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Ubuntu 9.10: The Karmic Koala Benchmarked And Reviewed

Benchmark Results: Synthetics

Though I generally prefer real-world application-based benchmarks to synthetics, it's always fun to compare a simple score with your friends (or enemies) online. These two benchmarks are insanely easy to use and have an equally simple system in place to compare your scores with others. They are also the only two synthetic benchmarks that run on all three major platforms, which makes comparing any machine to another possible. No more excuses.


Since GeekBench is notorious for giving a different result on each run, we ran the test five times. After discarding the highest and lowest scores we then averaged the remaining three to get our final score.

Karmic came out as the winner in our GeekBench runs against Jaunty by a solid four percent.


PeaceKeeper is a free browser-based benchmarking tool from FutureMark, the makers of 3DMark. I ran this test in a single tab in a single browser window with no other applications open. Since Jaunty comes pre-installed with Mozilla Firefox 3.0.15, which is quite a bit older than Karmic's 3.5.5, I decided to run 3.5.5 in Jaunty as well. Both 9.10 and 9.04 were running the 32-bit development version of Google Chrome on Linux (build

Well, Jaunty clearly lost in both the Firefox tests. Karmic's default almost doubled the score of Jaunty's, while still remaining more than 150 points ahead when 9.04 was running 3.5.5 as well. Chrome was another matter entirely. While 9.04 beat 9.10, the margin of victory is nearly insignificant. The real surprise is that, in Linux, the performance of the development version of Google's browser almost doubles that of Mozilla's latest. Though I am not surprised, Chrome's speed advantage is very noticeable.

  • burnley14
    The new Upstart feature sounds terrific. Windows needs to take notes, I hate the awkward limbo of seeing your desktop but not being able to do anything.
  • Hi,

    I was a bit surprised to read your slaughter of Ubuntu 9.10, because that does not reflect my experience with it. My first thoughts when reading this were related to the (possible lack of) integrity and technical skills of the author (sorry about that). Then I remembered that I experience a few minor issues when upgrading from 9.04 to 9.10 as well and that I read about people which were unhappy with it. However, none of these would IMHO deserve the label "epic fail".

    Spending four days for installing 9.10 and reinstalling 9.04 seems like way more time than you should need. I upgraded my computers running Ubunutu in less than an hour. I have not tried a clean install but it would surprise me that this would be any harder. My parents have also been using Ubuntu for more than a year now without any complaints (this includes an upgrade to 9.10). Maybe I have been lucky?

    I have been using Ubuntu at work and at home for the last 3-4 years and I am pretty happy with it. I am also happy with the fact that you (Tomshardware) have been writing about Linux a bit more frequently. Keep it up, but don't be so harsh :)
  • jj463rd
    I tried it on one PC.Had constant problems with the Mouse not working,system locking up etc.I went back to installing rock solid older 8.04 LTS on it which worked without problems (except for the time consuming (about) 450 updates).
  • rsmith13
    I also got the Kernel problem error messages after installing Xubuntu 9.10 on an AMD 64 system. They went away after doing an update. I now have Xubuntu 9.10 on 5 single and dual core AMD 64 systems. with no problems.

    Do the update!
  • cyberkuberiah
    hardware driver support from the hardware makers themselves is lacking , i installed ubuntu , could not connect to belkin wifi even after using the prop drivers , and then uninstalled it . patience over .
  • haplo602
    nice article ... I mostly skimmed through it :-) anyway can you include a windows 7/vista benchmark base for the same hardware ?

    I know some of the test will be irrelevant (like the timed installation) but most should work.
  • DGriffin
    I had 9.04 and upgraded to 9.10 with out any problems at all... I have a AMD 64 processor and had no problems with the 64bit vir... ..idk maybe I got lucky, but I sorta doubt it..
  • MaxTesla
    The screensaver starts after 5 min so when you install Ubuntu the screen saver will start and the screen will go black you need to move your mouse too see the instalation again, this could of course be mistaken for a crash
  • MaxTesla
    The screen saver starts after 5 min so when you install Ubuntu the screen saver will start and the screen will go black you need to move your mouse too see the installation again, this could of course be mistaken for a crash
  • I tried installing Ubuntu 9.10 via Wubi, immediately after rebooting from Windows and seeing the Ubuntu bootscreen it gave me a black screen, with my monitor reporting that there was no signal. Back to Windows I go, I suppose. :/