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Hello All! This is my first post, and I would like to ask you guys advise about a very well known issue I am experiencing. I am now writing from ...
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  1. #1
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    Ubuntu Vs Windows XP


    Hello All!

    This is my first post, and I would like to ask you guys advise about a very well known issue I am experiencing.

    I am now writing from an Acer ASPIRE 3682 wXmI (CELERON 1,6 GHZ 533 mhz 512 MB DDR2) ... ok ok I know is considered quite old as a laptop ... but I still like it and with Windows XP is extremely fast (for normal use of course, I am not interested in gaming).

    I tried basically every distro on this Laptop. No way. they are so slow compared to XP! But I wonder why??? I have searched a lot and the explanation more interesting given to people with similar issues as mine is:

    it is impossible to compare an OS 10 years old with a contemporary one. OK, fair enough. But with Ubuntu in particular the slowness was even ridicolous ... just installed the OS and after few minutes I could see a huge amount of process running and consequent crisis for my old device unable to face such a effort ... thinking thinking reading reading but what?

    With XP at the contrary absolute normality since the beginning. No effort, the light of the activities almost always off, unless I am doing something for real, unlike Linux which requires continuous job even when I am not doing anything.

    Please can someone explain me why? I am really curious and I would like to understand.

    Despite my bad start with linux I decided now finally to build myself a powerful PC desktop, something like a 3GHz with 8 Giga of RAM or even more and I will install only Ubuntu on it. I really want to see at that point. But in the meantime I would really appreciate an explanation about such a difference in performance on the same machine between linux and windows.

    Thanks to everybody!

  2. #2
    oz
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    Hello and welcome to the forums!

    I've run Linux on dozens of different computers and it always runs as fast or faster than Windows for me, so not sure what's happening on your end. Just guessing here, but perhaps it's one or more of the following:

    Something (hardware/software) is mis-configured on your Linux system.

    One or more of your hardware components don't like Linux for some reason.

    All or parts of your hardware are not meeting the system requirements for the Linux distributions that you are trying to run.

    You could always try running a much older version of Linux just to see how it works out and/or compares. Either way, good luck with whatever operating system you should decide to run, and we hope that new power-box build goes well and turns out to be lots of fun for you.
    oz

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    thanks for the explanation, yes probably you are right must be something related to the hardware which actually has been designed for windows ...

    I will be back as soon as I will have ubuntu installed on the new machine... I have the impression that there will be a lot to learn here ...

    thanks again!

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  5. #4
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    I would also see how many startup applications you have.

  6. #5
    Linux Guru coopstah13's Avatar
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    a lot of perceived slowness is usually caused by using the incorrect driver for video

    I googled your laptop, it seems like it comes with either an intel or nvidia graphics chip, if you have nvidia you will need to install the nvidia driver

    i'm guessing that will be very helpful

  7. #6
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    I have tried running the newer versions of Ubuntu and Mint on a slightly slower HP laptop, but with Intel video. The performance was slower than I would have liked, so I am now using AntiX, Lucid Puppy and Saline (triple boot). The lighter distros work much better. I find that some of the newer popular distros just have too much crap I'll never use as part of the install. I may try minimal installs and just add the programs I want at some point.
    Registered Linux User #420832

  8. #7
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    Ubuntu basically is a piece of crap IMO. It's everything linux shouldn't be. It loaded a friggin apache server by default on the laptop I installed it on, amongst a ton of other useless processes eating precious system resources.

    I'd advise you to go for OpenSuse LXDE or Crunchbang Linux on that laptop. Those two have been very good to me on older hardware. OpenSuse LXDE is a little heavier than Crunchbang, but it's got that whole "just works" thing going for it. Crunchbang is pretty much beta quality (but a good beta).

  9. #8
    Linux Guru reed9's Avatar
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    I've found that a clean XP install is faster than Ubuntu, by and large, also. But with time Windows rot sets in and it tends to slow down. GNOME and KDE these days just require more resources than XP. (Remember, you can run XP with just 64 MB of RAM. I'm sure not well, but there you go.) Ubuntu is known for running a large number of background processes in an attempt to make a more "user friendly" environment. (A default Xubuntu 9.04, which is supposedly a lightweight option, was found by distrowatch to use more than twice the RAM of a Debian XFCE system.)

    If you use both a lightweight window manager and light weight applications, linux can run well on older machines. (If you're going to run heavy weight apps like k3b, using openbox as a WM isn't going to help you much.) Or if you bump up to more robust hardware, the difference becomes more negligible.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by reed9 View Post
    I've found that a clean XP install is faster than Ubuntu, by and large, also. But with time Windows rot sets in and it tends to slow down. GNOME and KDE these days just require more resources than XP. (Remember, you can run XP with just 64 MB of RAM. I'm sure not well, but there you go.)
    As a former windows "power user" I will just say this: 64MB for XP ? Nah, not really. Yes, maybe theoretically. Lowest system I've ever run XP on was a Pentium2-300 with 128 MB ram, just to see if I could. It was possible but it wasn't pretty.

    Aside from that one 'test', the lowest machine I would even consider loading XP on for any sort of real-world usability would be a PIII-900 with 384MB ram. At an absolute bare minimum.

    I would presume Linux to be the same - that there's a 3x or 4x difference between what's 'possible' and what's actually 'usable'?

  11. #10
    Linux Guru coopstah13's Avatar
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    I think its pretty well known that XP w/ SP3 needs 512mb to run reasonably

    when xp originally came out the specs were much more modest yes, but the bloat has increased significantly with all service packs

    It doesn't surprise me that xubuntu is heavier than debian xfce, simply because xubuntu includes so many gnome libraries by default, which is why i don't recommend xubuntu for a lightweight distro because it isn't

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