Xorg issue I can't stand...

Roland Scheidegger sroland at tungstengraphics.com
Wed Apr 11 05:32:20 PDT 2007

Paulo J. Matos wrote:
> Hello all,
> I'm having, what I guess, being a Xorg problem. My version is
> xorg-server 1.1.1. I have an ATI Radeon Mobility 7500. Laptop is a
> Pentium4 2.2Ghz. The symptoms I have range over all my apps but one is
> consistently there: X.
> For example, whenever I'm browsing, from time to time, X goes up to
> share 66% of CPU against 33% of firefox. When I'm seeing a movie, be
> it with Xine or mplayer, everything is ok for the first couple of
> minutes and suddently X starts eating my CPU again which hinders me
> the possibility of continuing to watch the movie since the player
> video stops (although audio keeps going). This happens no matter if I
> use KDE, Gnome, or Enlightenment. I can't seem to know where to start.
> I've enabled/disabled dozens of options in my xorg.conf but things do
> not change. I've even tried (when X started eating my CPU) to strace
> it by (as root) attaching strace to X process but as soon as I did
> that my system blocked and I had to turn it off and on again.
> I'm just curious if I can do anything to debug, test, or anything. I'm
> getting depressed as my system gets unusable and it seems I can't to
> anything. Worst is, I'm not 100% sure it is Xorg. It might as well be
> something else but I've already gone through kernels 2.6.18, 2.6.19
> and 2.6.20 and the issue remains... :-/
> Any suggestions, advice is extremely welcome.

You could try oprofile to see where all the cpu time is spent. That
said, since it works initially, something strange must happen. Are you
sure your cpu isn't going into thermal throttling? It could possibly
cause what you're seeing. P4 are not suitable for notebooks, if the
manufacturer skimped on cooling you're likely to get thermal throttling.


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