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Ubuntu vs. Arch Linux On The ASUS ROG Strix G15 / Ryzen 9 5900HX

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  • Ubuntu vs. Arch Linux On The ASUS ROG Strix G15 / Ryzen 9 5900HX

    Phoronix: Ubuntu vs. Arch Linux On The ASUS ROG Strix G15 / Ryzen 9 5900HX

    This past week were the initial Linux benchmarks of the Ryzen 9 5900HX with the ASUS ROG Strix G15 laptop. Ubuntu was used as the default test platform as usual given its popularity and arguably the most relevant Linux distribution to use given that it's the most common Linux distribution at the moment for preloads on laptops by multiple vendors. In any case, as usual many users were quick to say "but Arch Linux!" as if it was going to make a dramatic difference in my findings. Well, here are some Ubuntu 21.04 versus Arch Linux benchmarks on that AMD Advantage laptop.

    https://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=30367

  • #2
    Gotta say, pretty excited for AMD getting more competitive in laptop space and GPU space generally. Nvidia has great products but their culture is way too money oriented. But I guess Nvidia is not doing anything wrong in capitalism society.

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    • #3
      As an actual Arch Linux user who didn't bring up that argument, "but Arch Linux!" only matters if you know how to configure your system for performance. It helps to know to install stuff like cpupower (for the systemd service) and change the scheduler off of schedutil or ondemand over to performance, to go Perpetually High with patches or to install one of the umpteen AUR kernels, and other things like that.

      And after you do all of that, "but Arch Linux!" still might not mean shit. Just because Arch is more plain and generic by default doesn't mean it'll be faster. Sometimes that not-plain and not-generic stuff other distributions patch in make things faster. Sometimes they don't.

      I use Arch because it gives me full control over my system, because the documentation is really good, because the PKGBUILD format and AUR allow me to quickly and easily try new things in a manner that is better for my system than "make && make install", because when I install a program I'm getting what the developer of the program released and not some Debian maintainers interpretation of that program via 21 patches to set defaults and tweak themes. None my reasons are because Arch is 1337 and faster than the rest. That's what Gentoo is for.

      And as a long-term Phoronix reader, unless there is some crazy bullshit happening most every distribution performs around the same. Pick your distribution based on merit, features, support, community, and capability. Don't pick your distribution because some jackasses on Reddit like to post "btw I use Arch".

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      • #4
        Originally posted by skeevy420 View Post
        As an actual Arch Linux user who didn't bring up that argument, "but Arch Linux!" only matters if you know how to configure your system for performance. It helps to know to install stuff like cpupower (for the systemd service) and change the scheduler off of schedutil or ondemand over to performance, to go Perpetually High with patches or to install one of the umpteen AUR kernels, and other things like that.

        And after you do all of that, "but Arch Linux!" still might not mean shit. Just because Arch is more plain and generic by default doesn't mean it'll be faster. Sometimes that not-plain and not-generic stuff other distributions patch in make things faster. Sometimes they don't.

        I use Arch because it gives me full control over my system, because the documentation is really good, because the PKGBUILD format and AUR allow me to quickly and easily try new things in a manner that is better for my system than "make && make install", because when I install a program I'm getting what the developer of the program released and not some Debian maintainers interpretation of that program via 21 patches to set defaults and tweak themes. None my reasons are because Arch is 1337 and faster than the rest. That's what Gentoo is for.

        And as a long-term Phoronix reader, unless there is some crazy bullshit happening most every distribution performs around the same. Pick your distribution based on merit, features, support, community, and capability. Don't pick your distribution because some jackasses on Reddit like to post "btw I use Arch".
        Wow a mighty Arch User! And he actually talks about the difference between distros. Wow how insightful! As a random normal human being I can't really see any major difference between distros except cosmetic and procedures, shame on me. And most importantly, other branches apparently don't need configurations or cannot be configured and they are already at the top of their performance limit. I guess we losers could never reach this Arch level. Sigh

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        • #5
          I use Arch as well because it allows me to customize my system without a lot of secrets or hidden settings. Whenever I tried other distributions I have the feeling I need to figure out how to do something instead of just doing it. On the other side my Arch system is based now on plenty of mostly simple scripts so obviously not something I would recommend to normal users. I would say Arch is for the users that prefer to create their own customized distribution/installation but performance is not the main reason.

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          • #6
            Well said skeevy420 (and it's not because I got a shout out). I just think you nailed it

            And thanks for the benchmarks and article, Michael

            Hopefully this can put some of the noise to bed. Stop distro hopping (do that in a VM) and start tweaking your kernels!!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by skeevy420 View Post
              And after you do all of that, "but Arch Linux!" still might not mean shit. Just because Arch is more plain and generic by default doesn't mean it'll be faster. Sometimes that not-plain and not-generic stuff other distributions patch in make things faster. Sometimes they don't.
              Whole post is well-said. There is still some truth that a more minimal system will run faster, because the more background processes you have, the more you're reading from disk to load them, the more they might prompt the CPU to get attention, and the more RAM they will use. However, that was really only a problem back in the days of single-core CPUs, HDDs, and where running out of RAM was common.

              I'm still strongly opposed to unnecessary bloat, as well as people using the abundance of modern hardware as an excuse to be lazy about optimization, but the point at hand here is that minimalist environments don't yield as much of a performance difference as they used to.

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              • #8
                'Worthless geometric mean of all tests.'

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                • #9
                  I wonder why Michael felt the need to upgrade the Mesa stack only on Ubuntu...

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                  • #10
                    Well, I suggested Arch because I knew the kernel would be more recent. Don't really care about performance. I just don't see any point running old "LTS" distros with bleeding edge hardware. Unfortunately even 1yo AMD hardware has bad support due to the driver situation. Even if there was a more recent PPA kernel available, setting up the PPA and first boot will be major pain in the ass thanks to all those missing drivers. It's just much easier to use a distro which has up to date packages right from the start.

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