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Stats Ubuntu Open Source Operating Systems Upgrades IT Linux

The Performance of Ubuntu Linux Over the Past 10 Years ( 110

An anonymous reader writes: Tests were carried out at Phoronix of all Ubuntu Long-Term Support releases from the 6.06 "Dapper Drake" release to 16.04 "Xenial Xerus," looking at the long-term performance of (Ubuntu) Linux using a dual-socket AMD Opteron server. Their benchmarks of Ubuntu's LTS releases over 10 years found that the Radeon graphics performance improved substantially, the disk performance was similar while taking into account the switch from EXT3 to EXT4, and that the CPU performance had overall improved for many workloads thanks to the continued evolution of the GCC compiler.
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The Performance of Ubuntu Linux Over the Past 10 Years

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 05, 2016 @03:52PM (#51448837)

    after forcing systemd on us!

  • In all honesty... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 05, 2016 @03:54PM (#51448861)
    Writing sane optimized software makes far bigger impact than dicking with filesystems, schedulers and compiler optimizations to hunt the 0.05% extra performance. For example the Unity desktop is super laggy on low-end hardware, all due to bloated design.
    • I wouldn't call Unity bloated, I'd call it inappropriately feature rich for low-end hardware.

      Would be nice if there were a "I'm on a crappy little ARM core" switch in Ubuntu that reconfigures it to a more Raspbian like system hardware requirement.

      • There kind of is. Install Xubunt or Lubuntu, or install the respective desktop environments used by those projects. I'm running Xubuntu on an almost 8 year old NetBook with a 1.6GHz Atom CPU and, while I wouldn't call it fast, it's usable.
    • I'm still using my old Core2Duo laptop on 10.04 because it is way faster than any recent laptop on 14.04 or 16.04. Just added an SSD, it boots in 14 seconds and launches any application instantly. I installed 12.04 on it because I wanted to get updates, but it was clearly slower, so I sticked to 10.04.
      • I loved 10.04! Best version of Ubuntu ever, IMO.

        At the time, Ubuntu was just getting better, and better. I could hardly wait for 10.10.

        When 10.10 came out, it had that awful Unity desktop. I hated it so bad, I never used Ubuntu again.

        And now they are using systemd - barf.

        • I don't really care about systemd as long as it works and is fast, but Unity is definitely a failure. It's been 5 years now and I'm still not used to it, and find it a terrible UI compared to Gnome 2.

          Not better for Tablets, not better for TVs, and for sure not better for desktop.

          The only good thing I like is the windows shortcut to launch an application with the keyboard, but that would be easy to do on Gnome 2 also.

          Unfortunately, Gnome 3 was not better, and the Gnome project abandoned Gnome 2, so the

    • You should try Lubuntu [] the lightweight version based on the LXDE [] desktop ...
    • Let's put this another way:

      Would you expect the Mac OS X software stack to be more efficient now than a similar software stack from 10 years ago?

      How about MS Windows?

      It's nice to know that a Linux OS hasn't become a bloated mess over a decade of software upgrades.

      • Please, stop the denialism.

        Windows 10 works smoothly on an Atom N270 or Core 1 Duo. Unity, on the other hand...not so much.

        A basic composited desktop with basic animations does not require that much horsepower. Even a measly GMA950 is more than enough. Even VIA C7-M with Chrome9 graphics ran Windows 7 with no hiccups and all 3D eyecandy enabled.

        Linux is terribly bloated and unoptimized.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 05, 2016 @03:59PM (#51448901)

    What about measuring reliability? That's one of the most important performance factors of any system of any sort, including Linux installations.

    After all, a Linux system that crashes or that does not even boot will offer no reasonable performance of any type!

    When I last used Ubuntu, it used its own init system called Upstart. It generally worked well for my needs.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but as I understand it Ubuntu 15.04 was the first to switch to systemd.

    Based on my experiences with Debian, systemd was a complete disaster. After doing routine updates I experienced booting problems on several of my computers. After some investigation it turned out that all were due to various problems with systemd.

    While desperately looking for solutions to my problems, I found many other people reporting all sorts of problems with systemd. These are the kinds of problems we never experienced with sysvinit or Upstart or other init systems.

    It doesn't matter how fast my computer's CPU is, or how fast the disk is, or how fast the graphics are if the computer doesn't even boot far enough to be usable because the init system crapped out.

    • by PRMan ( 959735 )

      I quit using Ubuntu far before systemd (during the Vista days because Vista). Back then, updates would crash it and then make me spend hours getting it back to a functional state.

      I went back to Windows with Windows 7. So that's not a systemd thing as much as a Ubuntu thing.

      • Well, that's refreshing. :) You actually switched the operating system, instead of continuing to whine year after year about the problems, like many masochistic Linux users of Slashdot do.
    • by dbIII ( 701233 )

      What about measuring reliability? That's one of the most important performance factors of any system of any sort, including Linux installations.

      It's not supposed to be beta software so reliability is assumed. If you don't get it then the software is not ready for release. It's not high turnover commercial software where something has to be out by the end of the month whether it works or not.

    • What about measuring reliability?

      In all seriousness: probably because his benchmark programs don't measure reliability. This guy benchmarks stuff. A lot of stuff. He knows how to do it. This time he's benchmarked a bunch of Linux installs. We learn a little, but not so much. Yes, there are some big differences (like the disk performance going down). But often it's not clear why any of that stuff happened. So not very informative, to be honest.

    • The most reliable Linux based system I has was based on Linux 2.2.30(?) anyways, 2.2, and Blackbox as a Window Manager. I played Counter Strike on my laptop and had great framerates, I ran prime number generators, cracked passwords, watched fun opengl screensavers, and everything was always smooth as silk and nothing ever crashed no matter how high the load became.

      I would go back to it if I could and could have sub-pixel font hinting. My god the fonts were ugly... but perhaps they would look nicer on a 4k s

  • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Friday February 05, 2016 @04:13PM (#51449007)

    Software performs better after it's had time to mature and be optimized and bugs removed.

  • Don't tell anyone (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NotDrWho ( 3543773 ) on Friday February 05, 2016 @04:13PM (#51449009)

    If Linux fans find out that a distro is in any way successful, they're obligated to split it into a million competing forks and bitch about it endlessly.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 05, 2016 @05:40PM (#51449703)

      There may be lots of Linux distros, but they fall into 3 categories:

      1) Fedora-derived distros
      2) Debian-derived distros
      3) Niche distros

      We don't really see fragmentation, but rather specialization.

      The Fedora- and Debian-based distros see the most use. Even they aren't very different these days, especially the Debian versions that use systemd.

      So the fragmentation you're talking about just doesn't exist any more. It's not 1996.

      • We don't really see fragmentation, but rather specialization.

        And the alternative to specialization is bloatware, so be glad for specialization.

      • Debian is definitely a popular root but I'd dispute I'd argue that it isn't Fedora that's a major root, rather it's Red Hat/RHEL. Even then, there are large numbers of popular distros not derived from those sources. From the GNU/Linux Distribution Timeline []:
        1. Slackware has spawned lots of distros (including SUSE)
        2. Enoch spawned the Gentoo line of distros (and Gentoo is the current base of ChromeOS).
        3. The Arch family started independently
        4. The on-the-rise Alpine Linux was independently started

        So by lineage al

        • It might be a bit harsh to call Slackware, Gentoo, SUSE, Arch, etc. "niche", but I do agree that the majority of Linux installations are either from the Debian lineage, or the Redhat (Fedora) lineage.

      • by ebvwfbw ( 864834 )

        ...So the fragmentation you're talking about just doesn't exist any more. It's not 1996.

        Great, glad we have just one Desktop... well we don't have that. There's kde, gnome, others.
        Great, glad we have just one Filesystem... well we don't have that either. btrfs, gpfs, ext(n), etc.
        Great, glad we have just one organized set of files... well we don't have that. We have the right way which RedHat mostly does and some really screwed up distros. Sometimes I think they're like - nobody will ever guess the config file is here! Ha!
        Great, glad we have just one way to install Linux.... well we don't hav

    • I've been running Lubuntu [] exclusively at home for a number of years, and I have no complaints. I like the way it works out-of-the-box, browsing, wordprocessing and media player and installing software can't be easier with Synaptic [] the graphic package manager.
  • Linux Mint (Score:2, Informative)

  • All Linux is open source, all use the same kernel, all use the gcc compiler.

    Why would Ubuntu substantially outperform other Linux distros using the same kernel, compiler, file system, ect? Why would CPU, Radeon graphic, and HDD performance be substantially different?

If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.