PC World: Boost Your Penguin Power

They call it recompiling your kernel. Just think of it as a
way to get the most out of Linux.

“Do you want to make your Linux PC run even better than it
already does? You’re probably not experiencing any performance or
stability problems–Linux has earned its reputation as a rock-solid
OS, after all–but there’s at least one Linux power-user trick you
should be aware of. Recompiling your Linux kernel may sound about
as fun as a root canal, but it’s a relatively simple process that
leaves you with a leaner, faster Linux system. How? A smaller
kernel–the very nucleus of the OS–takes less time to boot, takes
up less space in memory, and rids you of system components you
simply don’t need.”

“Let’s get more specific: At the heart of Linux is the
kernel–the core code that controls every aspect of your system,
divvying up resources to programs and coordinating the flow of data
to and from your computer’s hardware and peripherals. Unlike the
Windows kernel, Linux’s kernel is completely configurable. You can
add and remove support for various types of hardware, optimize the
kernel for your particular processor, and more.”