In a recent story on SearchEnterpriseLinux.com, we reported that Windows Server 2008 eked out a narrow 2-watt power savings over Ubuntu 8.04 Long Term Support. The findings emitted some sparks of protest from Ubuntu fans. The latest is from Fred Marsico, the chief technology officer of Quantum Mechanics R&D in Corvallis, Ore., and a Ubuntu desktop user.
Like another reader who responded to the story but preferred to remain anonymous, Marsico said the test would have been more meaningful if it had compared energy use while the servers were active rather than in idle mode and if the test had been done on multiple hardware platforms instead of just one. We agree in principle with Marsico, but once you open the door to testing on different applications, the task would be endless. (This doesn’t mean Marsico is wrong, of course.)
Michael Larabel, the editor of the Phoronix website that tests Linux hardware, was kind enough to add a test of the respective servers in time for our story. No one claims the test is definitive. But its results were surprising, given Windows’ reputation for bloatware and Linux’s for minimalist agility.
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