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Author Topic: A tip for running Mandelbulb3D in linux  (Read 3395 times)
Description: don't use WINE
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miner49er
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« on: December 09, 2010, 06:22:50 PM »

Hi there, something I discovered last night whilst getting annoyed at the slowness of M3D under WINE in linux. I tried using an XP VM using the free VMWare player. It run MUCH faster or at least appeared to.

I wonder if Jesse will release the source for this wonderful program - it would be great to port it to linux! I will offer myself up for the job :-)
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kon16ov
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warep kon16ov
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2010, 10:37:38 PM »

It also seems to go a bit faster in VirtualBox -- as long as I remember to set it to use both cores...  I'm running them side by side (one in VM, one via WINE) and the speed is fairly comparable, but an edge goes to the VM.  I did notice that if you, for whatever reason, have QuickTime's sys tray thingo running, it bogs M3D down, horribly.  I killed it off and it sped things up considerably. 

How much processing power/RAM are you allocating to your VM?

(and, yeah, I'd love to run this native...  as long as it played well with MDZ and Mandelbulber, I'd be in heaven.  grin )

Phil
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kon16ov
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warep kon16ov
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2010, 03:45:22 AM »

Interestingly enough, I've found that WINE handles my...insanity...a little better than the VM.  By way of explanation, I tend to run silly amounts of fractal apps at once, which, for the most part means they're all kinda slow at times.

So, I loaded the XP VM w/512MB allocated and it ran M3D pretty fast.  I then loaded M3D in linux via WINE.  With them both running, the WINE-running version was grinding through frames much more quickly -- mainly in the hard shadow and ambient shadows, it seemed.  This is counter to my initial observations, but it was also 600+ frames in on both instances, so that may have been a confounding factor in some way.  Now, because I can't leave well enough alone, I loaded Mandelbulber up and started doinking around in it.  Everything got a bit pokey.

ps -aux revealed that the VM was slicing 50.2% of the load, MBulber 79% and M3D (in WINE) was running 109%.  Now, I know that we deal with some fun maths on this forum, but, to me, that's a little wonky.  What it DID tell me, though, was that it took a lot more thinking to get the WINE-run M3D to do what it was doing than a VM with an entire OS running in addition to M3D.  I go either way with Mandelbulber or MDZ as far as my "what to do when massive anims are generating..." passtimes, but both seem to allocate enough horsepower to slow down M3D in both instances.  I'm sure with some renicing, it will all come out in the wash, but I just found it interesting how the OS handled divvying up the processor power.  As for RAM consumption, both linux-side apps played very well, using ~0.5% of the RAM while the VM, of course, cruised in at 25% (2GB system...).

This may fall under either "vault of useless knowledge" or "too much free time," but your suggestion just got me thinking.  Now, to find someone to do the opposite -- running a linux VM with Mandelbulber and MDZ.  I'd like to hear what, if any, performance differences there are, in those cases.

Phil
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miner49er
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« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2010, 01:22:19 PM »

My machine is a P4 3GHz single core with 2Gig of memory, the VM is given 1Gig of memory.

It's so much quicker than WINE...

I might check out VBox - that can use VMware images can't it?
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kon16ov
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warep kon16ov
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2010, 10:38:06 PM »

Ah.  I'm running about the same, actually, specs-wise. 

What settings do you use as far as threading and such?

Yeah, VBox runs VMWare images. I find the VirtualBox is a little kinder, resource-wise, than VMWare, but might not have some of the refined optimizations, which might explain why you're seeing such an improvement in M3D's performance vs. WINE and I haven't really noticed much difference. 

Hmmm...
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