Bought a new machine so that I could move to the fast lane. Intel Core2Quad 8Gb of memory situated on a ASUS Maximus mobo, running openSUSE 10.3 x86_64.
Makes all the difference when profiling and compiling stuff.
Need to figure out how to setup my developer environment though, so have not had time to do much performance work on AB yet.
As soon as I sort it out, graphs will follow :-)