[syslog-ng] Trying to let my harddrive spin down once in a while

Lars Stokholm lars.stokholm at gmail.com
Mon Jul 11 18:58:45 CEST 2011


On my laptop I run Arch Linux with syslog-ng and cronie (cron) among other
programs of course.

I'm trying to get my harddrive to spin down automatically once in a while
(using hdparm).

Me and a lot of other people both in the Arch and Ubuntu community are
having our attempts to do this ruined, by what first seemed to be the EXT4
journalling block device (jbd2).

After long discussions and finally a bug report (see at the bottom of this
mail), I think I've boiled my troubles down to be mostly about syslog-ng
(and possibly cronie - but I don't think so).

No matter what I try I can't seem to get syslog-ng to stop "waking up my
disks" (at least that's what kernel tracing tells me). Killing the crond
process almost totally stops these syslog-ng writes to the disk.
Unfortunately I've been unable to configure my way out of it using
syslog-ng.conf. So my harddrive won't stay spinned down - not even for a

This is what tracing the journalling gives me (see the kernel bug report
below for an explanaition):

As you can probably see, syslog-ng writes every minute at least. I guess
that's because my user crontab has a command that gets run every minute.
What I don't get is why syslog-ng writes to the disk, even though I'm
telling it not to log crond's output.

Here is my syslog-ng.conf - as you can see I tried to output the crond
messages to /dev/null. I guess it works, because there are no mentions of
crond anywhere in /var/log anymore.

Here are the discussions and the bug report I mentioned:

I don't know if syslog-ng is causing trouble for only me, but it seems

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