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HDD File Copy Times
In order to reflect different file sizes, we used a folder containing 275 1920x1080 images (totaling 193.6MB), along with the ISO file of Ubuntu 10.04 LTS AMD64 (697.6MB) as the test files for our file copy time trials. Together, these files add up to 891.2MB.
In both tests, Ubuntu 10.04 and its EXT4 filesystem demolished the older EXT3 in 8.04. When transferring from USB to HDD, Lucid is almost twice as fast as Hardy. When copying files from one location on the same hard drive to another, the new LTS completed the operation at more than three times the speed of 8.04.
We did notice that when working with the smaller image files, Lucid's status bar is right on the money. But it gets very confused about how long the operation will take when working with a much larger ISO file. To be fair, the status bar in Hardy is no better.
File Compression/Decompression Times
As usual, we used a folder containing 334.6MB of various benchmarking tools for our file compression/decompression tests. Zip compresses the test files down to 332.7MB while 7z compresses them to 313.7MB.
In these tests, Lucid finishes faster than Hardy, with the exception of 7z compression.