I was wondering how to get the best performance out of my pi and currently the gui is started with startx automatically on boot, however I intend on using the pi remotely.

My question then is: does starting a GUI that is not being drawn use resources on the pi, even if it does not output to a monitor?

1 Answer 1


The only significant resource usage will be of memory.

On my Raspbian jessie/sid Pi about 10MB was freed after killing the lightdm display manager.

Before killing lighdm

KiB Mem:    447872 total,   127268 used,   320604 free,    19852 buffers
KiB Swap:        0 total,        0 used,        0 free.    63176 cached Mem

After killing lightdm

KiB Mem:    447872 total,   117488 used,   330384 free,    19912 buffers
KiB Swap:        0 total,        0 used,        0 free.    64204 cached Mem

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