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Old 09-17-2014, 03:42 PM   #1
jbruyet
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Registered: Feb 2011
Location: North Central Washington
Distribution: Debian, OpenSUSE, Kali, Ubuntu
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VirtualBox VM killing my CPUs


Hey all, I recently installed CentOS 6.5 on my workstation. Hardware is an Asus mobo with an AMD quad-core processor and 16GB of RAM. I downloaded and installed VirtualBox from source and then created an Ubuntu 12.04 (per vendor spec for a software package) VM. The VM has one CPU, a 160GB hard drive and 10GB RAM. When I run Ubuntu my processor is idle until I do something. For example, just opening a terminal window takes about 10 seconds and it takes even longer to close it (Firefox is much worse). This can spike my CPU to almost 200%. Has anyone else had a situation like this? If so, how did you fix it?

Thanks,

Joe B

Last edited by jbruyet; 09-17-2014 at 03:56 PM.
 
Old 09-17-2014, 03:55 PM   #2
jbruyet
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Ok, I think it's just an issue with the Ubuntu 12.04 VM. I just installed Windows 7 and it's fast and speedy.

Thanks,

Joe B
 
Old 09-17-2014, 05:53 PM   #3
jbruyet
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Replaced Unity with XFCE4 and we're fast and speedy now.

Thanks,

Joe B
 
Old 09-18-2014, 07:17 AM   #4
vinbob
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Registered: May 2005
Location: Fareham, UK
Distribution: HP-UX 11i, Fedora, Ubuntu, Debian, RHEL, OEL, CentOS
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Hi,

That'll be because Unity requires 3D acceleration for the desktop compositing, Gnome is the same. Windows 7 and XFCE does not require this.
In Virtualbox's GUI goto the Display settings for your Ubuntu VM and enable the 3D acceleration option (assuming your host system is able to provide 3D acceleration).

Also if you've assigned more than one VCPU to your VM, this will auto-enable I/O APIC on the guest which will use more CPU time on the host and slow down I/O on the guest (as I/O system calls take longer to process). You're best just running 1 VCPU on your guests unless specifically required and having I/O APIC disabled.

HTH

Last edited by vinbob; 09-18-2014 at 07:20 AM.
 
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Old 09-19-2014, 02:01 PM   #5
jbruyet
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Registered: Feb 2011
Location: North Central Washington
Distribution: Debian, OpenSUSE, Kali, Ubuntu
Posts: 178

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Hi vinbob, 3D acceleration was already enabled on the VM. I'll remember that bit about multiple vCPUs and I/O APIC.

Thanks,

Joe B
 
  


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