1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking Benchmarking Platform
Phoromatic Test Orchestration

Ubuntu: 32-bit v. 64-bit Performance

Michael Larabel

Published on 29 December 2006
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 3 - Add A Comment

While 64-bit support is now considered common for both Intel and AMD processors, many Linux (as well as Windows) users are uncertain whether to use a 32-bit or 64-bit operating system with there being advantages for both paths. With this being the last Phoronix article for 2006, we decided to take this opportunity to look at this common question of whether to use 32-bit or 64-bit software. In this article, we will be comparing the i386 and x86_64 performance with Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy Eft and Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn Herd 1 to see how the numbers truly stack up.

One of the common (and leading) reasons for 64-bit processor owners continuing to use 32-bit software is due to some software not being available for x86_64 Linux. The key package that keeps many Linux users to running i386 software is for Macromedia Flash Player support (though 32-bit Firefox on 64-bit Linux fixes that issue or using Gnash). Linux provides backward compatibility for running 32-bit executables and most open-source software can easily be compiled for x86_64.

Both i386 and x86_64 versions of Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy Eft and Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn Herd 1 were used for testing. An AMD Athlon 64 X2 processor was selected for comparing the 32-bit and 64-bit performance of both Ubuntu Linux builds. Below is a list of all the hardware used for testing as well as the major software versions. The ATI Radeon X300SE was used with the open-source R300 Radeon drivers and the options set were AccelMethod: XAA, AccelDFS: 1, GARTSize: 64, EnablePageFlip: 1, and ColorTiling: 1.

Hardware Components
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+
Motherboard: Abit KN9 Ultra
Memory: 2 x 1GB OCZ DDR2-800
Graphics Card: ATI Radeon X300SE
Hard Drives: Seagate 160GB SATA2
Optical Drives: Lite-On 16x DVD-ROM
Cooling: OCZ Tempest
Power Supply: SilverStone Zeus ST75ZF 750W
Software Components
Operating System: Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10 (i386 & x86_64)
Ubuntu Feisty Fawn 7.04 Herd 1 (i386 & x86_64)
Linux Kernel: 2.6.17-10-generic
2.6.19-7-generic
GCC: 4.1.2
X.Org: 7.1.1

The benchmarks used for comparing 32-bit and 64-bit Linux was Unreal Tournament 2004, Gzip compression, LAME compilation, LAME encoding, RAMspeed, and kernel compilation. The kernel we had used for measuring the compilation time was the 2.6.19 vanilla kernel. The remainder of the benchmarks were used using our standard Phoronix benchmarking practices.

Latest Linux News
  1. Trying To Run The Intel Core i7 5775C On Linux
  2. VirtualBox 5.0 RC3 Brings VMM Fixes, Takes Care Of Some KDE DnD Problems
  3. Ubuntu Is Finally Fixing Its Annoying GRUB Setting
  4. Firefox 39.0 Brings New Features, HTML5 Changes
  5. OPNsense 15.7 Released As Fork Of Pfsense
  6. The Less-Powerful Intel Compute Stick With Ubuntu Will Soon Ship
  7. Kodi 15.0 Release Candidate 1 Arrives
  8. Fedora 23: Python 3 Default Approved; Netizen Spin Rejected
  9. GNOME Shell & Mutter Just Landed More Wayland Improvements
  10. Ubuntu MATE Announces A Partnership With A PC Hardware Vendor
Latest Articles & Reviews
  1. 6-Way File-System Comparison On The Linux 4.1 Kernel
  2. How KDE VDG Is Trying To Make Open-Source Software Beautiful
  3. Attempting To Try Out BCache On The Linux 4.1 Kernel
  4. CompuLab's Fitlet Is A Very Tiny, Fanless, Linux PC With AMD A10 Micro
Most Viewed News This Week
  1. Pinos Is For Linux Video What PulseAudio Is For Audio
  2. The State & Complications Of Porting The Unity Editor To Linux
  3. The Staging Pull For Linux 4.2: "Big, Really Big"
  4. Latest Rumor Pegs Microsoft Wanting To Buy AMD
  5. "PulseVideo" Coming To Complement PulseAudio?
  6. Exciting Features Merged So Far For The Linux 4.2 Kernel
  7. RadeonSI Gallium3D Gets New OpenGL 4 Bits
  8. Linux 4.2 Advertises GFS2 Performance Improvements