Windows 11 WSL 2 versus Ubuntu 21.10 performance

by Don Sharpe
Don Sharpe
Don Sharpe
Don has been writing professionally for over 10 years now, but his passion for the written word started back in his elementary school days. His work has been... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Windows 11 and Ubuntu 21.10 are scheduled to be released this month.
  • Tests performed show that the two operating systems are similar in performance.
  • Similar hardware was used for the tests.

With only a few days remaining until the release of Windows 11 and Ubuntu 21.10 on October 5 and October 14 respectively, Phoronix decided to test and compare the two operating systems and from the results, it seems that they are on the same wavelength.

The tests

Phoronix put to test three systems; Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 (WSL 2) in Windows 11 system, Ubuntu 21.10 and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. in the test equipment, similar hardware was used which included;

  • Windows 11 Build 22454
  • AMD Ryzen 9 5900X
  • GeForce RTX 3090
  • 16GB memory (8GB for WSL).
  • WD Black SN850 1TB (2 275GB virtual disks of WSL)


When compared to Ubuntu, it seems that WSL 2 on Windows 11 performs exceptionally well under moderate CPU-intensive conditions. The conditions change when the CPU is overloaded or the memory and I/O system come into play. This causes the system to lag.

In the Nginx web server benchmark test, WSL 2 on Windows 11, seems to take the lead by a significant margin, beating Ubuntu 21.10 and 20.04 LTS. In the 130 tests performed, it was found that Windows 11 WSL 2 is up to 6-7% slower than Ubuntu 21.10. The percentage goes lower for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

It is important to note that the tests performed were for the Windows 11 Dev channel version hence its performance may be slightly different from the Windows 11 public version set to be released on October 5.

If you wish to find a more detailed evaluation, you can visit here.

What do you think of the performance metrics for the two operating systems? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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