I have always found battery life with Linux to be relatively lesser than windows. Nevertheless, this is Linux and we always have something up our sleeves. Now talking about this small utility called TLP, that can actually save some juice on your device.
TLP – Linux Advanced Power Management is a small command-line utility that can genuinely help extend battery life by performing several tweaks on your Linux system.
$ sudo apt install tlp
For other distributions, you can read the instructions from the official website.
After installation is complete, you will have to run the following command to start tlp for the first time only. TLP will automatically start the next time you boot your system.
Now TLP has started and it has already made the default configurations needed to save battery. We will now see the configurations file. It is located in /etc/default/tlp. We need to edit this file to change various configurations. There are many options in this file and to enable an option just remove the leading # character from that line. There will be instructions about each option and the values that you can allot to it. Some of the things that you will be able to do are –
- Autosuspend USB devices
- Define wireless devices to enable/disable at startup
- Spin down hard drives
- Switch off wireless devices
- Set CPU for performance or power savings
TLP is an amazing utility that can help save battery life on Linux systems. I have personally found at least 30-40% of extended battery life when using TLP.
I guess with the drivers being less refined for Linux then Windows I think the only thing you can do to save energy is to run the hardware in a energy saving mode more aggressively. I believe this is what TLP is doing because what I have noticed is temps run cooling and the fan is slower to ramp up then without TLP. This would indicate some throttling of some kind to reduce energy. Maybe this is why I don’t see Linux adopting this into its builds by default. I have pretty much accepted that Ubuntu which is what I run uses a tad more energy then Windows 10. I notice it in heat build up and in reduced battery life. But I like the performance of Ubuntu and prefer to accept less battery life then reduced performance to save energy.