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Ancient tablet always running slow :(

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by Double44, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    I have a Nexus 7 2012 Lollipop tablet that has 1GB of ram, I love the thing but it always runs slow. After rebooting I start out with about 425MB of free ram but as I continue using it, it drops around 200MB and becomes sluggish. For some reason I feel as if Android is not managing my ram properly, sometimes my foreground apps even get closed.

    I have about 100 apps installed on it, but I use Greenify to force stop most of the apps I don't want running in the background, and have even disabled some of the bloatware that I don't use. I've installed Holo Launcher for ICS which has a low footprint, but for the most part I am still struggling. I figured that I may have had too many background tasks, but even disabling those apps doesn't seem to give me additional ram.

    One thing I've noticed, is that some force stopped apps (like Amazon) will actually run again after a certain period of time.. completely defeating the purpose, and I wonder if this is a problem.

    This is a stock device and would like to keep it this way, so I don't really know what else I can do.
     



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  2. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
    Moderator

    The problem is twofold. First killing apps is counterproductive. It can (and in your case, probably does) make a device less efficient. The second problem is by today's standards it's an under-powered device with limited resources.

    The force-closes you get are most likely from you killing an app or service that shares resources with the app you want to run. Android wants to keep those services active but you keep killing them. Forget 'additional ram'. Freeing up ram will not make an android device run better, it will make it slower ... and flaky.

    Take a read through

    https://androidforums.com/threads/p...k-killers-ram-optimizers-and-the-like.896663/

    and

    https://androidforums.com/threads/why-you-dont-need-a-task-killer.335110/

    This topic has been discussed extensively.

    As for your problem, I think the best you could hope for is to audit your device for the apps you think are essential and only have those installed. Then backup your device and perform a factory reset and only install your core apps, leaving the task killers and optimizers off the list.

    There really are no apps or tweaks that can make your device have a faster processor or more memory. Those are strictly hardware limitations.
     
    Bg260, mikedt and Dannydet like this.
  3. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    I'm not really "killing" these tasks in the traditional sense, it's with Greenify via Force Stop, not through a task manager. I suppose I don't understand the difference between the two. When an app is Force Stopped, it should reside only on storage, as if it's a new app that has never been run. I don't touch system apps, only the ones I've installed. Half of the apps installed are live wallpapers, text-to-speech engines, and icon packs.
     
    #3 Double44, Jun 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
  4. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
    Moderator

    Greenify is one of those apps that sits on the fence for utility. While it's true that it doesn't kill apps in the traditional "task-killer" way, it still will "force stop" the app once it's been run. A force stop is pretty much killing it with dependencies, so while it's a bit more elegant, it's still lipstick on a pig, IMHO.

    Theoretically, but Android is not that simplistic. When there is a chunk of free memory on an Android device, the OS will place recently used or frequently used apps there with the premise being that if you ran them recently or you open it a lot, you're bound to launch it again. Keeping it cached reduces the performance hit on the device if you had to open it as if loading it for the first time. This isn't Windows or other desktop OS's where having free resources speeds performance. It's actually the other way around for most 'nix environments.

    Also consider that these services that supposedly optimize your tablet need to run all the time and steal resources from the apps you want to be running. Android, all by itself, will gracefully unload any cached apps from active RAM when required. Trying to out-anticipate the OS's memory needs is an exercise in futility.
     
  5. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Running live wallpapers can certainly tax an underpowered low-specced device, and make it lag, run slow, etc. About auditing your apps; something like the Amazon app, do you really need that, can't you look at Amazon in the browser instead? Do you use the Facebook app, which is notoriously bloated and a system hog. Again can do that in the browser. Do you really need umpteen TTS engines and icon packs?
     
  6. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    Okay I think I'm starting to understand, but if Android is already managing apps accordingly, what does it matter if I have 100 or 1000+ apps (or 1000 live wallpapers) installed?
     
  7. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
    Moderator

    Live wallpapers really put a load on the GPU, especially on older devices. They are on all the time. It's like towing a camper with a Corolla. The apps, as long as there are no associated services, should have a negligible impact on performance when you're not using them, but many of them keep services alive like a weather app that warns you about storms, or a sports app that updates the scores. Facebook, Instagram, Gmail, etc. all keep communications going so you get notifications. If you turn all of that off, you might gain some performance back, but you'll lose a lot of functionality.
     
  8. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Are you actually using any live wallpaper apps, or large bloated human like TTS engines. A live 3D aquarium or something may make the tablet look pretty, but if the thing doesn't have the horse power, it's just going to slow down and lag noticeably, compared to just using a static picture wallpaper.
     
  9. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    I checked and have 55 live wallpapers installed, are you guys saying that if these are uninstalled, I could see a boost in performance? I have 12 TTS engines installed, but they aren't on all the time either, are they? I keep these things local just incase I want to swap em out later, or if I don't have an internet connection around.

    Right now I just use a static wallpaper because it runs too slow. I don't understand GPU, can you tell me what it does in relation to RAM?
     
  10. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
    Moderator

    If you aren't using the live wallpaper, it should only take up storage space, but a lot of these have services that will check the dev's website to look for updates or worse, push ads.

    I'm not sure about the TTS engines, but I'd be surprised if they also didn't have some services running all the time, too.

    A GPU is the Graphics Processing Unit, similar to the video card in your PC. It handles everything that shows up on your screen.
     
    mikedt likes this.
  11. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    Are you saying the gpu uses ram in order to display them?

    Is there an app that can diagnose/check my apps for the services they use? would be helpful to know which apps are problematic before removing stuff
     
  12. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Very definitely it does, for rendering and animating all the 3D fishes or waterfalls or whatever. I've got a basic specced Android device here, a DLP projector, with only 1GB RAM, some cheapo slow Amlogic CPU, and when that's running live wallpapers it's very noticeably slower and laggy. I usually only use it to play videos or use a laptop via HDMI to it. .

    Not sure of any apps myself off hand, but when it comes to TTS voices, things like the basic small stock Google one, will use much less resources and RAM than the ones that promise truly life like speech, e.g. Ivona, which is about 500MB or something. A TTS engine is something that very probably will be kept in RAM, so it can respond instantly when it's needed to say something.
     
    #12 mikedt, Jun 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
    lunatic59 likes this.
  13. zuben el genub

    zuben el genub Extreme Android User

    My Ancient Acer A-500 isn't slow. Built in graphics that I can delete, I do. I can make an animated GIF for a wallpaper using my own camera and photos and resize accordingly.

    My big problem in newer updates. I have some programs I no longer update since 4.1 Ice Cream won't play them. However, It does use an SD card and I have a few downloaded videos on it. Those only run when I use the player.

    I also have a newer Acer and I think that's running 5.1. That does allow you to disable built ins that you won't use. You can still delete some graphics.

    TMobile US has visual voicemail and I think Viber has a Skype type service. Visual voicemail would start with the device, but if you are running a visual talk, it probably does run. On the PC, Skype does run basic services for notifying you for a call, but the visual doesn't run until you turn on the main program with camera and mike. I use Viber for text and regular calls if I need to call.

    I can't think of an app, but my Moto does give me the data usage of all the apps by name. I'd suppose that if enough wanted it, someone would make an app that would run on older forms of Android for diagnostics of a sort.

    If you think you have found a diagnostic app, please check back here with the experts before you install. It could be jumping from the frying pan to the fire.
     
  14. You can disable WiFi. This will prevent Google Play services from taxing your resources. Not practical if you are using the tablet for browsing though.
     
  15. Double44

    Double44 Member
    Thread Starter

    I've removed Greenify, but I'm still confused about all this.

    If the Force Stop action is redundant, why does it exist? If Android manages memory on its own, why am I experiencing all this slowdown? Do I just have too many background tasks running? Only one LWP and TTS engine should be needed as a background task, so I don't understand why the other apps even matter if Android will filter them out of memory.

    I use Netguard to prevent certain apps from receiving an internet connection (to block out ads), but I may try disabling WiFi too..
     
    #15 Double44, Jun 30, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2017
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