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September Brought Good Valve, ARM, Linux News

Valve

Published on 02 October 2012 01:15 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Valve
3 Comments

Now being into October, it's time to recap what happened in the Linux/hardware world during the month of September.

As usual, here's a rundown of the most popular content on Phoronix during the month of September 2012.

During the month of September on Phoronix there were 221 news postings and 22 featured articles. If you appreciate all of this content, please refrain from using AdBlock, subscribe to Phoronix Premium for ad-free viewing and seeing multi-page articles on a single page, participate in the forums, or even make a PayPal tip. This content on Phoronix.com along with the benchmarking and core Phoronix Test Suite development is done single-handedly by myself.

You can also follow Phoronix via RSS, on #phoronix on FreeNode IRC, Facebook, and Twitter (also @MichaelLarabel for extras).

The most popular Phoronix news postings last month were:

Apple iPad 2 As Fast As The Cray-2 Super Computer
A university research director has shown that Apple's iPad 2 is as fast as the Cray-2 vector super-computer out of Cray Research from the 1980's. With some work to to the software, the iPad 2 performance benchmark result is quite impressive.

Interesting Features For The Linux 3.6 Kernel
The Linux 3.6 kernel is set to make its official debut in the coming weeks and -- as usual -- there's many interesting features to this next major open-source kernel release.

AMD "Hondo" APUs May Not Be Too Linux Friendly
Just one day after hearing Intel isn't planning "Clover Trail" Atom support under Linux due to targeting this low-powered processor towards Windows 8 tablets, similar information has now come out of AMD. The next-generation "Hondo" Fusion APUs are initially being targeted towards Windows 8 tablets rather than Linux/Android.

Valve's Steam Linux Beta About To Drop?
A lot of Phoronix readers have been writing in this morning with the feeling that the Steam Linux Beta is likely about to happen.

Qt5's Linux Requirements Cause Problems
With XCB being a requirement for the Linux version of Qt 5.0, and Xlib not being supported, it's causing problems for some wishing to adopt this forthcoming tool-kit.

NVIDIA Tegra With Open-Source Graphics Is Coming
In continuation of NVIDIA Tegra With Open-Source Graphics Is Coming, here is the video that covers all of what's currently going on in the open-source Tegra world.

When it came to the Phoronix featured articles, the most popular September 2012 content was:

NVIDIA Performance: Windows 7 vs. Ubuntu Linux 12.10
With a largely shared driver code-base across platforms, the binary graphics drivers offered by AMD and NVIDIA perform at roughly the same speed for OpenGL between Linux and Windows; that's traditionally been the case and what Phoronix benchmarks in prior years have shown for NVIDIA and AMD. However, the OpenGL performance difference between operating systems is beginning to widen due to compositing window managers and other factors now affecting the results to a greater extent. In this article are benchmarks of the proprietary NVIDIA graphics driver from Microsoft Windows 7 and then development snapshots of Ubuntu 12.10 with Unity and KDE desktops.

Ubuntu Unity Proves Very Slow To KDE, GNOME, Xfce, LXDE
Earlier this week when benchmarking the latest Unity and Compiz packages for Ubuntu 12.10, I mentioned a new OpenGL desktop comparison was forthcoming. Those results from the Ubuntu 12.10 development snapshot are now available with the default Unity desktop being compared to KDE, GNOME, Xfce, and LXDE. In no test did the Unity desktop yield the fastest performance with nearly every time the default Ubuntu desktop being left in last place for performance.

Ubuntu's Unity/Compiz Gets Even Slower
Updates were recently pushed into the Ubuntu 12.10 "Quantal Quetzal" repository for the Unity desktop and Compiz compositing window manager. Performance improvements were talked about, but still there are big problems at hand. The recent Unity/Compiz updates have caused more OpenGL slowdowns, at least for those using Intel's popular open-source driver.

The ARM Cortex-A9 Can Beat Out The Intel Atom
Here's some interesting test results recently uploaded to OpenBenchmarking.org that compares the performance of ARM Cortex A8 and Cortex A9 cores running at 1.0GHz against an Intel Atom N450. All three systems running at 1.0GHz were also running Gentoo Linux. Clock-for-clock, can the latest-generation ARM Cortex-A9 take out the Intel Atom? For the most part, yes.

Gentoo Linux vs. Linaro ARM Benchmarks
The latest Linux ARM benchmarks at Phoronix are comparing the performance of Gentoo Linux against Linaro 12.08 from a 1.4GHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 development board.

Ubuntu 12.10 File-Systems: Btrfs, EXT4, XFS
For those curious about the file-system performance of Ubuntu 12.10, here are some benchmarks from Quantal's Linux 3.5 kernel with the EXT4, XFS, and Btrfs file-systems.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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