bit-tech.net

Windows Vista SP1 Core Performance

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Fod 26th March 2008, 09:27 Quote
wot no x64 love?
strangely mixed results though. it's... interesting to say the least.
vaderag 26th March 2008, 09:56 Quote
This is just teasing me now... 2 articles in 2 days!
I was pissing about with this all last night and i STILL can't get SP1 installed :(
Leitchy 26th March 2008, 10:05 Quote
The only advantage to me is the network transfer speed and less crashing when doing so. Used to do my box in!!
Shadow_101 26th March 2008, 10:06 Quote
I know it’s mentioned that the difference from Vista - XP Transfer speeds is well cataloged elsewhere, but particularly in the Network & HHD file transfer section it would have been nice to see what Vista File Transfer speeds should be achieving.

Other than that, I thought it was an excellent read.
Bindibadgi 26th March 2008, 10:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow_101
I know it’s mentioned that the difference from Vista - XP Transfer speeds is well cataloged elsewhere, but particularly in the Network & HHD file transfer section it would have been nice to see what Vista File Transfer speeds should be achieving.

Other than that, I thought it was an excellent read.

I'll use the same files and same system for the SP2 versus SP3 XP results in a few weeks :) (providing I can find an XP disk again!)
Shadow_101 26th March 2008, 10:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
I'll use the same files and same system for the SP2 versus SP3 XP results in a few weeks :) (providing I can find an XP disk again!)

Sweet! :D
Zeali 26th March 2008, 14:04 Quote
Are there any comparisons between XP SP2 and Vista SP1?
E.E.L. Ambiense 26th March 2008, 15:41 Quote
Great read. I appreciate you guys doing this. I've been considering jumping to Vista Home Premium for the past month with this new build I'm working on, so this gives me some more fat to chew on. ;)
boe_d 26th March 2008, 15:42 Quote
Nice report - I just wish you had a copy of XP handy to include in your benchmarks :)
GoodBytes 26th March 2008, 15:50 Quote
About Vista increase boot time, that is because when you upgrade SP!, it clears pre-fetech, super fetch, and clear all previous boot optimization, once you pass that, Vista DOES start faster. However that is under 64-bit environment.
Tim S 26th March 2008, 16:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
About Vista increase boot time, that is because when you upgrade SP!, it clears pre-fetech, super fetch, and clear all previous boot optimization, once you pass that, Vista DOES start faster. However that is under 64-bit environment.

SuperFetch / ReadyBoost and all associated services are disabled because with them turned on, benchmarks get faster and faster over time. There is no reliable way to accurately benchmark a system with the prefetchers enabled. We've seen improvements between run #1 and run #3 on the same hardware for example, which gave us enough reason to just disable it to remove the benchmarking headache.

The boot times were measured on a fresh install with all the hotfixes installed and then again once Vista SP1 was installed - that combined with the above means there should be little to no difference in system state.
guanellaluigi 26th March 2008, 16:43 Quote
I would like to see some test on Encrypted FileSystem performance.
I'm seeing particularly bad performance when moving a 100MB file from an unencrypted folder to an encrypted one.
Both files are on the same HDD and performance problems started with the SP1 upgrade. Performance seems dropped by a huge amount...
Could you reproduce this on your test environment?
GoodBytes 26th March 2008, 16:53 Quote
@guanellaluigi, I don't know why, but could it be that it simply encrypts your data before placing it on the drive, and that it could potentially be that Windows Vista pre-SP1 did not do a proper job.

@TimS, I am no expert in anyway on the topic, and I am not trying to questioning your expertise nor protect Vista... just trying to learn. I think it would be best to calculate such task without drivers installed, I say this, because when I install my Creative X-Fi drivers, Windows takes 4-5 times more time to startup then without Creative drivers. And it could be that Nvidia drivers could face the same issue however only effecting SP1, or that the drivers has performance issue with SP1, and it should wither wait for new drivers or maybe try on different configurations.

I think all these benchmark should be done with the next released of drivers, or even better products and drivers released after SP1, as I personally think that Nvidia doesn't care about their old products, as long as it "works" it is fine. What do you think?

Related to Superfetch and prefetch, this is what makes Vista better than XP or better than Vista without SP1, you can't just disable that, else you have to disable EVERYTHING but absolutely EVERYTHING except the bare minimum to run the OS. At some point Superfetch and prefetch won't be able to optimize any more, and this is when you calculate, in my opinion.

@boe_d, Vista would benchmark much slower than XP, for the simple fact that XP has a very very close core system than WinNT, and that companies learned since that time how to make proper optimized drivers. Also benchmark could have potential compatibility issue with Vista that could change results, but personally I think it is just picking at minor insignificant details on the end result score. Between 1000 and 1010 in a score... their is no difference in real life.
cjmUK 26th March 2008, 16:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim S
SuperFetch / ReadyBoost and all associated services are disabled because with them turned on, benchmarks get faster and faster over time. There is no reliable way to accurately benchmark a system with the prefetchers enabled. We've seen improvements between run #1 and run #3 on the same hardware for example, which gave us enough reason to just disable it to remove the benchmarking headache.

I'm agog! Superfetch, and to a lesser extent Readyboost are key Vista technologies that are an improvement on XP. Regardless of what it does to your benchmarking, surely they must be enabled?? Otherwise you are comparing apples with pears.
lewchenko 26th March 2008, 17:02 Quote
Apologies if I have missed this somewhere in the articles...

If I have been diligently installing all recommended updates to VISTA over the course of its lifetime (which I have), is there still benefit from installing SP1 (i.e. is SP1 just a collection of all the critical updates combined) ?
cjmUK 26th March 2008, 17:03 Quote
The issues regarding file copying are well documented. Pre-SP1 caching (which is enabled in XP) was disabled, and other changes were made in an attempt to improve copying integrity and performance. They succeeded in improving in one or two scenarios but the perceived performance across the board was awful.

In SP1 they have taken a step back and re-enabled caching; the natural effect of this is that the perceived copying speed has improved for smaller/medium files, but little perceived improvement in larger files. When I mention 'perceived' performance it is because when Vista SP1 (or XP for that matter) claims to have finished copying a file, it hasn't really. The file has not truly been copied until it's been removed from cache and written to the actual disk.

As for boot times, we were led to believe that Vista would boot faster than XP, but IMHO this wasn't born out. And I haven't noticed any difference post-SP1.

But in general, I've noticed that SP1 is slightly smoother and slicker, and Vista is just as stable as before - more stable than I ever had with XP.

However, as I said in the gaming performance thread, though SP1 does exactly what MS claimed it would do, it wasn't really ambitious enough - the article clearly states that SP1 is not really going to catch and 'floating voters'. I would have like to see much more visible changes mdae.

Fingers crossed for SP2.
cjmUK 26th March 2008, 17:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by lewchenko
Apologies if I have missed this somewhere in the articles...

If I have been diligently installing all recommended updates to VISTA over the course of its lifetime (which I have), is there still benefit from installing SP1 (i.e. is SP1 just a collection of all the critical updates combined) ?

SP1 includes all the necessary updates issue previously, plus includes additional changes in core functionality. So installing it would be a good idea...
GoodBytes 26th March 2008, 17:14 Quote
I must agree with cjmUK, however I think Vista fine as it is. If you are begging for 3-5 heck even 10 fps more in your games, than go back to the past with Win95, I think your games will sky rocket in fps. The more features you add, the slower things gets... Take a car! for example, I am most positive that your car will perform way better, if you remove just about everything except the 4 wheels, but you change with bicycle wheels. Anyway...

Also, at Bit-tech did you enable "Enable advance performance", 'cause that does a nice increase in performance, also did you set the computer (in power mode) to "high Performance" instead of "Balance"
Tim S 26th March 2008, 17:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmUK
I'm agog! Superfetch, and to a lesser extent Readyboost are key Vista technologies that are an improvement on XP. Regardless of what it does to your benchmarking, surely they must be enabled?? Otherwise you are comparing apples with pears.

Depends how often you'd like an article from us. :)

Once every three weeks while we reinstall everything in between each benchmark run to ensure the system state is the same every time? And even then, there is no guarantee that the system state will be the same, because SuperFetch has its own way of doing things.
boe_d 26th March 2008, 17:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
@boe_d, Vista would benchmark much slower than XP, for the simple fact that XP has a very very close core system than WinNT, and that companies learned since that time how to make proper optimized drivers.

Yeah - while I know XP is much faster than Vista - I wish people publishing benchmarks for Vista would include XP - I want MS to have article after article, benchmark after benchmark, review after review in their face about performance. When I was beta testing Vista and reported how crappy the performance was - they said it must be me, my drivers, a firewall or third party app or something I was doing wrong as they hadn't gotten any reports of slow performance with Vista. 5 months later they quietly admitted Vista wasn't optimized for performance. Ballmer won't discuss it - he just says we sold a lot of copies whenever anyone asks anything regarding issues with Vista.

Unless by some miracle Ballmer gets replaced - the only way I think Windows 7 will be a real OS is if they keep posting benchmarks to remind the less geeky that XP is a better OS than XP. I'm stunned by those who say - it is a newer OS so it requires more horsepower - what kind of thinking is that - should my new car guzzle more gas or should it be optimized and more efficient so it can do more with the gas? 64 bit - dual cores are new to XP yet it runs great on them compared to Vista - Vista should BLOW the doors of XP but it is the other way around. Then there are those who say Vista is doing a lot in the background that is why it runs slow - what the hell is it doing in the background? I turn on my computer and want to run word or browse the web or play a game - I'm not asking it to calculate PI to the infinite digit in the background - what excuse is that?

We need more benchmarks for the idiots who say things like - it runs fine on my home PC - you need a faster processor or more memory - we need more benchmarks so they have no place to turn and stop posting bad advice for those who don't know better about what OS is good so they don't waste money on hardware or and OS if they already have XP.

I'm not anti MS - I really really really wanted Vista to be better than XP - unfortunately it isn't. Hopefully Windows 7 will be everything that Vista should have been. Some reports of poeple running Windows 2008 server as an OS for their PC give me hope that MS isn't completely incapable of making a faster OS - not sure why the F'd up so badly on Vista. With Windows ME - they knew enough to drop it like a bad penny and move on - no SP - no more development - no excuses - just move forward. Ballmer doesn't want to admit what a huge failure Vista is so he keeps it alive when Bill would have just pulled the plug and left a DNR sign on the body.
GoodBytes 26th March 2008, 17:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by lewchenko

If I have been diligently installing all recommended updates to VISTA over the course of its lifetime (which I have), is there still benefit from installing SP1 (i.e. is SP1 just a collection of all the critical updates combined) ?

Yes and No, like all Service Packs, it contains updates already released, so that you have less update to perform. However, Vista SP1 contains a BIG chuck of new updates that never was out before and previously set as Beta (only available from Microsoft website) updates.
Bindibadgi 26th March 2008, 17:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
I must agree with cjmUK, however I think Vista fine as it is. If you are begging for 3-5 heck even 10 fps more in your games, than go back to the past with Win95, I think your games will sky rocket in fps. The more features you add, the slower things gets... Take a car! for example, I am most positive that your car will perform way better, if you remove just about everything except the 4 wheels, but you change with bicycle wheels. Anyway...

Also, at Bit-tech did you enable "Enable advance performance", 'cause that does a nice increase in performance, also did you set the computer (in power mode) to "high Performance" instead of "Balance"

It's always set to high performance, this way not sleep states or screensavers interfere with benchmark results. This is unless we're specifically testing power saving features that are relevant.

boe_d - Unfortunatley MS doesn't give a **** - they want "perceived progression" and Windows 7 will be EXACTLY the same again mate :(
Tim S 26th March 2008, 17:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes
IAlso, at Bit-tech did you enable "Enable advance performance", 'cause that does a nice increase in performance, also did you set the computer (in power mode) to "high Performance" instead of "Balance"

Enable Advance Performance reintroduces an old bug from Windows 3.11 and can cause data corruption and data loss if your drive loses power. See here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/magazine/cc162475.aspx

Screensavers are disabled and power management is set to 'high performance' in all cases.
cjmUK 26th March 2008, 17:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim S
Depends how often you'd like an article. Once every three weeks while we reinstall everything in between each benchmark run to ensure the system state is the same every time? And even then, there is no guarantee that the system state will be the same, because SuperFetch has its own way of doing things.

I'd rather you spend some extra time running benchmarks that *may* be somewhat comparable than spending less time running benchmarks that cannot be comparable ever.

Readyboost is a crutch for systems without much RAM. But Superfetch is an integral part of Vista - disabling it is like tieing one of Vista's arms behind it's back.

You could even say it's somewhat unfair that you compare both OS's with the same hardware - to be truly fair, you should compare both OS's 'recommended hardware' configurations. But OK, we can let this one slip, but not the omission of SuperFetch...

[fair play - in an SP1 vs Pre-SP1 test, one would assume each system is equally crippled by the disabling of SuperFetch]

As for the effort involved in preparing the test environment, I don't see why GHOSTing can't be employed to good effect. It only takes a couple of hours to wipe a system. I realise that you have logistical and time constraints, but you can't jeopardize the integrity of BT to save a bit of time...

OK, I'm lecturing now so I'll stop. :)
GoodBytes 26th March 2008, 17:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by boe_d

I want MS to have article after article, benchmark after benchmark, review after review in their face about performance.
How about Win95?! Linux and Mac OS in your way... Performance is not everything in life. I perfect slower car but that doesn't break than one that is a million times better in performance but I can't drive it in winter as it unable to and potentially get damaged (DOS), or a car that is significantly better but require maintenance every week (Win9x). You must also know that in Windows Vista, you have a lot of stuff to clean your computer and stop (unlike XP!!!!) reduce performance over time desipe your best in taking care on it. Just re-install WinXP every 3 months, and you will see that XP starts and respond WAAAAYYY better. This is not the case with Vista, it's performance is the same, all the time.
Quote:

When I was beta testing Vista and reported how crappy the performance was - they said it must be me, my drivers, a firewall or third party app or something I was doing wrong as they hadn't gotten any reports of slow performance with Vista. 5 months later they quietly admitted Vista wasn't optimized for performance. Ballmer won't discuss it - he just says we sold a lot of copies whenever anyone asks anything regarding issues with Vista.
One, Ballmer has nothing to do with this... replacing him won't do anything different to Windows.
Well their you go.. you just said " crappy the performance"... for me it could mean just a slight slow down, as it could mean that it runs slower than a 386. You should have presented with benchmark results, and compare with several computers using different configurations.
Quote:
The only way I think Windows 7 will be a real OS is if they keep posting benchmarks to remind the less geeky that XP is a better OS than XP.
XP better than XP!?!... However I know you what you mean. You guy REALLY think that Windows 7 would be a major performance increase... it will be Vista, with added features... that IS ALL! And as I stated before, it will get sower, as more you add stuff, the more slower it will be.

Quote:
I'm stunned by those who say - it is a newer OS so it requires more horsepower - what kind of thinking is that - should my new car guzzle more gas or should it be optimized and more efficient so it can do more with the gas?
NOOO.. not more gass?! Vista a new core (mostly)... that would like comparing a gass engine with hydrogen powered car or electric cars. They are are both completely different technologies... doesn't mean it has 4 wheels that it is the same thing. For sure gass power is better then hydro and electric car AT THE MOMENT, however they will get optimized... electric cars will have better batteries, longer battery life, and shorter recharge time (optimized hardware drivers). And like you learned how to drive, I'll be surprised you drove perfectly well, and perform movie stunt with the are without destroying it, and drive at 200Km/h anywhere you go without an accident. No you were slow, and trying to get used to the car (drivers for Vista)

[quote]64 bit - dual cores are new to XP[quote]
XP doesn't take full advantage of your multi-core CPU, as Vista does, moreover, XP is 32-bit... so you don't even use you paid for 64-bit CPU... you could have gotten a nice P4 and OC it, instead.
Quote:
Then there are those who say Vista is doing a lot in the background that is why it runs slow - what the hell is it doing in the background
Do you cook? You will sure cook and finish faster if you don't clean after yourself. However you will be infested with visitors, and you will take more and more time to cook your next meal, as you have less and less pots and pans to cooks... or until you decide yourself "ok, I'll use this super dirty pan that contains 3 rats", which takes more time, as if you had a clean one.
Quote:
I'm not anti MS - I really really really wanted Vista to be better than XP - unfortunately it isn't. Hopefully Windows 7 will be everything that Vista should have been.
Was WinXP better than Win2k... nope... however the core is identical... they just decided to make a pretty version out of it. SAME FOR WINDOWS 7!
Quote:
With Windows ME - they knew enough to drop it like a bad penny and move on - no SP - no more development - no excuses - just move forward.
The reason why WinMe was dropped out, was because Microsoft knew since day one, before it got released it was big mistake, moreover, it was SOOO BAD, that no software companies give any support to WinMe. So far I see more and more companies support Vista and Vista 64-bit. So things are going very well.
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