Gnome-shell increased memory usage and micro freezing the system while gaming

Greetings,

Since the last stable update on 04.06.2023 I have noticed a bit of odd behavior while gaming - gnome-shell starts to consume more memory and while doing so, the whole system micro freezes for a few moments. Then it resumes to behave normally, till next memory increase.

I have ended up having gnome-shell consuming 4.6 Gb while gaming. The annoying part is the micro freeze, especially in online shooter games.

Anyone else had similar experience while gaming, after the update?

1 Like

Same behavior if you disable all gnome extensions? I guess one of them is producing such a behavior.

I have started testing this morning, by disabling all extensions and enabling them one by one.

Will see what will be the result - a lot of gaming needed :wink:

Pretty much anything beyond Dash to Panel and AppIndicator extension enabled causes the micro freezes for me.

For now, I will just turn off Gnome Extensions globally before starting to play and turn them back on after.

Just wanted to add that I, too, am seeing a post-update increase in gnome-shell memory usage and multiple micro-freezes. But it is not limited to gaming, and gnome-shell takes as much as 12GB of memory.

Also, the memory suck does not “stick” after restarting the gnome-shell, but soon thereafter the memory usage goes back to a high number.

I almost didn’t post, because it seems to generally work. So I assume many others are experiencing this too.

Below are inxi -F results for two very different machines running Manjaro and experiencing the issue.

Machine 1:

System:
  Host: manjaro-yoga Kernel: 6.1.31-2-MANJARO arch: x86_64 bits: 64
    Desktop: GNOME v: 44.1 Distro: Manjaro Linux
Machine:
  Type: Convertible System: LENOVO product: 80VF v: Lenovo YOGA 910-13IKB
    serial: <superuser required>
  Mobo: LENOVO model: Agera v: SDK0J40709 WIN serial: <superuser required>
    UEFI: LENOVO v: 2JCN39WW date: 05/31/2017
Battery:
  ID-1: BAT1 charge: 60.2 Wh (100.0%) condition: 60.2/78.0 Wh (77.1%)
CPU:
  Info: dual core model: Intel Core i7-7500U bits: 64 type: MCP cache:
    L2: 512 KiB
  Speed (MHz): avg: 613 min/max: 400/3500 cores: 1: 573 2: 654
Graphics:
  Device-1: Intel HD Graphics 620 driver: i915 v: kernel
  Device-2: Chicony EasyCamera driver: uvcvideo type: USB
  Display: x11 server: X.Org v: 21.1.8 with: Xwayland v: 23.1.1 driver: X:
    loaded: modesetting unloaded: vesa dri: iris gpu: i915
    resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz
  API: OpenGL Message: Unable to show GL data. Required tool glxinfo
    missing.
Audio:
  Device-1: Intel Sunrise Point-LP HD Audio driver: snd_hda_intel
  API: ALSA v: k6.1.31-2-MANJARO status: kernel-api
  Server-1: PulseAudio v: 16.1 status: active
Network:
  Device-1: Qualcomm Atheros QCA6174 802.11ac Wireless Network Adapter
    driver: ath10k_pci
  IF: wlp1s0 state: up mac: 58:00:e3:d0:d8:81
  IF-ID-1: tun0 state: unknown speed: 10 Mbps duplex: full mac: N/A
Bluetooth:
  Device-1: Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4 Bluetooth 4.0 driver: btusb type: USB
  Report: hciconfig ID: hci0 state: up address: 58:00:E3:D0:D8:82 bt-v: 2.1
Drives:
  Local Storage: total: 238.47 GiB used: 67.34 GiB (28.2%)
  ID-1: /dev/nvme0n1 vendor: Samsung model: MZVLW256HEHP-000L2
    size: 238.47 GiB
Partition:
  ID-1: / size: 81.24 GiB used: 66.97 GiB (82.4%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/dm-0
  ID-2: /boot size: 451.5 MiB used: 133.1 MiB (29.5%) fs: ext4
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p6
  ID-3: /boot/efi size: 256 MiB used: 233.1 MiB (91.1%) fs: vfat
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p1
Swap:
  ID-1: swap-1 type: partition size: 9.31 GiB used: 13.8 MiB (0.1%)
    dev: /dev/nvme0n1p9
Sensors:
  System Temperatures: cpu: 46.0 C pch: 35.5 C mobo: N/A
  Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A
Info:
  Processes: 279 Uptime: 17h 6m Memory: available: 7.51 GiB
  used: 4.48 GiB (59.7%) Shell: Zsh inxi: 3.3.27

Machine 2

System:
  Host: manjaro-imac-2019 Kernel: 6.1.31-2-MANJARO arch: x86_64 bits: 64
    Desktop: GNOME v: 44.1 Distro: Manjaro Linux
Machine:
  Type: Laptop System: Apple product: iMac18,3 v: 1.0
    serial: <superuser required>
  Mobo: Apple model: Mac-BE088AF8C5EB4FA2 v: iMac18,3
    serial: <superuser required> UEFI: Apple v: 429.120.4.0.0 date: 04/22/2021
CPU:
  Info: quad core model: Intel Core i5-7500 bits: 64 type: MCP cache:
    L2: 1024 KiB
  Speed (MHz): avg: 3685 min/max: 800/3800 cores: 1: 3539 2: 3795 3: 3703
    4: 3703
Graphics:
  Device-1: AMD Ellesmere [Radeon RX 470/480/570/570X/580/580X/590]
    driver: amdgpu v: kernel
  Device-2: Apple FaceTime HD Camera (Built-in) driver: uvcvideo type: USB
  Display: x11 server: X.Org v: 21.1.8 with: Xwayland v: 23.1.1 driver: X:
    loaded: radeon unloaded: modesetting,vesa dri: radeonsi gpu: amdgpu
    resolution: 2560x1440~60Hz
  API: OpenGL Message: Unable to show GL data. Required tool glxinfo
    missing.
Audio:
  Device-1: Intel 100 Series/C230 Series Family HD Audio driver: snd_hda_intel
  Device-2: AMD Ellesmere HDMI Audio [Radeon RX 470/480 / 570/580/590]
    driver: snd_hda_intel
  Device-3: GN Netcom Jabra SPEAK 510 USB driver: jabra,snd-usb-audio,usbhid
    type: USB
  API: ALSA v: k6.1.31-2-MANJARO status: kernel-api
  Server-1: PulseAudio v: 16.1 status: active
Network:
  Device-1: Broadcom BCM43602 802.11ac Wireless LAN SoC driver: brcmfmac
  IF: wlp3s0 state: up mac: 18:81:0e:dc:3e:c8
  Device-2: Broadcom NetXtreme BCM57766 Gigabit Ethernet PCIe driver: tg3
  IF: enp4s0f0 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: full
    mac: 68:fe:f7:0a:bd:43
  IF-ID-1: docker0 state: down mac: 02:42:01:42:dc:e6
  IF-ID-2: tun0 state: unknown speed: 10 Mbps duplex: full mac: N/A
Bluetooth:
  Device-1: Apple Bluetooth USB Host Controller
    driver: btusb,hid-generic,usbhid type: USB
  Report: hciconfig ID: hci0 state: up address: 18:81:0E:DC:3E:C9 bt-v: 2.1
Drives:
  Local Storage: total: 957.59 GiB used: 516.96 GiB (54.0%)
  ID-1: /dev/nvme0n1 vendor: Apple model: SSD SM0032L size: 26.08 GiB
  ID-2: /dev/sda vendor: Apple model: HDD ST1000DM003 size: 931.51 GiB
Partition:
  ID-1: / size: 91.11 GiB used: 50.84 GiB (55.8%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/dm-0
  ID-2: /boot size: 451.6 MiB used: 131.5 MiB (29.1%) fs: ext4
    dev: /dev/sda6
  ID-3: /boot/efi size: 196.9 MiB used: 42.6 MiB (21.6%) fs: vfat
    dev: /dev/sda1
Swap:
  ID-1: swap-1 type: partition size: 7.45 GiB used: 888.9 MiB (11.7%)
    dev: /dev/sda3
Sensors:
  System Temperatures: cpu: 44.0 C mobo: N/A gpu: amdgpu temp: 41.0 C
  Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A
Info:
  Processes: 350 Uptime: 15d 1h 36m Memory: available: 23.37 GiB
  used: 11.01 GiB (47.1%) Shell: Zsh inxi: 3.3.27

Wait… what? You boot up and the gnome-shell has taken 12GB RAM? No applications are running?

Prove it:

pamac build smem
sudo smem --numeric --abbreviate --totals --sort=rss

No…sorry, not at boot. Over time with applications running. Apologies if that was unclear.

Then the applications take memory and not gnome-shell?

Yes, overall. But the 12GB was specifically for gnome shell. I can’t ‘prove it’ at the moment, because I restarted when it got that high. But will post back if it gets there again.

I found few extensions (and/or combination of them with my other extensions) that were the main contributors for the micro freezes, in my case:

  • Freon
  • Just Perfection
  • OpenWeather

After disabling them, so far, no more micro freezes while gaming or in other activities outside of gaming.

Please feel free to add your findings :wink:

Freon and Openweather updates the screen on updating values. Guess that is known? So the micro freezes are just screen updates, which are no fast enough.

Here is a screenshot of gnome-shell using 8.8 GB of memory.

I have not tried disabling Just Perfection and OpenWeather, but will.