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[Bug 1208993] Re: Ubuntu slows down and hangs while copying file from/to USB


The default cache setup on Ubuntu 14.04 (no explicit settings in sysctl.conf) seems to use bytes instead of a ratio:
$ cat /proc/vmstat | egrep "dirty|writeback"
nr_dirty 43
nr_writeback 0
nr_writeback_temp 0
nr_dirty_threshold 169462
nr_dirty_background_threshold 84731

This default is for a system with 8G memory, so are probably too small.

The problem caused by this default settings is slow file copies (10
MB/sec) from a SATA hd to a USB3 (SATA disk).

Using a ratio for the default settings instead of a number of bytes
might allow better use of memory for machines with memory to spare.

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  Ubuntu slows down and hangs while copying file from/to USB

Status in nautilus package in Ubuntu:

Bug description:

  While copying many and large files to and from a USB drive, the system
  becomes incredibly slow and sometimes hangs. I watched the system
  monitor while it was running slowly but cpu was not above 50% at any
  time, the same for memory.

  I'm using the "WD my passport" HD with a USB3 port of my "ASUS K55VD"

  Description:	Ubuntu 13.04
  Release:	13.04

    Installed: 1:3.6.3-0ubuntu16
    Candidate: 1:3.6.3-0ubuntu16
    Version table:
   *** 1:3.6.3-0ubuntu16 0
          500 http://ubuntu-archive.mirror.nucleus.be/ raring/main amd64 Packages
          100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

  Steps to reproduce:
  1) Aquire many large files (like your totally legit moviecollection)
  2) Copy files to external HD
  3) Open your browser and be sad when your system becomes incredibly slow after a few minutes

  This is my first bugreport so if I'm missing something, please tell

  ProblemType: Bug
  DistroRelease: Ubuntu 13.04
  Package: nautilus 1:3.6.3-0ubuntu16
  ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 3.8.0-27.40-generic
  Uname: Linux 3.8.0-27-generic x86_64
  ApportVersion: 2.9.2-0ubuntu8.1
  Architecture: amd64
  Date: Tue Aug  6 22:56:34 2013
  EcryptfsInUse: Yes
  ExecutablePath: /usr/bin/nautilus
   b'org.gnome.nautilus.window-state' b'geometry' b"'656x715+154+151'"
   b'org.gnome.nautilus.window-state' b'maximized' b'true'
  InstallationDate: Installed on 2013-05-31 (67 days ago)
  InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 13.04 "Raring Ringtail" - Release amd64 (20130424)
  MarkForUpload: True
  SourcePackage: nautilus
  UpgradeStatus: No upgrade log present (probably fresh install)

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