Edit: Unfortunately, the images originally included in this post are gone, because of hosting problems in late 2009. My apologies.
My wild enthusiasm for Debian has abated somewhat after installing a Gnome desktop again, this time with the testing netinst ISO. Performance is much worse, and so it falls closer to Ubuntu, and farther away from the speed demon I got with the Sarge desktop.
It also has a small slew of quirks that I didn’t see in the earlier version. It claims it can’t find the network, for instance, even though I’m very much online and have net access. It also has that same slow-motion feel that Ubuntu has, and not surprisingly, looks a lot like it too.
Bootwise it’s nothing to crow about — startup rolls in around two minutes-plus, with a bootchart that’s very similar to the one I posted for Hardy. The two are not so dissimilar after all.
It’s a little disappointing, since I thought I had come across something that could challenge Crux, at least for ease of use, even if performance didn’t approach it.
But it does illustrate, to me at least, that much of Ubuntu’s weight gain is genetic — it inherits some of its bloat from its ancestor — the newer one, that is. I would still like to take a closer look at Sarge again, which seemed to have none of the issues of its newer cousin, and was a serious performer.