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

SprezzOS Is Indeed Trying To Be A Faster Linux

Operating Systems

Published on 15 March 2013 05:25 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems
10 Comments

SprezzOS, a Linux distribution that most people have likely not heard of, is aiming for real change with their open-source operating system. They previously claimed their ambitions were to become the "most robust, beautiful and performant Linux", and it turns out they are indeed trying to at least live up to their performance goals.

SprezzOS was exclusively covered on Phoronix earlier this year in the aforelinked article. Many downplayed this Linux distribution that sent information to the Phoronix news box. The developers later made claims of a 120 second Linux server installation.

Since January I hadn't heard any information from the developers or any other news surrounding SprezzOS. Most Phoronix readers that read about the distribution have likely written it off as a fluff.

However, today I was tipped off to some SprezzOS news that shows the distribution is indeed progressing and they're aiming to make real change.

The latest news is that as part of their "Raptorial" project, which is a modern rewrite of APT with an emphasis on parallelism and project art. Raptorial is aiming to be a backwards-compatible, drop-in replacement for the APT packages. Raptorial is made of a common code-base that is focused on performance, documentation, and testing.

It's quite an interesting and some may view the goals as being a bit lofty, but they already have code to show for it. Nick Black of SprezzOS announced "rapt-show-versions", his replacement to apt-show-versions, is already much faster than the Debian version. His single-threaded version of apt-show-versions is nearly five times faster than Debian's apt-show-versions while his multi-threaded version on a quad-core processor is insane: 1.01s for the default Debian copy or 0.04s for his multi-threaded rapt-show-versions. If he can make dependency resolving and other parts of APT faster, this will be quite impressive.

Nick Black has approached the Debian development community to see if they're interested in integrating his faster code within the official APT code-base or provide this new rapt-show-versions alternative in the Debian world. He made the proposal here.

It's nice to see this original innovation possibly going into upstream Debian, which would benefit other Linux distributions too, rather than just having this drop-in replacement be closed-up or pushed behind CLAs and other restrictions. So far the response seems to be Debian developers wanting to see more code and saying they want to rely upon APT cache (Raptorial doesn't use a cache) and that by rewriting their existing code in C++ they might alreay get a speed-up by using libapt-pkg.

We'll see what else comes out of SprezzOS in the months ahead.

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 .
Latest Articles & Reviews
  1. Ubuntu 15.04 Offers Faster OpenGL For AMD Radeon GPUs On Open-Source
  2. Ubuntu 15.04 Brings Some Graphics Performance Improvements For Intel Haswell
  3. Sub-$20 802.11n USB WiFi Adapter That's Linux Friendly
  4. The Lenovo T450s Is Working Beautifully With Linux
  5. Linux 4.0 SSD EXT4 / Btrfs / XFS / F2FS Benchmarks
  6. Linux 4.0 Hard Drive Comparison With Six File-Systems
Latest Linux News
  1. Phoronix Server Migration
  2. GCC 5.2 Will Come In Two To Three Months
  3. AMD FP3 Motherboard Ported To Coreboot
  4. The Difference In Optimizations Between NIR & GLSL
  5. OpenMandriva Lx 3 Alpha: Adds UEFI Support, Defaults To LXQt
  6. Systemd Kills Off Shutdownd
  7. There's Now More Than 1,100 Games On Steam For Linux
  8. Btrfs In Linux 4.1 Has Fixes For File-Systems Of 20 Terabytes & Up
  9. Microsoft's CoreCLR Now Works On FreeBSD
  10. Unigine 2.0 Beta 2 Brings PBR, SSR, Kinect 2 Support
Most Viewed News This Week
  1. AMD Releases New "AMDGPU" Linux Kernel Driver & Mesa Support
  2. Ubuntu's Desktop-Next Switching From .DEBs To Snappy
  3. My Favorite Computer Desk Of The Past Decade For Less Than $100
  4. Systemd Kills Off Shutdownd
  5. AMD Open-Sources "Addrlib" From Catalyst
  6. Library Operating System (LibOS) For Linux Still Being Pursued
  7. Debian 8.0 Jessie Is Ready For Release This Weekend
  8. GIMP's Porting To GTK3 Continues