Linux gurus toy with Android ICS, make a 100% faster Linaro build and slap it on the Galaxy Nexus

Linux gurus toy with Android ICS, make a 100% faster Linaro build and slap it on the Galaxy Nexus
Some Linux programmers decided to dig deep into the latest Android Ice Cream Sandwich source code, and came up with a new version called Linaro. What was the purpose? To optimize the heck out of the code, clean it up and achieve up to twice faster performance than stock ICS.

Moreover, the Linaro distro of Android 4.0 has attracted the attention of the CyanogenMod crew, and we all know what happens then. The end result is a CM9 nightly build with Linaro running on a Galaxy Nexus, which is chewing through synthetic benchmarks like a beaver through pretzels.

Owners of a Verizon or а GSM Galaxy Nexus can take it for a spin from the source link, but what chunks of that code will end up in the CM9 source code for the main release and when will it be ready is up to the CyanogenMod guys. 

The Linaro creators say there's only so much you can do with software spring cleaning, though, so they give us a glimpse of porting the build over for Cortex-A15 processors and the respective performance leap. Hopefully Google's software engineers will be taking a peek at Linaro's optimizations as well, as it seems that the ground work has been done for them already.

source: Reddit via AndroidPolice



1. hung2900

Posts: 966; Member since: Mar 02, 2012

If Google upgrades it, Apple will sue them anyway because of the big leap compared to crap iOS 6.

2. mercorp

Posts: 1045; Member since: Jan 28, 2012

Are you crazy?

12. thunderising

Posts: 232; Member since: Nov 25, 2011

You're still asking that?

3. pokharkarsaga

Posts: 561; Member since: Feb 23, 2012

thats what actually android should be,a hardware optimizer os and not the hardware junk os.bad news for wp and ios. android now 100% faster than wp and ios and itself.fastest os of all time.still much can be done in android.

4. SprintPower

Posts: 74; Member since: Dec 29, 2008

holy critburgers! Lazy Google bastages better get off their overpaid backsides and clean up the dang code!

5. ibap

Posts: 872; Member since: Sep 09, 2009

Let me guess - bloatware removal alone accounted for half of the speedup?

6. toaster

Posts: 114; Member since: Sep 13, 2011

GNex has no bloat.

7. Retro-touch unregistered

You beat me to it and furthermore why would CM9 include bloatware in the first place, really highlighting your ignorance, I didn't know optimizing code meant removing some apks (apps)!!! dumbass

9. PackMan

Posts: 277; Member since: Mar 09, 2012

Nice try at trolling Mr. iFap.

8. tedkord

Posts: 17512; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

This looks interesting, google should definitely give it a look. On the flipside, I've read in the forums that users who've installed the cm9 linaro build actually saw their synthetic bench's drop. I remember on fellow stated his quads dropped 400 points from the official cm9. I hope it is as golden as the devs state, and that google then incorporates it into the next update. Like I've always said, dev community > corporate programmers.

25. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

benchmarks mean nothing - it is the user experience that counts - does the phone UI feel more responsive? Fast processing of requests such as going on the browser? Might be worth trying as you can always go back to what you had.

27. JGuinan007

Posts: 699; Member since: May 19, 2011

Depends on what benchmark was used linaro does nothing for GPU the code optimized was only for CPU as the guy said.

10. AbhiD

Posts: 885; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

Yesterday everyone just bashed what intel said abt android..., but now this is a proof to all those that android is actually a half baked OS which could run twice better than actual if optimized properly by google. And all this points out that android isn't just fully ready for those HEXA CORE OR OCTA CORE processors...

11. XiphiasGladius

Posts: 813; Member since: Aug 21, 2011

Even at a half baked state it is still arguably better than the competition. . .

13. AbhiD

Posts: 885; Member since: Apr 06, 2012

Yeah, it's better than competition in terms of freedom and customization not in pure performance or fluidness

14. iamcc

Posts: 1319; Member since: Oct 07, 2011

I can tell you my Galaxy Nexus is pretty fluid... I actually didn't notice much of a difference after installing a linaro ROM.

16. XiphiasGladius

Posts: 813; Member since: Aug 21, 2011

To what device are you referring to anyways? Lumia 900 vs. Galaxy Y? or was it iPhone 4s vs. LG Optimus One? geez. . .

26. tedkord

Posts: 17512; Member since: Jun 17, 2009 That's my single-core Thunderbolt with Gingerbread. Notice it's a fluid and smooth and fast as any iPhone. That's the last generation Android version, with only a single core CPU and old GPU. And a really memory hoggy UI in Sense.

15. BrandT

Posts: 9; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

AOKP also has a test build of Linaro with their latest build 38.

17. lzsbleach

Posts: 155; Member since: May 20, 2012

Personally I think things are not going to get any better for the iphone, they are basically at there limit. But Android has so much ahead of them and probably far away from there limit, theres still alot of room for improvement. We all know what happens to mobile Os's when there at there limit right, they wont go far.

24. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Judging by the new IOS 6 coming out, I agree with you...

18. Fuego84

Posts: 357; Member since: May 13, 2012

I think thats Google's game plan with android, I mean what sells more of a product than to claim its new version of the OS is better than the previous one.

19. jove39

Posts: 2149; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Think I'll sell my sgs2 for gnex :)

20. tedkord

Posts: 17512; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

ToThis isn't all that uncommon. Modern coding is usually not well optimized and cleaned up. Back in the days when computers had a few kilobytes of memory and no hard drives, programs had to be compact. With modern devices, that's no longer a concern. And with something large like an operating system, where dozens of different sections are each coded by a different group, and tied together by other groups, you have a lot of inefficiency. This has been a concern for many years, I remember reading an article about it at least a decade ago. Any large program (game, operating system, etc...) will be rife with unoptimized coding and bloat.

21. ilia1986 unregistered

This is why Android will never die. Community >>>>> Corporation. That's right.

22. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

i love what the mod community can do with already great software. I really hope El Goog takes a look at this and sees where they can integrate code. If nothing else, with Cyanogenmod taking a look at it, that means Steve Kondik (Cyanogen) has his hands on it.. hopefully that means he can take it to samsung (he works there!) and get them to implement it on a Galaxy update. If its really that big of a difference, it needs to be spread around!

23. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

most ICS roms I have tried are faster than the carrier/manufacturer version - I hope I see a version of this for the DROID RAZR.

28. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

and better battery use. im at 40% battery after 1 day, 8 hrs with regular use including about 2 hrs of streaming music on my old SGS1. Get that out of a stock set up. :)

29. BattleBrat

Posts: 1476; Member since: Oct 26, 2011

My RAZR gets me battery life on par with that.

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