VimFueago
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How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:36 pm

So just picked up a RPI4 8GB, and pondering what OS to put on there (I have a Pi3B at the moment, running Raspbian).

My real issue with Debian based OS are some of the packages are so old, it's really hard to get stuff working, many current packages in Debian maintainer's eyes are actually considered obsolete by the software authors. Essentially it moves way to slow to be useful in an ever changing world. Ubuntu feels like a better balance, still going toward stability, but not using ancient packages.

I really wanted to know If I am losing any performance optimisations, functionality, or servicing features by not choosing PI OS..

Thanks.

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B.Goode
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:44 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:36 pm
So just picked up a RPI4 8GB, and pondering what OS to put on there (I have a Pi3B at the moment, running Raspbian).

My real issue with Debian based OS are some of the packages are so old, it's really hard to get stuff working, many current packages in Debian maintainer's eyes are actually considered obsolete by the software authors. Essentially it moves way to slow to be useful in an ever changing world. Ubuntu feels like a better balance, still going toward stability, but not using ancient packages.

I really wanted to know If I am losing any performance optimisations, functionality, or servicing features by not choosing PI OS..

Thanks.

Perhaps you have to choose the compromise that suits you?

Fortunately, there is no cost involved - other than your own time - in trying both.

Even if you loose performance by not using the Operating System recommended and supported by the hardware manufacturer, there is so much power in an RPi4B board that you may never notice the loss incurred by running a third-party OS.

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DougieLawson
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:46 pm

If you have to ask the question the answer is always RaspiOS.
If you have some Linux skills then Ubuntu 20.04 is a good alternative.
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VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:00 pm

Sounds like nobody actually knows then.

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DougieLawson
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:09 pm

There's a bunch of stuff in RaspiOS that has been updated to exploit the RPi hardware. Some of those optimisations won't be in Ubuntu. The benefit of Ubuntu is that they don't stick with old packages (unlike DebIan). So it really is a string and scissors question.
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Criticising any questions is banned on this forum.

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fruitoftheloom
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:52 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:00 pm
Sounds like nobody actually knows then.

Arch Linux ARM (or Linux Distro based on Arch such as Manjaro) may / may have optimisations but software packages are even more recent than Ubuntu.

So the choices are do you want a Linux Distro which is fully supported by RPF / RPT, and has older stable packages.

...or a Linux Distro which may or may not be optimised for the Raspberry Pi Hardware, but has newer packages or are even bleeding edge ?
Rather than negativity think outside the box !
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B.Goode
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:23 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:36 pm

I really wanted to know If I am losing any performance optimisations, functionality, or servicing features by not choosing PI OS..



tl;dr - YES

VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:15 pm

OK, thanks for the answers. I think Ubuntu 64 20.04 LTS server is the way I need to go, I can see from the ubuntu packaging website, it's got newer stuff (e.g. ocaml - one of my "problem packages").

Will I still get the bootloader/firmware/binary blobs delivered by apt on the Ubuntu release? (I am assuming not) Is there a way to install them manually?

andrum99
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:16 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 1:36 pm
So just picked up a RPI4 8GB, and pondering what OS to put on there (I have a Pi3B at the moment, running Raspbian).

My real issue with Debian based OS are some of the packages are so old, it's really hard to get stuff working, many current packages in Debian maintainer's eyes are actually considered obsolete by the software authors. Essentially it moves way to slow to be useful in an ever changing world. Ubuntu feels like a better balance, still going toward stability, but not using ancient packages.

I really wanted to know If I am losing any performance optimisations, functionality, or servicing features by not choosing PI OS..

Thanks.
The onyl real optimisation that I am aware of versus Ubuntu is the NEON accelerated crypto, which I'm assuming is not present in Ubuntu (although it may be). There may also be other micro-optimisations, but for the Pi 4 I would not expect those to make much difference unless you are doing some very compute-intensive tasks. Also note that Ubuntu 20.04 for Pi is a server version, so there is no GPU acceleration for the display.

andrum99
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:18 pm

DougieLawson wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:09 pm
The benefit of Ubuntu is that they don't stick with old packages (unlike DebIan).
This is the major argument in favour of Ubuntu, versus Raspberry Pi OS which is based on Debian.

VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 8:09 pm

andrum99 wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:16 pm
Also note that Ubuntu 20.04 for Pi is a server version, so there is no GPU acceleration for the display.
Running this headless anyway, so no X11 at all.

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Imperf3kt
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:41 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:15 pm
I can see from the ubuntu packaging website, it's got newer stuff (e.g. ocaml - one of my "problem packages").
Newer is not the same as optimised. I'd even go so far as to say that's a juxtapose statement.

Are you sure "optimised" is what you're after, because if yes, then raspios is what you're after.
55:55:44:44:4C
52:4C:52:42:41

VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:48 am

I need newer packages, so my options are bloating apt and using pinning, and all the compatabilty headaches that causes, or not use raspberry pi os.l and going Ubuntu server 64.

Trying to find actual information on say what compiler flags are used for both builds seems quite hard. Given the 64bit Ubuntu RPI build can only run on a RPI4, you would hope it was build using sensible optimisations, but who knows...

I have resorted to just benchmarking some typical applications I use. Benchmarking current 32bit raspbian (that is just my rpi3 sdcard plonked in rpi4 and updated), to 64bit raspberry pi os, and finally 64bit server Ubuntu.

Using Phoronix to do 3 or so typical use benchmarks:
  • apache
    cachebench (read)
    cachebench (write)
    cachebench (read/update/write)
    bork
    encode-flac
    sqlite

I can then see what these potentially missing optimisations actually mean in real terms. I'm already guessing there won't be much difference, if any between the 64bit platforms, so we shall see. Should have some results later.

JonG
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 10:53 am

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:15 pm
OK, thanks for the answers. I think Ubuntu 64 20.04 LTS server is the way I need to go, I can see from the ubuntu packaging website, it's got newer stuff (e.g. ocaml - one of my "problem packages").

Will I still get the bootloader/firmware/binary blobs delivered by apt on the Ubuntu release? (I am assuming not) Is there a way to install them manually?
I use Ubuntu 20.04 64-bit, as I had specific performance issues with Raspberry Pi OS 32 bit, especially with Thunderbird, which took minutes to start up. I have not tried Raspberry Pi OS 64 bit, as I'm satisfied with Ubuntu.

With regard to updating the Pi 4 boot EEPROM, I keep a separate SD with Raspberry Pi OS, which I run occasionally to update the EEPROM, as necessary.

Giga_Pi
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 12:46 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:15 pm
OK, thanks for the answers. I think Ubuntu 64 20.04 LTS server is the way I need to go, I can see from the ubuntu packaging website, it's got newer stuff (e.g. ocaml - one of my "problem packages").

Will I still get the bootloader/firmware/binary blobs delivered by apt on the Ubuntu release? (I am assuming not) Is there a way to install them manually?
Manjaro's good.

It has a fair amount of HW acceleration, updates eeprom, is 64Bit, and has the latest packages.

Very clean and modern OS (Debian is just... not, in my opinion)

It's a bit different to Debian or Ubuntu, but I was able to learn fairly quickly.
GNOME for Pi

A project to get the popular GNOME desktop to run on Raspberry Pi OS.

Guide here: https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=66&t=276512

Source code here: https://github.com/TerraGitHuB/gnomeforpi

Pi4 4GB with Manjaro ARM KDE

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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm

I am biased, but I look on it as:

Raspberry Pi OS is the official OS, that means everything we do is tested on that OS, We do not test on other OS's. Everything we optimise is tested on that OS, nothing else. If you have a bug, you will need to prove it is present on our OS - there's no use coming to us with a problem on another OS unless you can show its also present on PIOS.

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.
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andrum99
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 4:57 pm

jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm
I am biased, but I look on it as:

Raspberry Pi OS is the official OS, that means everything we do is tested on that OS, We do not test on other OS's. Everything we optimise is tested on that OS, nothing else. If you have a bug, you will need to prove it is present on our OS - there's no use coming to us with a problem on another OS unless you can show its also present on PIOS.

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.
^ This.

If you want to test the 5.4 kernel on Raspberry Pi OS, then you can upgrade Raspberry Pi OS to a pre-release version of the 5.4 kernel. Note that Ubuntu 20.04 also uses a 5.4 kernel. The current kernel on Raspberry Pi OS is 4.19.

VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm

jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.

OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0

jamesh
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm
jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.

OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0
That should make you think - why are Raspberry Pi still testing their kernel 5.4, when Ubuntu have already released theirs....
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LTolledo
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 8:18 pm

any hint on timeframe of upgrade to 5.4?

in a few weeks not more than 10?
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VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Fri Jul 03, 2020 10:10 pm

jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm
VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm
jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.

OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0
That should make you think - why are Raspberry Pi still testing their kernel 5.4, when Ubuntu have already released theirs....
Absolutely, assuming of course that RPI foundation have the same engineering team size as Canonical..

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rpdom
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Sat Jul 04, 2020 5:00 am

VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 10:10 pm
jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm
VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm



OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0
That should make you think - why are Raspberry Pi still testing their kernel 5.4, when Ubuntu have already released theirs....
Absolutely, assuming of course that RPI foundation have the same engineering team size as Canonical..
That depends on how many of Canonical's team are working on the Raspberry Pi kernel, and do they have as much knowledge and experience of the Pi as the team at Raspberry Pi Trading?
Unreadable squiggle

andrum99
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Sat Jul 04, 2020 11:35 am

jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm
VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm
jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:02 pm

We are likely to have a major release of the kernel soon - we have been testing 5.4 for some time. That might be important to you.

OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0
That should make you think - why are Raspberry Pi still testing their kernel 5.4, when Ubuntu have already released theirs....
Well Canonical are using 5.4 on all platforms, and 20.04 went through the usual testing, and it is an LTS release. I've not come across any issues with it so far, but as ever YMMV.

fruitoftheloom
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Sat Jul 04, 2020 1:18 pm

VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 10:10 pm
jamesh wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm
VimFueago wrote:
Fri Jul 03, 2020 5:20 pm



OPERATING SYSTEM: Ubuntu 20.04
Kernel: 5.4.0-1012-raspi (aarch64)
Compiler: GCC 9.3.0
That should make you think - why are Raspberry Pi still testing their kernel 5.4, when Ubuntu have already released theirs....
Absolutely, assuming of course that RPI foundation have the same engineering team size as Canonical..

Many ex employees of Broadcom Cambridge UK now work for RPT / RPF..
Rather than negativity think outside the box !
RPi 4B 4GB (SSD Boot) RaspiOS64 ARM64
Asus ChromeBox 3 Celeron is my other computer...

VimFueago
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Re: How "optimised" is Pi OS, compared to Ubuntu 20.04?

Sat Jul 04, 2020 3:55 pm

Well, I spent the last day and a half running benchmarks on 32bit PI OS, the 64bit beta of PI OS, and 64 Ubuntu, and I have my answer. I'm going with 64bit Ubuntu.

It's performance is either the same or in some cases noticably better than 64 bit PI OS, specifically, Bork file encryption and SD write speed were noticably better. Both 64bit versions noticeably outperformed the 32 bit version on one particular benchmark; FLAC encloding.

Apache cachebench and sqlite benchmarks were near identical across all 3 SUTs.

RPI64 failed a couple of tests due to missing packages that ubuntu64 had no problems with. Given this and the general obsolete package problem in Debian, I'm going with Ubuntu64, it's the same or faster and has better package support.

In all the benchmarks, hardware was identical, even the SD card (I wiped and clean installed between each test), abnormalities i noted above I reran the test (the phoronix test suite runs the tests multiple times anyway).

https://www.phoronix-test-suite.com/

Tests ran:

sqlite
Apache
cachebench
bork
encode-flac

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