Sunday, September 13, 2009

Kernel 2.6.31-1

Well, time for another update. I thought I'd write up my initial impressions on kernel 2.6.31-1 (from the Archlinux testing repository as of the 11/09/09). I have to say, there are a few things that struck me right off the bat.

Good Things:
- Intel driver performance increased noticeably (smoother, yet cooler), and glxgears (yes, I know it's not a benchmark, but I used it as a comparison check for driver and kernel settings) is up around 280 fps (highest it has ever gone in archlinux).
- Flash videos, while still not perfect, are less jumpy than they were with the old kernel on this netbook (Samsung N110)
- Suspend works (who knows if it's just temporary, but it now works on the Samsung N110, I will post an update with what happens when it moves into the core repository - may be missing a driver or some other updated package)
- It's smoother under heavy load (default configuration, not sure if KMS is enabled or not, I'd say no though, since there's no framebuffer on boot) than its predecessor
- It seems a little bit faster to boot (probably saves about a second or two on boot).

Bad things:
- USB devices aren't working right now (may be because of the fact that I only installed kernel26 and kernel26-firmware from testing, or it's due to an old package that has yet to be updated)
- KMS (as far as I know) still results in no backlight control for this monitor, and that seems to be an intel driver problem.

Overall, I'm happy with the new kernel, even if I can't use usb devices with it for the time being. I'll bet once they move it to core/up the revision to -2, it'll work again.

*UPDATE* USB works again, but I don't think I updated anything for it to work again, it just seems to have decided to be nice again.

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