[ubuntu-uk] Poor performance with Ubuntu on my laptop

Gareth France gareth.france at gmail.com
Thu Oct 4 15:25:03 UTC 2012

Unfortunately, Intel is rather addicted to selling cheap, crippled CPUs 
which have been hobbled to fit a low price point by disabling most of 
their onboard cache memory. This dramatically reduces performance. It's 
a false economy - they cost as much to make as upmarket chips, as they 
are the same silicon with some features present but disabled. It's part 
of a stepped marketing model where sales of lots of cheap crippled 
products sold for a tiny profit are balanced by very overpriced premium 
products at vastly inflated prices and very high profit margins. It's a 
filthy tactic which is unfair to consumers, but Intel is damned near a 
monopoly and what can you do? It started with the 486SX, which was a 
486DX with the floating-point unit turned off. It's made them billions. 
For years, I used AMD or Cyrix kit from preference but they are no 
longer really competitive except at the very cheap end - the low-end AMD 
chips are not crippled, as Celerons and "Pentium Dual Core" ones are. 
Seriously, your best bet might be to overclock the chip. These cheap 
crippled chips often overclock very well. Or, teach yourself some basic 
maintenance skills, buy an uncrippled chip & swap the CPU over. Google 
to see if this is possible. As for lighter-weight distros, I am not sure 
they will help much - you have lots of RAM and possibly a competent GPU 
too - but you could try Lubuntu.
I'm not a fan of the Ubuntu spin offs to be honest. I have no idea how 
I'd go about overclocking a modern machine however I'm an IT technician 
myself so replacing the CPU is an idea I could consider later down the 
line. I know for a fact several versions of the machine exist some 
sporting i3 or better processors so I would hope it's removable.


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