What distros have you been testing recently?

Discussion on Linux distributions
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bin
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by bin »

Interesting - thanks Dai. I might revisit it with that in mind, though the 1.3gb I was seeing was in htop - which seems to report about 2/3rds what top and free show..........!
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by dai_trying »

Maybe they are using different ways of measuring, I noticed a considerable difference in memory usage when using Debian Bookworm which is what led me to finding that post. Please let us know what, if anything, you find. :)
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by wove »

Memory management for me should be totally transparent to the end user. Linux distro overviews and reviews do always mention there RAM usage, and Linux users do seem to use memory reporting tools more than other OSes. That kind of makes me think that Linux is probably not that good at memory management, although overall I do not recall running out of RAM when using Linux.

Kernel.org has several hundred pages of documentation devoted to how Linux uses RAM and how it is controlled. Almost all of the documentation is way way way beyond my pay grade. Linux as represented in Android, does a very remarkable job of memory management. An Android tablet with just a couple gig of RAM has the power to swipe between many open applications smoothly and with ease. Chrome feels more fluid and more capable on a tablet than on a desktop/laptop with significantly more resources.

Throwing gobs of extra RAM into my laptop was mostly just waste when using Linux. Linux does run well with the extra RAM, but Linux just does not seem to ramp up and make use of the extra resources. I had hoped to see a good boost in performance when compiling, indexing and rendering and while it has resulted in 15-20% increase in performance, it is far less than I expected. In FreeBSD the extra RAM provides a 300-400% increase in performance.
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by dai_trying »

I've always thought Linux was pretty good at ram management as it runs at way lower usage than Windows (10 or 11) but I have never owned a Mac so I can't do a comparison for that. I know some distros have higher ram usage due to their choice of applications and settings but I think overall it is a pretty good user experience fo the end user...
As for the Kernel.org docs, it's also above my pay grade but maybe one day I'll give it a try :D

I have upgraded some of my machines and although I haven't performed any tests to see if it runs faster/better I can say it does feel like it makes a difference and seems to run "snappier", although I guess it could just be me knowing it has been upgraded and noticing what I expected to see (placebo?).
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by wove »

I do agree that Linux does RAM management well. I have never ran out of RAM on a task and I am impressed at how well it does with lower spec hardware. I assume the behavior I see is perhaps do to Linux's server roots. It does everything adequately while maintaining as much reserve as possible to handle that time when it will get hit with several thousand requests for a file.

My Raspberry Pi 3B+ with its 1GB working as a NextCloud server has an uptime of 18 months, which can be attributed to just how fine a job Linux does at self management. My desktop machines typically remain up and running until some update comes through requiring a restart. So Linux really is second to none when it comes to very functional stability over time.

Of course one of the advantages of adding gobs of RAM to your system is bragging rights :) And there is nothing wrong with basking in the glow of the placebo effect.
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by dai_trying »

I use my Pi3B as a octoprint server for my 3D printer, It's so convenient to monitor from another location when a long print is running and 1GB ram seems to be no problem at all. :)
And I edited my spelling error thanks to your hint :D
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by crosscourt »

I bask in the glow a lot as with gaming more ram really does make a difference and with my wife doing a lot of high end productivity work, its pretty much a must. Lowest amount of ram I have in any device is 16gb but all my desktops have 32gb presently, so discussions on ram usage are pretty meaningless at those specs. Certainly I keep an eye out for memory issues but typically not an issue. DDR4 prices in particular have dropped and are continuing to drop.
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by dai_trying »

I didn't really notice much of a difference upgrading my gaming laptop from 16GB to 32GB when gaming, although I'm sure there must be a few FPS difference but I usually cap it at my screen frequency 144Hz in this case. I haven't used the desktop much recently but that only has 16 GB although I'm sure to upgrade that at some time in the near future.
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by crosscourt »

8 to 16gb is a huge difference in games but 16 to 32gb wont wow you but it will make gameplay a bit faster, less laggy and more responsive. Depending on how much vram you have on your video card you may run into issues as many games today end up over 8gb vram and having 32gb of ram will help somewhat. I run at 1080P as my eyes cant take the higher resolutions but running at 144hz you need a good gpu with more than 8gb of vram and a minimum of 16gb of ram if you play demanding games or pc ports that tend to have optimization issues coming over from consoles.
Prefer gaming on a large monitor as Im still trying to play competitive games online. People love thrashing an older pro-gamer from the Quake days.
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Re: What distros have you been testing recently?

Post by dai_trying »

I only really play Fortnite as my son and grandchildren play it and we all play together, it makes the distance between us smaller (in the same way as phones and video calls do) and I'm getting better at playing too, although my six y/o grandson is probably as good if not better than me :D
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