Pbatt source?

Brad_chuck developed a neat little battery monitor sometime ago:


Dougal did some further work on it. Brad was going to rewrite it in Vala.

However, the only link left on the forum is to Brad's original Pbatt version 0.0.1.

Has anyone kept any of the more recent sources of Pbatt?

I would like to have a play with the source! Got some ideas...

Posted on 22 Feb 2010, 8:06


Posted on 22 Feb 2010, 12:37 by BarryK
Found Pbatt sources
It's ok guys, I found the sources.

Although I'm away from home, I threw one of my 2.5 inch external USB hard drives into my carry bag, on which I have a lot of archived stuff -- did a search and found all the versions of Pbatt.

The last version that Brad posted was 0.2.1, and Dougal added some improvements and posted 0.3.2.

I have uploaded these sources to my source repository:

username: puÂppy password: linÂux

Posted on 22 Feb 2010, 15:12 by Sage
More tail chasing?
Disappointing to read this entry after I took the time to try to compress a lifetime's experience with batteries into a couple of sentences. What more can I advise about battery maintenance? Everyone involved with the technologies we use want a number on the page. Batteries fail when they fail - believe nothing else. Surely this is every user's experience this last half century?

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 8:21 by Jemimah
You might want to take a look at my vattery-ibam project. It's already written in Vala, and the modified sources are available at http://drop.io/jemimah. Ibam is cool because it's adaptive and learns how long your battery actually lasts.


I've also written a cpu temperature monitor based on Vattery.

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 13:41 by Sage
Let's stop this battery nonsense
"it's adaptive and learns how long your battery actually lasts."
Which parts of my missives didn't you understand? Do you realise that the military would make you a $bnaire overnight if you could predict the behaviour of individual batteries? There's probability based on statistical analyses of large samples and the individual behaviour of the battery in YOUR laptop.

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 13:52 by 8-bit
battery life
I assume you are talking about the individual batteries that make up a battery pack failing.
I have a Compaq laptop that goes from 100% charge to around 50% and from there immediately drops to 0%.
I attribute this to the fact that one or more of the batteries that make up the battery pack have reached the end of their life and are more or less only holding a surface charge.
I tried rebuilding a battery pack with used battery segments at one time but gave it up.

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 15:31 by pakt
Battery monitor
Although I'm certain we would all love to have a battery monitor that reflects the true state of the batteries which, as you point out, is certainly out of our reach, laptop users *still* need some indication of battery charge level so they know *approximately* how long they have before the machine shuts down.

Take an analogy. The fuel gauge of your car is broken, you're on a trip and you can't see how much petrol is left in the tank. If you know approximately how far you can drive on a tank of petrol then doing a rough calculation you can use the odometer to estimate when the tank will be empty. This may not be accurate considering the changing mileage you get on different terrain, but would still be useful to the driver.

In the same way, we're using the laptop's "odometer" to give us *some* indication of how much battery charge is left. Savvy?

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 17:11 by Sage
Battery monitor
Afraid that analogy is entirely misleading, pakt. I agree that a laptop user needs to know approximately how much charge is left in his battery as much as a soldier needs to know how much longer his torch will light his path in the jungle. Sadly, there is no way of determining the key parameters you need. A coulometer would be valuable, but no guarantee for any individual cell. Tthe trade has to base it's predictions on the statistics of probability and the very closest of QC. In practice, this is utterly unreliable for single specimens - as it is for all mass produced items..
Worse still, most folks leave their consumer durables on charge even at top-of-charge. They have no concept of overdischarge, either. I tend to leave my cordless phones and mobiles on charge. Most of the time I get away with this gross abuse of the science, but I don't complain when I get a sudden failure - it's not mission critical, I keep a spare pack in the fridge.
With a motor car, at least you can rock it on the suspense and listen to the petrol slopping about in the tank, - or not!
Electrochemistry occurs at an highly expanded and very vulnerable 2D interphase. The potential drop in this region can be interpolated in MeV - that's big! Not every punch through becomes self-repairing. Not every particle of carbon/MnO2/w.h.y. of the current collector and dispersant is free of foreign atoms. That's the bad news from the site of the main action, quite apart from what the end user perpetrates. Books have been written about all this. My book shelves creek under their weight.
No software solution is ever going to approach a solution in individual cases.

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 19:32 by Anonymous Coward
Do you suggest that we go blind, learn when to stop using our laptops, and let natural selection eliminate those who fail to learn?

Posted on 23 Feb 2010, 21:41 by Sage
Far be it for me to suggest what you do with your laptop but you may get a flavour of my views from my previous contributions on the Forum...

Posted on 24 Feb 2010, 8:16 by jamesbond
Battery monitor is useful even if it's not accurate
Sage, I think you may be right at the fundamental level on how battery works and how it may possibly fail.

However, I would like to repeat the sentiment of others here.

For a laptop user, battery indication is vital. Even if the indicator has a large amount of inaccuracy. This, for me is better than "no information at all" at 100% accuracy.

For me, I don't really use the "how many minutes left" kind of information, or even, how many percentage of charge left. All I need is for the indicator to tell me to find a power outlet quickly when the battery is about to be depleted.
This is infinitely better than finding my laptop suddenly drop dead. Even if it only works 50% of the time. (In reality though, used in this way, my indicator is more than 90% accurate, YMMV).

Of course you can disagree, and you can freely remove the "useless" battery monitor in your laptops if you wish. But for the rest of us, we find it useful and we'd rather have it.


Posted on 24 Feb 2010, 16:33 by Sage
"no information at all"
What does one have to say to get the message across?! Exasperating.
From what I've been saying, any reasonable person should've been able to deduce that what you get from a battery monitor in software is exactly "no information at all".
No doubt the guys at those conferences in Japan & SF whose machines burst into flame thought their battery monitors were imparting useful information.

The phraseology "I think you may be right" borders on arrogance unless, of course, Herr 007 has been working in the field of batteries this last half century?

Posted on 25 Feb 2010, 7:27 by somebody
Sage and Batteries
First, most of the laptop batteries have some electronics inside to avoid overcharging, otherwise explosive batteries will be more common. The electronics controls the charge and discharge, so it must provide some basic battery measuring techniques. Also, there is no need for a Coulomb-meter to measure the battery status. So, measuring something as (Actual Charge Capacity / Design Capacity) * 100 will give your battery status, not the remaining time left. That's why there are so many algorithms/programs for that. Couldn't find some references for laptop batteries (didn't expend much time) but this ones will give some insight:

This one shows you the electronics inside the battery pack:

Posted on 25 Feb 2010, 14:16 by Sage
.......the indefensible is supposed to be a British pastime? Ignorance is a terrible affliction - wait long enough and somebody always pops up to prove black is white. If you don't understand what internal sensors in battery packs do, don't try to explain them. Predicting the unpredictable can certainly make money, sell products; now pass me my crystal ball and tarot cards.

Posted on 25 Feb 2010, 20:25 by x
Battleship murgaaground and leaking puppies
"Network Error (tcp_error)

A communication error occurred: "Connection refused"
The Web Server may be down, too busy, or experiencing other problems preventing it from responding to requests. You may wish to try again at a later time.

For assistance, contact your network support team."

Posted on 27 Feb 2010, 11:03 by timremy
yep, we are one happy family.