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Thread: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

  1. #1

    Question Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    This problem may be tied into other issues that I will post about today.

    On bootup, the hard drive thrashes a lot - sometimes as long as five minutes (or longer). I've noticed that it seems to be tied to PackageKit... "Package Updater" starts every time I boot, and if there are updates to be made, the time the hard drive thrashes is extra long. If there are no updates, the thrashing is usually short - stops a few seconds after my desktop appears. (This ties into the problem I had with Firefox needing to be forcibly updated as it starts crashing.)

    How would one go about diagnosing a thrashing hard drive after boot-up?

    Once it stops thrashing, no more problems until I have to boot up again. If there are updates available, I can make it stop thrashing by running Package Updater and doing the updates - as soon as Package Updater is finished, the thrashing stops. (This also eliminates the problem with Firefox locking up my system.)

    Bob

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    It's hard to know what you are trying to describe.

    When there has been a kernel update, the next startup run the purge-kernels service before the desktop shows. And on my slowest system that takes around 4 minutes.
    openSUSE Leap 15.4; KDE Plasma 5.24.4;
    testing Tumbleweed.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    And to be precise, is that thrashing after boot before anyone is logged in?
    Henk van Velden

  4. #4

    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    I have automatic login because the computer is not accessible to anyone except maybe my wife - and she doesn't mess with it (I wouldn't mind her getting on here because she is rather computer savvy.)

    Package updater starts every time I boot (or re-boot) the computer, and if there are updates (and I don't catch the pop-up for Package Updater in time or start it immediately), the hard drive might thrash for 5 minutes, sometimes longer. If there are no updates to do, then the thrashing is for only a few seconds after the desktop appears. Trying to start any other software while the hard drive is thrashing is just asking for a full lockup (the mouse cursor moving is the only thing that works, and I have to do a hard reset (power down by power button) to clear the lockup).

    Thanks for replying!

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    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    Then, when you want to debug this, first switch off automatic login, thus you can find out if it starts direct after boot, or only after login.

    Sorry for this, I guess you understand that, but instead of posting the results of such a test, you are telling about your wife. IMHO you should give her her own user definition. That is what Unix/Linux is, a multi-user and multi-session operating system.

    BTW, before you think I can debug that "Package Updater" (I think you mean the applet in your desktop), I do not use it and have PackageKit not installed. So the above is only a hint on how I would start investigating this.
    Henk van Velden

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    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    Quote Originally Posted by Archaeometrist View Post
    ackage updater starts every time I boot (or re-boot) the computer, and if there are updates (and I don't catch the pop-up for Package Updater in time or start it immediately), the hard drive might thrash for 5 minutes, sometimes longer.
    That sounds like Gnome. Normally, with Gnome, the package updater just downloads the packages. Then it installs them on the next boot.

    When I try Gnome, I try to disable the package updater, and use "zypper" at the root command line for updating. But of course there will still be a period when the system is doing updates. By doing it this way, I have better control of when that happens.
    openSUSE Leap 15.4; KDE Plasma 5.24.4;
    testing Tumbleweed.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Hard drive thrashing after boot.

    I ended up deleting and tabooing packagekit altogether. I would rather use YAST - and I'd found that packagekit was starting every time I booted (or re-booted) the computer. Removing packagekit also stopped the several-minutes-long thrashing of the hard drive (which seems to be tied to when there are multiple updates). Packagekit also started at other times (often while online), thus the seemingly random lockup I'd been fighting every since I updated from 15.2 to 15.3.

    I also could find no way to set it up like I was going to (no automatic checking) and no help files. The symptoms indicate that (on my system) packagekit conflicted with Firefox and the symptoms suggest that it clashes with Firefox when there are updates available. Chromium doesn't have that problem from what I can tell.

    Thanks for the help!

    Bob

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