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'[OT] Gentoo'
2012\01\15@152321 by V G

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I've always wanted to try Gentoo but never had a fast enough processor
to bother with the compilation process. I bought myself a Core i7 and
can now compile programs reasonably quickly. I'm currently using Arch
linux 64 bit.

The question is, should I bother with Gentoo? Is it going to give me
an advantage over binary distributions like Arch Linux and Ubuntu

2012\01\15@154927 by Adam Field

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On Sun, Jan 15, 2012 at 3:23 PM, V G <spam_OUTx.solarwind.xTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
> I've always wanted to try Gentoo but never had a fast enough processor
> to bother with the compilation process. I bought myself a Core i7 and
> can now compile programs reasonably quickly. I'm currently using Arch
> linux 64 bit.
>
> The question is, should I bother with Gentoo? Is it going to give me
> an advantage over binary distributions like Arch Linux and Ubuntu?

It's true that a fast processor(s) helps when running Gentoo, but I've
used Gentoo on Pentium 3's and AMD K6-2 processors. The problem of
Gentoo lies in largish desktop projects like KDE and gnome. These
would take days to compile on older machines. Luckily firefox and
openoffice are available as binaries so you won't need to compile
those.

The advantages of Gentoo are not in speed but in flexibility. With
other distros, I found myself too often removing binary packages and
compiling source so I could have a feature that was missing, and then
I was left managing upgrades by myself. With Gentoo, I found it easier
to stay on the bleeding edge with a system that was still
maintainable.

Why not give it a spin in a vm and see if you like it? If anything,
you'll learn a lot about Linux and its pieces

2012\01\15@163022 by David

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On 15/01/2012 20:23, V G wrote:
> I've always wanted to try Gentoo but never had a fast enough processor
> to bother with the compilation process.

I first ran Gentoo on a dual PIII system, an i7 is probably orders of magnitude faster!

> The question is, should I bother with Gentoo? Is it going to give me
> an advantage over binary distributions like Arch Linux and Ubuntu?

As the other reply says it is one way to learn more about how some things work under the hood.  I liked the ability to remove or add features, good for flexibility (what if the Debian/Redhat/whatever package doesn't include something you want) and for security (no sense compiling in database support to something if you're not going to use a database).

I wouldn't use it in a "normal" server environment and I'm not currently using it on a desktop.  But I'd definitely use it if I had specialist requirements or if I had a bit more time to play with my desktop again.

Why not try it in a VM and see how you get on?  Your shiny new i7 has all the Intel virtualisation tech built in :)

Davi

2012\01\15@204815 by V G

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The only reason I would consider a switch is for the potential speed
increase. How much of a speed increase would I get

2012\01\16@043311 by David

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On 16/01/2012 01:47, V G wrote:
> The only reason I would consider a switch is for the potential speed
> increase. How much of a speed increase would I get?

You will get a negligible increase by compiling packages for your own architecture with aggressive optimization and with only the options you need.

You will spend hours doing so.

A cost-benefit analysis here doesn't look promising.

This article is a few years old but still very relevant: http://www.linux-mag.com/id/7574/

Davi

2012\01\16@193416 by William \Chops\ Westfield

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>> The only reason I would consider a switch is for the potential speed
>> increase. How much of a speed increase would I get?

In which application?

BillW

2012\01\17@020057 by V G

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On Monday, 16 January 2012, William &quot;Chops&quot; Westfield <
.....westfwKILLspamspam@spam@mac.com> wrote:
>>> The only reason I would consider a switch is for the potential speed
>>> increase. How much of a speed increase would I get?
>
> In which application?
>

Overall system performance

2012\01\17@041909 by V G

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Anyway, I decided to test out my CPU so I compiled the Linux kernel 3
in Arch Linux on a ramdisk with make -j9. Copied current system
config.

The kernel compiled in 2 minutes

2012\01\17@110044 by Mark Hanchey
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On 1/15/2012 4:30 PM, David wrote:
> As the other reply says it is one way to learn more about how some
> things work under the hood.


This is the best reason of all to try out gentoo.  This is a pic mailing list but if you ever venture into the world of ARM or MIPS systems that can run a full linux kernel , learning how linux really works from the basics , without installers or pre-packaged binaries helps a ton.  Gentoo gives you the chance to learn the core code to have a functioning linux system so when the time comes to run on minimal hardware you can better understand the process. I started with linux when there was no X , no gui, just text, the process of using it was difficult, to say the least ,but I better understood how it all worked. Today ,with the way linux is distributed ,users become overwhelmed when something breaks because they can't click their way out of the problem or there isn't something they can download to fix it.

Mark

2012\01\17@114921 by V G

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On Tue, Jan 17, 2012 at 11:00 AM, Mark Hanchey <markspamKILLspampixeltrickery.com> wrote:
> This is the best reason of all to try out gentoo.  This is a pic mailing
> list but if you ever venture into the world of ARM or MIPS systems that
> can run a full linux kernel , learning how linux really works from the
> basics , without installers or pre-packaged binaries helps a ton.
> Gentoo gives you the chance to learn the core code to have a functioning
> linux system so when the time comes to run on minimal hardware you can
> better understand the process. I started with linux when there was no X
> , no gui, just text, the process of using it was difficult, to say the
> least ,but I better understood how it all worked. Today ,with the way
> linux is distributed ,users become overwhelmed when something breaks
> because they can't click their way out of the problem or there isn't
> something they can download to fix it.

I already know how a Linux system works... If I get Gentoo, it won't
be for any learning purpose. I made my own "distro" entirely from
scratch with a vanilla kernel (2.2 or 2.4) many years ago for a 386
single board computer.

Let me rephrase my question:

For those of you who have tried Gentoo, did you find that compiling
everything from source provided a noticeable speed increase over a
regular binary distribution?

I'm guessing like compiling for the new SSE instructions and other
instructions set extensions not found on 686(?) computers (but what
Arch linux is compatible with) would provide some speed increase. Is
it worth the trouble is the question.

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