I would like to ask if there are some possibilities for speeding up Ubuntu a little. For example I do not need windows content to be visible while moving them, nor I need animations when launching the animations etc.

Thanks guys. I actually changed to ubuntu 2d and turned off everything there was to be found in bunch of tutorials. I was just wondering if it was possible to find some kind of options like that which are available for ex in windows: fit for best performance.

As for my graphics card I have ATI Radeon X2100 (integrated with mainboard). lspci | grep VGA writes that my card is found and compatibile. I have installed open source drivers, so I assume my card works, however when checking system properties it says that graphics card is undefined. So does it work or not? How to check it?

  • what graphics card do you have (lspci | grep VGA) - what CPU type are you using and how much RAM have you got. Have you any graphics drivers installed? – fossfreedom Dec 21 '11 at 12:19
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Does your system has enough hardware resources? You can use light weight desktop manager like LXDE instead of Gnome / Unity. If you still prefer using Gnome / Unity then, you can use it without any effects (you can choose these options from the login screen). That is, Unity 2D:

  • "Gnome" things only apply if you're using gnome-shell? What does that mean? – Jo-Erlend Schinstad Dec 21 '11 at 20:15

You can try a basic or light weight window manager such as Lubuntu (openbox + LXDE), Xubuntu, or fluxbox. If you are running Unity, you can run it in 2d.

I have a quick guide on Fluxbox here :


You can find other, longer guides as well if you stay with fluxbox.

In general, of the ubuntu flavors, and performance of window managers :

Lubuntu > xubuntu > ubuntu > kubuntu

But, if you do a minimal instal, and install kde, and not kubuntu-desktop, kde is fast.

Ubuntu wiki Minimal Low Memory Systems

In my experience, with anything resembling modern hardware, changing window managers and turning off effects has little to modest effect on graphics performance.

Performance is most affected by the driver, the nvidia closed source driver performs better then the open source driver for example. As another example, the GMA500 runs gnome (2d), with all the effects I use (transparency, etc) faster on the psb_gfx driver then openbox with no effects using the uvesafb.

Other drivers can affect your hardware as well, including interestingly wireless drivers.


From your description, I think your Graphics driver is not properly installed. You can do it from system->administration->Additional Drivers. You should get the "Catalyst control centre" in System->Preferences after that.

Installing the ATI driver makes a huge difference to performance from my experience. There are a few other things as well that you can try out to make ubuntu faster like removing unwanted startups, setting CONCURRENCY to shell and moving /tmp to RAM. Here's something to start - http://www.skipser.com/p/2/p/speed-up-ubuntu.html

If you really can't get your ATI driver working, make sure you disable all desktop effects. Setting it to NONE will make kompiz go light on CPU.


apart from above answers u can do the following it helped me a lot : install Preload can drastically improve your overall Ubuntu Unity performance. Preload monitors applications that users run, and by analyzing this data, predicts what applications users might run, and fetches those binaries and their dependencies into memory for faster startup times. The only downside is that, installing Preload sometimes results in an increase of system boot time. There was a slight increase but nothing significant as far as I am concerned. to install Preload it is in Ubuntu repositories by default so you can use synaptic package manager. or just type in ur terminal sudo apt-get install preload. and hit enter

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