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Benchmarking Fedora 18 Updates
While Ubuntu and many other Linux distributions tend to stick to the same kernel version and other key package versions for the entire release's lifetime, Fedora releases generally follow more closely the latest upstream releases. Fedora 18 shipped with the Linux 3.6 kernel, GNOME Shell 3.6.2, X.Org Server 1.13.0, and Mesa 9.0.1. These package versions with Fedora 18 updates are now at the stable Linux 3.8 kernel, GNOME Shell 3.6.3, X.Org Server 1.13.3, and Mesa 9.1. Many other packages are also at new versions.
Having done a new clean installation of Fedora 18 today, I decided to run some brief benchmarks to see how the stock F18 performance compares to that in its updated state. Those benchmarks are being shared for reference within this article. Fedora 19 development packages weren't compared since the Fedora development packages continue to ship with a fair amount of debugging support that can lead to slower performance than the release versions.
Benchmarking happened from a Lenovo ThinkPad W510 laptop with an Intel Core i7 CPU, Intel SSD, and NVIDIA Quadro FX 880M graphics. All benchmarking was done in a fully standardized and automated way using the Phoronix Test Suite software. Benchmark results in full along with other system information can be gathered from 1304155-UT-FEDORA18U44.