Ubuntu 14.04 Now Runs Well On The 2013 MacBook Air, Beats OS X 10.9 In Graphics
Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems on 19 March 2014. Page 2 of 3. 19 Comments

The same hardware was used throughout testing (ignore the slight system information reporting differences due to OS X and Linux exposing their system details in different ways that are then parsed by the Phoronix Test Suite; the CPU frequency differences just come down to the Linux 3.13 configuration reporting the CPU's base frequency while the 3.14 kernel shows the Turbo Frequency). The 2013 MacBook Air had an Intel Core i5 4250U processor, 4GB of RAM, 120GB SSD, and HD Graphics 5000. All benchmarking was handled in a fully-automated and reproducible manner using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite benchmarking software.

First up with the multi-platform Nexuiz open-source first person shooter, Ubuntu 14.04 in its stock configuration was slower than OS X 10.9.2 with its Apple-developed OpenGL driver. However, after moving to the Linux 3.14 kernel and Mesa 10.2-devel i965 DRI driver, the Nexuiz performance under Linux was on par with Apple's OS.

OS X had issues with OpenArena while it was running great on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and even seeing an extra speed boost out of the experimental Intel Linux driver code.



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