Intel Aims for Two Second Boot Times

Imagine an operating system that would boot in two seconds -- that’s what Intel is aiming for with Moblin.

We reported earlier this year that Intel had released a Linux-based operating system for alpha testing. Intel’s aim for Moblin is to provide the Atom CPU a light and fast OS that less stressful than running a full blown version of Windows.

Those who have been testing the alpha version since late January have found that parts of the system can be started up in just seconds. If Intel is able to reduce all initialization processes to just a couple seconds, and have them run in parallel, we could have the fastest booting OS yet.

Intel Open Source Technology Center director Imhad Sousou spoke at the Linux Collaboration Summit about reducing Moblin boot times, detailed in Ars Technica’s report. By cutting out bloat, parallelizing and other streamlining techniques, Sousou declared, "We think that two second boot is possible."

A reduced boot time would increase the usability of any system, but particularly so for portable devices such as the netbooks and MIDs that Moblin is targeted at. Often we’re finding that we prefer to have our notebooks (and netbooks) in and out of sleep states for the sake of having nearly-immediate access. Of course, sleep modes do drain battery as well as risk data loss, and hibernate modes still incur wait times as RAM is being written back and forth.

Would you be willing to try Moblin (that’s right, bye bye Windows, hello Linux) on your netbook if Intel made good on its promises for a two second boot time?

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • icestorm50
    With a 2 second boot you could shut down to save battery life and then have almost no penalty when you go to reboot; that sounds mighty nice! I would be willing to take a look at netbooks with Moblin installed on them when Intel has a Moblin booting around 2 seconds.
  • decoppel
    I would be willing to try it anyway.

    I really don't want a windows based OS on MY netbook.
  • ckthecerealkiller
    I would be all over it like white on rice in a glass of milk on a paper plate in a snowstorm.
  • the_one111
    No, I wouldn't.

    I mean, my god, we couldn't wait 6 more seconds....
  • sublifer
    I'd sure give it a try. Having a Linux OS that fast might be enough to win a sizable marketshare for linux which would mean better support and maybe even AAA game releases on Linux. :)
  • So you're trying to tell me that a crappy, slow, Atom processor can boot an OS in 2 seconds? I'm sure they mean: "display the desktop in 2 seconds, and wait 10 more seconds for the rest of the OS to catch-up while the mouse cursor sits frozen." I was noticing today that Ubuntu comes with some of the smaller to netbook sized Dells now, I'd trust Ubuntu far more than Moblin.
  • ckthecerealkiller
    YouKnowItsTrueI'd trust Ubuntu far more than Moblin.
    I certainly have to agree with that statement. Also, I doubt that the full boot process could be completed in 2 seconds as well. Still it would be great if it does work as described. Not likely, but still......
  • antemon
    let's see what the ext4 file system does with moblin.

    and I can't hardly wait for jaunty.
  • gamefreak62
    I don't think I would care what OS it was running if it could boot in two seconds. (Unless it were Ubuntu. I just can't warm myself up to Gnome...) I would use a netbook for just work anyway since the hardware in them sucks too bad for games.
  • Sure i could put in my quad boot notebook replacing vista