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I have an intel NUC with an N3050 in it. Just running Firefox and gnome system monitor seems to keep the CPU usage at 100% (sometimes but not others)! I am using it as a media center, and first noticed it when I was running kodi and mythtv. When watching a recording, it would every now and then freeze and then catch up, and then a video file (mkv H.264) was playing really poorly (not smooth at all) while myth was recording. I looked at the system monitor and found that at least 1 of the cores was at 100%.

I put a post on the kodi forums (http://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=257980) and one of the responses was to say that the Braswell processors have issues with the kernel.

Has anyone had these issues, are there any ways around this without having to go away from the stable versions of Ubuntu?

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IN case anyone else has problems, I had similar: poor performance Ubuntu 14.04.3 with 3.19 Kernel, with high CPU activity -- upgraded the kernel to 4.4.1 and it is now significantly faster, and the CPU is not nearly as busy.

System seems stable (only upgraded a few hours ago).

I will just add the code to do this here for anyone looking (using the tmp dir):

cd /tmp/

wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.4.1-wily/linux-headers-4.4.1-040401-generic_4.4.1-040401.201601311534_amd64.deb
wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.4.1-wily/linux-headers-4.4.1-040401_4.4.1-040401.201601311534_all.deb
wget http://kernel.ubuntu.com/~kernel-ppa/mainline/v4.4.1-wily/linux-image-4.4.1-040401-generic_4.4.1-040401.201601311534_amd64.deb

sudo dpkg -i linux-headers-4.4.1*.deb linux-image-4.4.1*.deb

After install, reboot.

If you want to check your current kernel version (before or after upgrade), use:

uname -r

If anything goes wrong and you want to uninstall the new kernel, restart your computer and select boot with the previous Kernel (under Advanced Options) when you’re at Grub boot menu, after logged in run below command in a terminal:

sudo apt-get remove linux-headers-4.4.1-* linux-image-4.4.1-*; sudo update-grub

Info taken from: http://www.yourownlinux.com/2016/02/how-to-install-linux-kernel-4-4-1-in-linux.html http://ubuntuhandbook.org/index.php/2016/01/how-to-install-linux-kernel-4-4-in-ubuntu/

  • I have done the same now. I used to play one video file and do one recording and the video would play poorly and freeze when they CPU hit 100%. Now I am recording 6 channels at once, as well as playing the exact same video. I am looking at the stats (using the "o" key in kodi) and both cores sit between 50% and 70%, peaked to 90% at one stage. The video is playing smooth and no problems after about 10 minutes at this load. Looks like upgrading the CPU is the answer. Next time a quad core would be handy, but this cheap celeron NUC makes for a great media server. – MicWit Feb 5 '16 at 4:05

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