Copying large files to USB Device blocks system

When copying large amounts of data, e.g. digital images to an usb drive, I noticed laggy system behaviour, to the point that the mouse would not move.

The problem seems to be cache queue bloat, which I could reduce by adding these settings to my local sysctl config file (/etc/sysctl.d/my-sysctl.conf>:

vm.swappiness=10
vm.dirty_background_ratio = 5
vm.dirty_ratio = 10

I had to reboot the system because sudo sysctl -p did not reload the values. For more details on this see the references

Ref:

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