Intel Mesa 9.1 Benchmarks On Unity, KDE, Xfce, Etc
Written by Michael Larabel in Mesa on 28 February 2013 at 11:11 AM EST. 10 Comments
Benchmarks from the Mesa 9.1 stable branch with Intel "Ivy Bridge" graphics were done to look at the OpenGL gaming performance from Unity, KDE, GNOME Shell, Xfce, LXDE, and Razor-qt.

For this quick end-of-month benchmarking, Intel HD 4000 graphics with the Linux 3.8 kernel and Mesa 9.1 led to running OpenGL benchmarks on Ubuntu 13.04 "Raring Ringtail" with the following desktop configurations:

- Unity 6.6.0 with Compiz.
- KDE 4.10.00 with KWin while opting for the option of disabling desktop effects on full-screen windows.
- GNOME Shell with Mutter.
- Xfce 4.10 without compositing.
- LXDE 0.5.12.
- The Razor-qt desktop with OpenBox 3.5.0.

All packages (aside from building Mesa 9.1 from its Mesa Git branch) were obtained from the Ubuntu Raring repository on 27 February. All benchmarking was handled via the Phoronix Test Suite software.

As usual for these quick, one-page benchmarking roundabouts, the full system hardware/software details, system logs, and the complete set of benchmark results are available via within the 1302289-FO-INTELIVYB61 result file.

Overall, with the latest desktop environments and latest open-source Intel driver, the impact of the different desktops / compositing window managers has greatly diminished.

The most recent OpenGL Linux desktop performance comparison was in January within Ubuntu 13.04 Desktop Gaming Performance Comparison. Previous to that was Ubuntu 13.04 Desktop Comparison: 6 Desktops, 5 Driver/GPUs. Benchmarks from different drivers / GPUs will come when Ubuntu 13.04 is readied for release.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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