Does Snow Leopard Actually Downgrade Performance?

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Snow Leopard is being widely touted as a performance increase, but the OS upgrade resulted in a 10-15% performance DECREASE on both my Mac Pro as well as my MacBook Pro — at least, according to the Xbench benchmarking tool.

Now of course, that could just be things that Xbench measures, perhaps it doesn’t account or provide sufficient weight for multi-threading, and multi-tasking. But we would like to get to the bottom of this, and are asking for your help.

If you followed our handy dandy upgrade guide you ought so still have a functioning Leopard install to boot from. If so, please follow this testing protocol:

  1. Power down your machine until cool.
  2. Boot Leopard, and kill all running applications
  3. Run XBench All tests except the drive test**
  4. Upload results using the name: CoM – YOUR NAME – PRE (Uploading XBench results is part of the process. Once you’re done, it asks if you want to upload your results and what name to give it)

Use the same protocol with your Snow Leopard install, but name the result CoM – YOURNAME – POST.

Thanks in advance I’ll be releasing results in the next few days.

** Why no drive test? XBench places too much emphasis on hard drive performance, and in an era where all hard drives perform basically the same, it skews all performance tests to the center. Running the test without drives provides a better picture of the actual performance delta.