Ubuntu: Swapping for best performance



Question:

I have Ubuntu on my laptop for like 10 days. I'm new to Linux. So I'm interested about getting better performance of my laptop. Laptop: DELL: Intel CPU i7-4510U 2.00x4 , Graphics: Intel Haswell Mobile 4400 and Ati Radeon R270, 1TB HDD, 8GB RAM 1600mhz. I'm using laptop for android and web development ( app. android studio (mostly testing app via emulator), Eclipse..). So what value should I use for swap? Thanks.


Solution:1

Swap size

From a default Ubuntu installation we will have automatically created a /swap partition having a reasonable size. There are few cases only when changing this default value may be needed (e.g. being prepared to upgrade RAM later).

To get an idea if changing your swap size would give you any benefits it is probably a good idea to just see how much of it is acutally used by issueing the following command in a terminal:

free  

This will give you all memory availble, and used, uncluding RAM and swap. Only if that value reaches the upper limit of your swap size it would make sense to increase it. If it always is at the lower level of usage reducing its size will not influence system performance and may not be worth the hassle (note that we should not completely disable swap).

Swappiness

More than swap size "swappiness" may influence system performance, as this value will determine how swap will be used by the kernel. Still, the default swappiness value of 60 is a sensible value and we should not need to change it. See this very nice question and answer on more background about swappiness. Please also consider that as a beginner to Ubuntu it may not be such a good idea to play aroung with system internals (at least not without a full system backup which will enable you to restart from scratch).

What else?

Perhaps more than CPU power (which you may not be able to change so easily anyway) are the following:

  • have a working graphics driver installed to use the ATI card rather than the inbuilt Intel graphics.
  • consider replacing a slow laptop hard drive by a fast SSD (this will do miracles).
  • further increase RAM size (may speed things up, but only if running multiple applications in parallel or for graphics or video editing).

Note:If u also have question or solution just comment us below or mail us on toontricks1994@gmail.com
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