Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I got two PCs (one a little bit older Desktop and a new HP Probook 5330m LG719 Laptop), both running Ubuntu 11.10.

When I log in on either of them, sooner (sometimes right after login) or later (sometimes 30 minutes afterwards) the whole desktop gets extremely slow. That is, I can no longer use it, the mouse will only move every other second for some pixels, or not at all; keyboard input does not seem to work (at least alt+f4, etc.)

I cannot think of anything that might cause it: My laptop runs on an Intel Core 5, my desktop an AMD Phenom 9650. The former got an Intel HD 3000 graphics processor (rc6 and stuff enabled, which never caused crashes without Skype enabled), the latter a Nvidia GeForce 8400 GS with proprietary drivers.

The only other software I have installed that is not in the standard installation is, as far as i remember, dropbox and google chrome.

Neither in syslog nor in the xorg log are any entries near the time of the freeze. Starting Skype in the Terminal wont give any results, it seems to crash before reporting.

Does anyone experienced similar problems or know a solution for it?

share|improve this question
I had an issue that Skype started to use all my available RAM. everything will slowly freeze. is this what's happening to you? – Alvar Apr 12 '12 at 13:33
What version of skype are you running? this got fixed for me since the last update. – Alvar Apr 12 '12 at 13:40
Thank you, but my problem was solved soon after march 8. I sincerely have to apologize for not reporting this here! Sorry!! – Dominik Apr 12 '12 at 18:13
up vote 2 down vote accepted

It's unlikely that skype is causing your machine to crash. The symptoms you describe sound like something is leaking memory and you are simply running out of memory. You can determine this by watching "top" in a terminal and sorting by memory usage (type F then n and hit enter). The culprit will likely be at the top of this list.

share|improve this answer
that seems highly unlikelysince it only happens when skype is running, but I will test. To be sure, do you know a possibility to log this? – Dominik Mar 7 '12 at 19:19
(then again, I got 4gb ram and 8 gb swap) – Dominik Mar 7 '12 at 19:19
Well, Skype seems to work without crashing for now, yesterday it crashed three times on both my PCs. – Dominik Mar 7 '12 at 19:25
Maybe it's skype that is eating the memory. You could log top by running while true; do top -n 1 -b |head >> top.log; sleep 10; done in a terminal. – pestilence Mar 7 '12 at 19:29
Thank you. I have never really worked with log, could you give me a hint how to do that? – Dominik Mar 7 '12 at 19:53

Is this during a video feed? There's already a bug for hard lockups during video feeds.

If not, I'll file a bug at the appropriate tracker.

Edit: Filed. See

Please head over to add more info(comments)/mark as affecting you

share|improve this answer
Oh boy. First, let me thank you for your taking the initiative and opening a bug report. It seems as if i did not tell here that my problem seems to not occur anymore, however, I did nothing to prevent it, so I cannot tell why. But thank you! I will write this on the bug report as well. – Dominik Apr 12 '12 at 18:10
@Dominik I have marked the report as invalid as it affects nobody now, although if it does recur, anybody can mark the bug as New and mark it as affecting them. – hexafraction Apr 12 '12 at 19:58

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.