[CDBUG-talk] An idea of mine.

Jonathan Franks jfranks214 at taconic.net
Wed Jan 5 12:38:39 EST 2005

Steve Moon wrote:

>>Firstly, my laptop seems to get extraordinary battery life under FreeBSD
>>as compared to Windows. This is what started the thought process.
>That's the key point -- and it seems too good to be true. Yes, 
>FreeBSD is more efficient than Windows in many respects, but the
>display still needs to be powered up the hard drive needs to spin from
>time to time, and the CPU needs to keep your lap warm.

>I would investigate why the battery life is poor before diving into
>this -- could it be the student laptop batteries are abused by light
>use/recharge/light use/recharge cycles that eventually kill Lion
>batteries? Are the correct power management drives installed,
>configured, and working?
The power management is configured and working, but we are definitely 
experiencing the light use / recharge cycles. Additionally, when the 
students put them away they don't always turn them off, or even plug 
them in :-). I know that these factors would be unaffected -- these are 
training issues that we are continually revisiting with the faculty. 
However there are many occasions when the laptops are treated "properly" 
and still fail to last. Essentially I think we're pushing the limits of 
what they are designed for.....

>On the other hand, if you're switching from running apps locally to on
>the terminal server, then you're replacing hard drive/cdrom use with
>wifi radio power drain which is likely less and would explain the
>extended battery life.
>Seems like a side-by-side test using a students laptop with poor
>battery life would give you a more definitive answer.
Thanks, Steve. I think you're right. I'll run a test, but the more I 
look at this the more it looks like I'm going to need to continue to 
search for a solution. They key here would seem to be whether the HDD / 
CD or the WiFi uses more power. The other down side that I'm just 
thinking about is that I don't think that RDP will deliver sound (though 
I'm not positive on this). While this isn't critical, some of the 
edutainment programs they use are far more engaging for the kids when 
the sound is on.....

Anyhow I'll let you know how the experiment turns out. Thanks again.


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