• Tag Archives KDE
  • Speed testing of Fulong

    Reading Ryan Hill’s blog, he did a test to see the merge times needed for a bunch of KDE packages (why people want KDE in the first place is beyond me, but whatever…) Apparently he did these on an SGI O2, and I was curious to see how they compared to the Fulong. The following is my result:

    kiona ~ # for pkg in kdeaddons kdeadmin kdeartwork kdebase kdeedu kdegames kdegraphics kdelibs kdemultimedia kdenetwork kdepim kdetoys kdeutils kdewebdev; do genlop -t $pkg; done
    * kde-base/kdeaddons

    Sat Jan 12 13:12:16 2008 >>> kde-base/kdeaddons-3.5.8
    merge time: 55 minutes and 54 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdeadmin

    Sat Jan 12 01:31:28 2008 >>> kde-base/kdeadmin-3.5.8
    merge time: 18 minutes and 51 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdeartwork

    Fri Jan 11 15:24:05 2008 >>> kde-base/kdeartwork-3.5.8
    merge time: 22 minutes and 38 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdebase

    Fri Jan 11 01:36:48 2008 >>> kde-base/kdebase-3.5.8-r5
    merge time: 4 hours, 59 minutes and 46 seconds.

    Sat Mar 1 17:54:52 2008 >>> kde-base/kdebase-3.5.8-r6
    merge time: 4 hours, 59 minutes and 12 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdeedu

    Sat Jan 12 01:12:37 2008 >>> kde-base/kdeedu-3.5.8
    merge time: 1 hour, 52 minutes and 53 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdegames

    Fri Jan 11 14:37:26 2008 >>> kde-base/kdegames-3.5.8
    merge time: 1 hour and 55 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdegraphics

    Sat Jan 12 04:00:52 2008 >>> kde-base/kdegraphics-3.5.8-r2
    merge time: 2 hours, 29 minutes and 24 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdelibs

    Mon Jan 7 21:44:56 2008 >>> kde-base/kdelibs-3.5.8-r2
    merge time: 3 hours, 56 minutes and 15 seconds.

    Tue Jan 15 12:47:09 2008 >>> kde-base/kdelibs-3.5.8-r2
    merge time: 4 hours, 22 minutes and 31 seconds.

    Fri Feb 22 14:16:42 2008 >>> kde-base/kdelibs-3.5.8-r3
    merge time: 4 hours, 17 minutes and 16 seconds.

    Sat Mar 1 04:58:21 2008 >>> kde-base/kdelibs-3.5.8-r3
    merge time: 4 hours, 17 minutes and 41 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdemultimedia

    Sat Jan 12 05:28:55 2008 >>> kde-base/kdemultimedia-3.5.8-r1
    merge time: 48 minutes and 45 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdenetwork

    Fri Jan 11 23:19:43 2008 >>> kde-base/kdenetwork-3.5.8
    merge time: 3 hours, 25 minutes and 1 second.

    * kde-base/kdepim

    Sat Jan 12 12:16:22 2008 >>> kde-base/kdepim-3.5.8
    merge time: 5 hours, 51 minutes and 46 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdetoys

    Tue Jan 8 02:13:33 2008 >>> kde-base/kdetoys-3.5.8
    merge time: 13 minutes and 19 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdeutils

    Fri Jan 11 18:14:59 2008 >>> kde-base/kdeutils-3.5.8-r1
    merge time: 1 hour, 7 minutes and 58 seconds.

    * kde-base/kdewebdev

    Thu Jan 10 18:10:38 2008 >>> kde-base/kdewebdev-3.5.8
    merge time: 1 hour, 28 minutes and 11 seconds.

    I estimate that I am getting anywhere from 10-100% better performance out the Fulong than he is out of his O2. If I get the Origin 200 back up and running, I’ll see what happens with that as well. Probably won’t bother with the Indy, however, as the numbers would just be stupidly long.

  • Fulong issues

    So, while I have been doing a compile of compiz on the Fulong, it wanted to compile kdebase as well. Fine, no big deal, except that it fails the compile of that package about halfway through. Upon restart of the compile it completes without any issues. This is a problem that I have seen (and reported) before with the Fulong, and now I think I have the answer as was so graciously bestowed upon me by Thiemo Seufer:

    The problem is a compound of
    1) Not enough RAM (only 512 MB) in some machines, which causes an
       increasing number of package builds to use swap, and some of them
       to evenutually fail to build because of a timeout.
    2) Slow on-board PIO IDE, from which the firmware can boot from
    3) A kernel-imposed limit of 1 GB when PCI DMA devices (like a SATA
       disk controller) is used.
    4) A kernel bug in the cache coherency management which hits PIO IDE,
       and causes instability since kernel 2.6.18. Up to then, the problem
       was mostly papered over by an excessive amount of cache flushing in
       the kernel code. This problem went unnoticed upstream since PIO IDE
       is these days only used on very small/cheap systems, where a
       different code path is used.

    So, the first one is the most telling, at least for my situation. I suppose the other problems (at least 2 and 4… 3 doesn’t apply since I don’t (and cannot)  have SATA controllers on the Fulong at this time) are also applicable, but I haven’t really noticed them one way or another.

    Thiemo notes that problem 3 has supposedly been fixed in kernel 2.6.22+, and since I am running at the moment, this should be fixed for me as well, not that it matters. He also has a fix in for 4, and it is waiting for upstream review. 2? Well, his solution is to add SATA disks, so apparently it is not really a problem for me.

    His answer to 1 is to add memory to the system, and recommends 1-2gb. Well, seeing as I already have 1gb in the system, obviously this is still an issue regardless of what he recommends, and hopefully a real solution will come about.

  • xorg 1.4.x on Fulong

    So once I got gentoo installed on the fulong, I decided to do an emerge world update on the system. Yes, there were some problems during this and the KDE update was a bit hairy, but it did eventually install everything in the list.

    One issue I found with it was that the emerge would go for a while, then die with a compile error. If I started the emerge again it would continue for a while, then die again in a new spot on a different package. I had to do this iteration more than once because of packages breaking during compile, even though when restarted they would compile fine. Is this a problem with the Fulong where it is getting overstressed or something? The system has a full gigabyte of RAM installed so that is probably not the problem, unless there is some spot in the memory stick that is bad that I do not know about.

    Another thing I found was that X broke. Everytime I fired it up, it would die with a segfault. Eventually I found a patch that was running around out there from Zhang Le that fit the bill, and once I patched it with his patch it started to work again. Apparently this is a problem with the 1.4.x series of X. In my case it is a pre-release version (

    The patch I installed is now on my local web site.

    There are also still some problems with KDE, so I am now in the process of unmerging KDE completely from my system so that I can put in something else that I more prefer. Still haven’t quite decided WHAT, of course… 🙂