor my CPU load. Sometimes, an over-eager application takes up all the memory, causing everything to slow down to a halt, until the app crashes and Linux returns to normal behaviour. (Positive Thinking: At least all other apps and the OS remain stable...) Well, everytime this happens, I immediately see the value rising steeply in xload. I sigh and watch the GUI growing less and less responsive while the load habitually goes up to 20... 30 over a minute or two, until Linux finally realises it's hopeless and kills the amok running app.

Sometimes in this situation I switch over to the text terminal with ctrl-alt-F1. Even with a high load, it feels much more responsive since it does not have to bother about drawing a GUI. I run top to watch what's happening -- and never do I see the load rising.

What's going on here? When I stay in the GUI, Linux is pissed and the load rises like phoenix with his rump on fire -- when I switch to the text terminal, Linux suuuddenly feels flattered by nostalgia and condescents to kill the swapping app immediately, causing the load to drop? Is this a feature?

Comments:

Probably caused by memory leak in apps you are running using GUI. My guesses:

  • Gnome based windows manager with its applets,
  • Java stuff (web browsers applets, you-know-which-IDE),
  • web browser,
  • etc.

First, get rid of Gnome stuff and see if it will fix the problem.

Regards.

-PAVUK

Posted by PAVUK on September 19, 2005 at 12:42 PM CEST #

Hi Pavuk! Thanks for your input. You-know-which-IDE was involved indead, tusila jsem to... My window manager is xfce, but since apps like Evolution use Gnome components, I cannot get fully rid of Gnome. Well, I activated a swapfile and updated afore-mentioned IDE to the latest build, up to now, that helped, let's keep our fingers crossed.

Posted by seapegasus on September 25, 2005 at 03:11 AM CEST #

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