"Last month we looked at the cost of running Compiz by
means of looking at how the window manager affected the frame-rate
of several different games and whether compositing was used. We
also tested out several different drivers and pieces of hardware.
When Compiz was running rather than GNOME's Metacity it often
caused a measurable drop in the OpenGL performance and then we
later found this to be the case too with KDE's KWin. Today we are
seeing if and how using Mutter, the window manager for the GNOME
3.0 desktop that uses Clutter-based compositing, will affect the
performance of several different open-source games.
"Mutter is a key component along with the GNOME Shell for the
GNOME 3.0 desktop. Mutter has been in development since even before
the GNOME 2.28 release and was originally a fork of the GNOME 2.x
Metacity window manager that added in support for using the Clutter
tool-kit for providing the compositing support. Clutter in turn
uses OpenGL / OpenGL ES for providing hardware-accelerated
animations and effects. Metacity meanwhile is no longer being
actively developed aside from receiving bug-fixes. Mutter is
already available in many distribution repositories (such as Ubuntu
10.04 Lucid) for running as an alternate window manager with a
GNOME 2.28/2.30 desktop. To see how Mutter is affecting the
system's performance we had installed an Ubuntu 10.10 "Maverick
Meerkat" daily LiveCD from 2010-06-17 to look at the performance
with the latest packages."
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