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Two days ago, I bought my personal computer, the battery capacity is at 95%. Is that normal?

Running Ubuntu 16.04

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  • What's the make of your computer ? Dec 22, 2016 at 20:37
  • I bought mine a few weeks ago, and have max 97% on it. It's a HP ProBook.
    – Alex
    Dec 22, 2016 at 21:33
  • you shouldn't see that type of problem for a few years. No, its not normal. But maybe your new PC is new From the retailer, not from the Manufacturer, which could give you older, more decrepit hardware.
    – j0h
    Dec 22, 2016 at 22:17

1 Answer 1

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A rechargeable battery only accepts a charge so many times. Over time it slowly wears out. What causes that wear is discharge and charging cycles. In the past with laptop computers, any time you plugged the computer into a power outlet it would detect the level your battery was at and then fully charge the battery to 100%. This, it turns out, is not always the best idea. It's quite common for most laptops to be unplugged for just a few minutes. Or to be put to sleep, moved somewhere, then plugged in and used again. In either case, this ends up with very minimal battery drain and the constant "drain a little, charge a little" cycle was determined to cause a lot of "wear" on the battery.

Now, modern laptops have more intelligent charging systems that normally won't try and charge your battery unless it's low enough to make charging it worthwhile. What level that is depends on the manufacturer, but generally it's something below 95%. The reasoning is, having that extra 5% charge isn't really going to give you much more time, but avoiding topping up the battery all the time reduces the number of discharge/charging cycles and extends the overall life of the batter significantly.

The OS doesn't decide when to charge. It is the job of the EC (embedded controller) device. The EC device will tell the OS when it's charging so the OS can display that information, but it's not the OS's job to make those decisions.

So yes, the behaviour you are seeing seems normal for modern laptops. If you see the battery is below 90% and it doesn't charge when you plug it in, then there is perhaps something amiss. There are sometimes battery charge system configuration programs you can run that will calibrate the computer's embedded controller with the amount of wear your battery currently has. On MSI laptops, for example, this is called Battery Calibration and they recommend this be run every three months. You may consider checking if your computer has such a program and running it if it does.

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