Linux / WinXP dual boot observations & puzzlers.

In an effort to mend my Windows bigot ways, I recently spent some time converting one of my machines at work to a dual boot WinXP/FC4 box. It has been my first exposure to Linux, and while I can’t claim enlightenment, I can at least say it’s been eye-openning. :rolleyes:

A couple of odd things have come to light, and I’d appreciate input on any/all of the following:

  1. Large discrepency in BOINC benchmarks.

Under windows XP, BOINC produces the following benchmarks:
Measured floating point speed 2435.99 million ops/sec
Measured integer speed 4681.75 million ops/sec

Under FC4, using the same hardware (excepting the HDisk) BOINC produces these benchmarks:
Measured floating point speed 1328.29 million ops/sec
Measured integer speed 2828.89 million ops/sec

Same hardware, just different op systems (and hard drives).
Is BOINC under Linux that much less effecient? Did I install the wrong version of FC4, or BOINC? How the heck can I tell? Or are the benchmarks just that different between op systems. Ein@home units are taking about 5h40m to complete under linux; I don’t have a comparable number for WinXP (see below).

Background: Hardware is AMD FX-55 running on an ASUS A8V Deluxe, 2GB mem, not OC’d. Win XP Pro is plain old 32bit; FC4 was x86 DVD iso (2.6.11-1.1369_FC4).

  1. FC4 & BOINC -> stable; Win XP & BOINC -> random lockup.

Under WinXP, with BOINC crunching away, I began to experience sporadic lockups of the machine. Typically after being left alone for several hours, it would refuse to “wake up” to keyboard or mouse movements. Power still on, and fans still humming away. Put MBM5 to work monitoring temps, and logging every 3 minutes let me tell when it froze up, but as nothing looked abnormal there was no clue as to why. Recently, the freezes started happening while I was using the machine.

I need to try a test of leaving overnight w/o BOINC and see if it locks up. But it’s hard not to crunch. :smiley: :smiley:

Booted into Linux yesterday afternoon, and so far it’s 24hrs+ at 100% CPU with no sign of a lockup.

  1. Win XP updates -> easy peesie; FC4 updates #$%^&^@! Remember that I’m a major Linux newbie, but … how the hell do you non newbies ever manage to tune/upgrade this stuff!?! At work it’s almost impossible; something to do with yum/up2date not working through proxies or having repository conflicts out the waazoo. When I try to update my machine at home (another dual boot experiement), the up2date at least finds updates before giving me and unending series of dependancy conflicts. Yikes!

Just getting the video driver updated, from god knows what that maxed out at 1280x1024 to a reasonably modern nVidia driver took me the better part of an afternoon. Edit this .conf file, edit that .conf file; boot and have the op system fall into a command line only mode cause it can’t find a driver. Modprobe this. Remeber command line arguments that. Egads.

Under WinXP I boop over to guru3d, download bla.exe, double-click, and then reboot.

Am I missing something? Is Linux life really this hard? Under WinXP, most everything wants to install to C:\Program Files\AppDirectoryGoesHere. When installing under Linux, I have no clue whether it’s installing in my home directory, or ??? I thought I updated Firefox this morning, only that didn’t seem to replace the prior version, it just installed in the directory I unpacked it in. Is there an Add/Remove programs tool similar to that on the Winders Control panel?

My NIC card (a cheesy old D-LINK 530+) limps along under FC4 at slightly better than dial-up speeds. I’m afraid to try to update the driver, as it’s my only current connection to the net. The builtin Marvel Gigabit Eth adapter is wrongly ID’d by FC4 as some Realtek device, and flat out doesn’t work (runs like a champ under XP). The D-Link is mis-ID’d too, but enough of the command set seems to work so I’m not touching it. Sigh. :frowning:

The co-workers I’ve asked about this all seem to be very shy when it comes to upgrades. They’re running FC3, have never updated, and seem to think that if it works at all then leave well enough alone. Is that the world of Linux?