For our final two tests we looked at the operating system performance in the OpenGL workstation benchmarks provided by SPECViewPerf 10.0. Sadly, on many of the consumer cards and drivers under Windows 7, SPECViewPerf 10.0 could not run many of the view-sets. Oddly enough, even the octal-core Opteron workstation with the ATI FirePro V8800 would even lock-up under Windows 7 x64 when we tried to run these view-sets. The two systems that handled Maya fine for both operating systems were the AMD Athlon II X3 system with the Radeon HD 4670 graphics card and the Intel Core i7 system with the NVIDIA GeForce 9800GTX. The Linux results from the Phenom 9500 + Radeon HD 5770 and dual Opteron 2384 + FirePro V8800 were left in for reference numbers.
The Athlon II X3 system only was slightly in favor of Ubuntu 10.04 with SPEC's Maya view-set, but Ubuntu scored hugely with the NVIDIA graphics on the quad-core Core i7 system with Hyper Threading. In fact, Ubuntu 10.04 LTS was nearly twice as fast as Windows 7 on this system in this OpenGL workstation benchmark.
With the SolidWorks view-set provided by SPECViewPerf 10.0, the Athlon II X3 system this time was faster on Windows 7 x64. However, the Core i7 system with the NVIDIA GeForce 9800GTX consumer graphics card was still nearly twice as fast under the Linux operating system.