1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Is PowerTop Still Useful For Extending Your Battery Life?

Michael Larabel

Published on 26 June 2010
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 2 of 2 - 18 Comments

Below are the idle results for the different conditions.

These results show there is no longer a huge power savings from using PowerTop on the Intel notebook and netbook that were tested, but there is some benefit. The ThinkPad T60 with its Core Duo processor shaved off just 0.578 Watts or about 4% when following the PowerTop recommendations. The Samsung NC10 netbook had cutdown its power consumption by 0.803 Watts or about 6%. Of course, if your hardware does not support WiFi power savings or you use your Bluetooth interface actively along with USB peripherals, there will not be much at all in the way of savings.

When looking at the power savings when under the OpenArena-GraphicsMagick-PostMark workload, there was not any greater power savings via following PowerTop's recommendations when the systems were stressed. The ThinkPad T60 again just went through about 0.5 Watts less power and the Atom netbook cut down its power consumption by 0.8 Watts.

While using PowerTop in 2010 may not lead to significant power savings like it has done in the past for us -- though the Atom netbook's battery life would still be extended by about 6% -- it's good in the respect that more of the power performance optimizations for Intel hardware have worked their way into the mainline Linux kernel and related components. All that PowerTop v1.11 basically did for us was to disable the Bluetooth as it wasn't being used at the time, enabling USB auto-suspend, enabling WiFi power-savings, and enabling power-savings for the Intel HD audio. If you are serious about extending the battery life for your Intel mobile device, PowerTop still may be worth trying out. It is also worth noting though that Intel is not too actively developing PowerTop anymore, but as aforementioned, its last release was 18 months ago and even in its Git repository the only work in the past few months have been translation updates. In fact, there have not been any major code changes to PowerTop at all this year.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Linux Hardware Reviews
  1. MSI X99S SLI PLUS On Linux
  2. NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 Offers Great Linux Performance
  3. CompuLab Intense-PC2: An Excellent, Fanless, Mini PC Powered By Intel's i7 Haswell
  4. From The Atom 330 To Haswell ULT: Intel Linux Performance Benchmarks
Latest Linux Articles
  1. RunAbove: A POWER8 Compute Cloud With Offerings Up To 176 Threads
  2. 6-Way Ubuntu 14.10 Linux Desktop Benchmarks
  3. Ubuntu 14.10 XMir System Compositor Benchmarks
  4. Btrfs RAID HDD Testing On Ubuntu Linux 14.10
Latest Linux News
  1. openSUSE Factory & Tumbleweed Are Merging
  2. More Fedora Delays: Fedora 21 Beta Slips
  3. Mono Brings C# To The Unreal Engine 4
  4. Coreboot Now Has Support For Intel Broadwell Hardware
  5. Enlightenment's EFL 1.12 Alpha Has Evas GL-DRM Engine, OpenGL ES 1.1 Support
  6. GTK+ Lands Experimental Backend For Mir Display Server
  7. Ubuntu 14.10 Officially Released
  8. Mesa 10.4 Might Re-Enable HyperZ For R600g/RadeonSI
  9. Intel GVT-g GPU Virtualization Moves Closer
  10. GTK+ 3.16 To Bring Several New Features
Latest Forum Discussions
  1. HOPE: The Ease Of Python With The Speed Of C++
  2. Updated and Optimized Ubuntu Free Graphics Drivers
  3. Ubuntu 16.04 Might Be The Distribution's Last 32-Bit Release
  4. Linux hacker compares Solaris kernel code:
  5. Advertisements On Phoronix
  6. Users/Developers Threatening Fork Of Debian GNU/Linux
  7. AMD Releases UVD Video Decode Support For R600 GPUs
  8. Proof that strlcpy is un-needed