Sluggish Computer on Heavy I/O Activity

Colin Law clanlaw at gmail.com
Wed Jun 10 15:23:55 UTC 2015


On 10 June 2015 at 15:15, Amichai Rotman <amichai at iglu.org.il> wrote:
> Hi all,
>
> I am running Ubuntu 14.04 64Bit on the following hardware:
>
> Motherboard: Gigabyte G41M-ES2L with version F9 BIOS (latest)
> 4Gb of RAM (2x2Gb DDR2 800)
> 1x500Gb  Hitachi HDS72105 HDD (SATAII as Master for OS)
> 1x2Tb TOSHIBA DT01ACA2 HDD (SATA II as Secondary for Data)
>
> I have a weird problem:
>
> Whenever I copy or move data several Gigabytes in size (single or various
> files), or use Transmission -  my whole computer becomes sluggish and
> unresponsive...
> It takes it about 2-3 minutes to snap out of it.
>
> Come to think of it, it also happens when I open Google Chrome happens,
> especially when opening more than 3 tabs at a time.
>
> It even affects my online radio  playback  - the sound becomes choppy for a
> few seconds...
>
> Any ideas on where to look for the cause?
>
> I am working with Dropbox client v3.0.3 constantly open in the background.
>
> It seems like a RAM issue, but how is it ralated to hard drive I/O?!

Is it using a lot of swap space?  Have a look in System Monitor or use
top or similar if you are happier with the command line.  It should
not be using a lot from what you say is going on but the symptoms
sound like classic disk thrashing due to swap usage.  Clogging up for
several minutes then eventually sorting itself out.

If not that then is something hogging the processor?  Again look in
System Monitor or command line tool.

Colin

>
> Thanks!
>
> Amichai.
>
>
>
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