Windows or Linux - Views on Pure Performance Please

Ignoring UX, security, updates, what you think of JACK, which OS is more of a pain in the neck etc…

Is there a significant difference in Rack performance in one OS or the other?

a. At the fundemental level e.g. better use of CPU/cores?

b. At the level of Windows (Deskop) spends half it’s time going and updating things, running Cortana, and Linux doesn’t, or can be configured not to.

And yes I know the OS question has been asked before here, with lots of considerations like culture, loving Linux, hating Windows and all that. All valid considerations, but putting that to one side.


from my experience with tuning on the low end for the sonaremin i would say linux can be setup to use its ressources most efficiently - i guess it will be a bit better than windows in a normal setup and i was even able to get a few percent more performance out of it by reducing things even further, i.e. very minimal window manager (even below xfce etc.) and number of running processes … i think windows is more like running linux with kde or gnome and you’ll get a significant boost in performance already by using xfce or a similar lightwight desktop and you have everything at your hands to go even further …


I dual boot, windows 10 and ubuntu 20.4, and the short answer, no operating system shows notable performance gains.

Linux does show marginally lower cpu usage using F3, but both os’s have about the same capabilities before I get dropouts in respect to patch size. Fan noise is also lower when using ubuntu and the CPU temperature is steady.

While it is possible to improve the performance under Linux, as @hexdump mentions, I have found this to be a time consuming route.


VCV spends very little time in the operating system, and lot of time processing audio in VCV and in the modules. You wouldn’t expect a huge difference in performance between operating systems. Sone difference, sure…


linux can certainly be tweaked a lot better for low resource usage and performance. but, as @Squinky indicated, how much of that will be noticeable as to vcv rack performance on a decent modern system is questionable.

but, if you want to try, i suggest you dive deep and learn how to build your own gentoo system, with just the elements you need to make it really lean.


I compiled the process here

following this guide take less than ten minutes

(also, I m about to edit and update that guide , I ll appreciate whatever advice to improve it )


Thanks everyone, that’s what I wanted to know. Sounds like it’s the realm of my ‘B’ list - not radical but some improvements to be gained by using linux and optimising it.

And thanks for this David, that looks super-helpful!