EDIT: We no longer recommend you DO NOT upgrade to Ubuntu 10.04 ...

[EDIT by Mark Greaves]
*** We are no longer advising people not to use Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (Lucid Lynx), as of version 10.04.02 (or on a fully updated system) the issues appear to have been resolved… though for people who don’t need an LTS release, we still advise bypassing 10.04 in favour of 10.10 ***

I have been asked why I posted this in the news section on the front page. Well, for kick off, some of the news I’d seem worried me (more than a little) … however I though (by now) some of the kinks should’ve been ironed out, but that I really ought to try it before making any more comments. Now I have, I’m running on 10.04 at this very moment.

The upgrade started at ~ 3pm and by 8pm I sort of had something I could work with again.

Chances of the average user completing this process, ZERO.

Pro’s of upgrade: I’m sure I’ll find some nice shiney new stuff (besides the theme) but not seen anything yet.

Con’s, ok, here we go;

  1. My graphics setup did not survive the upgrade and I could not progress until I’d deleted /etc/X11/xorg.conf. I experienced many reboots, hardware driver fixes etc before reaching this conclusion, just so’s people know, the most recent nVidia driver was behaving badly so I tried the last but one version (173) which was a machine freezing non-starter. Ubuntu have disabled (Ctrl-Alt) consoles, Ctrl-Alt-Backspace, and as far as I can see the boot / recovery process, which makes things very interesting indeed. Fortunately I have a stack of Live CD’s here to fall back on.

  2. When finally going again, there appears to be a super huge major bug in the NVidia drivers when used with Xinerama. When xinerama is turned on, all 4 of your screens operate effectively as one and you can move your mouse / drag+drop between all four screens - an absolutely invaluable facility. The desktop (through some logic that escapes me) picks one of your screens as the “master” and this is the screen that is blessed with menus / panels. However, if this screen isn’t at the end of your chain of monitors (i.e. monitor #0) , as soon as you move your mouse off the left hand side of the screen, you’re dead. For a random period the mouse will flutter and dance … eventually you will be logged out and presented with a login prompt again.

  3. Once you finally get a stable system, you wonder what the hell KSMD is and why it’s eating half your CPU. Apparently it’s a feature which is enhanced further by editing /etc/default/qemu-kvm and editing the line that reads KSM_ENABLED=0 and replacing the 0 with a 1.

  4. Now you’re wondering why your load average is running at above ‘1’ when previously it was typically running at 0.2 or lower. Not totally figured that one out yet but I’m pretty sure it’s tied to the graphics system. Certainly killing off 10 instances of gkrellm that I use to watch different things has a major impact on the load average.

Note; At the moment, I need a machine that is 4x faster to get the same speed as I was getting under 9.10.

  1. To get your 4x speed you turn off CPU scaling on your processors and let loose with 4 x 3.G CPU’s and it’s all sort of back to normal … except your CPU temp hits the ceiling. Solution; install 2x larger case fans.

Go on, ask me if I’ve had a fun afternoon!

Revised text for the news article;

AVOID UBUNTU 10.04 LIKE THE PLAGUE - Use 9.10 instead!

Ok, next, Empathy doesn’t work. It offers to import your contacts from Pidgin but does no such thing and leaves you with a blank screen.

Ah, Ok, it’s not just me … everyone seems to be having performance / high load average problems with 10.04.

Methinks 10.04 was released ~ 6 months before it was ready !!

Ok, here’s my problem(s).


a. System Idle time .vs. Load Average
b. Xorg memory usage

Performance is sluggish and as soon as I pretty much do anything the load average hits 1+.

[smg id=432 type=preview]

Am I missing something here… 4 users?.. I can only see root, bind and gareth

How is memory allocated to Xorg… on a percentage basis, or what is currently being used?.. my Xorg mem usage is 6.1%… but you have 8.5 times the memory I have on this laptop… load average (if left to settle) 0.03

Erm, this is a shot from “top” … see the “Tasks:” count … (!)

And “users” in this context is the number of xterm’s I have open, the listing down the left is the effective UID of each process, but background processes don’t count at users … :wink:

heh… never noticed that before… sure enough, open another terminal and “bingo” another user :slight_smile:

Ok, my machine is now 100% again.

Solution: clean install of 9.10 from scratch.

Conclusion: 10.04 has one or more critical defects in one of the following areas that causes the overall performance of the machine to drop to 10% or normal;

a. The Kernel
b. The nVidia screen driver
c. A combination of the two

I’m not about to debug this at the moment, but if you upgrade to 10.04 then be aware you may find the performance is “pants” and if you google around you will find a number of articles about whether Windows 7 is faster than 10.04 … as far as I’m concerned 10.04 is Ubuntu’s vista.

What about a clean install? I had it running after the up grade but like you said not much of anything worked. I went back to karmic . I hope they fix lucid ran very fast with little computer power, memory processor. i have been on ubuntu forum since 2008.

Yup, tried two clean installs, same results.

I’ve been sent something to try by the guys at Ubuntu, will hopefully get chance to do it later on, not hopeful tho’.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nvidia-vdpau/ppa; sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get install nvidia-glx-185

Guess what? No change what-so-ever.

Note; I’ve now installed / upgraded a few machines to 10.04, success rate seems to be about 50%.

(i.e. 50%, works fine, no problem, 50% there’s a show stopper which can sometimes be fixed, and in the case of my main machine, apparently not …)

My Dell notebook arrives tomorrow. Core 2 Duo ULV SU7300, Intel WiFi Link 5100, 512MB Nvidia GeForce G 105M.

My plan is to wipe the hard drive immediately and jump head-first into Ubuntu x64. Judging from this thread it looks like a lot of the problems people are encountering come from upgrading from Karmic to Lucid. As I’ll be starting from scratch might this increase the argument for going straight in with Lucid?

If I install Lucid, what’s a good test to perform to find out if I’m in that 50% of people who just can’t run it without major grief?

Mmm, there is no easy test as the performance issue only appears under certain types of usage. On a new machine, I’d be inclined to install 10.04 and see if it works well enough for you - then be prepared to install 9.10 if you’re not happy with 10. The major issue here is for people who rely on their computer for business purposes and who cannot afford to upgrade to something that will prevent them from working.

(and upgrading to something that then takes a couple of days to undo / get right again is less than impressive …)

I think if Ubuntu are going to be this crap it really does make a case for the Operating System snapshot / restore system that Windows XP has …

Mad Penguin firstly “you da man!” Secondly i’ve been running Lucid for a while now on dual boot with XP pro too and I have noticed the heavy load in Ubuntu also i have a AMD Athlon 64 x2, nVidia GT220 1gb card and 2 gig corsair xtreme ram. I installed and played around with conky for a while and got hooked its real pretty and Shows what i need. But the loads are pathetic the CPU jumps around above 50% the graphics card is throttleing like crazy and the memory usage is just bonkers even with just the desktop running on its own its well above 900meg at idle… Really hope Linux sort this soon as i seriously want to ditch Micro$oft and can’t be bothered going through the pain of a fresh karmic install.

Keep up the good work guys.


Just do what I’m doing, use 9.10! There’s no real need to use 10.04, there’s nothing critical in there (apart from the bugs that make it unusable) and I’ve found 9.10 as stable as a rock. Personally I use gkrellm, but mainly because it supports client-server connections and lets you monitor multiple machines relatively efficiently.

Here’s my gkrellm view of the linux.co.uk core, this is 24 CPU’s, 48 GB of RAM and 15Tb of disk … :slight_smile:

[smg id=552 type=“preview”]

I see what your sayin there Mad Penguin you have some serious (toys) hardware there… But i think to aid in the progress of the next Ubuntu or future updates for Ubuntu 10 i’ll stick and keep sending my reports back to HQ, if however i do get a nice solution before anyone else i shall share my findings as usuall on as many forums as possible.

Long live Linux!



A fair few people have all logged the fault on the Ubuntu Bug tracker, but in true Ubuntu style, not enough people are having the same critical problem to get them to pay any attention to it (apparently). For ‘new’ faults, this wouldn’t bother me too much and I’d write it off as me being a little bit too bleeding edge, but in this instance they’ve broken lots of stuff to the extent the product is unusable on machines it previously worked perfectly on, yet it seems not to be worrying them.

From a business perspective, this makes their product untenable, there’s no way you can afford to have an office with 20 machines in it, then upgrade to find that all the machines are stuffed and you’re days worth of downtime trying to recover. It’s almost as if they’re trying to make a case for RHEL.

This is just another in a long line of bad decisions and mistakes from Ubuntu, I really wish somebody else (IBM?) would have a crack at what Ubuntu are doing … I’m guessing 9.10 will last me a while, but if they can’t get their act together then eventually I’m probably going to need to drop back to Gentoo again.

A small remark to Ubuntu: I personally still struck with Debain:

For my desktops with std.-hardware and when reliability is much paramount too the newest version any tool (e.g. with Servers), I use the Debian-stable tree (currently “lenny”). Otherwise I found the “testing”-tree still more stable than the most other distributions.

Nothing against Ubuntu, but they are IHMO a step to fast in implementing new software.

Mmm, I’m not sure they’re too fast, indeed for some stuff they’re way too slow. As far as I can see the main problem they have is that they don’t test stuff properly, they just bung it out the door and see what happens.

I did try Debian desktop a few months ago … worked ok, but not at all polished, and I think part of the polish issue was that their desktop components were a little out of date. I’m going to have to find some time to try Sabayon