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Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Phoromatic Tracker Launches To Monitor Linux Performance

Michael Larabel

Published on 16 December 2009
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 2 of 2 - 10 Comments

Phoromatic Tracker provides a whole new set of tools for any Linux / BSD / OpenSolaris / Mac OS X developer to utilize. While we only have one reference implementation that is public right now, any Phoromatic user can utilize the private Phoromatic Tracker immediately. If you have been using Phoromatic already and running a test schedule on a routine basis, simply go to the Test Schedules page within your Phoromatic account and then click on the Tracker link within the results column. This will allow you to access Phoromatic Tracker for your results using the same set of features found in our public implementations. In the coming weeks all Phoromatic users will be given the ability to "open up" their tracker interfaces to the public from their Phoromatic account.

In other words, you can do what we are doing with Fedora Rawhide and the Linux Kernel, except for any project you wish -- graphics drivers, compilers, whatever! You can do so already right now and begin collecting the test results on Phoromatic and then soon as the option is enabled to allow public access to your results, everything will be there and working. Again, with as many systems as you wish and any tests that you want. Any test profile written for the extensible Phoronix Test Suite interface is automatically compatible with Phoromatic, Phoromatic Tracker, and all other components of ours. This automated Phoromatic testing also follows all other Phoronix Test Suite features like running tests multiple times to ensure accuracy and steps to ensure statistical significance.

The kernel tracker actually caused us to launch this new Phoromatic extension about three weeks ahead of schedule. There is only two weeks worth of data collected on the kernel tracker at this time, but there are already multiple regressions being found within the Linux 2.6.33 kernel. Just head on over to kernel-tracker.phoromatic.com and then set the results range to all available data, and get ready to be surprised. There are many unresolved regressions at present. We have not had the time or resources to look into all of the regressions being found, but another feature we introduced to the Phoronix Test Suite this quarter is the ability to autonomously find performance regressions down to the very code commit at hand. We previously demonstrated this feature, which leverages the Phoronix Test Suite atop git-bisect (though other revision control systems can also be supported) in an automated manner, to locate the commit in the Linux 2.6.32 kernel that caused a significant performance drop in the EXT4 file-system. In the near future, it will be quite possible to control this bisecting and carry out meticulous performance tracking all from Phoromatic.

Another feature coming to Phoromatic shortly is the ability to download all of the system logs (dmesg, Xorg.0.log, lspci, etc) and raw test output all through the Phoromatic Tracker interface. Right now, this is not in place due to limited bandwidth with this free Phoromatic service. Of course, Phoromatic isn't limited to just building benchmarking test farms either, but can be used for simply benchmarking a few systems remotely -- as I showed earlier this year when benchmarking Linux systems in the US from Italy.

All of this work right now is hosted at Phoromatic.com, but enterprise customers of the Phoronix Test Suite and professional services clients do have access to this source code for local installations on corporate intranets. I would really love to fully open-source Phoromatic, including the Phoromatic Tracker, if there are any companies or other organizations willing to sponsor its public development. This can become a very valuable tool for developers both publicly and privately. In 2010, this feature set is only going to be expanded and become much more powerful when the "phoralysis" engine is announced and other key milestones reached.

Head on over to Phoromatic.com to try out this service or stop by Phoronix-Test-Suite.com to use our leading, open-source, multi-platform benchmarking software. Comments, feedback, and commercial inquiries are always welcome.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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