[scribus] Scribus on 'modern' machines
John at T4sLtd.co.uk
Fri May 2 17:33:28 CEST 2008
Craig Ringer wrote:
> John Beardmore wrote:
>> Amount of memory doesn't seem to be a bottleneck, so my guess is that
>> CPU and memory speed are likely to be the main rate determining
> Do keep an eye on your free RAM during heavy operations. Scribus likes
> *LOTS* of RAM, and if you're swapping even a little bit your performance
> will suffer considerably.
I don't think that's been the problem.
> It's often informative to run the command "vmstat 5" in a terminal.
> That'll print some summary system activity data every 5 seconds. You are
> interested in the "swap" columns - you do not want to see anything but
> zeroes in the "si" and "so" columns most of the time. If your system
> starts swapping more than very occasionally, and especially if it does
> so when the "cache" memory column in vmstat begins falling rapidly, then
> you might benefit from more RAM.
Unfortunately I don't have such a tool for XP.
>> I guess faster memory and CPU might improve editing speed a little, but
>> I assume given Craigs comment, that the extra CPU core won't help much
>> there. Is that right ?
> Correct. It will help the rest of your system remain more responsive
> while Scribus is hogging the CPU, but it will not detectably improve
> Scribus's performance. A second core can help single threaded
> applications if they're doing lots of async I/O or network
> communication, but Scribus does neither of those and won't benefit.
>> But will a second core help more with printing ? In other words, does
>> any part of the printing process run in a separate thread that might
>> benefit from a second core ?
> Probably not any part that takes a significant amount of time. You'll
> find that almost all the time is spent in the Scribus process preparing
> the job; the later parts of the printing process probably happen very
> quickly. You can verify this by running:
> "watch lpstat"
Again not on XP. I was wondering if GDI calls might be taking a lot of
resource, but I don't know.
> and kicking off a Scribus print job. When a job appears in the "watch
> lpstat" window, Scribus has handed the print job off to the print system
> for processing. Before that a second core will not help. After that,
> though, Scribus is probably basically idle, and the print system will
> most likely only use one core for processing the job. However, you'll
> find that the print system gets it done quickly enough that you won't care.
> If you're thinking of upgrading it's certainly best to focus on maximum
> performance per core rather than on the number of cores.
> By the way, many applications (but not Scribus most of of the time)
> benefit quite significantly from a fast hard disk, as does general
> system responsiveness. I have the same laptop as two of my workmates,
> but they got it with only 2GB of RAM and with a 5400rpm HDD. My machine
> is *massively* faster, and it's almost all down to the 7200rpm hard disk
> though the extra 2GB of RAM does help with caching. Similarly, a friend
> built a desktop with a Western Digital Raptor 150 (a 10,000rpm SATA hard
> disk) and the performance benefits are quite impressive. Boot times and
> program launch times are massively improved as well. So - if you're
> using lots of other apps on there, not just Scribus, or you value
> general system responsiveness a fast disk is worth thinking about. Don't
> bother for Scribus, though, as it will not gain very much from a fast disk.
OK - an interesting point.
I get the impression that this laptop doesn't spend much time accessing
the hard disk, so hadn't thought of going for a faster one, though I
guess that at least the first time a program is launched will be disk
I suppose the other point is that a faster disk would probably use more
Many thanks, J/.
John Beardmore, MSc EDM (Open), B.A. Chem (Oxon), CMIOSH, AIEMA, MEI
Managing Director, T4 Sustainability Limited. http://www.T4sLtd.co.uk/
Carbon Trust Consultant: Energy Audit, Carbon Footprint, Design Advice
Energy Efficiency Accreditation Scheme, (EEAS), Registered Assessor
Phone: 0845 4561332 Mobile: 07785 563116 Skype: t4sustainability
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