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Extending Ubuntu's Battery Life

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  • Extending Ubuntu's Battery Life

    Phoronix: Extending Ubuntu's Battery Life

    Last week when traveling to Europe for FOSDEM and other business meetings, I had picked up a new 9-cell battery for a Lenovo ThinkPad T60. While an additional three battery cells will noticeably extend your battery life, you can also extend your battery life by taking a few simple steps to optimize your Linux desktop that will also reduce your power consumption and heat output. In this article are a few simple steps to take in order to extend your notebook's battery life on Ubuntu.

  • #2
    Also, something worth mentioning for nVidia users:

    Option "OnDemandVBlankInterrupts" "boolean"

    Normally, VBlank interrupts are generated on every vertical refresh of every display device connected to the GPU(s) installed in a given system.
    This experimental option enables on-demand VBlank control, allowing the driver to enable VBlank interrupt generation only when it is required.
    This can help conserve power.

    Default: off (on-demand VBlank control is disabled).
    I've been using it for quite long time without any adverse effects.


    • #3
      What does vblank exactly do? I read on wikipedia, and thought that it's only useful for people with CRT monitors.

      Btw, I got Ubuntu Tweak, and an option in there allowed me to get my battery preferences to let me choose how the processor is handled when on ac/battery power (max battery life, based on processor demand, and max performance).

      The powertop 'game' of pressing buttons is fun too, but unfortunately, the settings don't stay after a reboot. But I do play it everytime I go on battery though.


      • #4
        You can place your scripts in specific directories to be run at specific events:

        /etc/acpi/ac.d - when on AC power
        /etc/acpi/battery.d - when on battery

        In the form of the filename:

        For instance:

        The more the weight, the later it will be executed. Scripts with lower weights are executed before the greater.

        There is one little bug though. It seems that if the system is on battery during startup, /etc/acpi/battery.d is never executed.

        As for VBlank, I don't know what it does in greater technical detail, but after enabling this option my wakeups are drastically reduced.

        A simple tray application for controlling the built-in hardware (wireless, bluetooth, anything causing wakeups) would be nice. I have written a very crude one that works only on my notebook, but I look forward to the release of Ubuntu 8.04 with a newer HAL (better killswitch support), so a better solution could be coded based on that.
        Last edited by socketbind; 03-01-2008, 08:35 PM.