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 Forum index » Taking the Puppy out for a walk » Misc
Is Puppy Green?
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ecomoney


Joined: 25 Nov 2005
Posts: 2183
Location: Lincolnshire, England

PostPosted: Sun 15 Mar 2009, 20:36    Post subject:  

So....what is there we can do to make puppy even "greener"....we must make a considerable carbon footprint with all of our computers. I notice puppy doesnt have a screensaver/screen blanker. Can we turn off hard disks when not in use? or is this simply a bios feature on some computers? I notice modern computers must have higher wattage power supplies..does this make them consume more energy? Does running old kit use less power?
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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Sun 15 Mar 2009, 21:28    Post subject:  

The screen goes dark on Puppy after 10 mins. of inactivity.
This makes a big difference in power use with a crt monitor,
and you can feel how much cooler the monitor is.
Running a graphical screensaver saves no power.

My p2 pc uses 90 watts; more than half goes to the crt.
It has a 125 watt power supply.
An average new Vista box uses about twice as much power
and needs a supply twice as large; even though they have
lcd monitors and are touted as being energy efficient.

I guess it comes down to how you use Puppy. When using a
laptop that's only using 20 to 50 watts, that's "Green" in my
opinion.

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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Sun 15 Mar 2009, 21:28    Post subject:  

oops double post
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disciple

Joined: 20 May 2006
Posts: 6463
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 02:33    Post subject:  

Quote:
I notice puppy doesnt have a screensaver/screen blanker.

?
There are screensavers. By default the screen is just blanked after a few minutes... but screensaving and blanking don't even save any power anyway.
If you want to turn the screen off, put
Code:
   Option      "OffTime" "3"
in the serverlayout section of xorg.conf.[/quote]
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ecomoney


Joined: 25 Nov 2005
Posts: 2183
Location: Lincolnshire, England

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 09:32    Post subject:  

Thanks for that, I used it to find this page.

Im just thinking...for the cybercafe project Im currently working on, the people who work their say they have a problem, not only with power consumption, but also with people wondering away and leaving their screens on while logged into their email and such.

I understand puppy has a template xorg.conf file that it uses to create the various xorg.conf files for particular graphics setups. If that file were modified with some of the settings from the link above then that wold help their electricity bill, their (rather careless) clients privacy (to some small degree), and do their bit for the planet.

Would someone with a bit more knowledge than me explain if this can be done, and if so how to do it?

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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 12:23    Post subject:  

The 16 inch Phillips monitor attached to my pc draws 51.5 watts
of power. When the screen goes dark after 10 mins. of inactivity
this drops to 46.5 watts. Not much savings.
If the computer is powered off and the monitor is still powered
up, the monitor is only drawing .7 (less than a watt) watts.

Something that turns off the computer after a a period of
inactivity would be ideal. I don't think an xorg configuration
would have anything to do with that?

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Pizzasgood


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 6270
Location: Knoxville, TN, USA

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 13:01    Post subject:  

Quote:
a typical smart-arse answer and a cop-out.

You are saying that an operating system's inability to operate hardware is a feature.
No. I didn't say anything about that. What I said is that an OS that has the ability to use the hardware should not power up the hardware for no reason, if attempting to conserve power. That is wasteful. Such an OS could initially use a slight amount more power than one that simply cannot use the devices, because it might need to do some probing of the device to prepare for the moment when the device becomes needed by the user. But then it should power down the device and wait.

Those same standards should apply to Linux. And in fact, Linux probably could use those devices just fine. I know first hand that Linux supports wifi and bluetooth. Not every single device, but many. HOWEVER, Linux doesn't turn those devices on by default, unless vendor changes the default for their distro. Otherwise, you have to TELL Linux to turn them on. That is a design choice, just like not mounting partitions unless told to, and not connecting to the net unless told to.

Whether Linux can or cannot use that machine's wifi and bluetooth is irrelevant, because even if it could use them, it would not turn them on by default, and would instead behave exactly the same as if it could not use them.

Quote:
Something that turns off the computer after a a period of
inactivity would be ideal. I don't think an xorg configuration
would have anything to do with that?

There was some discussion of this recently. Barry had a blog post about it I believe. They were basing the decision on mouse activity.

I wonder if there's a built-in way to have Xorg's "screensaver" run arbitrary code. If there is, you could use that instead. Otherwise, I suppose you could patch Xorg's code to let you run arbitrary code.

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canbyte


Joined: 10 Jan 2009
Posts: 266
Location: Hamilton, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 16:10    Post subject:  

I got one of those little UPM/ EM100 power meters

Both machines are 4w when turned off. What the heck is all that juice doing in there? There's no mouse/sensor-on setup here.

Dell running Puppy runs at 51w doing nothing to 68w active (Seamonkey). Startup is 60-80w. No power saver available.
Dell running winME is 66-68w
Puppy is greener

Compaq running winME runs 46w idling, 68w working. Consistent.

The Compaq runs Puppy on CD & flash drive so hard drive rarely runs -very quiet.

Compaq running Puppy: draw is all over the place but seems to range 43* to 58w at idle and 60-66w working (ie watching youtube). * reduces to 40 after a long while & hd shuts down. HD - i'd guess that it saves about 2-4w when down.
Puppy -- potentially better but hard to tell. Call it a draw for now.

I wonder why Puppy is a bit agitated on Compaq? Bounces around for no apparent reason.Why this box and not the other? Something for you techies to ruminate on. Differences: no swap, runs printer which means the original 412 was modified with addition of devx. I can always try to get more data if its of interest.

Overall: Puppy wins on this sample of two. Based on machine being idle most of the time, Puppy saves a little less than 25% on the Dell or 12% between the two. Not counting other contributors like monitor, printer etc.

Go green!
Go Puppy!

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Printer: Oki C3400 > LAN


Last edited by canbyte on Tue 17 Mar 2009, 14:47; edited 3 times in total
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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Mon 16 Mar 2009, 16:32    Post subject:  

Ecomoney

Measured power consumption with both pc and crt monitor.
87 watts to begin with.
After 10 mins. no mouse activity, screen dark, 82 watts.
After 20 mins. no activity, power drops to 41 watts...
essentially what the pc uses without a monitor.

So the screen blanking indeed cuts power use by more than
half.

Now the trick is to find a sleep or clean shutdown mode for
the pc itself that happens after +- 20 mins.

Monitor-107s phillips
Using Puppy 4.1.1 full install.

edit:
Disconnecting my 2 hard drives and running from usbflash
saves another 10 watts.

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disciple

Joined: 20 May 2006
Posts: 6463
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 00:59    Post subject:  

You guys are saying Puppy's default "screen blanking" which just turns the screen black saves power. With my LCD monitors it certainly doesn't, because the backlight stays on - just all the pixels are switched to black. Can you guys confirm that your monitors aren't switching to standby, like an LCD one does? If they aren't, it means a CRT monitor would use way less power displaying DOS style white text on a black background, than displaying the lighter colours used by most programs... which has interesting implications for the white text on black/black text on white/some other combination debate Smile
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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 18:08    Post subject:  

disciple:

I was under the impression (probably mistaken) that "ecomoney"
was using old pcs' with crt monitors. I guess it is "standby" mode
that the crt monitors drop to after 20 minutes of non use.

My laptop with 12 inch screen never drops to standby using
mains power (I don't have a battery).

Did measure power usage of laptop with screen disconnected.
Screen uses 6-7 watts depending on brightness setting.
Thanks for the "heads-up" about the backlight staying on.
Does cutdown on lifetime of lcd screens; so I'll be turning
off power more often.

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ecomoney


Joined: 25 Nov 2005
Posts: 2183
Location: Lincolnshire, England

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 19:03    Post subject:  

@rjbrewer

Thank you for taking the time to test and to post test results. Im currently doing some work for a Seamans Mission charity who run a large cybercafe from their two bases at local major seaports. They have recently asked me to give an outline of what kind of cost savings they can expect using an open source system. They do mostly use LCD monitors, but even with this information Im sure that I will be able to configure their systems to save them many hundreds of British pounds, and do their bit for the environment. One site offers around 30 computers 9:00-17:00 and the other site runs 24/7.

Im just wondering, is there a manual command that can be used to switch off hard disks? Im sure that preventing them from continuing to spin after a certain time (15 mins) will help reduce wear and tear as well as save electricity.

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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 20:20    Post subject:  

ecomoney wrote

Quote:
Im just wondering, is there a manual command that can be used to switch off hard disks? Im sure that preventing them from continuing to spin after a certain time (15 mins) will help reduce wear and tear as well as save electricity.


I think power down drives (stop spinning?) is just available on
laptops. Laptop drives only use 1/4 or less power than 3.5 inch
pc drives anyway.

As far as wear and tear; it's just the opposite.

For instance: If you were able to start a good automobile engine
and keep it running at a nearly constant rpm, without stopping or
starting it ever; it could easily last close to a million miles.

80% or more of all wear and stress on the motor happens during
start stop modes.

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Msi Wind U100, N270 1.6>2.0Ghz, 1.5Gb ram.
Eeepc 8g 701, 900Mhz, 1Gb ram.
Full installs

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Mr. Maxwell


Joined: 30 Aug 2008
Posts: 215
Location: Nebraska, USA

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 22:26    Post subject:  

At 666 posts you should probaly post again very quickly. Twisted Evil
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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Tue 17 Mar 2009, 22:30    Post subject:  

Oppornockity tunes but once.
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Eeepc 8g 701, 900Mhz, 1Gb ram.
Full installs

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