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I have a weird problem with my Ubuntu right now.

My login speed is never consistent for months, sometimes it changes within weeks. What I mean is, for example, within 2 weeks, boot time is really fast and speedy but then say after that, boot time becomes noticeably slower.

Usually, right after the ubuntu login sound plays, my desktop would've finished loading already but sometimes, the ubuntu login sound is already done playing and I'm still in this stage of the login --> image, exactly like that.

Any reasons for this? Sometimes it slows down after updates (which I think is kind of normal?) After a few reboots, it becomes fast then randomly it becomes slow again.

EDIT:

As suggested by CYREX, here's what I found from dmesg. Note that I don't have much of an idea what the numbers represent, I assume it's some sort of time. Here are the ones with the big gaps in them including a horrible, horrible one:

[    1.840381] EXT4-fs (sda3): mounted filesystem with ordered data mode
[   12.727535] udev: starting version 151

...

*These below are the ones near the bottom of the output of dmesg*

...

[   15.896985] vboxdrv: Successfully loaded version 3.2.6 (interface 0x00140001).
[   16.365727] ppdev: user-space parallel port driver
[   17.275125] hda-intel: IRQ timing workaround is activated for card #1. Suggest a bigger bdl_pos_adj.
[   23.218666] Adding 2097144k swap on /media/Storage/UbuntuSwap/2048Mb.swap.  Priority:-1 extents:1 across:2097144k
[  200.486521] wlan0: deauthenticating from 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a by local choice (reason=3)
[  200.486796] wlan0: direct probe to AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 1)
[  200.685037] wlan0: direct probe to AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 2)
[  200.884026] wlan0: direct probe to AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 3)
[  201.085044] wlan0: direct probe to AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a timed out
[  211.250602] wlan0: direct probe to AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 1)
[  211.253054] wlan0: direct probe responded
[  211.253066] wlan0: authenticate with AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 1)
[  211.263190] wlan0: authenticated
[  211.263234] wlan0: associate with AP 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (try 1)
[  211.270763] wlan0: RX AssocResp from 34:59:0c:2e:81:3a (capab=0x411 status=0 aid=7)
[  211.270767] wlan0: associated
[  211.271087] ADDRCONF(NETDEV_CHANGE): wlan0: link becomes ready
[  217.531285] ath9k: timeout (100000 us) on reg 0x806c: 0xdeadbeef & 0x01f00000 != 0x00000000
[  217.531403] ath9k: RX failed to go idle in 10 ms RXSM=0xdeadbeef
[  221.444033] wlan0: no IPv6 routers present
[  225.203575] lo: Disabled Privacy Extensions
[  249.747532] process `skype' is using obsolete setsockopt SO_BSDCOMPAT

More about my setup:

The laptop is setup to dual boot Windows 7 and Ubuntu. Both in a separate partition. However, they share a common separate partition where I put all my files (/media/Storage -> NTFS). I also created the Ubuntu swap in that shared NTFS partition. Looks to me like something's wrong there..

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Please tell me if you have installed any software during that period that made the time differ. For example i normally install mysql, php, apache after a couple of days of using ubuntu. That increases the time by 1 or 2 horrible seconds. Also it would help a lot if you can run dmesg from console and see where it gets stuck a lot AND also do a cat /var/log/syslog to see what it is making it slow down so much. Maybe a driver problem, maybe a library problem, etc... –  Luis Alvarado Dec 28 '10 at 17:04
    
Hey, I updated my post to include the output of dmesg. I'm not 100% sure what to make of it but judging by the numbers, it seems like something's up with the way I setup my swap space in Ubuntu? –  Brock Dute Dec 29 '10 at 0:20
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1 Answer

I would start with bootchart. It is available in the apt tree. As far as improving boot speed, ureadahead (installed by default in current Ubuntus I think) is probably the most effective along with eliminating unnecessary daemons etc. (chkconfig or sysv-rc-conf)

http://www.bootchart.org/

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