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Thread: Finding source of heavy disk activity

  1. #1

    Default Finding source of heavy disk activity

    Hi there,

    I have both an HDD and an SSD in my computer. I use the HDD for bulk storage and the SSD for heavy reading and writing.

    I recently moved a project from my HDD to the SSD but I can still hear the HDD running when I run the app so something is still being accessed on the HDD. Is there a way to see the files being written to or read from on a particular drive for a time?

    It may be that I use a symlink and it's accessing the symlink to get to the rest of the files or may be some caching I didn't catch or whatever but being able to see what's being heavily accessed on the HDD would be a quick way to find out.

    For anyone who's interested this is what I did:

    Original path:
    /home/reg/jobs/Drupal/drupal-7/drupal/... and all it's subdirectories

    New path:
    /home/reg/jobs/Drupal/drupal-7/drupal <symlink to> /var/home/reg/jobs/Drupal/drupal-7/drupal

    where everything under "var" is on the SSD and everything under "/home" in on the HDD.


    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    So you go through the sym-link to the SSD? The sym-link is a file on the HDD thus has to be accessed to get to the linked files on the SSD. So you do touch the HDD to get to the files

  3. #3

    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    Quote Originally Posted by gogalthorp View Post
    So you go through the sym-link to the SSD? The sym-link is a file on the HDD thus has to be accessed to get to the linked files on the SSD. So you do touch the HDD to get to the files
    Perhaps. If a directory 3 deep down from the symlink is accessed does that mean the symllink is accessed? I don't know. It might all be done in a cached look up table of the file system and therefore irrelevant. In any case it will be fun watching the disk access once I learn how to monitor the disk access to see what really is going on.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    If you're running KDE, in my old presentation slide deck about optimizing for SSD I describe a highly recommended 3rd party KDE gadget. When installed, you can get realtime monitoring of your disk activity. You won't necessarily know immediately exactly <what> is causing the disk activity but you can investigate as the problem is happening. A big problem is that often-times you won't notice the problem until after the problem has been happening for awhile (so won't know what activity might have kicked off the scanning).

    https://sites.google.com/site/4techs...ntations-30min

    TSU

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    Sure the access follows the path the path leads through the symlink so the HDD will get hit a little just enough to read the symlink which forwards on to the SSD structures

  6. #6

    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    I appreciate all the insights but my original main point of interest I still have no direct answer to... how do I monitor file system access as it happens? There must be something out there to do this with.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Finding source of heavy disk activity

    Which desktop?? there are a lot of widgets that do this.

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