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I'm running ubuntu server, and I was staring at "top". lsb_release seems to pop up every 30 seconds - which in turn calls apt-cache. I don't really know where to start looking for the source of this issue, is it part of some update checking mechanism or something? Does anyone have any idea why ubuntu needs to know it's release version as often as it is looking?

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What services does the box provide? Do you have any scheduled tasks in cron or something else? – Zoredache Oct 25 '11 at 22:49
Is anything snmpwalking against the host, by chance? I know Net-SNMP does use lsb_release if it finds it. – jgoldschrafe Oct 25 '11 at 23:05
So a little more detail, this machine is a VM running on an ESX host managed by a VCenter with vmware-tools installed. Looks like vmware-tools (open-vmware-tools) on ubuntu calls lsb_release at some point, I have a feeling now that either Vcenter is asking vmware tools to check it's version or there's a scheduled update mechanism built into vmware tools. Also 30 seconds seems have to turned into 7 minutes. [perhaps I imagined it incorrectly] – loosebazooka Oct 27 '11 at 0:33

Perhaps you have auto-updates enabled?

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So I looked at this, there's no auto-update from apt as far as I can see. – loosebazooka Oct 27 '11 at 0:23

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