Choppy stuttering mouse and graphics

I’ve been testing fedora 31 vs pop os 19.10 on my laptop to try and find the most compatible distro. Fedora wins because the wifi works! However, although they are running the same version of gnome, the general experience is very different. On pop, whether in wayland or X, despite my very low end hardware everything runs smooth. If a process takes a while, it takes a while, but it doesn’t interrupt the display.

On Fedora 31 though there is a noticeable stutter in mouse movements and screen updates when the cpu is active (not 100%, just not idling). When it is really busy (like dnf upgrade) it actually freezes for a few seconds. I have tried the X and Wayland sessions and both suffer from the same choppy experience. I’d love to track this down and fix it for myself and others on this hardware.

What can I do to know where to start?

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I would start by running something like htop and finding the components that are taking up excessive CPU and memory. A reasonable next step might be to report bugs if you believe the component is using excessive resources. You can also look for and contribute to upstream bug reports that may be connected, and see if there are any patches that address the issue.

Depending on your confidence, you might also look into the internals of the components and Gnome to see why it might be happening on your hardware. Whether it’s ultimately fixed or not, it will be a good learning experience.

Thanks for your reply. I’ve used all my existing skills to try to track this down I’m afraid. Part of the problem is that htop shows just normal sane amounts of cpu and ram usage. It’s almost like the scheduling/process priority is all out of whack and when any process wants even a small burst of cpu it hangs the graphics output. Any suggestions on where to start with internals on this?

I have been having this same problem, but I also see when I am simply switching between windows and applications. It’s getting the point that it’s making 31 almost feel unusable. It seems to be Gnome that is generally spiking when this happens.