Booting With Mandriva's Speedboot

Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems on 21 February 2009. Page 1 of 3. 14 Comments

Being worked on as part of Mandriva's next Linux distribution update is a technology they are referring to as Speedboot. Speedboot will be officially introduced with Mandriva Linux 2009.1, and compared to the normal boot process, it begins initializing some processes early on while it postpones other tasks until after the graphical display manager has shown. In essence, the user is logging into their Linux desktop even before the system is fully booted. We have some timed results of Mandriva's Speedboot along with videos showing the differences.

When Speedboot is being used, only necessary services will boot prior to starting the graphical display manager, while all other tasks will start-up after that. These minimal services include ACPI, D-Bus, HAL, and Syslog. There are also some other changes involved such as not running many actions with initscripts and disabling readahead when in this mode. Of course, Mandriva's Speedboot truly isn't making the system faster as a whole, but is just taking time away prior to the user being able to log-in and push that work until after the log-in process or the graphical display manager is running. Until enabled by default, Speedboot can be used on the beta for Mandriva 2009.1 and later by adding "speedboot" to the GRUB's kernel configuration.

We tested out Speedboot on the Mandriva 2009.1 beta with the same Intel netbook we used for other recent Linux boot articles. This netbook is the Samsung NC10 with an Intel Atom N270 CPU, 2GB of DDR2 memory, and an OCZ Core Series V2 SSD. Some of the key package versions in Mandriva 2009.1 beta include the Linux 2.6.28 kernel, GNOME 2.25.90, X Server 1.6.0 RC 2, xf86-video-intel 2.6.1, Mesa 7.3, and we were using the EXT3 file-system.

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