Found in the Linux 2.6.30-rc2 kernel release yesterday were a few Intel i915 DRM updates that could affect the system's graphics performance. Well, we decided to check. For some quick tests we compared the Linux 2.6.28 kernel to be found in Ubuntu 9.04 to the Linux 2.6.30-rc2 kernel found in the Ubuntu kernel mainline PPA.
Testing was done again on the Dell Inspiron Mini 9 with an Atom N270 CPU, 1GB of system memory, and Intel 945 graphics. The Phoronix Test Suite tests we used included OpenArena, World of Padman, Tremulous, GtkPerf, and JXRenderMark for a mix of 2D and 3D tests.
As you can see, the numbers certainly have improved. However, there still is more optimization work left. However, this is also taking into account other changes made in the Linux 2.6.29 and 2.6.30 kernel besides just the Intel-specific bits. To compare your system's performance to these results, run phoronix-test-suite benchmark phoronix-3867-14354-11729. More numbers can also be looked at from the Phoronix Global results page.