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FreeBSD 8.0 vs. Ubuntu 9.10 Benchmarks 268

An anonymous reader writes "Phoronix has brought benchmarks comparing the FreeBSD 8.0-RC and Ubuntu 9.10 Alpha 6 operating systems. FreeBSD rather ends up taking a wallop to Ubuntu Linux, but there are a few areas where FreeBSD 8 ran well. They also posted benchmarks comparing this near-final FreeBSD 8.0 build to that of FreeBSD 7.2 to show performance improvements there but with a few regressions."
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FreeBSD 8.0 vs. Ubuntu 9.10 Benchmarks

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:02AM (#29564511)

    It's interesting how on page 1, there are three graphs. Two of these are "lower is better" (where Ubuntu wins), however, when FreeBSD wins the graph is displayed in MIPS where "higher is better", thus appearing to make Ubuntu win there too.

    If you're a casual reader not paying attention, reading, or clicking on to page 2 (and you know I'm right when I say that's most of the people reading this article), you can see where this is going.

  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:08AM (#29564561)
    When my friends ask me about Linux, I usually steer them toward Ubuntu first, as it's the most user friendly and well-supported distro out there. Canonical really puts a lot of development work into it, and it shows (in this result and many others). In the past, I usually avoided the Linux topic altogether, as there were so many confusing distros that even trying to explain the concept of Linux to non-geeks (and even many geeks) was a huge pain in the ass. So, I for one welcome our new Ubuntu overlords.
  • by MikeRT ( 947531 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:13AM (#29564599)

    The areas where FreeBSD gets its ass kicked by Ubuntu start on page 7...

    It seems to me like FreeBSD's real problem is incredibly bad I/O compared to Linux. The majority of the CPU-heavy tests were nearly neck-in-neck.

  • Re:What's the point. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Jurily ( 900488 ) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <yliruj>> on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:13AM (#29564601)

    I'm sort of curious what the point is of comparing an alpha to a release candidate. Additionally it's a minor update versus a major update. Throwing in an older release makes it all the more pointless as I'm not seeing anywhere in the summary that they disabled debugging.

    They left out almost all distros, too.

  • Safe to assume? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Capsy ( 1644737 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:14AM (#29564615) Journal

    Maybe this is a sign that more systems will start coming with Ubuntu already equipped?

  • Re:What's the point. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hedwards ( 940851 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:20AM (#29564661)
    Well, with the number of distros out there, it's inevitable that they'd leave out most of them. But I must admit that leaving out every other distro makes it kind of hard to know if Ubuntu is doing better than the pack or about the same.

    It's kind of suspect, in my opinion, that the older release was doing so much better than the newer one, considering all the time that's been spent in recent times on optimizing various portions of the source. It's also worth noting that probably a much larger portion of the FreeBSD user base will recompile their kernel pretty much immediately with basic optimizations and removing the cruft that they don't need or want.
  • BSD did rather well (Score:4, Interesting)

    by John Jamieson ( 890438 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:21AM (#29564677)

    I'm not a BSD user, but I don't see BSD taking a real kicking in these benchmarks. In the majority of the benchmarks, the average user could not discern a speed difference.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:30AM (#29564765)

    OS benchmarks are misleading, usually. Claims such as "12% decrease in performance" (of linux kernel..) usually translates that kernel execution time takes ~ that much longer, but neglects that majority of time kernel is idle and userspace process (ab)uses the processor (and whatever else). So, 12% is probably 1% in real usage case. I guess same applies to sensational Windows 7 speed improvement over "slow" Vista.

  • by Galactic Dominator ( 944134 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:35AM (#29564809)

    That's to be expected considering the defaults of ext4 vs ufs2. You can increase flush time on ufs2 and expect a similar increase. Revert to ext3 and it would be a completely different outcome. Interesting to see all the chest pounding on choice for default settings in a desktop enviro vs a traditionally server one. Would have been a been comparsion to use the upcoming PCBSD's release vs Ubuntu's, but we've seen the bias from Phoronix before.

  • Re:What's the point. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by fbjon ( 692006 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:52AM (#29564985) Homepage Journal
    Is there any actual benefit to be gained from removing "cruft", other than saving a smidgen of memory?
  • by psm321 ( 450181 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @09:53AM (#29565011) Journal

    And every time I try Ubuntu "one more time", I am amazed that people call it the most user-friendly distro. I can never get anything to work in it. My go-to "it just works" distro right now is Fedora, and that's what I recommend to people because things actually work. Of course most of the time I personally run Gentoo or Slackware, but there are occasions when I want things to just work.

  • by Bill Dimm ( 463823 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @10:42AM (#29565607) Homepage

    Wow, so I'm not the only one that doesn't understand the Ubuntu love-fest? I only tried it once (8.04 64-bit), but I got frustrated with it very quickly. For example, I logged in as a normal user (not root), selected the network configuration app from the menu, and was not prompted for the root password. Everything just came up ghosted and unusable. I tried to log in as root, but you can't do that ("admin not allowed to log in from this screen" -- is there some other screen that admin can log in from?). I ended up having to pull up a shell, guess the name of the network admin app (/usr/bin/network-admin), then su and run it. This is supposed to be user-friendly? How does something that brain-damaged get released? I ran into several other problems (it's been too long for me to remember details), and just gave up on it after a few hours. I haven't had problems like that with other distros (OpenSUSE has worked quite well for me lately). I just don't see why people think Ubuntu is so much better than everything else.

  • Compiling in FreeBSD (Score:5, Interesting)

    by phorm ( 591458 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @11:04AM (#29565869) Journal

    Actually, you'll probably do quite a bit of compiling in FreeBSD too. While you can pull binary packages, most people I know prefer to use a package manager like portsnap and compile source packages.

    If you have a script to take care of compiling the common stuff, then just "make config" everything that need user input and let it fly. Granted, most servers I've used BSD on have been dual or quad core Xeon/AMD PC's with a fair bit of RAM, so it is overall a fairly quick process, though it was still not too bad on a few P4-era celerons.

    The nice thing about FreeBSD source-compiled apps that I truly did love compared to BSD is the little tweaks you could do to avoid tons of crap dependencies. Debian used to be fairly "clean" as far as deps, but both Ubuntu and Deb are now getting quite ugly in that you get rather unwanted stuff in order to get the package you want. In most FreeBSD stuff, for example, I can check the "No X Server" box and happily compile my apps without any X support whatsoever. On Debian/Ubuntu I end up trying to install some CLI system monitoring tool or CUPS, whatever, and end up with a whackload of stuff because it's tied to some font which is loosely tied to the actual package I'm trying to install. On Ubuntu desktops, trying to exorcize the demons of "Evolution" without having it remove other important stuff due to deps is near impossible. Sometimes there's a separate branch for a "cleaner" install, but often enough not.

    Of course, BSD ain't perfect. Linux tends to have a lot of "new" stuff that BSD is a little more "conservative" in bringing into the mainline (iSCSI support for example was a fairly recent addition compared to 'nix), but overall the package system is powerful indeed.

    Having not used Gentoo (yet) but knowing others who have, it seems like it might be somewhat similar in concept. The issues I've heard with are mostly in people getting to the up-and-running stage, but - similar to BSD - avoid annoying little conflicts or unwanted cruft is a lot easier than Debian/Ubuntu's precompiled binaries. Of course, I've also heard of much frustration in both if you have find halfway through a *long* compile that you missed something you should have flagged/included.

  • Re:What's the point. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by kad77 ( 805601 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @11:21AM (#29566147)

    I'm sort of curious why the slashdot story summary is so annoyingly biased in it's phrasing - "FreeBSD rather ends up taking a wallop to Ubuntu Linux, but there are a few areas where FreeBSD 8 ran well", when the arguably flawed test suite shows NO SUCH THING!

    The FreeBSD system has very comparable or better benchmarks on nearly every metric in the test, just click through TFA and see for yourself.


    Besides the needless and counterproductive bias, the phrase X "rather ends up taking a wallop to" Y is clunky and sophomoric. Editors, get a life.

  • by notamisfit ( 995619 ) * on Monday September 28, 2009 @12:23PM (#29567223)

    Certain companies (Apple) have no-GPLv3 policies in place.

  • by buddyglass ( 925859 ) on Monday September 28, 2009 @02:07PM (#29568983)

    Actually compilation itself is a questionable benchmark due to all the variables you can't control. For instance, maybe the code contains pre-processor directives that result in entire modules not being compiled on one OS or the other? But if you're going to use it as an OS benchmark, you should at least use the same version of GCC.

    The other dumb thing I often see are benchmarks using tasks that are single-threaded and almost entirely processor-bound. In other words, tests that are mostly useless for exposing differences between operating systems, most of which revolve around scheduling, memory management and I/O.

Logic is the chastity belt of the mind!