The first neutral (i.e. not published by us) benchmark of Mir is out. Michael over at Phoronix has a good write up of the current state of things and also mentions that the install was smoother than anticipated.
The results (~about 10% median, 15% average penalty in FPS, see below) are totally within the expected range for where Mir is at right now and doesn’t have us sweat.
The first chart shows the absolute comparison of Saucy on X and Saucy on XMir on the Phoronix Test Suite. There are some obvious issues (e.g. Nexuiz 800×600) which need to be investigated, but overall judging from the second chart, most benchmarks are around the statistical important median (9.68%). It is admittedly a 9.68% penalty, but overall not too bad, considering we haven’t done any major optimizations yet. Feel free to hit this spreadsheet to get the exact numbers (courtesy of Phoronix) & interactive charts.
One of the reasons for this result set is missing composite bypassing support, which we are aware of since January. Composite bypass helps when apps/benchmarks run fullscreen because… well, because they don’t need to be composited. Gamers out there… there is hope and a plan in place to get you your precious FPS back. This feature/bug is currently scheduled once other key functionality landed. Also, in order to make FPS based benchmarks really count, we need eglSwapInterval(0) implemented, which is currently in progress. Another important but hard to measure benchmark is how the desktop feels, responds and reacts to your interactions. This can’t be expressed in FPS and only user testing can really tell. We are eager to get your reports through launchpad.
I’d like to do a dedicated spike later this summer and squash as many performance bugs as needed for 13.10 – right now there are still a lot of other critical bugs and features that need our attention.
Performance is important for Mir to succeed – starting next week, we should have the test results from our performance lab available on the Ubuntu QA Dashboard. This will add another layer of transparency to our development process and should help people understand that Mir is more than just talks – Canonical is putting its money to where its mouth is. Sorry if others have a hard time following our pace, but we are on a mission and have no time to spare.