Stop GNU Octave autoload all packages

Speed up Octave startup by a factor of 50-100 by not autoloading packages. For each of the files below (if they exist), comment out the line

# pkg ("load", "auto");
  • /usr/share/octave/*/m/startup/octaverc
  • ~/.octaverc
  • /etc/octave.conf

reference for Octave config file location

Verify GNU Octave speedup fix

in Octave type

pkg list

if all packages are starred, that means you’re autoloading, which greatly slows down Octave startup.

Measure GNU Octave startup speedup

The factor of 100 improvement in GNU Octave speedup was estimated with the command

time octave --eval 'exit'
  • Before fix: 4.904s
  • After fix: 0.072s