Linux has a lot of advantages, but long battery life on a laptop isn’t usually one of them. I have an ASUS ultra-book that lasts more than 4 hours on Windows, but only 1.5 hours on Kubuntu. Luckily I found the way to overcome this issue.
On my machine I have two graphics cards and by default Linux uses the power-hungry Nvidia all the time. This results in dramatically shorter battery life than I get on Windows. Given the fact that I don’t care about gaming, and I don’t need that power all the time I simply disabled the Nvidia card using the Nvidia X Server settings. This single switch increased my battery life from 1.5 hours to 4.5 hours 🙂
To disable the Nvidia card on Kubuntu you simply:
a. Press ALT+Space (or ALT+F2) and type NVidia:
b. Select the Intel Card
For the Kubuntu team: I beg you, display this information during install. Your users will thank you. Also display some tips about keyboard shortcuts on install. I wouldn’t knew about the “ALT+Space” shortcut without some help from a friend :).