Ubuntu's LPIA-based MID Edition Can Save 10%+ Power
Phoronix: Ubuntu's LPIA-based MID Edition Can Save 10%+ Power
When it comes to putting Ubuntu Linux on mobile devices, Canonical has two flavors of their popular Linux distribution to suit the needs of vendors and end-users: Ubuntu Netbook Remix and Ubuntu MID. The former targets netbook computers (hence its name), particularly those with Intel Atom processors, and brings a unique interface atop GNOME. The Ubuntu MID edition is targeted for very small netbooks and mobile Internet devices. Particularly, Ubuntu MID aims to be on handheld devices and those with 4-7" touch-screens. Beyond having a different user interface, Ubuntu MID is spun with LPIA packages instead of the i386 package-set. LPIA is quite similar to i386, but targets the Low-Power Intel Architecture with different compile-time optimizations. With the low-power focus, will this distribution extend your battery life? Yes, our results today show that the power consumption can be cut down by greater than 10%.
I'm not sure your analysis is correct.
The MID release is targeted at computers with very low resources, 128MB of RAM, for example. The applications installed on it, including the window manager, the web browser, and the file browser, are all very light weight in comparison to the equivalent apps on the UNR distribution. I don't think that comparing memory consumption between these two releases says anything about how well Linux does (or doesn't) do when compiled for lpia. I bet that if I were to switch to a lighter weight window manager than gnome and a lighter weight browser (such as the MID browser), I would see memory consumption improvements with the i386 software, too.
There is an alternate install CD for the lpia architecture at http://cdimages.ubuntu.com/ports/releases/9.04/beta/. If you want to compare lpia to i386, you should probably install from that ISO and apply the UNR configuration to it. After all, no one would run the MID edition on their netbook for longer than it takes to reconfigure it so that the interface is usable on the netbook.