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System76's Pop!_OS Is Exploring Intel's Clear Linux Performance/Power Optimizations

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  • System76's Pop!_OS Is Exploring Intel's Clear Linux Performance/Power Optimizations

    Phoronix: System76's Pop!_OS Is Exploring Intel's Clear Linux Performance/Power Optimizations

    When Ubuntu-loaded laptop and desktop vendor System76 announced their new Ubuntu downstream last year as "Pop!_OS" it began as mostly cosmetic changes to the desktop shell and other minor improvements. Over time they've been investing more into it with work items like a better installation process, but it looks like they will be diving deeper as they begin exploring performance and power optimizations...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...OS-Clear-Power

  • #2
    Cool .. I was looking at System76 earlier today and was disappointed to not find a nice Raven Ridge laptop


    Looking for something like:

    Processor:
    * Ryzen 5 2700U

    Memory:
    * 2-4 slots. 2x8Gb DDR4-2666 minimum (better 3200+).

    Screen:
    * 14-15" IPS matte screen, >1920x1080, and >75Hz (FreeSync would be a bonus, but not strictly necessary)
    * Thin bezel (similar to Dell XPS idea)

    Keyboard:
    * Backlit (white) with a solid feel (minimal flex), and some key travel (I don't know my laptop keys very well, but I *love* Cherry MX Brown switches on the desktop)
    * Number pad if space allows

    Touchpad:
    * Physical buttons included, at least left and right, if not middle as well.

    Storage:
    * 2x m.2 slots

    Battery:
    * As big as possible. 90Wh?

    External ports:
    * 1x USB-C (includes being a charging port? I'm not really up to date with that stuff, but it sounds nice)
    * 4x USB3
    * 1x Ethernet
    * 1x sdcard
    * 1x HDMI
    * 2x Mini-DP
    Audio:
    * Optical SPDIF + line-out combo jack
    * Headphone jack
    * Mic jack (optional for me, may as well)
    * Speakers above keyboard

    Miscellaneous:
    * Intel dual band wireless AC
    * Webcam with stereo mic
    * Air intake vents NOT where the machine rests on one's legs. In fact not on the base at all, should be at the rear or side.
    * Materials that don't show fingerprints easily
    * Materials that don't bend or flex easily, so it feels robust
    * Lots of BIOS options! Similar to desktop X370 boards. Configurable TDP would be nice.


    Hmm, might save a copy of that wishlist! I'm definitely over Intel and nVidia for CPU+GPU. Hybrid setups in general are annoying. Intel makes good network adapters though.

    If not Raven Ridge though, then a Ryzen 3 of some sort, 4c8t with clocks around 3GHz, plus a Vega GPU with at least 4Gb HBM would be very very nice.

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    • #3
      still waiting for new firmware, no i'm not installing poop os

      Comment


      • #4
        Linux powered by Intel should be good above all in the optimization of OS based on CPU's instructions.

        Comment


        • #5
          System76 is in an interesting position here. Traditionally OS vendors have been decoupled from the hardware vendors, and OS vendors had to ship an OS that worked everywhere rather than optimize it for specific hardware.

          System76 is in a unique position where they know exactly what kind of hardware their OS is shipping on, and it's always modern CPUs. So they don't even need function multi-versioning - they could simply compile all the packages with AVX2 support a-la Gentoo and call it a day. And it would be one heck of a performance win.

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          • #6
            I still continue to consider Ubuntu a wrong choice (ever), they provided a firmware upgrade that I was unable to apply because I am using Debian. They said me that they can't work on several distros at the same time so I would better to uninstall Debian, install Ubuntu or POP_OS applying the upgrade and then reinstalling Debian.
            A simple bash script would be preferable instead a package just for Ubuntu.

            Comment


            • #7
              I'd gladly pay a little extra for System76, but the problem really comes down to them not offering something I want/need. In terms of performance, my current crappy Lenovo laptop with a Haswell i3 still performs great; it only bogs down on pages filled with animated ads. The build quality, display, speakers, and battery life are really the only things I especially dislike about it (and even then, the display is tolerable). When it comes to mobile CPUs, Intel hasn't improved much (in terms of performance-per-watt, graphics, or IPC) since Haswell. So, it's a little difficult for me to justify buying a somewhat expensive new platform that won't make a major difference in performance, even though the rest of the experience would be significantly improved.
              If they offered an ARM or AMD system, at least then there would be some advantage vs what I have now (where ARM would offer much better battery life, and AMD would offer better graphics performance).

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Shnatsel View Post
                System76 is in an interesting position here. Traditionally OS vendors have been decoupled from the hardware vendors, and OS vendors had to ship an OS that worked everywhere rather than optimize it for specific hardware.

                System76 is in a unique position where they know exactly what kind of hardware their OS is shipping on, and it's always modern CPUs. So they don't even need function multi-versioning - they could simply compile all the packages with AVX2 support a-la Gentoo and call it a day. And it would be one heck of a performance win.
                Solus also uses Clear Linux's Intel optimizations, so Pop!_OS is not really in an "interesting position" here. Unless you're talking about the fact that they also sell hardware, but then it's still not "interesting" 'cause there are still companies bundling that, like Apple with their products, MS with the Surface line-up, etc.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by schmidtbag View Post
                  I'd gladly pay a little extra for System76 [...]
                  Shhhh, don't let the folks over at OMG! Ubuntu here you! ;-)

                  Originally posted by schmidtbag View Post
                  If they offered an ARM or AMD system, at least then there would be some advantage vs what I have now (where ARM would offer much better battery life, and AMD would offer better graphics performance).
                  Depends. Lenovo also has an AMD Thinkpad line-up but (at least here in Europe) they're using older AMD CPU's so it's comparable to what you're currently using. So System76, unlike Lenovo, would need to buy the newest, or at least more recent AMD CPU's for it to be an upgrade for you.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Vistaus View Post
                    Shhhh, don't let the folks over at OMG! Ubuntu here you! ;-)
                    Haha do they not like System 76? I don't really ever reference them for anything (or use Ubuntu) so I'm not sure what they have to say.
                    Depends. Lenovo also has an AMD Thinkpad line-up but (at least here in Europe) they're using older AMD CPU's so it's comparable to what you're currently using. So System76, unlike Lenovo, would need to buy the newest, or at least more recent AMD CPU's for it to be an upgrade for you.
                    Yeah, if I were to get an AMD-based laptop, it would have to be Ryzen based. Unfortunately, it seems most Ryzen-based laptops (from any brand) only come with single-channel memory, which I may as well pass up on.

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