Baloo is The Responsible of Unresponsivenes

Now, I have bothered the community with my laptop not responsive. On all DE I installed I used to install Dolphin which brings Balloo with it.
I insisted on finding out. I found out over the past 2 days on KDE Plasma:

  1. If Baloo is indexing it is taking most of the CPU
  2. When it finishes indexing (or I stop Baloo) the machine is running perfectly.
  3. I -surprisingly- found out like Baloo “forgets” it has already indexed some files and suddenly come back to index them (again), which makes it unresponsive, then works fine, then “forget”, then re-index…

I have another issue with Baloo/Dolphin, when I search for a file, , a unique single file, it brings in search result several copies of the same file, (opening folder location of all of them actually opens the same folder that has nothing but actually this file only with some folders)

  1. What might be causing Baloo to “forget” and re-index frequently? (is it related to BTRFS/Snapshot, TimeShift snapshots?)
  2. Why is it showing in Dolphin several copies pointing actually to the same file in the same location?

How can both be fixed?

I cannot help with your problems, but I can say to you that Baloo, expecially if you started or are using a DE different then KDE (and with this I intend a new installation not made directly with KDE) tends to do a lot a problem. The only time I hadn’t have any problem with it is when I’ve installed directly KDE from iso/base arch.

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Did you exclude /run/timeshift from search? I don’t use timeshift but since it mounts the root of the partition, it is possible it is indexing all your snapshots.

That would explain both the reindexing and the duplicate file results.

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Thanks @ParanoidNemo
This can be one solution. Unfortunately I downloaded the default and had to install the default as I couldn’t find a way to get internet to select KDE!

WOW! @dalto thank you.
This goes inline with my thinking as I mentioned in my post.
But how to:

How to do it, I’ll appreciate.

The first thing I do after installing Plasma:

balooctl suspend
balooctl disable
balooctl purge
balooctl status
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System Settings->Workspace->Search

Disabling baloo has two downsides

  • You lose the benefits of the index which probably doesn’t impact you since your workflow is heavily terminal driven
  • KDE ecosystems apps are increasingly leveraging baloo so those apps will have decreased functionality without baloo

I noticed:

[limo@lenovo ~]$ balooctl monitor
Press ctrl+c to stop monitoring
File indexer is running
Indexing modified files
Indexing modified files

though I never edited, downloaded, copied… any file.

That is normal. That means it is doing nothing right now.

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I personally haven’t noticed any of them. Others’ experience may vary. Concerning reduced functionality od KDE applications, Konsole and Kate work just fine, so I’m okay with that.

When I have to search for a file, I use fd and rg1. No indexing needed, and they work almost as fast (maybe a few seconds slower).

I have noticed a big gain in Plasma performance overall. Maybe not as big on my new desktop, but on my old laptop, certainly.

1 BTW, they are written in Rust. :bearded_person:t4:


I did all, but not purge.
May be as dalto it is related to TimeShift and snapshots?
I believe in brainstorming, as I believ Linux is all about brainstorming to get best results.
Hopefully this can help other users as well as I found some saying almost the same thing.

balooctl purge is not necessary, it just erases the index from your drive. If I’m not using the indexing service, why keep an old index? Its existence is just dead space on the drive, and a potential security vulnerability.

And balooctl status is just to check that it is truly dead. :skull:

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But the strange thing it said 2 times it is indexing then idle…

There are files being constantly changed on your machine by your running applications.

For me, as I mentioned, this is the main main top principal feature I am after, I have lots of PDF and I read a lot and research a lot.
So, for me it is the most perfect combination, Baloo+Dolphin. :+1:

Did you try excluding /run/timeshift from your search?

$ balooctl status
Baloo is currently disabled.

One of the first things I do post Plasma install.


Have you tried fd? I have lots1 of PDFs, too.

To install fd:

sudo pacman -S fd

To use it

fd part_of_filename

It will look in your working directory and all subdirectories.


fd part_of_filename directory_where_to_start_looking

It has many other options.

1Running fd pdf | wc -l in my home directory returned 16821. This took 0.25s.

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hopefully there is a way to restrict it to “user documents” (.doc?, .xl?, .pdf…) and “user images” (jpg, jpeg… photos from camera or mobile)… etc. not to index system files or config files!

How does that help search the contents of a PDF file? That is what baloo is doing…