GNOME Optimizations Continue In Striving For Faster 4K Experience

Written by Michael Larabel in GNOME on 13 July 2020 at 06:45 AM EDT. 64 Comments
Canonical's Daniel Van Vugt has been engaged in several weeks now in optimizing GNOME for a faster 4K experience particularly when using Intel graphics but many of these optimizations pan out for other GPUs and resolutions too. Over the past week he's been working on yet more optimizations.

We have been reporting on many of Daniel's significant performance optimizations and he's seemingly had no shortage of finding areas to optimize. As part of his status update for the weekly Ubuntu desktop team reports, Daniel noted, "Continued progress toward making 4K (or any resolution) faster and smoother..."

Some of the new optimizations he has been working on over the past week include setting up Mutter to cull actors not intersecting the redraw clip, which can lead to more than a 10% reduction in render time and potentially boosting other areas too.

Avoid painting most of the wallpaper in the overview for a roughly 10% reduction in GPU power usage at least with Intel hardware while also reducing render times. The current behavior in the overview area was leading to almost every pixel needing to be touched.

A workspace switching optimization that can reduce the render time during the switching process by more than 20%.

And he's been working on other GNOME code too, all just some of his GNOME performance adventures over the past week.

In running many 4K displays with GNOME around here, I am very excited for GNOME 3.38 come September with all of the performance work building up as well as continuing to polish the Wayland experience.
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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 20,000 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, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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