The OpenMP-based GraphicsMagick test obviously benefited with the SMP differences between Ubuntu 6.06.1 and 8.04.4 LTS along with the better GCC support, but even in 2010 its performance is still improving somewhat with a 8% higher number than the 2008 Ubuntu Linux release.
The Himeno Poisson Pressure Solver numbers were interesting between Ubuntu 6.06.1 LTS and Ubuntu 8.04.4 LTS, but the performance is effectively the same in 2010 as it was in 2008.
While in some areas the performance in Ubuntu 10.04 "Lucid Lynx" has dropped due to the slower -- but more reliable -- performance of the default EXT4 file-system, in a majority of the tests, later Ubuntu LTS releases are getting faster and not slower. In nine of the 18 tests, Ubuntu 10.04 LTS was the clear winner over Canonical's previous two Long-Term Support releases. This is good for dispelling any rumors that Ubuntu Linux is getting slower with time, but in fact for many areas it is getting faster. Other areas like the boot speed and power efficiency has improved dramatically with succeeding Ubuntu releases.
What is also making Ubuntu 10.04 an exciting Long-Term Support release is addressing more usability issues, the use of Plymouth for the boot screen, Ubuntu Netbook ARM improvements, the introduction of the Ubuntu One Music Store, a new desktop theme, and many package updates. As earlier tests have shown, the overall open-source graphics support is greatly improved in Ubuntu 10.04 compared to even Ubuntu 9.04 or 9.10 with the ATI Radeon support now using kernel mode-setting and the introduction of Nouveau support for NVIDIA graphics. Now we just need to see how Ubuntu 10.04 compares to Windows 7 and Mac OS X 10.6.3.