The next version of the Linux Kernel will be very noticeably faster on computers with limited memory.
Most “improvements” of certain unnamed operating systems (such as Microsoft Windows) involve more demand on hardware, so upgrades slow your computer down and eventually you have to throw it out and buy a new one.
It is not the primary objective for Linux to make each major improvement include improved rather than degraded performance, but it is a side effect of excellent OpenSource engineering.
Currently desktop software slows down when its path jumps to a part of the code that is not cached in memory and needs to be paged-in from disk. That can be caused by poor memory management that doesn’t scale all that well in the desktop environment.
In Linux kernel version 2.6.31, developers have added some heuristics to make it much harder for ‘mapped executable pages’ to get moved out of the list of active pages.
The kinds of improvements expected are huge, like fifty percent increases in speed or better on low memory machines.
Hat Tip: Virgil Samms