December 5th, 2008

Type, Computer

Ubuntu weirdity

For the two latest versions, Ubuntu has been slower than Windows XP on my elderly HP laptop with a single Celeron processor and 512 MB RAM, some of which is taken by the onboard graphics chip. It was so bad in the end that I could not play music from the hard disk because it stuttered. (Though it almost stopped stuttering if I stayed away from mouse and keyboard and had no other programs running.) Also starting programs took a long time, browsers scrolled jerkily etc. I more or less put it aside.

Today I found time to make a Google search for Ubuntu slow and read the top list. One of the advices was to boot offline to see whether it was the IP handling. I thought this foolish, since it affected offline applications more, if anything, than online ones. (Last.fm client stuttered not.) My cynicism was rewarded when I logged on without network and found it as slow as ever. Moderately disgruntled, I plugged in the network cord and watched it negotiate for a while with my other laptop, which has a wireless broadband. Then I went online again to read other, hopefully better ideas.

Firefox scrolled like a happy child. I started Banshee and the music plays happily in the background, no stuttering, no performance hit with other programs. I have four programs up now, and Firefox has a couple tabs. The system monitor reports a little over half load.

Sometimes you just suspect these things are made by cats.

Now, back to solving other people's problems. But hopefully this can help someone too.
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    石田燿子 - 幸せのいろ