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How An Old Pentium 4 System Runs With Ubuntu 10.04, 10.10

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  • #11
    Antiquated? I've got two computers with these sorts of specs in my house. And I agree with Zhick, this doesn't tell you anything about the desktop responsiveness.

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    • #12
      I seriously think it would be most beneficial for everyone to know what the difference is between Ubuntu 10.X vs Win7 on older hardware. Boot-up times and desktop responsiveness along with common applications loading and usability. I think that's pretty much the extent of what's relevant on older hardware since most people would not use old hardware to game or do performance oriented databasing...

      Although it's really interesting to see the regressions in performance! Keep up the good work!

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      • #13
        Definitely Linux does help keep old machines out of the landfills as all the posts indicate. I have one old thinkpad (T23) that chugs along nicely on Debian Sid...even more responsive than WinXP

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        • #14
          Originally posted by Zhick View Post
          After reading the title I actually expected an interesting article, that'd tell me about the desktop-performance of such an old machine. Y'know, things like the general responsiveness (snappyness) and memory-consumption (swapping kills desktop-performance).
          Well, I guess I should've known better. I should've know it'd only be a bunch of meanigless pts-graphs with pretty much zero value for anyone who's actually interested in how well such an old system fares as simple desktop-system with the latest Ubuntus.
          Although some memory consumption report was expected, there are so far no objective tests for 'snappiness'. The problem was brought up previously with the appearance of Con Kolivas' Brain Fuck Scheduler. It's not totally impossible to make certain tests, but currently we have to rely on the collective reports of subjective user experiences, hoping the results are independent.

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          • #15
            Its really disappointing to see the new gallium drivers for old cards degrade in performance in comparison with the old mesa drivers. I have several of those old cards and was hoping to give them a new live sometime.

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            • #16
              Yeah - any of those three are probably quite usable.

              And configuring a 128MB ramzswap on 10.04 or 10.10's likely to help desktop performance w/512MB ram.

              The r9200's a questionable choice (could go with a 9600) and if there's enough HW around the SIS is quite dubious! There are a lot of boxes with i845/i865/i915 integrated graphics in use still, certainly way more than an sis+9200 combo, so it'd be good to see benchmarks with those.

              As for the CPU-related benchmarks... the P4 is a *very* odd CPU optimization wise and gcc dev is probably oriented towards the more general K8/K10 and Core 2/i7 cores.

              My own use? At SCALE I had a Compaq small-desktop i845 P4/2.66 doing a real time DV->MPEG(-1? I forget ATM) transcode for the main presentation theater (mostly to support the overflow room for keynotes) Ran 70-80% load for both days, no probs.

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              • #17
                Originally posted by misiu_mp View Post
                Its really disappointing to see the new gallium drivers for old cards degrade in performance in comparison with the old mesa drivers. I have several of those old cards and was hoping to give them a new live sometime.
                Gallium basically requires a DX9 level card, so one'll need at least a i915 (someday), fx5200 or r9500. Noueavu devs were planning on getting it working on pre-DX9 nVidia chips but punted and made a regular DRI driver. r300g is faster than r300 in many things already.

                DRI2 cost 3D performance at first, and the catchup work probably hasn't been done on r100 or r200 yet. And yeah, it might even be running with vsync on...

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                • #18
                  Originally posted by ad_267 View Post
                  Antiquated? I've got two computers with these sorts of specs in my house. And I agree with Zhick, this doesn't tell you anything about the desktop responsiveness.
                  people nowadays think that anything older than 18 months is obsolete and antiquated. my pc is 4 years old (and a bit faster than pentium4 system, since it's amd64) and i still consider it an overkill for my needs.

                  the main reason to get a new box nowadays would be to get a more energy efficient pc offering a similar level of performance as the old box.

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                  • #19
                    Originally posted by bulletxt View Post
                    mmm.......... quite interesting....

                    Linux is really evolution. Evolution brings new "things", but loses others. Like humans loosing their tail
                    GCC is also an evolution and who knows if it is not the main player here? It will be great to see how GCC makes a difference in those tests. Ext3 makes a big difference here, but maybe there's some payoff using it?

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                    • #20
                      Originally posted by agd5f View Post
                      The slower 3D performance is likely due to the tearing avoidance code in the dri2 support. A better comparison would be to look at newer distros with kms disabled.
                      By, "tearing avoidance code", I assume you mean GLX Sync & Swap? That's only been introduced with the *.35 kernel (thus not effecting 10.04). I can't think of any other tearing avoidance functionality - especially because there doesn't appear to be any. KMS is a mongrel for tearing on my Radeon 9550.

                      I'd suspect the performance drop would have more to do with redirected rendering.

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