Ubuntu vs. Arch Linux On The ASUS ROG Strix G15 / Ryzen 9 5900HX
Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems on 25 July 2021. Page 2 of 2. 59 Comments

Out of 73 diverse tests ran on both Ubuntu 21.04 and Arch Linux, Ubuntu actually came out in first place in 63% of the tests -- granted, often by very slim margins.

If taking the geometric mean of all 73 benchmarks, the performance was neck-and-neck.

When pulling up a side-by-side look with the subset of benchmarks having a measurable difference between these operating systems, this is how the results breakdown. Arch Linux performed much better for WireGuard, it also led in some I/O tests like LevelDB, and otherwise in a few different tests had a number of a few percentage point wins. Ubuntu meanwhile tended to perform better in the compilation benchmarks and other random workloads like the NGSPICE circuit simulator, PJSIP VoIP, etc, based on the underlying software differences between these two distributions.

In cases like web browsing performance, gaming, and other benchmarks the performance tended to be quite close. All the data in full can be found via this OpenBenchmarking.org result file. But no astounding overall difference was found for Arch Linux when it came to the performance on this Ryzen 9 5900HX laptop. It's fundamental advantage is punctually shipping with the latest Linux kernel releases so as to avoid having to use any third-party/PPA kernel builds, rolling your own kernel, etc, but even for the purposes of a laptop review is of little advantage with Arch for then lack of noting the hardware experience on older kernels such as with Ubuntu.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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