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Thread: Revisiting Android Task Killers and Why You Still Donít Need One

  1. #11
    Jazz
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitchelln View Post
    There's more to this than just memory. Some apps seriously affect battery life, through either poor design, bugs or just being CPU heavy. I like to be able to stop these apps before calling it a day to ensure my battery doesn't take a hit overnight.
    The article is actually about the memory management of android, and specifically makes a note of CPU-intensive apps as being the... oh i cbf explaining it if you cbf reading an article in the first place:

    "As we’ve learned, full memory is not a bad thing—we want to watch out for the CPU, the resource that actually slows down your phone and drains your battery life."



  2. #12
    Ratchet
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cubits View Post
    The article is actually about the memory management of android, and specifically makes a note of CPU-intensive apps as being the... oh i cbf explaining it if you cbf reading an article in the first place:

    "As we’ve learned, full memory is not a bad thing—we want to watch out for the CPU, the resource that actually slows down your phone and drains your battery life."
    Nice to meet you Cubits.

  3. #13
    Soundwave
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    ...doesn't the eee transformer have a task-killer built in anyway, if you fancy using one?

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by res1122 View Post
    On a desktop OS, like Windows, Mac OS X, or Ubuntu Linux, the user is responsible for closing programs in order to keep a reasonable amount of memory available. On Android, this is not the case. The OS itself automatically removes programs from memory as memory is needed. The OS may also preload applications into memory which it thinks might soon be needed.
    Having lots of available empty memory is not a good thing. It takes the same amount of power to hold “nothing” in memory as it does to hold actual data. So, like every other operating system in use today, Android does its best to keep as much important/likely-to-be-used information in memory as possible.
    As mentioned earlier, there is more to this than just memory. Android cannot automagically decide whether an app is running too often through design or poor coding. So an app that, say, polls a remote server frequently will burn CPU and waste battery. Or a media app that leaves the sound chip enabled all night wasting juice. Some apps just occasionally go rogue through a combination of events or race conditions and start burning cycles. Race conditions are almost impossible to track down and sort out. So it is handy to be able to kill misbehaving apps. I run Ubuntu all day, but there are still occasions where I have to resort to kill -9. It's inevitable unfortunately.

    Okay, so such apps may be implemented poorly, but some of them are really useful. So a task killer solves the problem. I can run the useful apps and terminate them to save battery.
    Last edited by mitchelln; 08-05-2011 at 04:21 AM.

  5. #15
    Jazz
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    I probably will uninstall task killer, but ONLY because I have Android Assistant as an alternative. I really do not know how these people can actually believe what they are writing. Some tasks obviously hogs the CPU, and some decides to use the ram up, and if you play games, as mentioned earlier in the thread, you quickly find out that it can affect games a lot.

    I can agree about the ram, its not like something in the ram drains all the power, or the uses all of the CPU by default. But tasks do not auto shutdown before it becomes critical. Which is that you actually run out of memory. On a device like the Transformer, there is quite a bit more memory than on other devices, and it seems to me that this article counts much less for the Transformer than other Android devices.

    Most the time I would agree that it manages quite well on its own. Most apps even know how to shut down when they should. But if you browse a few webpages, maybe even some flash ones, and look through 5 or more apps, and have some kind of animated live wallpaper, you should not expect that the next game you run, or video you play will do so smoothly, because the system tries to be ready to get back to a few of those other apps, which might even still be running in the background. The browser most likely is. And a task killer is a much faster way of killing it than most other ways.

    It is probably a good idea to make some apps excluded from the task killer though. But why did they not include the built in task killer from Android 2.1 - 2.2? Probably 2.3 as well. On Honeycomb, there is a task and services manager, and you can probably manage with it, but its not one click away unless you make it so. I have not found any built in widgets for it, only by making a shortcut to the settings. I do miss the old clear high and low lvl ram. Making it clear all of it was almost as good as restarting the phone. On the Transformer, it seems I just have to restart it now.

  6. #16
    Soundwave
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    I totally disagree to the main article. I can understand the main premise that a task killer only frees up memory and that it does nothing about CPU usage. However I have been an android user for some time. I have a samsung captivate running froyo 2.2 and a asus transformer. Its hard to understand the battery benefits on the transformer since it gives me usage time of around 8 hrs (with constant downloading, browsing, tweaking the desktop etc). However on my phone I have noticed that having a task killer increases my battery life to a huge extent. Not having a task killer kills my phone in 12 hrs with medium use. But with a task killer which I use religiously (I have however fine tuned it to ignore certain apps which start on their own) I get more than 1.5 days of moderate use. So even if someone writes up a huge essay on why not to use task killers then I will totally disagree but one has to use them a little judiciously specially about ignoring certain apps to be killed.

  7. #17
    Soundwave
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    It's a good thread that makes you think about what you should use task killers for. But it seems to think task killers are just there to free up RAM.

    That's not why I got one.

    Sometimes you want to close apps because they're doing something you don't want. Like accessing the internet. Some just auto-start, but won't restart if you close them. Like skype, or google maps. I don't want them to load when I start the tablet, I want them to load when I load them. I don't use them enough to justify them lurking there, doing god know what... Some are simply hopeless, bloody MyZine loads back up every time I close it, so I just leave it there, until I get the guts to root the device and take that thing out.

    Anyway, thanks for the post, it was informative and will help me decide better when to and when not to use a task killer.

    Cheers.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gudiomen View Post
    It's a good thread that makes you think about what you should use task killers for. But it seems to think task killers are just there to free up RAM.

    That's not why I got one.

    Sometimes you want to close apps because they're doing something you don't want. Like accessing the internet. Some just auto-start, but won't restart if you close them. Like skype, or google maps. I don't want them to load when I start the tablet, I want them to load when I load them. I don't use them enough to justify them lurking there, doing god know what... Some are simply hopeless, bloody MyZine loads back up every time I close it, so I just leave it there, until I get the guts to root the device and take that thing out.

    Anyway, thanks for the post, it was informative and will help me decide better when to and when not to use a task killer.

    Cheers.
    Hello and welcome to the Forum. Your post makes sense. Thanks for bringing the info forward.

  9. #19
    Ratchet
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    very interesting read as I always thought like a "Windows" user that I am and figured kill running task will not only free up memory but make the tablet more responsive, not that it was really sluggish, but I notice when playing music and it goes into the "sleep" mode *screen turns off) and when I turn it back on and do the unlock thing the music will come back on but it skips a bit for little than plays regular.
    I always kill process and clearing cache of the sort every time, but now my question is...is there an app out there that shows CPU usage and if ifs spike the root cause of it?
    Last edited by raycaldwell; 11-12-2011 at 11:31 AM.

  10. #20
    Soundwave
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    Thank you! Great article.

 

 
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