How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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pencilrocket
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How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Sun Oct 28, 2012 4:41 am

The memory usage is decreased around 14% and running proccess 25%. So I'm gonna upgrade OS to free up the resouces for DAW.

How is the official test report for the Windows RP & Release version?

We have been wanting more efficient resource management of Live itself, but at the moment we can free up some resouces by upgrading our several OS soon.

Thanks.
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UltimateOutsider
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by UltimateOutsider » Sun Oct 28, 2012 5:00 am

pencilrocket wrote:The memory usage is decreased around 14% and running proccess 25%. So I'm gonna upgrade OS to free up the resouces for DAW.
Could you clarify what you're talking about here? Are you saying that Win 8 uses fewer resources than Windows 7? Because that's not the case.

If you only install the apps and drivers needed to support a given PC's hardware, Windows 7 will consume less RAM on that same PC than Windows 8 (in other words, ignoring caching, Win 7 will give you more "available" RAM). Win 8 is slightly bigger. Also, Windows 8 might have slightly fewer core processes, but this is a trick- they moved a bunch of functionality from standalone processes into service hosts, where a single host process manages several services. So there's a slightly smaller number of processes listed in Task Manager, but some of those processes are actually doing a lot more. Resource usage (threads, handles, etc) is actually significantly higher on Windows 8 than Win 7.

But from your post, I'm not even sure if that's what you were trying to say.

pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Sun Oct 28, 2012 5:17 am

Win 8 uses fewer resources than Windows 7?
Yes as I said, OS itself uses 14% less memory. And I didn't mention in the first post but the text/shape/image rendering is faster on the 8.
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XSIMan
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by XSIMan » Sun Oct 28, 2012 2:23 pm

Does Win 8 load sampled instruments faster and use Less CPU for the same mix?
It's supposed to make battlefield 3 and other online games hack proof with its random memory thingy so that might be enough for me to upgrade. it's £24 to upgrade till the end of the year.

pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Mon Oct 29, 2012 4:36 am

Hey bumping. We are waiting some info.
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davepermen
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by davepermen » Mon Oct 29, 2012 4:50 pm

Testing of it is not yet over, and thus there is no official support yet. At least, that's what I've read in the help section somewhere.

@UltimateOutsider: quite wrong you are. It does use less resources, and is documented to do so. But whatever. A new windows faster and less resource hungry than the old one? not possible! blahblah :)


I use it together with live without problems, btw, since the first pre-beta release.
http://davepermen.net my tiny webpage, including link to bandcamp.

UltimateOutsider
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by UltimateOutsider » Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:15 pm

@davepermen - You're right, my info was out of date. I had done earlier tests with a pre-release Windows 8 build, and what I said in my post was accurate for that release.

Anyway, I've retested with the RTM build, and here are my current findings. Win 8 is indeed better, but only slightly so- and the lower process count is still a trick. :)

I did a head-to-head comparison between 64-bit Windows 7 Professional SP-1 and 64-bit Windows 8 Pro (RTM) on a Dell Latitude E6430. I did a fresh install of each operating system and only installed the following on both PCs:

- All Windows Update patches
- Dell Touchpad drivers
- Intel HD Graphics Driver
- Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Remote Debugger

I did not make any other customizations to the systems, so it’s a comparison of the default out-of-the-box Windows setup on equivalent Windows SKUs, with the same number of 3rd-party processes/services running.

Here’s the raw data:
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Observations:
- The smaller number of total processes on Windows 8 is due to an administrative change; they bundled more services into “host processes” which each manage multiple services. So Windows 8 lists nine fewer processes than Windows 7- but also shows nine more services!
- Windows 8 uses only 4.4% less RAM than Windows 7. I believe that all the people reporting that Win 8 uses 14-15% less are comparing a Windows 7 setup with tons of 3rd-party cruft installed to a pristine Win 8 install that hasn’t gathered any barnacles yet. Win 8 simply isn’t that big an improvement in terms of memory savings.
- I measured “power-on to desktop” because it was easy to start the stop watch at the same time I pressed the power button. This notebook takes around 13 seconds before it actually begins kicking off the OS install, so you can shave that much off of each score. Windows 8 boot time is 3 seconds faster than Win 7. Almost 8.5% faster than Win 7 if you shave off the 13 seconds for the hardware boot.
- I also monitored CPU usage in Process Explorer while the system was idle on both OSes. Windows 7 varied from 0%-0.77% CPU usage during this period, while Windows 8 regularly went from 0.00%-1.54%. Still not bad, but twice as busy as Win 7 when it was active.

There's also the matter of audio interface latency and DAW performance. Regarding audio interface latency, I did round-trip latency tests on four different interfaces (MOTU PCIe-424, MOTU UltraLite-mk3 FW, NI Komplete Audio 6, and Virus TI Desktop interface mode), and the results were virtually identical across operating systems. In terms of actual interface performance on Win 8, however, (how many plugins and notes of polyphony the interface could support before audio broke down), the MOTU interfaces stumbled pretty hard on Win 8 whereas the KA 6 and Virus ran pretty close to the same as on Win 7. I believe the performance differences are down to drivers, and MOTU has yet to adopt Win 8 as a supported environment, so beware. And yeah, that DPC Latency tool simply doesn’t work properly on Win 8 yet- an update is supposedly in the works.

Summary:
Windows 8 offers very modest resource usage improvements over Windows 7. There are some performance tweaks here and there that aren’t reflected in my observations, and results will vary by application. You should also keep in mind that very few hardware vendors have released Win 8 drivers yet, and I and others have observed wildly varying results on numerous devices that work great on Win 7 and don’t fare so well on Win 8. If you decide to test out Win 8, put it on a separate partition, or at least make a full, working backup of Windows 7 before attempting to upgrade.

Also, while there ARE some performance improvements in Win 8, none of them apply in any way to day-to-day DAW usage. DAW performance will be exactly the same as Win 7 at best, or if your drivers aren't Win 8-certified, it may suffer. Upgrade to Win 8 if you like the new UI, or the non-DAW related features it offers. But if the PC is primarily for making music... I don't see any compelling reason to upgrade at this point.

EDIT: I guess I should also mention that those Cakewalk/SONAR Windows 8 numbers were misleading; they were simply meter readings that said nothing about the DAW's ability to function. Actual DAW benchmarks of SONAR have shown that it performs exactly the same on Win 8 as on Win 7.
Last edited by UltimateOutsider on Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

H20nly
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by H20nly » Tue Oct 30, 2012 11:18 pm

UltimateOutsider wrote: Upgrade to Win 8 if you like the new UI, or the non-DAW related features it offers. But if the PC is primarily for making music... I don't see any compelling reason to upgrade at this point.
a pre-disposition to pain and frustration would be the only one i can think of.

even Apple are not capable of making a 100% painless OS release.

pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Wed Oct 31, 2012 1:15 am

@UltimateOutsider

Thanks for the report. But your result indeed shows Windows 8 uses 17% less amount of Ram than that of Window 7.
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UltimateOutsider
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by UltimateOutsider » Wed Oct 31, 2012 1:35 am

pencilrocket wrote:@UltimateOutsider

Thanks for the report. But your result indeed shows Windows 8 uses 17% less amount of Ram than that of Window 7.
By what math?

The 4.4% was actually what the 177MB MB is in relation to total physical RAM (3978MB).

Win 7's 2963MB available is 94.36 percent of Win 8's 3140MB available. That leaves a difference of 5.63% between the two values, if you want to measure it that way.

In either case, it's not 17%.

pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:17 am

(1015-838)/1015 X 100 = 17.4 [%]

8 uses 17.4% less resouces than 7 used according to your chart.
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pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:16 am

Ballmer bump

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pencilrocket
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by pencilrocket » Wed Nov 21, 2012 3:44 pm

Bill bump

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sporkles
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Re: How's the Windows 8 Compatibility?

Post by sporkles » Wed Nov 21, 2012 4:42 pm

davepermen wrote:Testing of it is not yet over, and thus there is no official support yet. At least, that's what I've read in the help section somewhere.

@UltimateOutsider: quite wrong you are. It does use less resources, and is documented to do so. But whatever. A new windows faster and less resource hungry than the old one? not possible! blahblah :)


I use it together with live without problems, btw, since the first pre-beta release.
Hey, nice to see you back, davepermen! :D

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