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View Full Version : Why Fedora 12 performs poorly compared to Slackware?


witek
20th December 2009, 10:40 PM
I`ve just installed Fedora 12 on Dell Optiplex GX260 512M RAM, CPU 2GHz, intel video 845. I use Slackware everyday but I wanted to test something else with good community support and big repository. Here enters Fedora.

On Slackware talking with skype eats ca. 25% of CPU (according to top). On Fedora talking with skype eats ca. 50% of CPU along with pulseaudio that eats 30% of CPU. Why is that so? :confused:

On Slackware Mplayer with default video output -vo xv runs without problems eating ca. 7% of CPU. On Fedora it is unable to use -vo xv at all. Only open GL output seems to work but it is much more CPU hungry.

Xine runs on Slackware. Xine on Fedora crashes whole X.

Both systems are up to date. Fedora uses newer kernel 2.6.31 vs. 2.6.29. Fedora uses newer xorg 1.7 vs. 1.6 and newer intel driver. Why it performs so poorly then? :confused:

Is Fedora aimed at new fast hyper giga machines only? What about older ones?

macemoneta
21st December 2009, 06:41 AM
The new Xorg, Intel driver, Mesa, DRI and kernel are undergoing a dramatic rewrite. The new software is not yet at the performance level of the older software, but it has new functionality. This is the driver in F12, and it supports the newer Intel GPUs (like the X4500HD). If you are looking for video performance on an older Intel GPU and the old driver works for you, then use Slackware.

brebs
22nd December 2009, 03:20 PM
newer xorg... and newer intel driver
Newer does not, unfortunately, necessarily mean better. Linux apps typically take 3 steps forward, and 2 steps back, with every new release of every one of the hundreds of apps that make up a typical installation.

They fix some bugs totally, fix some other bugs partially (optionally causing subtle new bugs), introduce completely new bugs, and break API/ABI compatibility because they seem to get a perverse pleasure out of causing work for everyone else :(

This is most obvious on a rolling release distro (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_release).

/rant

aleph
22nd December 2009, 04:08 PM
A new branch (or "more significant version number") release tends to be slower because optimization is usually a low-priority goal for such a release. "First make it work, then make it work correctly, and finally make it work fast" is the rule followed by the developers. As that branch matures and less significant version numbers bump up, it will usually go stable and fast.

However Fedora does not believe in stability. Fedora's philosophy is "to boldly break what no one has broken before". The keyword here: "boldly". Fedora does not wait for stability and performance to set in, because they usually lead the shadow of mediocrity, and mediocrity is to be feared. To paraphrase Frank Herbert in his novel "Children of Dune", Fedora has decided to reward brilliance instead of punishing mistakes -- shaping the future by encouraging creativity, paying the necessary price of making mistakes, rather than following the tried-and-true way and being trapped in a predetermined future.

Disclaimer: The above is not an officially canonized summary of the Fedora philosophy. And by the way, I'm not implying that they are actually doing a good job of it.

sonoran
23rd December 2009, 01:28 AM
This is most obvious on a rolling release distro (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_release).

/rant

That might be theoretically true, but my experience is exactly the opposite. I've been using Arch as my main system for over a year and have only encountered 1 update problem (a mis-timed readline/bash update that I could have avoided had I checked the Arch Forum more carefully), whereas in fedora 11 something broke every month or so.

I think this difference can be attributed to the fact that Arch accepts most upstream stuff as-is while fedora must tinker and patch everything to integrate into a much more complex system. I don't use GNOME in Arch, or selinux, or PackageKit (obviously), or other fedora-specific stuff.

So I would argue that it is not rolling release itself that causes problems, but the complexity of the system.

JN4OldSchool
23rd December 2009, 03:27 AM
That might be theoretically true, but my experience is exactly the opposite. I've been using Arch as my main system for over a year and have only encountered 1 update problem (a mis-timed readline/bash update that I could have avoided had I checked the Arch Forum more carefully), whereas in fedora 11 something broke every month or so.

I think this difference can be attributed to the fact that Arch accepts most upstream stuff as-is while fedora must tinker and patch everything to integrate into a much more complex system. I don't use GNOME in Arch, or selinux, or PackageKit (obviously), or other fedora-specific stuff.

So I would argue that it is not rolling release itself that causes problems, but the complexity of the system.

I have to agree that this has been my experience also. Arch has proven to be pretty much bullet proof, but I do think the simplicity of my install ensures this.

Dies
23rd December 2009, 04:41 AM
:mad: Why Fedora 12 performs poorly compared to Slackware?

I think you meant

"Why does almost every other distro perform poorly compared to Slackware"

;)


But yeah Fedora 12, while better than the last two releases, definitely has some issues.

scottro
23rd December 2009, 04:50 AM
Slackware, Arch, and a few others tend to use more vanilla packages. (See above). They also run fewer things at boot and during normal use, packages have fewer dependencies and so forth.

The downside is that that more is required of the user in configuring X, sound, and so on. (Assuming that X and sound work as they're supposed to on Fedora/Ubuntu, etc., which isn't necessarily a given). :)

DamianS
23rd December 2009, 01:44 PM
It should also be mentioned that since Fedora is a 'bleeding-edge' distro, it is not the best choice on an old slow computer with just 512M ram.

witek
23rd December 2009, 01:57 PM
It should also be mentioned that since Fedora is a 'bleeding-edge' distro, it is not the best choice on an old slow computer with just 512M ram.

But why? What is so bleeding-edgy about Fedora that makes skype alone consume much more of CPU than Slack? Pulseaudio?

OppaErich
23rd December 2009, 02:44 PM
Newer does not, unfortunately, necessarily mean better. Linux apps typically take 3 steps forward, and 2 steps back, with every new release of every one of the hundreds of apps that make up a typical installation.

They fix some bugs totally, fix some other bugs partially (optionally causing subtle new bugs), introduce completely new bugs, and break API/ABI compatibility because they seem to get a perverse pleasure out of causing work for everyone else :(

This is most obvious on a rolling release distro (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_release).

/rant

+1

You forgot replacing, renaming and changing syntax of config files. :rolleyes:

Dies
23rd December 2009, 09:55 PM
But why? What is so bleeding-edgy about Fedora that makes skype alone consume much more of CPU than Slack? Pulseaudio?

You mean aside from the fact that Fedora tends to consistently ship with unreleased/unsupported, just barely tested versions of software? Like an X11 that no ones ready for? :confused:

By the way, as someone else already mentioned 512mb of memory is really pushing it these days, at least with any of the mainstream distros. I hope you at least skipped using LVM and also disabled as many services as possible...

JK3MP
23rd December 2009, 10:56 PM
Fedora as it says is "bleeding-edge" meaning newer software and apps, and this also means heavier usage overall. Fedora functions to be very easy to the end user providing many GUI apps that Slackware doesn't installer wise, etc. If you want a lighter install and less CPU intensive PC then slackware is where its at, but if you want newer support and applications and wanna try the "new" thing, then Fedora is, despite more hardware requirements. I run slackware on my desktop and Fedora on my laptop. Fedora was easier than slack to get running with my laptop, and fedora's easy support and installation packages made it easier to get it up and running. My desktop being more simple, was fine with slackware, and shows greatly with speed and simplicity. I love slackware, but Fedora is a great distro too. Some people want speed, performance, others want look and bleeding edge. Thats why there are various distro's not just one . ;)