CPUs running at 100% (Hardy Heron, Dell XPS M1330)

J dreadpiratejeff at gmail.com
Thu Apr 1 18:17:30 UTC 2010

On Thu, Apr 1, 2010 at 13:24, Quin Wills <quin.wills at simugen-global.com> wrote:

> Thanks Jeff and Liam
> Jeff, yup when I ran my DELL hardware test I ran everything from fan tests
> to RAM. So all good there we hope.
> I'm really not seeing any particular process causing the problem, and also
> seem to feel that I can't make a convincing argument for hardware being the
> issue. I suppose my concern is that there's been an update that has somehow
> buggered things up. But surely Canonical/Ubuntu check this on a laptop
> they've agreed LTS on?
> Any other words of wisdom on what next to do?

Well, if you're sure it's not hardware (and I really doubted it in the
first place, I just like to rule out the easy things when things like
this happen) then that only leaves software... ;-)

Now that I think about it, I may have seen something very similar to
what you're seeing, but to be honest, it's been a good while since I
ran Hardy...  I did run it for quite a while on a Thinkpad, and
thinking back, every time I ran into a problem like this: inexplicable
CPU load, system freezing, etc, it was almost always due to something
using Java.

In my case, either Firefox running pages that had java applets, or
java programs (we had a couple that were used for front ends to
databases, ticketing system, etc).  Lotus Notes also caused quite a
bit of pain for me too.

The best thing I can tell you at this point is make sure everything is
up to date (I have a feeling it is, going by your responses so far),
and pay a LOT of attention to what you're doing at the time this

Also, maybe something here will give you an idea:


vmstat could be useful, at least it will give you an idea of what
state the CPU is in at any given moment and show idle, system usage
and user-land usage so you can determine if it's a user app or a
system app that's causing the problem.

I'm still thinking it's gotta be something Java related.  Despite all
the people (java developers) who swear by the superiority of Java, I
still despise java code for this very reason...


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