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Old 04-27-2005, 10:55 PM   #1
hermaphromike
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Unhappy Why does linux performance seem so terrible in comparison to windows?


I'm not trying to start a flame war here, and I'm no advocate for windows, I'm really asking this seriously:
I'm using Mandrake 10.1 (kernel 2.4), and Openbox 3.
I've got an AMD K6-2 processor (400mhz) and 164mb of ram.
I also have an installation of Windows 2000

my question is this: why do linux applications run so much more sluggishly than do windows applications? I understand that windows preloads a lot of stuff, I'm not talking about IE start time vs. firefox start time... in fact, if they both ran at the same speed, I wouldn't care which took longer to load. Firefox runs WAY faster under windows 2000 than it does under linux.
I don't get it. Am I doing something wrong? Isn't linux suposed to run faster than, or at least at a comparable speed to windows?
 
Old 04-27-2005, 11:40 PM   #2
musicman_ace
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It depends on how much tweaking you've done to the system, the window manager used, swap size and usage, hd settings, background services, etc.
Linux allows you to tweak a lot of stuff. Back when I was using Windows, I'd remove lots of services one I'd completed an installation. The same applies to linux if you've used a bloated distrobution.
 
Old 04-27-2005, 11:55 PM   #3
hermaphromike
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I understand that the window manager can have a lot to do with it, which is why I use openbox (it's a really lightweight WM). And I've done hdparm, and I've pretty much shut down every service I don't use.
I just don't understand why windows is lightning fast, and linux is incredibly sluggish.
It's almost like my processor is running slow or something, I don't know if this is something that happens... but that's what it seems like. For instance, I installed the same distro on my much faster desktop computer, installed openbox on that, and it runs linux fast (probably faster than windows)

so what gives?
Desktop: windows - fast / linux - faster
Laptop: windows - fast / linux - sluggish/slow


I'm not talking about a slight speed difference here, it's like linux is running on a different computer.
thoughts?
 
Old 04-28-2005, 12:22 AM   #4
DeadPenguin
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On every computer I have had linux on from Pentium -> my new Amd64 Linux has run much faster than the windows version that was previously on it.

My web browsing seems faster, my games seem faster.(UT2004)

Has this been the experience with other distros or just Mandrake 10.1?

 
Old 04-28-2005, 12:32 AM   #5
Lakota
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Mandrake 10.1 up against an older o/s like Windoze 2000 is kind of unfair. If you install Windoze XP and Mandrake 10.1 on your 400 mhz machine I believe you will find Mandrake more responsive. Windows XP on a 400mhz pc is crippled. Your slow firefox on mandrake may be due to ipv6, did you disable that? If not do this:

navigate to about:config (enter this in the address bar) and scrolling down to network.dns.disableIPv6. This is usually false, so change it to true (right click, modify, type true) and restart mozilla

Now do this:
1.Type "about:config" into the address bar and hit return. Scroll down and look for the following entries:
network.http.pipelining network.http.proxy.pipelining network.http.pipelining.maxrequests
Normally the browser will make one request to a web page at a time. When you enable pipelining it will make several at once, which really speeds up page loading.
2. Alter the entries as follows:
Set "network.http.pipelining" to "true"
Set "network.http.proxy.pipelining" to "true"
Set "network.http.pipelining.maxrequests" to some number like 30. This means it will make 30 requests at once.
3. Lastly right-click anywhere and select New-> Integer. Name it "nglayout.initialpaint.delay" and set its value to "0". This value is the amount of time the browser waits before it acts on information it recieves.

Now do this in a terminal
su
for root privilage, then type
echo "alias net-pf-10 off" >> /etc/modprobe.conf
echo "alias ipv6 off" >> /etc/modprobe.conf
save, and restart the computer.

Now your mandrake firefox should be surfin faster waves than your Windows installation.

I have a 1.8 ghz pc and have new Mandriva 2005 Limited Edition installed and it is honestly way faster than Windows XP on that same pc.

Last edited by Lakota; 04-28-2005 at 12:34 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2005, 12:38 AM   #6
Lakota
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ah, laptop, I have a 266mhz dell, had a hell of a time finding the right o/s for it. Finally settled for Vector 4.3. You will not believe how fast it is. It is made for older hardware.
http://www.vectorlinux.com/

Last edited by Lakota; 04-28-2005 at 12:44 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2005, 01:01 AM   #7
coldsalmon
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Since you're running on a laptop, it may be that the power management system is throttling your CPU. I'm something of a noob myself, so I'm no expert on this, but it's something to check out. I don't know if you're familiar with the concept, so I'll explain it (if you already know, then skip the next paragraph).

On laptops, power managemet is very important because you want to have a long battery life and a cool CPU. Therefore, the power management system will usually "throttle" your CPU, meaning that it will make it run at a lower mHz level than it is capable of. Normally, this is a good thing. It keeps your CPU cool, and preserves battery life and electricity. My 1400 mHz CPU runs at 600 mHz about 90% of the time, and the ACPI power management system senses when it needs more power, and bumps it up to full speed.

What could be happening with you is that the power management system is keeping your CPU throttled at the lowest level all the time, or is using a power profile that doesn't allow it to get to full speed very quickly. You can test whether your CPU is being throttled by typing 'cat /proc/cpuinfo' at the command line. It will display a line telling you how many mHz your CPU is running at. You can also look at the bogomips line at the bottom, which displays a number that is twice your mHz. Hope this helps!!

--C
 
Old 04-28-2005, 01:01 AM   #8
coldsalmon
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*oops, double post, sorry*
 
Old 04-28-2005, 01:02 AM   #9
hermaphromike
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Lakota, it's not my internet connection that's going slowly, it's the actual firefox software. It takes longer to load (as I've said, excusable), it is slow to refresh, it runs as if it were this mega application on a machine that is just not up to par.
but it runs like lightning on windows 2000.

can it really be the mandrake distribution causing this? do linux distros really differ that much in that way? Isn't it mostly based on which kernel/wm you use, or is there more to it?


I've tried installing a lot of different distros on this thing, but my cdrom is a piece of trash and I couldn't figure out the ftp install for any other distro besides suse 9.1/9.2 (neither of which worked with my machine)
 
Old 04-28-2005, 03:59 AM   #10
musicman_ace
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What is the swap usage like? How much swap space total, how much is used, ect. ?
 
Old 04-28-2005, 08:31 AM   #11
Lakota
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The deal with Vector 4.3 is it includes only software that is lightweight, so it will run fast on older hardware. Vector 4.3 min hardware requirements is a pentium 200 with 64megs ram. Window managers for it are xfce, ice, fluxbox, instead of openoffice writter you have abiword, etc.The install disk for Vector 4.3 is only half a cd. It is slackware based, so you can install slack packages, but way faster than slack on older hardware. Also has a decent forum for help.

When you say firefox is slow to refresh, I am assuming you mean if you type a web address, it hangs for a few seconds (says resolving host at bottom left of browser window), before it even starts to download the page you asked for. This is due to ipv6 apparently. Had same trouble on my 1.8 ghz machine when I first switched to Mandrake 10.1. I am on cable internet and my provider said soon you will need to use ipv6, but at this point ipv4 is still in use. Apparently if I understand it right, 10.1 and firefox are both configured to use ipv6, it then finds that the protocall is not available and switches to ipv4. This happens every time you ask for a new page.

A good example of this is the website www.tsn.ca, prior to doing the first and third tweak I listed, it would sit idle saying "resolving host" for about 5 to 10 seconds, then start downloading the page. After those two tweaks it would start downloading in less than one second. After the second tweak listed, the download itself (between the start and finish) became quicker.

I should add, I have not tweaked at all on this new Mandriva 2005 install and it takes less than a second and a half to fully load the above link.

Last edited by Lakota; 04-28-2005 at 08:36 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2005, 08:41 AM   #12
haora
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Your saying that you installed Mandrake 10.1 on a 400mhz processor??????

Maybe that's the problem, like Lakota said, your comparing Win 2000 to Mandrake 10.1..., which are not exactly the same...

Take it from me, I have installed WinXP on my box (AMB k6-2, 450mhz, with 128MB) and it is reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally slooooooooooooooow, so, I guess Mandrake 10.1 would be the same....

My advise, find a diferente, maybe older, distro to install...

Good luck!

Fernando
 
Old 04-28-2005, 09:13 AM   #13
uzairkhan
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interesting

i am running mandrake 10.0 , dual booting with winXP sp2 , and guess what

mandrake is much sloweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer

the PC specs are

500 Mhz k6-2 processor
256 MB ram

i have not tweaked either of them, simple default installation.... may be i need to tweak mandrake a bit ,, i dont know. however, at the moment mandrake is slower than windows, and same happended when i installed FC2 .
 
Old 04-29-2005, 12:21 AM   #14
hermaphromike
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so I messed around with acpi, and I did find a slight speed increase (thanks koldsalmon)... linux still seems slower than windows on this hardware.
Windows XP and 2000 aren't really that dramatically different from eachother, besides the fact that XP offers more eye-candy and user friendly garbage (all of which I would turn off, hence why I use 2k)
My point is that while Windows XP is newer, and slightly more demanding, when it's running, it is not sluggish.

but Mandrake 10.1 is sluggish.

maybe I should go to an older version of linux, but wouldn't that just mean different packages/services? Can anyone give me a reason why other distros are fundamentally different from mandrake as far as performance? (not which pieces of software they install)
 
Old 04-29-2005, 10:23 AM   #15
masonm
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I'd suggest trying a different distro. Mandrake is pretty bloated and IMHO not one of the fastest distros out there.

The thing to keep in mind that whatever distro you install, some tweking of the configuration is needed to get the best performance from your machine. I run Slack on my lappy and it's damn fast.
 
  


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