Benchmarked: Ubuntu vs Vista vs Windows 7

Distros

In depth: A lot of people have been chattering about the improvements Windows 7 brings for Windows users, but how does it compare to Ubuntu in real-world tests? We put Ubuntu 8.10, Windows Vista and Windows 7 through their paces in both 32-bit and 64-bit tests to see just how well Ubuntu faces the new contender. And, just for luck, we threw in a few tests using Jaunty Jackalope with ext4.

When Windows users say that Windows 7 is easier to install than ever, what do they really mean? When they say it's faster, is it just in their heads, or is Microsoft really making big strides forward? And, perhaps most importantly, when Linux benchmarkers show us how screamingly fast ext4 is compared to ext3, how well do those figures actually transfer to end users?

These are the questions we wanted to answer, so we asked Dell to provide us with a high-spec machine to give all the operating systems room to perform to their max. Our test machine packed an Intel Core i7 920, which in layman's terms has four cores running at 2.67GHz with hyperthreading and 8MB of L3 cache. It also had 6GB of RAM, plus two 500GB of hard drives with 16MB of cache.

The tests we wanted to perform for each operating system were:

  • How long does each operating system take to install?
  • How much disk space was used in the standard install?
  • How long does boot up and shutdown take?
  • How long does it take to copy files from USB to HD, and from HD to HD?
  • How fast can it execute the Richards benchmark?

We also, just for the heck of it, kept track of how many mouse clicks it took to install each OS.

Before we jump into the results, there are a few things we should make clear:

  • To ensure absolute fairness, install time was measured from the moment the computer was turned on until we reached a working desktop.
  • The same computer hardware was used for all tests, and all operating systems were installed fresh for this article.
  • We used the Ultimate versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7, simply because Windows 7 was provided only in this flavour.
  • We used the Windows Vista SP1 disk to accurately reflect what users are likely to experience todaay.
  • Our Windows 7 version is the open beta that Microsoft issued recently. It is probable Windows 7 will be at least this fast in the final build, if not faster.
  • For Ubuntu 9.04 we used the daily build from January 22nd.
  • All operating systems were installed using standard options; nothing was changed.
  • After checking how much space was used during the initial install, each operating system was updated with all available patches before any other tests were performed.
  • Our journalistic friends have informed us that Windows Vista (and, presumably, Windows 7 too) has technology to increase the speed of the system over time as it learns to cache programs intelligently. It also allows users to use flash drives to act as temporary storage to boost speed further. None of our tests are likely to show this technology in action, so please take that into account when reading the results.
  • The filesystem, boot, shutdown and Richards benchmarks were performed three times each then averaged.

And, of course, there's the most important proviso of all: it is very, very likely that a few tweaks to any of these operating systems could have made a big difference to these results, but we're not too interested in that - these results reflect what you get you install a plain vanilla OS, like most users do.

Install time

Amount of time taken to install, from machine being turned on to working desktop. Measured in seconds; less is better.

At first glance, you might think that Ubuntu clearly installs far faster than either version of Windows, and while that's true there is one important mitigation: both Windows Vista and Windows 7 run system benchmarks part-way through the installation to determine the computer's capabilities.

A bit of a flippant one - just how many mouse clicks does it take to install an OS with the default options?

Surprisingly, Ubuntu 8.10 gets it done with half the clicks of Windows 7. NB: hopefully it's clear this doesn't make Ubuntu 8.04 twice as easy to install. Measured in, er, mouse clicks; fewer is better.

Disk space used immediately after a fresh install. Measured in gigabytes; less is better.

While some people might complain that we used the Ultimate editions of both Vista and Windows 7, they probably forget that the standard Ubuntu includes software such as an office suite as standard. NB: Vista failed to detect the network card during install, leaving us without an internet connection until a driver was downloaded on another computer.

Bootup and shutdown

Boot up time was also measured from the moment the machine was turned on, and the timer was stopped as soon as the desktop was reached. The Dell box does take about 20 seconds to get past POST, but to avoid questions about when to start the timer we just started it as soon as the power button was pressed.

Amount of time taken to boot, from machine being turned on to working desktop. Measured in seconds; less is better.

The 32-bit version of Windows 7 is the only one to beat the one-minute mark, but that advantage is quickly lost in the switch to 64-bit. Linux has always been rather slow to boot, but as we understand it reducing boot time is one of the goals of the Ubuntu 9.04 release.

Amount of time taken to shutdown, from button being clicked to machine powering off. Measured in seconds; less is better.

Windows lags a little behind the Linuxes, with 64-bit again proving a sticking point - this time for Windows Vista.

IO testing

To test filesystem performance, we ran four tests: copying large files from USB to HD, copying large files from HD to HD, copying small files from USB to HD, and copying small files from HD to HD. The HD to HD tests copied data from one part of the disk to another as opposed to copying to a different disk. For reference, the large file test comprised 39 files in 1 folder, making 399MB in total; the small file test comprised 2,154 files in 127 folders, making 603MB in total. Each of these tests were done with write caching disabled to ensure the full write had taken place.

Amount of time taken to copy the small files from a USB flash drive to hard disk. Measured in seconds; less is better.

Amount of time taken to copy the small files from one place to another on a single hard disk. Measured in seconds; less is better.

Let us take this opportunity to remind readers that Windows 7 is still at least nine months from release.

Amount of time taken to copy the large files from a USB flash drive to hard disk. Measured in seconds; less is better.

Amount of time taken to copy the large files from one place to another on a single hard disk. Measured in seconds; less is better.

With the exception of Windows 7 while copying larges files around a hard drive, Windows generally suffered compared to Linux in all of these tests. Obviously Windows does have to worry about some things that Linux doesn't, namely DRM checks, but these figures show a drastic performance difference between the two.

Notes: Vista and Windows 7 really seemed to struggle with copying lots of small files, but clearly it's something more than a dodgy driver because some of the large-file speeds are incredible in Windows 7.

Both Vista and Windows 7 seemed to introduce random delays when deleting files. For example, about one in three times when deleting the files from our filesystem benchmark, this screen below would appear and do nothing for 25-30 seconds before suddenly springing into action and deleting the files. However, this wasn't part of our benchmark, so isn't included in the numbers above.

This was very annoying.

Richards benchmark

Notes: This was done using the cross-platform Python port of Richards. For reference, Ubuntu 8.10 uses Python 2.5.2, Ubuntu 9.04 uses Python 2.5.4, and we used Python 2.5.4 on the Windows tests. Even though the 64-bit results for Linux and Windows don't look that far apart, we have to admit to being very impressed with the Windows tests - the deviation between tests was just 3ms on Vista, and 5ms on Windows 7, compared to 20ms on Linux.

Amount of time taken to execute the Python Richards benchmark. Measured in milliseconds; less is better.

It's clear from that graph that having a 64-bit OS can make a real difference in compute-intensive tasks, but it's not too pleasing to see Windows pip Linux to the post in nearly all results.

Switching to ext4

All the Linux benchmarks above were done using ext3, so what happens when we switch to ext4? Well, not a lot:

Boot, shutdown and filesystem tests for Ubuntu 9.04/x86-64 using ext3 (blue) and ext4 (red). Measured in seconds; less is better.

Although there's no difference in shutdown speed, the boot time using ext4 dropped by 8 seconds, which is a fair improvement. We can probably discount the the USB to HD tests simply out of error margin, which leaves the HD to HD tests, and there we find a very healthy boost: 3.7 seconds were shaved off the small files test, making ext4 about 25% faster. Our tests also showed an improvement in the large file test, but it's not as marked.

Conclusions

Benchmarks are always plagued with questions, uncertainties, error margins and other complexities, which is why we're not going to try to look too deeply into these figures. Obviously we're Linux users ourselves, but our tests have shown that there are some places where Windows 7 really is making some improvement and that's good for competition in the long term. However, Linux isn't sitting still: with ext4 now stable we expect it to be adopted into distros fairly quickly. Sadly it looks like Ubuntu 9.04 won't be among the first distros to make the switch, so users looking to get the best performance from their Linux boxes will either have to fiddle with the default options, have patience, or jump ship to Fedora - which will be switching to ext4 in the next release..

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Your comments

Real world is far more compelling

I have used W7 for a few months now and I have had Ubuntu on a laptop for about the same period of time. All I can tell you is that the Ubuntu is just plain faster in a big way. The efficiency and stability of 8.10 is tremendous. Conversely, I had a horrendous meltdown when attempting to upgrade to 9.04. So, in a year this conversation could be completely different as Jaunty could easily be Ubuntu's Vista.

1- For the guys talking

1- For the guys talking about how you get free applications with linux and that makes it more "complete" after install, i must say you should really expect it to be complete because those are probably the only applications you will ever run on that box. What you're failling to see is that the bloat in windows machines is necessary in order to gain usability power.

2- then these sort of critics: "Let the average teenager use each OS for six months of OS updates (maybe sometimes), AV updates (maybe sometimes), freeware downloads, indiscriminate browsing, Facebook, mp3 downloads, incorrect shutdowns and general use and abuse and rerun the benchmarks. "

Alright, you're absolutely on. After six months the average teen will have the windows machine to a craw, because he is using it to do what he wants to use it for. On the contrary the linux box will be flawless because he won't be able to do squat in it unless you're there teaching him to have a good time with command lines just to install a lame version of a software that is a maimed ripped off copy of the real software.

3- "As a windows user I should say that Linux lacks a bunch of important products from Autodesk, Adobe, ABBYY and so on. Yeah it includes office suite, VoIP, mail client, some picture editing tools and some more... You may mention that all this soft is free. Yeah it is free... But look, you can install OpenOffice, Skype, NetBeans, Thunderbird, any browser, Gimp,
mplayer, ffdshow (all codecs you'd ever need) and it will be also completely free... What's more, when you download an installation package, you can be sure that it will fit your system completely. But with Linux, its another story. A painless installation can only be done via repository, but when downloading from an independent resource, then ouch..
# tar -zxf xxx.tbz
# cd xxx
# ./configure && make install clean"

Exactly... Almost everything is doable in a linux box, if you're set to have the pain of doing it. At this moment linux users want the opperative system per se, not the applications they should be wanting. Linux is, at desktop level (not server) a freakin hobbie, not an efficient OS. And if we are talking about home users you can forget about it.

After 6 months we have to reinstall that teen computer?! Yeah, that's a pain... But on the other hand, the countless hours you would have spent just trying to get a simple teen game to work for him will cover that many times over.

Boot times

The faster it boots, the faster you get to troll on anti-Windows forums.

Well done.

MANDRIVA

Hi I would like to see this benchmark against Mandriva Linux which I have used for many years and find incredibly stable and zippy.

I have used vista, xp, and

I have used vista, xp, and ubuntu. I was scared at first to make the jump from windows to ubuntu but after I did I was so happy and their are a ton FREE programs that is one plus I did not think of when I was a primary windows user I will be a big linux fan for the rest of my life windows is still good but I perfer ubuntu

I would recommend...

Ubuntu to everyone! i think that it is a lot better than vista and will save you many a headache as you wait for things to load on windows. Although i have not tried windows 7, i have a feeling that it will be the same way as vista after you use it for a while; slow and annoying.
Ubuntu Rocks!

I loled at that

ok saying that changing to linux will save you headaches is the joke of the day...

An amazing comparision,

An amazing comparision, cleared lotsa doubts...
Thanks guys

obviously its going to be biased

its a website for linux.. god forbid they'd put an article on anything other than pro linux material
ffs, gimp is no where near photoshop, that free 3d modelling software is nothing next to 3ds max, and GTA4. linux fanns been milking these posts for months

Ummmm, How Much for Hibernation?!?

How is it that Winblows needs 5-6 GB more than Ubuntu Jaunty when the PC has less than 5-6 GB of ram? That is an incessant amount of space for something not even in use! Plus, hibernation doesn't even work well in Vista... Don't know about Win7. For the killer blow to that theory, My linux box fits it in to the correct amount and leaves ONLY THE NECESSARY AMOUNT OPEN.

I THINK UBUNTU IS BETTER!

From now on,I will discard windows instead of Linux(Ubuntu 9.04),for what is known to all of us.

What about stability

To be honest, I would not be interested in how many clicks it takes to set up each OS.
Stability and ease of use is much more important. I bought Vista 18 or so months ago and its been nothing but trouble since. First simply opening files was a huge issue, waiting up to 1 minute for each file to open. I was not the only person with this problem, just spend some time crawling through the forums out there detailing all the niche problems.
Right now I have had enough, as I am having problems on a daily basis with simple programs like media player and iTunes crashing, not opening/responding etc etc etc.
Its for this reason I am interested in ubuntu, if that aint more stable I will just have to switch to Apple.

And BTW, there is no chance in hell I am forking out any money for Windows 7, this should be a free upgrade for all the poor vista users who have mostly had nothing but torture with this piece of crap software.

So, try a stability test next time, see the frequency of application issues. It sounds like you are really smart, so this should not be an issue or?

Slackware vs. Debian vs. Ubuntu

I would like to see a similar comparison between Slackware Debian and Ubuntu. Slackware and Debian users often claim their systems are faster than the "bloated" Ubuntu. However I haven't been able to find a comparison test like this one that could substantiate their claims. Although Slackware and Debian may be lighter and snappyer than Ubuntu I would imagine this difference to be small.

Somewhat late in the day but I figured I'd mention...

Games. Yeah we know, Linux doesn't have many high-end commercial releases. But for the few that do get released, have you ever noticed the performance?

Basically, Linux rocks as a gaming platform. I can play Unreal Tournament 2004 on this crappy old laptop without a problem, whereas in Windows XP or Vista you can guarantee I'd have to lower number of bots/graphics detail.

Now take a look at EVE Online. Not sure if they still support Linux, but they certainly did for the Trinity release via the Cider compatibility layer. Yes, that's right, EVE Online effectively runs in a commercial version of WINE.. AND REQUIRES LESS HARDWARE TO DO IT.

Why are there not more games companies than just Epic and ID Software making Linux games? It's not like there's a lack of customers when Linux has a far higher installed user base than, say, your average games console. Hell, you can even do it games-console style and include the distribution on the game disk itself. Insert DVD, reboot machine, play game. What's hard about that?

Like Wow?

the boot time is like a Joke, Taking more than a min to boot? with like i7? even you take the 20sec out from the Dell part, it is still like 50sec for those system to boot. I have a 6 years old laptop which is like DDR2 and pentium M 1.2GHz, and a relative old HDD. and it can boot in like 17sec, with ubuntu 9.10 using ext4. and that is include the 3sec select kernel grub screen. That is OUT of BOX too. I have done nothing to the system to make it boot faster. Evern with ext3. the system boot in like 31 sec. which is still way less than 50sec.

Benchmarking pre-release software?

If you are benchmarking Windows 7, you should at least include Ubuntu's 9.10 alpha to see what Windows 7 will be up against at release.

a scientific mind...

...compares everything, not only time-to-install (what?), mouse clicks or transfer time.
First, installing from a CD or DVD is not the same with Win7 and Buntu904. With Win7, I got nothing but a bare situation that takes a lot of space and gives litle to do with. With buntu904 I got most things a human needs.
Second, booting the OS'es is not to be measured by showing a GUI. With Win7, I got nothing but nothing. After installing eg Antivirus, the pc needs to start it, update it, and announcing that the pc is ready. That takes time.
Last but not least, in a household of 4 with each member having a pc and a laptop/netbook, Win7 costs me a leg (weel, 8x a digit), and buntu904, nothing. And with buntu904, I'm offered a library full of free and well working software. With Win7, I only can enrich myself by continu paying for thit-and-that.

Install speed? Totally wrong!

I totally disagree with that graph! Windows clean install means windows + internet explorer. Ubuntu clean install means SO + Office suite + GIMP + etc and so on. Not fair

OMG Linux people are really reaching

Minesweeper and note pad are parts of the new windows experience along with Superfetch (One of the big complaints unix people have had about windows was taken away with this one). plus a ton of really slick stuff like media player 11 with support for nearly every format on the planet, Movie maker is pretty awesome as well. The .net framework will work on linux and the development tools are free. No other free dev language can even come close to the IDE provided with this microsofts dev language. and to try and complain and say Java is better is idiocy, The guy who wrote Java works for microsoft now and helped write the C# language. Linux people are still living in the win 95 era and need to crawl out of their caves and see the light. I support both Linux and Windows 2008 servers and can say from experience that no matter how much faster the linux box boots. setting up and configuring services on the windows machine takes a small percentage of the time that the linux box does.

I appreciate the testing!

Thank you for the benchmark testing. It was interesting to read, including the "for the heck of it" ones.

I'm disappointed, though, that they were all tested on multi-core systems. I will always stick to single-core and with me on a fixed income, I can't afford these outrageously huge 500 GB hard drives. I still have my 80 GB one. It has WinXP, Ubuntu, and I've used Damn Small Linux and Puppy Linux on it. In time, I'm going to try other small OSes on it that are GUI'd (I hate command lines). I haven't yet tried Andlinux but I've heard good things about it. I also like the Wubi versions of various Linux.

Thank you, again, for your article. You did a lot of work to try to make it on equal footing for each. That's to be applauded. There's no such thing as a perfect test.

Try Ubuntu 9.04 latest release

Its much faster especially for the bootup and install time than 8.10. In fact there was a saying in Microsoft when I worked over there, "Ubuntu is installed faster than boot up of XP" (which I don't know why but it really sucked over there)

However, XP rocks in the

However, XP rocks in the sense that I can play all my games over there... :) Ubuntu, no matter how hard it tries, doesn't give me that satisfaction..

Benchmarking

Although I use Ubuntu 9.04 daily, I must admit Win 7 Ultimate Build 7100 RC is quite nice. From switch on to a fully loaded desktop, it's 35 seconds on my machine - an Intel E5300, Nvidia 9600GT, 2GB memory, and 500GB 7,200RPM Seagate HD - no fancy specs at all. So far, I'm impressed with Win 7 - much improved over Vista.

UBUNTU VS. WINDOWS

GREAT WORK FOR A HONEST ATTEMPT TO A FAIR COMPARISON. MY COMMENT IS DIRECTED TO ALL THOSE WINDOWS USERS WHO ARE STILL WAITING TO JOIN THE LINUX REVOLUTION. ONCE YOU GET PAST THE LEARNING CURVE... YOU WILL REALIZE HOW EFFICIENT AND INEXPENSIVE IT IS TO OWN AND MANAGE YOUR LINUX BOX.

IN TODAY'S ECONOMY THE NEED TO STREAMLINE COSTS TO STAY COMPETITIVE... WELL IS A NO BRAINER. THE FACT THAT THE UBUNTU COMMUNITY IS WORKING HARD EVERY DAY TO PUT TOGETHER AN OS THAT CAN OUT PERFORM THE COMPETITION JUST PROVES THAT OPEN SOURCE WORKS WELL.

I PERSONALLY HAVE BEEN USING UBUNTU 9.04 FOR ABOUT 6 WEEKS AND THE INSTALLATION WAS VERY SIMPLE. WAS ABLE TO DO EVERYTHING MYSELF BY SIMPLY READING UP ON THE WELL WRITTEN FORUMS AND USER BASED SITES THAT SHARE INFORMATION. MY BOX IS A COMPAQ PROSARIO V2615 AND SHE HAS NEVER WORKED BETTER.

Don't know about most of the

Don't know about most of the tests, but in terms of boot time Windows 7 x64 is a fair bit faster than Ubuntu 9.04 x64 on my Dell XPS M1330.

The biggest difference which wasn't included is in battery life of laptops, which is about as real world as you can get.

Ubuntu won't last more than 1 hour 50mins max. Whereas Windows 7 clocks up over 2 hours 30mins.

I'm still sticking with Linux. Would struggle to switch back to Windows. Having said that I develop in Windows (.Net) so still use Windows as far as that is concerned.

Definitely impressed by Windows 7 though. They've redeemed themselves after Vista.

Just an average user.

I know several IT professionals, many weekend techs, and people who know just enough to get themselves into trouble. I myself, though not a smarty pants like the rest of you geniuses, can hold my own. I work on systems for friends, family, and for my company on a regular basis, and of the computer users I help and know, none of them are capable of using any Linux distro. I know I'm surrounded by idiots, but these idiots are the majority of the worlds population. They have used Window$ for so long that they don't know any better. They have no clue how to or even any interest in learning how to use any other operating system. Of my friends who do use Linux most of them would never change, and I see no reason for them to. I know plenty of Windows users who tried to change to Ubuntu and other various Linux distributions, but switched back shortly after because they couldn't figure it out. Windows is easy to use and for the most part stable. Of the people I know and help, they don't care about install time or number of clicks during the install. They just want to be able to turn it on and have it work. It is unfortunate for them that Windows is so faulty, but they live with it because it is what they know and they have no desire to learn anything new. They don't have time in their worlds for that. For now I will continue to help them deal with what came loaded on their system because like the rest of you, I am a nice person. I have a hard time seeing people stuck in the dark ages and like you I try to help other out the best I can, Linux or not.

Thanks for the time you spent on the research. I didn't find it valuable but I can tell you put some time and effort into proving your point.

Install Media?

Time to install vs gigabytes for install = Windows is better.
Anonymous Penguin (not verified) - March 1, 2009 @ 1:28am

801 seconds to install 2.3GB on Ubuntu64 = 348.26 seconds per GB. - FROM A CD

1364 seconds to install 11.9GB on Windows64 = 114.62 seconds per GB. FROM A DVD (Quicker Read Speed)

DOH!

Ubuntu

I used to use Xp for looooong and get in habit to to format HD on monthly basic to keep system stable. After one unrecoverable crash I am installed Linux to get my files back,and I am never went back. For some time I had dual boot and I am noticed that even kids preferred Linux. Last 2 years we are "FAT free" and we never had any stability problems.
Most of Window$ games are play just as good as on XP and some even better by using latest version of Wine of WineHQ repository.
Long live Linux.

Benchmarks

@Jason Cartwright
1393sec = 23min ( Windows installation time on a i7 )
in my case ubuntu installs in 10min on an old 512mb machine, its worth mentioning tough installation is done from an USB ( higher read speeds than a CD )

Installation time, boot up & shutdown speeds, are important anyone qualifying them as irrelevant is silly.

I'LL SWITCH TO WINDOWS

I've been using Ubuntu as the sole system since four years. I've been from upgrade to upgrade.I've been happy up to Ibex.
Now my hardwares are upgraded , so are my needs.Ubumtu is not anymore an answer.I don't want to spend my time to find a driver that does not exist under linux because linux is trailing behind hardware support and worry only about new distro and new boot system (grub 2 is very,very bad).Mythtv is the right name, just a myth and useless (except if you have a very old and obsolete tuner card. RDV works but forget about vnc (after ibex).I don't care if ubuntu boot faster than windows, I just want to use the full potential of my computers. This is not possible with the latest ubuntu and linux releases (I've tried Fedora 11).
Ubuntu and subsequently linux work good if you have an old computer and old hardwares, and don't with the newest one.

# of clicks during installation relevant?

won't the number of clicks impact the overall install time since it requires the user to read the install choices, move the mouse, and click?

Linux sucks

Linux tards never take into account that Windows Works, and they have Xorg, which is the biggest piece of crap in existence. Linuz users, enjoy Window tear, while Windows users don't have to deal with that bullshit. also Windows users can enjoy hardware support, and software support not some half ass drivers made by the linux community. this benchmark is epic fail.

Prefetching... Yes Linux Do That!

For GNU/Linux have a nice pice of program:-) THE PRELOAD, Build by RED HAT tiny, but powerfull, be careful speed up
like the wind.

Windows is fast than this benchmark

Yes Ubuntu start faster and is easy to install, copy files from ext2 to ntfs really slow when I have a troughput of 45 mbs on windows in ubuntu only 25 mbs, the installation time suck in the os because I need to download everything on ubuntu to work fine (included samba) so in windows you need to download drivers in ubuntu too.

A working OS

I bought a refurbished Toshiba in the UK which came with windows vista. I must say that it really ran very poorly for the specification of the machine. On the first boot it blue-screened. After finally getting the OS to load and ask for my details etc. there was constant disk activity. It seemed like a fast OS just trying to get out. The back up DVD program didn't work and just produced two coasters out of my brand new DVDs. The warranty registration program crashed etc - piece of junk.

I had a choice, either return the machine and wait for weeks for a replacement, or bite the bullet and install ubuntu. I have some experience with linux distros and the most frustrating thing is usually hardware related.

Anyway, about twenty minutes later, I had a fully functional laptop with all the hardware working.

I have to admit, I was very surprised about how easy, unobtrusive, non-threatening and sophisticated the ubuntu installation was.

These guys have put a great deal of work into this and it blows anything from Microsoft out of the water.

You forgot to mention how

You forgot to mention how many more programs run in windows vs linux, which is realy all that matters right?

How many programs are

How many programs are written for linux vs windows? And why did you neglect to use windows XP in your tests? I bet XP would of smoked them all.

You're a HUGE douche.

This is the lamest benchmark I have ever ever seen. I knew this was going to be a horrible article around the point where you said 'and two 500gb of hard drives.' Making no mention to the speed of the hard drives or any other specifics. What if they were 4200rpm notebook sloths or 10,000rpm Raptors?

Everyone else has already hit on everything. DRM?!? Mouse clicks? Seriously?

You guys suck!

/constructive criticism

compatibillity

I had a really hard time with linux because alot of software, games and hardware were not compatible

Linux

Pls I am intrested in the linux environment and will like to learn more,so can you pls send me a book on linux to help me improve on the linux field.I a student in Pentecost University College in Ghana and my e-mail is bignatito@yahoo.com. thank you.

...

With Windows XP I can do much more than word processing. I can find free software to do nearly everything else, including advanced video and image editing. Why would I need Linux again?

@ubuntu 8.10

are you kidding try 9.10 and u'll see that its far better than windows 7 . 7 is not even close...!!!

a user perspective

ok as a real user here, after install and start up the machine, how long it will take fore an average graphic design user in the real world like me to install photoshop cs4 on linux machine?

on windows7 i took me like 30 and some minutes, that was included making a cup of coffee.

on ubuntu.....

What about Virus / Spyware Checking...

You would have to be NUTS to run Windows without anti-virus software on it... I would like to see how big of an effect that has on the various benchmarks...
Granted it might be hard to keep Windows fans from crying foul but to me that is more of a "real world" comparison that I would find useful... (Too late to influence my "decision" since I gave up on waiting for Windows to grow up years ago but it is good to see that people stuck in Windows land have a choice besides XP /Vista now.)
Another comparison I would like to see is benchmarks of virtualization using Windows as a host vs using Linux as a host...
Why do you have to leave out the space between the two words in the "captcha" in order to post a comment?

ext4 File System is Default in Ubuntu 9.10

WRONG.

ext4, with the needed patches, was an option in Ubuntu 9.04 and is rock solid and fast.

in Ubuntu 9.10, due out at the end of October, ext4 is the default file system.

Ubuntu Patches

The default installation of Ubuntu requires around 300 patches to be installed as soon as you get/got a working internet connection, which can be time consuming.

Gentoo takes 3 years to install, even with the manual memorized.

Windows is good for people who:
- Do not like to have control over there computer and what it is doing at all times.
- require software like Adobe Products collection, Reason, Cubase, Sonar, Etc..
- Are Lazy
- Are Lazy Gamers
- The List can go on.

I have a separate system for the software that is nearly impossible to get working on Linux. I could care less about the performance of Windows. It is still Windows.

Why did you compare to Ubuntu?

I'm also wondering why Ubuntu? I've used it for a bit, it is very user friendly but doesn't compare in nothing to other very known distro's I have used when talking about performance. I've used Debian 5, LinuxMint, DreamLinux and am now a Slackware adept to the bone. If you compare Windows 7 / Vista to Slackware 13, Mickeysoft is out the door with losses all over the place.

Fucking fanboys

Fucking fan boys, sheesh... you people make me sick.

So far all OS's have their draw backs... So far here is what they are.

Windows: $$ (If you know how to use it you don't have the problems everyone else does. Spyware, instability, ect..)

Linux Distro - Any: Games (Most of the people who use it know what the fuck their doing.. unlike windows.)

Mac: Games (Most of the people who use mac are gay.. this is like coming out of the fucking closet or something..)

Right now we should all be hating on DirectX...
I love WINE!

Sleepy waitin' 4 the Win7 machine operates.

Yawn .... yawn .... have u guys finish talking (trashing)? Sorry, did I miss something? My company spending a lot of money buying genuine copy of Win7 and all the bloated software. And I have time to sleep about half the 12 hours everyday. Thanks Steve Balmer.
The reason why Window$ so popular waz becoz the pirated Window$ developer and user. :D Face it, plain vanilla genuine Window$ copy is lack of option. The majority window$ user using dual boot or linux livecd. Average user was scared using Linux because the window$ techies and elitist ubuntu community says "U can't do this, u can't do that. If I can't, u can't to 2." Bullshit!

4 Window$ only user out there I have 2 question 4 u:
1. Where do u put the windows if u live without walls? (Keep coming virus, spyware, trojan horse and adware. I luv u all. :D :D :D)
2. If Window$ was the best OS in the universe, then why da hell Mr. William "Bill" Gates leaves M$?

And 4 the Ubuntu elitist here's the question:
1. Should we do RTFM everytime we run in to problems?
2. Is Ubuntu=the only Linux in the universe?

You don't have answer, if u don't want 2. But the question will remain here and in your head 4ever. :D :D :D :D :D

How much is your time worth?

I too have been comparing Windows 7 vs Ubuntu 9.04 and now 9.10. I like the free Ubuntu and it does a good job. I'm writing this via my new Ubuntu 9.10 on my IBM T21 laptop. It did a good job of loading all drivers but some are very buggy. Audio flakey, I have to keep manually adjusting the volume higher or lower to get audio to play. The graphics are much slower than on the same computer with factory IBM windows 2000. I've installed Ubuntu 9.04 and 9.10 on this and other higher end systems and had similar results as far as doing a good job finding hardware but have a lot of buggy issues with video on ATI cards (Radeon x700 pro and Radeon HD 3450) with the fglrx drivers). Basically, I'm going back to good old Windows 2000 on the T21 and purchased a few Ultimate copies of Windows 7 to put on the other PC's. One thing you should mention in the next article is that with Windows 7 I didn't need to add any video or sound driver modifications or install codecs to playback encrypted DVDs or .mp4,mp3,Divx,Xvid. Everything just works and after all the time invested in Ubuntu trying to get these basics properly working (several nights of seeing the sun rise) I'm sticking with Windows 7 but keeping the dual boot to Ubuntu because I can still tolerate a little pain while keeping hopeful it will eventually work as it should.
Tip: In Ubuntu 9.10 after VLC is installed I still needed to install:
sudo apt-get install libdvdread4
and
sudo /usr/share/doc/libdvdread4/install-css.sh

Handbrake GUI is broken in 9.10..still working on it.

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