[ubuntu-uk] odd hd activity

Alan Pope alan at popey.com
Thu Oct 18 15:48:57 BST 2007

Hi Norman,

On Thu, 2007-10-18 at 15:18 +0100, norman wrote:
> For some unknown reason my hard drive becomes very active for about 5
> minutes and then stops. This activity is repeated at half hourly
> intervals. I would like to find out what is causing this but do not know
> how to go about it. The activity started only a day or two ago. Please,
> could some wise person advise me on what to try?

I would open a terminal and run "top" in that terminal. You'll get
something that looks a bit like this:-


Followed by this header:-


Then a list of processes that are running. The default view shows the
processes that are consuming the most CPU time at the top. For example
right now I have these:-


You'll note at the top of the list right now on my machine is Xorg,
nautilus and Java. (I'm uploading some files using a java applet, so
this looks about right).

Note in the left hand column you can see who owns the processes. My name
is next to some of them. 

I would leave that running permanently, and when you notice the disk
going nuts, take a look at it and see if something rises to the top. You
may also note in the top header the %wa (percentage of time the cpu is
blocked waiting for IO operations to complete) goes up as your disk is
getting mashed.

My bet would be trackerd, the file indexing daemon, but it could be
anything. Let us know what you find.

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