Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Debian Operating Systems Software Linux

Ubuntu 9.04 Daily Build Boots In 21.4 Seconds 654

Posted by timothy
from the spurious-precision-is-2.6-times-better dept.
Pizzutz writes "Softpedia reports that Ubuntu 9.04 Boots in 21.4 Seconds using the current daily build and the newly supported EXT4 file system. From the article: 'There are only two days left until the third Alpha version of the upcoming Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) will be available (for testing), and... we couldn't resist the temptation to take the current daily build for a test drive, before our usual screenshot tour, and taste the "sweetness" of that evolutionary EXT4 Linux filesystem. Announced on Christmas Eve, the EXT4 filesystem is now declared stable and it is distributed with version 2.6.28 of the Linux kernel and later. However, the good news is that the EXT4 filesystem was implemented in the upcoming Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha 3 a couple of days ago and it will be available in the Ubuntu Installer, if you choose manual partitioning.' I guess it's finally time to reformat my /home partition..."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Ubuntu 9.04 Daily Build Boots In 21.4 Seconds

Comments Filter:
  • by alain94040 (785132) * on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:10PM (#26456471) Homepage

    This is one of my pet peeves: why can't computers boot in a second or less?

    Imagine a visionary like Steve Jobs (by the way, enjoy your leave of absence and please come back). He goes to his team and says "I don't care what it takes, build me a computer which boots in one second".

    Ignore the past, the legacy of tens of years of layer after layer of OS software. Can it be done?

    A 3 GHz dual-core processor can process 6 billion instructions in that first second. I know the disk is a problem. I'm not asking for all possible OS services to be up in a second... But I'm sure this could be improved greatly. It's all out there in the open. People want this.

    --
    FairSoftware.net [fairsoftware.net] -- work where geeks are their own boss

    • by wizardforce (1005805) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:15PM (#26456547) Journal

      here:

      http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS5429881813.html [linuxdevices.com]
      http://lwn.net/Articles/299483/

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by SteelX (32194)

        From the original poster [slashdot.org]:

        Imagine a visionary like Steve Jobs (by the way, enjoy your leave of absence and please come back). He goes to his team and says "I don't care what it takes, build me a computer which boots in one second".

        From http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS5429881813.html [linuxdevices.com]:

        Yet, most BIOSes available for x86 chipsets were built for the desktop market, and thus have not been optimized in this area, according to Steve Jones, General Software CTO.

        When Steve Jobs is not around, leave it to Steve Jones!

    • by rgbe (310525) <simonwerner AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:16PM (#26456553)

      I agree totally. 21.4 seconds is incredibly slow, and that's only to get to the login screen... which is typically only half way. I know that it is possible to boot Linux in 5 seconds for some special cases. However, the boot time should be even quicker.

      • by kcbanner (929309)
        Yea, I mean I run archlinux and I'm up and logged in, about 10-15 seconds...Dell laptop so nothing special
    • by CannonballHead (842625) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:17PM (#26456575)

      I think there's more to it than that, though, too. For example, you'd have to completely bypass all checking, device discovery, etc., on boot (it takes time to discover drives, PCI/PCI-E/ISA ;) /USB device. Yeah, you could just have that set up in BIOS or something and just use that configuration, but that could be a pain, too.

      Now, if we're talking about post-POST boot-up, I think something could be done there. Even if it was having the option of, oh, 8GB of onboard memory dedicated to having a fast-boot operating system.

      As far as the extremely fast-boot idea goes, though, isn't that sorta what Good OS's partnership of Cloud and GIGABYTE is supposed to be? The GIGABYTE Touch Netbook M912 to be precise. Link here [thinkgos.com]. It was mentioned on slashdot a while ago as well.

      • Why does it take so long to discover the hardware? Is there some fundamental reason? Is it support for legacy hardware?

      • by Bryan Ischo (893) * on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:25PM (#26457787) Homepage

        Why does it take so long to discover those drives and other devices? Why does a CD-ROM drive take hundreds of milliseconds to be recognized during a POST? These things should happen basically instantly at modern hardware speeds, and yet they don't.

        It reminds me of NFS timeouts. Years ago when I worked in an environment where everyone NFS mounted a shared filesystem, there would occasionally be outages on the server or in the network. My local system would lock up and hang for MINUTES while it timed out on requests to the NFS server. I could never understand why the thing didn't just time out in seconds rather than minutes. Even at that time, we were running 10 MBit or maybe 100 MBit network connections; if the remote system is going to respond, it's going to happen at MOST after a few second delay. Waiting for minutes just seems dumb.

        The same sort of thing happens alot with web browsers too that wait far too long for servers to time out. If the server doesn't respond in 10 seconds, it's not going to respond. Ever. There's no reason to wait 30 seconds or longer to timeout an HTTP connection ...

        • NFS hard mounts (Score:3, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          My local system would lock up and hang for MINUTES while it timed out on requests to the NFS server. I could never understand why the thing didn't just time out in seconds rather than minutes.

          This was the default setting: hard mounts. If the server went away the NFS client was told to hang so that any program trying to access the export would block to minimize the chance of data corruption. Once the NFS server came back, things unblocked.

          You can of course configure NFS clients to use soft mounts, so that an error is returned to the process that was calling read() or write(2), and you would simply hope that the application code did error checking.

          It was possible to mix hard and soft mounts on one

        • by Eil (82413) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @09:24PM (#26460149) Homepage Journal

          You know how everyone wanted a Linux-based operating system that "just worked" on a wide variety of hardware with drivers for everything? And didn't throw a shit-fit if you moved the hard disk to a completely different machine and tried to boot it up?

          That's why Linux takes so long to boot these days. You can have very good hardware compatibility or you can have very good boot speed. You can't have both. (Well, until someone invents persistent RAM.)

          Why does it take so long to discover those drives and other devices? Why does a CD-ROM drive take hundreds of milliseconds to be recognized during a POST? These things should happen basically instantly at modern hardware speeds, and yet they don't.

          The CD-ROM does respond to the BIOS very quickly. What takes forever is the BIOS checking each controller, chain, and bus location for a device. Waiting for those probes to time out is what takes so long. This isn't just the BIOS either, it's the Linux kernel too and any OS that might want to speak to whatever hardware might happen to be there.

          . Even at that time, we were running 10 MBit or maybe 100 MBit network connections; if the remote system is going to respond, it's going to happen at MOST after a few second delay. Waiting for minutes just seems dumb.

          Seems dumb to you, the user. Didn't seem dumb to the programmers who wrote NFS and whatever application you were using. Why? NFS is 1) a block device, and 2) largely a hack. The way UNIX was designed, block devices just don't disappear from the system. Just like wheels (ideally) don't go flying off your car while you're driving down the road. But when NFS, a block device can suddenly go unavailable and as far as the OS is concerned, that's just really really bad for all sorts of reasons. The programmers figured that in order to make the system as robust as possible, they'd extend the timeout as long as tolerable to reduce the chances of data loss and corruption as much as possible. It's conceivable that a large number of problems could be resolved in a matter minutes (say, somebody tripped over the power cord for the network switch), thus preventing the loss of what could be very valuable data.

          The same sort of thing happens alot with web browsers too that wait far too long for servers to time out. If the server doesn't respond in 10 seconds, it's not going to respond. Ever. There's no reason to wait 30 seconds or longer to timeout an HTTP connection ...

          You click a mouse button. This initiates a request which, after all of the appropriate nameservers have been consulted, hops from your machine over dozens of routers, switches, and cables owned by different countries and corporations. It travels thousands of miles away to some place you can't even pronounce. Once there, the server recognises the request and acts on it, sending you back a mix of static content, images, and database content several orders of magnitude greater in size than your original request. The content then travels back to you another few thousand miles, perhaps via a different path until it eventually reaches your machine where it is processed and displayed in a mostly-legible fashion. And you have the gall to complain that sometimes it takes longer than 10 seconds for all of this to happen?

          Good. Fucking. Grief.

          I'm continually amazed that it works at all and I'm a sysadmin at a web hosting company. Almost every day I run across a site I want to visit that takes longer than 10 seconds to respond in full. There are lots of very good reasons that a website might take between 10-30 seconds to load in your browser. The authors of the HTTP protocol, web server software, and web browsers having a personal grudge against you sure isn't one of them.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by TarpaKungs (466496)

            NFS is 1) a block device

            No, it's a Network File System (hint, the initials). NFS supports filesystem primitive operations - see: http://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc1094 [ietf.org] Networked block devices are possible, but NFS isn't one of them. However, some of the points are still valid - unix doesn't particularly like it when mounted filesystems go away unexpectedly.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by Rich0 (548339)

              Frankly, what linux really needs is a working network filesystem.

              NFS is just a real mess. It has all kinds of security issues, and has no concept of users beyond the local machine. If /etc/passwd isn't synced across the network all kinds of stuff goes wrong. It also has a lot of limits around permissions/etc.

              Probably the next closest usable network filesystem for linux is samba - which really isn't ideal (for one it is almost entirely reverse-engineered and depends on a spec that isn't open). That files

      • by pz (113803) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:26PM (#26457817) Journal

        But why does it take more than a few milliseconds to discover a device? I've never understood this. We have had CPUs that have had sub-microsecond execution cycles for DECADES now, and yet the timeouts for communicating with devices are still measured in seconds. Why?

        Device discovery should take no more than a few milliseconds for an entire machine, with the possible exception of disk drives which presumably need to spin up and verify correct operating speed to report back on a self-check.

      • by Sponge Bath (413667) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:39PM (#26458009)

        The PCI spec also has required delays from power good to reset negated and then another required delay from reset negated to first configuration access. The second delay alone is about 1 sec (2^25 clock cycles).

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by icydog (923695)
          2^25 is around 33 million. Surely 33M cycles isn't a second these days?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      http://lwn.net/Articles/299483/

      Intel engineers have significantly reduced the boot time. However, there's a lot of hacks that need to be done to do so. Hopefully, a lot of those changes will make it in. At 10 seconds, you've got a PC that boots really fast. At 5, you've got a PC you're more likely to shutdown than hibernate or sleep (Linux has session restore which, for the most part, counteracts some of the advantages of hibernating of shutting down).

      Also, 1 second boot is probably not possible simply

    • by Cyberllama (113628) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:24PM (#26456711)

      So in order to be a "visionary", I merely have to decide what consumers might want (not that hard being one yourself), and then ask people smarter than yourself to make it happen with no actual technical insight on how to make it happen yourself?

      • by Chabo (880571) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:58PM (#26457271) Homepage Journal
        The boss of Volkswagen did this after they bought Bugatti. He said "let's build a car that produces 1000bhp and goes 400kph". Then it took years for the engineers to figure out how such a thing might be possible. In the end, they did it, and it's probably the greatest car ever made.

        [/clarkson]
      • by rossz (67331) <ogre@nospAm.geekbiker.net> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:07PM (#26457423) Homepage Journal

        In the business world that pretty much sums it up. You don't need to know how to do something. However, despite what you say, figuring out what consumers really want and are willing to pay for is damn hard. Companies spend billions trying to answer this question. Most of the results are complete failures. A few ideas make a few people very rich.

        Geeks can be absolutely brilliant in their field. Given the right direction they can come up with the next big thing. However, most geeks spend their time on little pet projects that will never make a dime. The sad part is when the business man comes up with an idea and the geek implements it, the businessman usually doesn't give the geek enough credit, aka $$$.

        The most rare of exceptions is when the geek comes up with an idea that becomes the next big thing.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by rnentjes (835795)
          Off course the geek doesn't get any money, any random geek would have come up with a working implementation when asked the right questions. The money is in the questions here, not the answers.
    • by vux984 (928602) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:27PM (#26456765)

      A 3 GHz dual-core processor can process 6 billion instructions in that first second. I know the disk is a problem. I'm not asking for all possible OS services to be up in a second... But I'm sure this could be improved greatly. It's all out there in the open. People want this.

      Hard to say if there's really a point to booting up before the services are running.

      What good is the PC being 'at the desktop' if the search service still hasn't started, the network still hasn't obtained an ip-address, half my tray icons aren't up? and the hard drive is still madly churning to get everything else running, so anything I try and launch is just going to be thrown into the queue and it probably will depend on something that hasn't started up yet anyway.

      Seriously, how much stuff could you really -defer- to after seeing the desktop and have a useful system?

      Remember the average hard drive moves under 50MB/s. Even a fairly modest Ubuntu desktop requires several times that much RAM. If the hard drive started loading data at maximum speed you've got maybe 50MB you can load in that time, and probably far less in actual practice. That means your kernel, drivers, HAL, desktop environment, localization, firewall, network, background, theme, etc has to ALL fit in under 50MB. And you'd need some sort of impossible situation where the cpu could run all the initialization code for all that in parallel, without waiting... nevermind that it almost has to be initialized in sequence due to the layer dependancies.

      If you want instant on PCs, the only real solution is to never turn them off, waking from suspend to RAM is about as good as its going to get for the forseeable future.

      • by Thinboy00 (1190815) <thinboy00@gDALImail.com minus painter> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:40PM (#26457001) Journal

        That means your kernel, drivers, HAL, desktop environment, localization, firewall, network, background, theme, etc has to ALL fit in under 50MB. [snip]

        Why not use DSL? (Damn Small Linux, not a second phone line)

    • by geekmux (1040042) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:18PM (#26457665)

      This is one of my pet peeves: why can't computers boot in a second or less?

      Cripes, I'm all for innovation, but damn, if you're literally counting the half-seconds sucked from your obviously insanely demanding lifestyle waiting for your current OS to boot up, then what the hell are you doing reading Slashdot? ;-)

      Hell, while we're on the topic of the damn-near unobtainable, I'd simply settle for true open-document standards, and a pop-up free Internet. Give me that, and I'll go get another cup of coffee while I wait for my OS to boot.

  • Oh YEAH? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Xtense (1075847) <xtense AT o2 DOT pl> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:13PM (#26456513) Homepage

    Well my TABLE LAMP boots in 50ms! Beat THAT!

    (And to all you electrotech-people, yes, i live in Europe, 50Hz here. You may laugh now.)

  • by colin_n (50370) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:16PM (#26456559) Homepage Journal

    Booted into Ubuntu 9.04 just to say "first post". Let's just say the ubuntu folks still have some work to do.

  • by Thelasko (1196535) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:16PM (#26456567) Journal
    Is EXT4 backwards compatible with EXT2 and EXT3? (3 is backwards compatible with 2) I'm asking because there are only Windows drivers for EXT2, and this could cause problems for those that dual boot.
    • by linuxkrn (635044) <gwatson@@@linuxlogin...com> on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:28PM (#26456781)

      For most users, no it will not work. One of the major features of ext4 is extents, which basically reserves space for a file to continue writing at a later date. This will decrease file fragmentation and improve performance.

      If however, you disable extents, then yes you can mount it as ext3. And as you know, ext3 can be mounted as ext2 without the journaling.

      I agree that the win32 ext2 drivers need updating. I would hate to lose access to ext partitions for dual boot systems.

  • by ani23 (899493) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:19PM (#26456609)
    boots 3.1 seconds faster with ext4 over ext3
  • reformat? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by doti (966971) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:19PM (#26456625) Homepage

    Converting an ext2 file system to ext3 takes a simple command, that runs instantly. It basically just add a flag that enable journaling.

    Will ext4 be so different that it will not be possible to convert without reformatting?
    That's would be a pain for the half-terabytes partitions we have today.

  • Why reformat? (Score:3, Informative)

    by McNihil (612243) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:20PM (#26456629)

    if by reformat you mean fdisk followed by an explicit mkfs.ext4 after....

    You should be doing the following:
    http://kernelnewbies.org/Ext4#head-3891522e0601162aab24c73c1f148a1e28c6a9d4 [kernelnewbies.org]

  • by CdBee (742846) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:20PM (#26456631)
    .. that is more than twice as long as Windows 98SE took to boot on my Athlon 1ghz in 2001. 8 years development and we're still ass-whipped by 90s technology. Way to go....
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by makapuf (412290)

      try FreeDOS + GEM [wikipedia.org] on your Athlon and discuver the real power of 80's tech power.

  • by mgkimsal2 (200677) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:21PM (#26456657) Homepage

    * Ubuntu 8.10 with EXT3 filesystem boots in 31.8 seconds (on the AMD Sempron system);
    * Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha (Build 20090112.1) with EXT3 filesystem boots in 28.3 seconds (on the AMD Sempron system);
    * Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha (Build 20090112.1) with EXT4 filesystem boots in 23.1 seconds (on the AMD Sempron system).

    * Ubuntu 8.10 with EXT3 filesystem boots in 26.8 seconds (on the Intel Core 2 Duo system);
    * Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha (Build 20090112.1) with EXT3 filesystem boots in 24.5 seconds (on the Intel Core 2 Duo system);
    * Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha (Build 20090112.1) with EXT4 filesystem boots in 21.4 seconds (on the Intel Core 2 Duo system)!

  • by Lord Byron II (671689) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:25PM (#26456717)
    My understanding is that ext4 provides some very nice features, but faster data access isn't necessarily one of them. I'd imagine that an ext2 fs, which doesn't have journaling to slow it down, should be even faster.
  • disappointing... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sofar (317980) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:26PM (#26456741) Homepage

    This is a truly disappointing news item. Instead of setting the bar higher and truly trying to reduce boot time, they have not done much more than shave seconds off the existing boot time.

    For a generic desktop distro, 20+ seconds is still terribly long. 10 seconds should realistically be easy to achieve, especially as it took Arjan and me only a few months to get to 5 seconds on a netbook. We sure cut some corners, but we did not even use ext4 on those netbooks, and we still had buggy X starting times of 1.5 seconds, something which we can probably do in 0.5 seconds with kernel modesetting.

    I hate to see everyone settle down with "20 seconds" being "the next 5 second boot". This is really not progress at all, but rather, complacency.

    • Re:disappointing... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by steveha (103154) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:57PM (#26457257) Homepage

      This is a truly disappointing news item. Instead of setting the bar higher and truly trying to reduce boot time, they have not done much more than shave seconds off the existing boot time.

      I just checked, and it does seem that a fast boot time was one of the goals that Mark Shuttleworth set for Jaunty.

      There are some specific goals that we need to meet in Jaunty. One of them is boot time. We want Ubuntu to boot as fast as possible - both in
      the standard case, and especially when it is being tailored to a specific device. The Jackalope is known for being so fast that it's
      extremely hard to catch, and breeds only when lightning flashes. Let's see if we can make booting or resuming Ubuntu blindingly quick.

      https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel-announce/2008-September/000481.html [ubuntu.com]

      Given that, I must confess that I'm also a bit disappointed that the boot time isn't closer to five seconds.

      I love your work with the 5 second boot, and I look forward to that technology being implemented widely. On a modern super fast CPU with a solid-state hard drive, I should hope that a desktop computer could boot as fast as a netbook. (And I'd be willing to install Coreboot [wikipedia.org] to get that speed.)

      steveha

  • Who cares? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bigredradio (631970) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:27PM (#26456773) Homepage Journal

    I don't mean to troll, but I could care less about boot up times. What I care about is uptime!

    With Windows, you are always having to reboot the system due to everything from software installs to changing a network connection.

    On Linux, I never have to reboot. Basically my desktop stays on unless I am taking a long weekend. I understand that efficiency is good, however, a fast boot-up does not seem like news to me.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bigstrat2003 (1058574) *

      With Windows, you are always having to reboot the system due to everything from software installs to changing a network connection.

      No, you aren't. This hasn't been true since Windows XP, at least. I can get uptimes of months at a time on my Windows box, the only time it comes down is for hardware changes or OS updates.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        "I can get uptimes of months" is diametrically opposed to "OS updates"

        Patch Tuesday and the various out of band patch releases, predicates that at best you can get is about 1 month between updates, IF you apply patches when they are released.

        Now if you don't apply patches when they are released, but wait "months" before apply them, then all bets are off, because at that point reboot cycles becomes arbitrary.

        Many hardware installs on windows require "reboot" as well.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Quarters (18322)
      You haven't had to restart Windows due to a networking configuration change in almost 7.5 years. You haven't had to restart Windows due to a driver change for almost 3.5 years now. Please get your facts correct.
    • Re:Who cares? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sofar (317980) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:55PM (#26457217) Homepage

      server maintainers care, because people pay them a ton of money to get a guaranteed 99.999% (extreme case, like NY stock exchanges etc.) or more uptime. That's only 5(!) minutes of downtime a year, and if you can boot in 5 seconds (and lets say shutdown in 5 as well), you can reboot 30 times a year for security updates. If you reboot in 30+30 seconds, that's only 5 reboots.

      imagine having a scsi raid array which takes 1 minute to initialize. a 20+20 boot+shutdown time would give you barely 3 boots per year. A 5+5 boot+shutdown almost gives you 5 reboots in the same time.

      you care for netbooks. The batteries are small, if you waste one minute at boot, and a minute at shutdown, at which the cpu and ssd (or worse: hard disk) are working hard, you lose two minutes of battery time, which translates into 5+ minutes idle or browsing the internet time. Reboot your netbook to quickly send a blog update from the airport a few times, and you've lost half an hour or effective work time.

      bottom line: shorter boot (and shutdown) means more _net_ work time available, for both a/c connected and mobile devices.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by drsmithy (35869)

      On Linux, I never have to reboot. Basically my desktop stays on unless I am taking a long weekend. I understand that efficiency is good, however, a fast boot-up does not seem like news to me.

      Note that for most people, "having to reboot" is irrelevant, since they turn their computers off every night anyway.

      Further note that for most of those who are left, the practical difference between "reboot" and "restart all your applications and services", is zero.

  • by VinylRecords (1292374) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:31PM (#26456833)

    What exactly is the definition of boot?

    When I start up my IBM ThinkPad (1.5ghz single processor, 512RAM, garbage video card) running Windows XP, it takes roughly 10-15 seconds to get to the user log-in interface from the moment the power button is pressed.

    But, once you log in, you are talking two to three minutes where background applications and processes are opening, explorer is loading, and applications that launch at start are loading.

    After you log in does that time count as boot time? Considering it takes me 10-15 seconds to get to the sign in screen, not that much time, but after logging in it takes well over two minutes for me to be able to actually run anything at normal capacity.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by bored (40072)

      Thats about the same amount of time it takes my machine, but I can type my password in ~1 second and a second later be at the desktop. Ie generally will start in another second or two. This is because I have disabled most of the crap that puts itself into the system tray. Everything continues to work, except when I want to change my desktop resolution I actually have to right click on the desktop instead of the system tray... anyway most of that crap that rattles your disk after login is probably useless an

  • ext4 (Score:3, Informative)

    by digitalhermit (113459) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:40PM (#26456989) Homepage

    However, the good news is that the EXT4 filesystem was implemented in the upcoming Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha 3 a couple of days ago and it will be available in the Ubuntu Installer, if you choose manual partitioning.' I guess it's finally time to reformat my /home partition..."

    From what I understand, there's no need to reformat. Similar to how EXT3 was layered on top of EXT2, EXT4 should just be another mount option as long as the kernel supports it.

    I have a couple EXT4 partitions I'm testing... It's been rock-solid so far...

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by phantomlord (38815)
      I migrated some of my non-critical partitions over to EXT4 and hit a race condition that corrupted my filesystem and resulted in data loss (the bug has since been fixed). I'm waiting a little longer before converting my important partitions over.

      Switching from EXT3 to EXT4 is as simple as a flag change and a remount. HOWEVER, your existing data will still be laid out without extents and thus you'll miss you on a lot of the improvements in EXT4. Eventually, an online defragmenter will be written to defrag
  • by jernejk (984031) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @05:42PM (#26457017)

    I've been using Ubuntu for I year. I was quite happy with the 8.4, but unfortunately I've switched to 8.10 64bit (to support 4GB RAM). You know what? I couldn't care less about how fast it boots. I do, however, care about these things:
    - switching from dual display to presentation (clone) and back totally messes up x config, I have to uninstall and reinstall nvidea drivers
    - in dual screen mode, nautilus opens on the first display. I have to open terminal and run nautilus& to lunch it on the second display
    - in dual screen mode, keyboard keeps focus in the previous screen. I have to minimize/maximize a windows on the "new" screen to move keyboard focus
    - RDP client crashes X windows in some cases (it does not close the drop down list of used servers... and bang)
    - oh and NO it's not AN ERROR if I close the RDP window. If I want to reconnect, I will, don't hide under my active windows and bring RDP windows back in 30 seconds. That's just plain stupid.
    - java and window decorations don't play well together (popups without buttons etc.)
    - How about opening a connection to a new server in a new tab, not in a new nautilus window?
    - Flash stops working. I just see a gray square where flash is supposed to be.
    - Firefox is not very stable.
    - Windows would become gray and unresponsive when there's a lot of disk activity.
    - I've seen ubuntu crash on my much more times than I've seen BSOD on the same HW.
    - If i lock my computer, I want it to be locked. I don't want it to be locked for a minute or so and than display what was last on my desktop. Sure, you'd have to log in to get access, but there could be things for my eyes only on that screen. So don't you ever roll eyes on windows security, ok? You've got your own issues.

    I could probably think of more but this is just a list of things I remember from the top of my head. Sure, you'll be downmoding me and say I'm trolling. Maybe I am. But my point is: there are MUCH more IMPORTANT things to fix than the FUCKING BOOT TIME. Who the fuck even cares about boot time?? Can't you just grab a coffee while it boots? What kind of idiotic metric is this?

    I guess SW development is hard and complex. And we've reached a point where maintaining these beasts is hard, for either open source or commercial products.

    • by Shikaku (1129753) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @06:04PM (#26457377)

      Almost all of those issues are from third party software.

      Nvidia is notorious for awful drivers, especially for dual display. The screensaver issue is also probably from bad Nvidia drivers.

      Adobe Flash is unstable in Firefox, especially on 64 bit systems. Open Source alternatives are also very outdated and slow.

      Third party plugins like Java and Flash can make Firefox have to wait. The Mozilla team needs to design much less dependency on plugins and more of a sandbox model, so that a crash or hang of a plugin will not freeze all of Firefox.

      Programs become unresponsive due to a lot of disk activity for reasons of speed; DiskIO has more priority. This is a GUI design problem and it should be decidable/configurable easily on or after install.

      • by pavon (30274) on Wednesday January 14, 2009 @07:16PM (#26458555)

        Almost all of those issues are from third party software.

        And it is Canonical's job to test that software and choose which version they are going to ship with. The last release of Ubuntu, all sorts of software broke on my computer that used to work before. This is their fault for choosing to package bad software.

        Also, for what it's worth, I've been having the same problem that he is having with Flash when using Gnash and swfdec as well. It seems like ndiswrapper has some issues in the latest Ubuntu that were not a problem in previous releases, beyond the fact that the flash plugin sucks.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bloodninja (1291306)

      Fire up the system without the proprietary Nvidia blob and file bugs! Ubuntu, like all FOSS software, needs _you_ to file the bugs so that the kinks can be worked out. Do not assume that what you see is what the devs see.

      You like Ubuntu and FOSS? Great! Help make it better.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        This is exactly why I left the Linux scene and consider it a failure.
        Filing bug reports isn't answered with a solution or bug fix, but with one of these:
        - bug report already exists
        - You're doing something wrong, it's not Ubuntu/Linux
        - It's your hardware, not Ubuntu/Linux
        - It's because of these evil hardware companies, not Ubuntu/Linux
        - You have the source code, fix it yourself
        • Hey, we try. (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Grendel Drago (41496)

          Nearly everyone else working on it is a volunteer doing it in their spare time. We're working on it, I assure you. If a bug report exists, that's important to know. If there's a workaround, it may still be that there's a usability issue and that's valid. If it's a problem with your hardware, what on earth do you expect them to do about it? If you can live without your shiny 3D eye-candy (or buying an Intel graphics card), you don't run into the evil-hardware-company issue.

          And lastly, the quickest way to fix

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by theCoder (23772)

      Your comment about a locked screen showing the contents of the desktop is probably related to a screensaver taking a screen capture and using it in the screen saver. This can be fixed by running xscreensaver-demo (I think) program to get the configuration for the screen savers. You may have to install the xscreensaver package to get this program. When it comes up, it will warn you that xscreensaver isn't running -- that's OK, just ignore it. You can still set the options for the various screen savers.

      Th

The IQ of the group is the lowest IQ of a member of the group divided by the number of people in the group.

Working...