LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

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Pavel_CZ
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LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Pavel_CZ »

Hello everyone.
Lately, I've been comparing the LM 19 Cinnamon and Xfce with my main operating system, the LMDE 3. Firstly, I have to say that I absolutely love the LMDE 3, in my opinion it's the best Linux distro I've ever used, and it suits my needs very well. But unfortunately, the optimization still isn't perfect.
I tested each of these three desktop environments/distributions on three lower-end to mid-range laptops (9 installations in total). Those were: Lenovo ThinkPad (Intel i5, 6GB RAM, upgraded with 1TB SSD), Samsung R540 (Intel i3-370M, 4GB of RAM, HDD only), and newer Acer Aspire (some AMD quad core, 8GB RAM, SSD).
I found out that under the same conditions, the LMDE performs noticeably worse than the standard Mint. And it's pretty heavy too. After a clean installation, the Xfce uses about 250MB of RAM, 300MB at most, but the LMDE 3 uses up to 1GB! Yes, I know that the Xfce is generally lighter environment, but the Cinnamon process itself uses only about 100-150MB, so the problem must be somewhere else. Also, the subjective and objective speed is something completely different when comparing LM19 and LMDE, it doesn't feel nearly as snappy and responsive, startup/shutdown times are longer, launching apps is slower, and I even experienced some lags while switching between apps, and LMDE also has higher average CPU usage. It just seems like those Ubuntu based distros do indeed have a clear advantage. Maybe, the Cinnamon 4 is going to change everything, but for now, I'm a bit concerned about the Debian edition. Even when comparing it to the LM19 Cinnamon with the exact same version of Cinnamon installed, the normal LM was significantly better on all three devices. Why is there such a big difference?
What are your opinions on this topic? Thank you for sharing any thoughts.
Pavel

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Flemur
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Flemur »

Pavel_CZ wrote:
Sun Dec 02, 2018 3:18 pm
Even when comparing it to the LM19 Cinnamon with the exact same version of Cinnamon installed,
That "even" comparison is the only fair comparison to make if you're comparing Mint 19 w/LMDE, as opposed to comparing Xfce with Cinnamon.
the normal LM was significantly better on all three devices. Why is there such a big difference?
What big difference?
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] if/when it is solved!
Your data and OS are backed up....right?

Pavel_CZ
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Pavel_CZ »

The RAM usage of the LM 19 was something like 600-680MB, but LMDE was using about 980MB-1GB on all three devices, and the speed difference was also a lot more noticeable then I expected. As I said, the LMDE 3 is currently my favourite, but there is still a long way to go...
EDIT: Yes, of course I'm mainly comparing the same versions of Cinnamon, but I just wanted to show how efficient the Xfce is, while being almost as featured as Cinnamon

srq2625
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by srq2625 »

I can't say where you've made an error in your LMDE install, but I'm pretty sure you have. LMDE is my distro of choice (I have one LM 19 - Cinnamon install) and have not experienced anything like what you have.

One of my machines is an AMD Quad-Core, 16GB, NVidia card, and an SSD. Even with the closed-source video driver installed and none of the "standard" auto-start applications removed, this thing boots to something less than 500MB memory used. Speed of boot and shutdown is no different than the LM19 install (on an older Intel i7 processor).

Pavel_CZ
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Pavel_CZ »

Thank you for your reply!
LMDE 3 is my distro of choice as well, but I just can't get the same level of performance out of it (compared to LM19 Cinnamon). Although it's possible that I somehow messed up the installation, I can't figure out how. In the past few years, I beta tested 7 other distributions, while using Mint for my home PC. I've tried both available installers for the LMDE 3 (the stock one and "Calamares"), I've been using Mint for many years without any problems. Also, during my tests, I always installed it on an clean, formated SSD/HDD with just two partitions (no dual boot or something).
With basically the same setup as one of my testing machines (mine had 8GB of DDR4 RAM instead of 16GB, and Nvidia GTX960M), your memory usage is very impressive! With tweaked settings, more efficient drivers, and auto-start apps disabled, I only got to around 700MB.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask, I can provide you with some more informations about my testing.

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by srq2625 »

Pavel_CZ wrote:
Mon Dec 03, 2018 11:04 am
your memory usage is very impressive!
I mis-remembered. I restarted my install and ....

Code: Select all

scott@desktop:~$ free -h
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:            15G        699M         14G         41M        607M         14G
Swap:            0B          0B          0B
scott@desktop:~$ sudo inxi -m
Memory:    RAM: total: 15.57 GiB used: 1.05 GiB (6.8%) 
           Array-1: capacity: 32 GiB slots: 4 EC: None 
           Device-1: DIMM0 size: No Module Installed 
           Device-2: DIMM1 size: 8 GiB speed: 1333 MHz 
           Device-3: DIMM2 size: No Module Installed 
           Device-4: DIMM3 size: 8 GiB speed: 1333 MHz 
scott@desktop:~$ 
So, not quite as impressive as I thought. But, with 16GB, I don't have to worry about a stray 200M one way or the other.

151tom
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by 151tom »

LMDE 3 installed and works OOTB on my 8 year old desktop and I've had zero problems.

It runs well and I don't find it anymore resource demanding than Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon.

I'm very impressed with LMDE 3 the developers did an excellent job creating this Linux Distro. :D

Code: Select all

lmde@cindy:~$ inxi -Fxz
System:    Host: cindy Kernel: 4.9.0-8-amd64 x86_64 (64 bit gcc: 6.3.0) Desktop: Cinnamon 3.8.9 (Gtk 3.22.11-1)
           Distro: LMDE 3 (cindy)
Machine:   Device: desktop System: Dell product: OptiPlex 380
           Mobo: Dell model: 0HN7XN v: A01 BIOS: Dell v: A02 date: 08/27/2010
CPU:       Dual core Intel Core2 Duo E7500 (-MCP-) cache: 3072 KB
           flags: (lm nx sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 ssse3 vmx) bmips: 11704
           clock speeds: max: 2933 MHz 1: 2133 MHz 2: 1867 MHz
Graphics:  Card: Intel 4 Series Integrated Graphics Controller bus-ID: 00:02.0
           Display Server: X.Org 1.19.2 drivers: modesetting (unloaded: fbdev,vesa)
           Resolution: 1366x768@59.86hz
           GLX Renderer: Mesa DRI Intel G41 GLX Version: 2.1 Mesa 13.0.6 Direct Rendering: Yes
Audio:     Card Intel NM10/ICH7 Family High Definition Audio Controller driver: snd_hda_intel bus-ID: 00:1b.0
           Sound: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture v: k4.9.0-8-amd64
Network:   Card: Broadcom Limited NetLink BCM57780 Gigabit Ethernet PCIe driver: tg3 v: 3.137 bus-ID: 02:00.0
           IF: enp2s0 state: up speed: 100 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
Drives:    HDD Total Size: 120.0GB (9.8% used)
           ID-1: /dev/sda model: Hitachi_HTS54161 size: 120.0GB
Partition: ID-1: / size: 106G used: 7.1G (8%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda1
           ID-2: swap-1 size: 4.29GB used: 0.00GB (0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/sda2
Sensors:   System Temperatures: cpu: 41.0C mobo: N/A
           Fan Speeds (in rpm): cpu: N/A
Info:      Processes: 158 Uptime: 1 day Memory: 939.8/3855.2MB Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Gcc sys: 6.3.0
           Client: Shell (bash 4.4.121) inxi: 2.3.5 
lmde@cindy:~$ 

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Pavel_CZ »

When the 19.1 Cinnamon came out, I've repeated my testing. With some tweaking and setting up, I managed to lower the memory usage of my LMDE quite a bit. My best result was on the Acer laptop (the one I mentioned in my previous reply) and it was a 691MB average of 5 boots. That is a significant progress, because OOTB, it was always more than 900MB. The CPU usage is also a bit better now, because I removed everything unnecessary and disabled some unnecessary processes running in the background.
But nevertheless, the LM 19/19.1 is still faster. In a side by side comparison, it's pretty obvious. (I used a camera to measure the speed and responsiveness, so I could later compare more distributions running on the same hardware independently) Aside from the reduced system requirements, nothing has really changed compared to my first testing.

I absolutely 100% agree with 151tom, the LMDE is awesome, it always worked for me on any hardware I tried, and the developers are really doing a great job! But I think that with a growing user base, they will focus on the LMDE 3 more and more, and I hope that one day, there will be no speed difference between the LMDE 3 and the Cinnamon LM 19 whatsoever.

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by axisofevil »

The speed & snapiness and general feel of a distro with a heavyweight GUI will be influenced by the settings of the windows special effects.
Prettiness has a cost.

I assume the GPU's were all equivalent, taking into account connection type, screen size, pixel density and refresh rates?
I don't care how much space Linux uses, provided that applications run at full speed.
Unused RAM is wasted RAM! :D :D

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rivenathos
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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by rivenathos »

You may also wish to consider antiX.
Current hardware: a Dell OptiPlex 3010 desktop, a Dell Inspiron 531 desktop, and a Dell Inspiron 1545 laptop.
Current OS: LMDE 3

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by SuperBoby »

I agree that something must be wrong in your install. Here is my RAM usage with only the terminal opened in my up-to-date LMDE 3 Cinammon on Lenovo Thinkpad X220T :

Code: Select all

$ free -h
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:           3.7G        480M        2.4G        157M        887M        3.1G
Swap:          4.0G        366M        3.6G
EDIT : inxi shows a little bit more, but not 1G :

Code: Select all

$ sudo inxi -m
Memory:    Used/Total: 652.1/3839.2MB
           Array-1 capacity: 8 GB devices: 2 EC: None
           Device-1: ChannelA-DIMM0 size: 2 GB speed: 1333 MHz type: DDR3
           Device-2: ChannelB-DIMM0 size: 2 GB speed: 1333 MHz type: DDR3
LMDE 3 Cindy x64 on :
Lenovo Thinkpad T410, X220 Tablet, X61

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by AZgl1500 »

I've been following this thread simply out of interest, as I have Mint 18.3 Cinnamon and LMDE3 Cindy on the same SSD but in separate partitions.

The first time I looked at LMDE3 memory use a couple hours ago, it showed 983MB used, this time it is a bit different.
I have been booting between the two OS's looking back and forth.... the memory always changes a bit each time.

My LMDE3 was first installed when it was released, and I update it occasionally but it has been two months since the last update.

So, just out of curiosity, this is LMDE3 for me right now.

Code: Select all

john@tp500l:~$ free -h
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:            11G        1.1G        9.9G        110M        652M         10G
Swap:           13M          0B         13M
john@tp500l:~$ sudo inxi -m
[sudo] password for john: 
Memory:    Used/Total: 1121.2/11903.6MB
           Array-1 capacity: 32 GB devices: 4 EC: None
           Device-1: ChannelA-DIMM0 size: 4 GB speed: 1600 MHz type: DDR3
           Device-2: ChannelA-DIMM1 size: No Module Installed type: N/A
           Device-3: ChannelB-DIMM0 size: 8 GB speed: 1600 MHz type: DDR3
           Device-4: ChannelB-DIMM1 size: No Module Installed type: N/A
john@tp500l:~$ inxi -S
System:    Host: tp500l Kernel: 4.9.0-8-amd64 x86_64 (64 bit)
           Desktop: Cinnamon 3.8.9  Distro: LMDE 3 (cindy)
john@tp500l:~$ 

I noticed that some of the LMDE3 installs here show memory used less than 600MB

It must be how we each have it configured.....
I never worry much about how much, as with 12gB RAM, who cares?


EDIT:
just let it do a full update, took a while. Memory use is different yet again.

Code: Select all

john@tp500l:~$ free -h
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:            11G        1.3G        8.1G        103M        2.3G          9G
Swap:           13M          0B         13M
john@tp500l:~$ 
Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by Grayfox »

I am a LMDE newbie but the system doesn't feel slow to me.

I am using a HP Probook 6470b that has a 120GB SSD installed.
This is off a clean install that is up to date.

Code: Select all

oot@grayfox:~# free -h -t
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:           7.7G        671M        6.2G         88M        852M        6.7G
Swap:            0B          0B          0B
Total:         7.7G        671M        6.2G

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by srq2625 »

@LuvNix - all I can say is "WOW". If I had encountered that kind of problem I would have dropped LMDE3 and moved on. I have successfully, and without incident, installed LMDE3 (64-bit) on 4 different computers with 4 different CPUs and memory configurations; a couple with SSD and a couple with HDD. No issues anywhere - it just ran "out of the box".

Granted I run 64-bit, still I have to say I hope your experience is a one-off anomaly.

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Re: LMDE 3 is too slow and heavy?

Post by ajgreeny »

I have tried LMDE3 in a virtual install only as shown in the thread I created at viewtopic.php?f=251&t=285255.

As I said in that, I found LMDE3 using Xfce in place of cinnamon absolutely fantastic; fast and stable, with few if any problems at all, and one poster on that thread suggests that cinnamon may be the problem on that distro. I have no experience of cinnamon on any other distro so am not able to comment on that possibility, but if you want to keep trying LMDE3 why not see if you get the same outcome from removing cinnamon and adding xfce4.

I accept that my installation was in VBox, and I also have been using Xubuntu as my main OS for many years now, so, of course, xfce is bound to be my favourite DE but I would suggest that you may also find it to be worth a try.

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