Slower frame rates with unityshell loaded, than plain compiz

Bug #1005074 reported by Achim on 2012-05-27
This bug affects 32 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
unity (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

The bug report is a followup of bug 987304.
Main problem is that all applications run slower with unity-shell compared to plain compiz.

For testing I run ioquake3 in benchmark mode with the map »demofour«.

window mode 1280x720, screen resolution 1920x1080
1260 frames 26.0 seconds 48.5 fps 4.0/20.6/44.0/5.9 ms unity 5.12-0ubuntu1.1 50Hz
1260 frames 25.2 seconds 49.9 fps 3.0/20.0/39.0/7.4 ms unity 5.12-0ubuntu1.1 60Hz

1260 frames 25.2 seconds 50.0 fps 9.0/20.0/38.0/3.5 ms gnome classic compiz 50Hz
1260 frames 21.5 seconds 58.7 fps 6.0/17.0/34.0/3.8 ms gnome classic compiz 60Hz

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 12.04
Package: unity 5.12-0ubuntu1.1
Uname: Linux 3.4.0-030400-generic x86_64
ApportVersion: 2.0.1-0ubuntu7
Architecture: amd64
CheckboxSubmission: 13741649d6b2dd56d757d58c3d964436
CheckboxSystem: da9af3b901b5569a389df6337f3d812f
CompizPlugins: [core,composite,opengl,compiztoolbox,decor,vpswitch,snap,mousepoll,resize,place,move,wall,grid,regex,imgpng,session,gnomecompat,animation,fade,unitymtgrabhandles,workarounds,scale,expo,ezoom,unityshell]
Date: Sun May 27 07:54:30 2012
InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 11.10 "Oneiric Ocelot" - Beta amd64 (20110906)
SourcePackage: unity
UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to precise on 2012-04-19 (37 days ago)

Achim (ach1m) wrote :
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in unity (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed

I've found that, even after the fix for bug #987304, some animations of unity are not smooth when sync to vsync is enabled. I posted a bug report about it (#1004251). Can that bug be related to this one?

Newfie (mn-newfie) wrote :

I just submitted this bug:

But, I just now discovered this report. Is my issue separate from this one or is it a duplicate? Hoping to be able to use Unity 3D in peace.

Changed in unity:
status: New → Confirmed
importance: Undecided → High
Changed in unity (Ubuntu):
importance: Undecided → High
Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Nicolás, yes indeed this is related to bug 1004251.

Compiz rendering is affected by all the plugins loaded. In Ubuntu 12.04, two changes occurred that seem to have slowed down rendering performance:
1. This Unity regression. Cause unknown as yet, but definitely confirmed. [bug 1005074]
2. The introduction of glFinish in the default opengl code path (to eliminate tearing). That slows down rendering somewhat, but should not slow down animations since bug 930192 was fixed in the final 12.04 release. [bug 1004251, bug 901097]

I have added a simple workaround to bug 1004251, which should improve performance for most people. That workaround bypasses bug 1004251 and should make the desktop experience smooth enough that you won't notice the Unity bottleneck (this bug) either any more.

But I would still very much like to figure out why compiz is so much slower when unityshell is loaded (this bug).

summary: - [unity] remaining performance problems
+ Slower frame rates with unityshell loaded, than plain compiz
Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Achim, could you please test downgrading unity to 5.8 as is described in bug 993942?

Achim (ach1m) wrote :

Daniel, this are my results with

  Installiert: 5.8.0-0ubuntu2
  Kandidat: 5.12-0ubuntu1.1
     5.12-0ubuntu1.1 0
        500 precise-proposed/main amd64 Packages
     5.12-0ubuntu1 0
        500 precise-updates/main amd64 Packages
     5.10.0-0ubuntu6 0
        500 precise/main amd64 Packages
 *** 5.8.0-0ubuntu2 0
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

1260 frames 25.7 seconds 49.0 fps 3.0/20.4/43.0/7.6 ms 5.8.0-0ubuntu2 50Hz
1260 frames 25.9 seconds 48.7 fps 3.0/20.5/40.0/7.3 ms 5.8.0-0ubuntu2 60Hz

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Achim, so no improvement with Unity 5.8 by the looks of it?...

Achim (ach1m) wrote :

Daniel, yes no improvement.

Changed in unity:
milestone: none → 5.16.0
Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

I think issues with game and graphics benchmark performance for lots of people should be dramatically improved by this:

However even if that proves to solve this bug, I would still like to find and fix the offending unity code too.

Daniel van Vugt (vanvugt) wrote :

Now tracking in bug 988079. So this is a duplicate.

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