Use a lightweight window manager instead of GNOME (or
Smaller footprint window managers and desktop
environments drastically reduce graphical boot time, compared to the standard Ubuntu desktop
One of our favorite lightweight desktop environments is
is a free
software desktop environment which aims to be fast and lightweight, yet
at the same time being attractive and easy to use. Its configuration is
entirely mouse-driven and the configuration files are hidden from the
desktop user. It is based on the GTK+ 2.x toolkit (like GNOME).
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is lightweight and fast, and is not bloated by little-used
features and options. This helps to reduce the time to takes to get to
a usable desktop. Of course, Xfce
does not only offer the advantage of faster bootup time. The
enviroment has support for GNOME
panel applets, has a very intuitive interface, comes with a minimal set
of applications (but
sufficient for most purposes - the file manager is particulary good),
attractive, and importantly is frugal on RAM.
So, with Xfce
you end up with a system that is not only quicker
to boot, but also quicker to perform your daily tasks. A win win
The final tip is certainly not for the faint of heart.
If you have a long weekend available and really want to get
to the heart of your Ubuntu box, why not build a kernel which is
tailored specifically to meet your requirements?
By only enabling the modules and drivers you need, the
boot time of your system will be reduced. The added benefit is that
this will also optimise the
kernel to the user's actual requirements. However, we recognise
that for many Linux users this tip will be one step too far.
Nevertheless, compiling the kernel is a good learning experience if you
want to get under the bonnet of Linux.
To learn how to recompile the kernel, we would suggest
that you review the information at Ubuntu's website, https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Kernel/Compile.
There is an excellent project called KernelCheck which
is designed to automatically build any 2.6 kernel from the upstream
source. KernelCheck can help users fix hardware problems and improve
boot time by customising the kernel configuration. KernelCheck
is a graphical user interface program designed to make the
kernel-compiling process as easy.
Unfortunately at the time of writing kernel.org has removed the files
used by KernelCheck to retrieve the latest kernel
information. The upshot of this is that KernelCheck cannot currently be
used, although its developer is currently investigating.
Kernelcheck is definitely worth keeping an eye on. Its
website is kcheck.sourceforge.net.
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