Less than two weeks ago Phoronix Test Suite 0.2.0 was released, which featured a number of profile updates, improved Linux hardware detection, and incorporating other feedback voiced by the initial users of this Linux benchmarking suite. Last Saturday version 0.2.1 was then released with initial support for PTS External Dependencies, a GLMark profile, GtkPerf profile, FRAC Benchmark profile, and other fixes. Continuing in an expedited development process, Phoronix Test Suite 0.3.0 has been released this morning with a number of major changes, including new test profiles and architectural improvements.
The two new test profiles added since Phoronix Test Suite 0.2.1 are for SPECViewPerf 9.0 and IOzone. SPECViewPerf is an OpenGL workstation benchmark that is quite reliable and is used in a number of Phoronix reviews while IOzone is a popular open-source hard-disk benchmarking program for measuring both read and write capabilities. In Phoronix Test Suite 0.3.0 are now 25 profiles and 9 test suites.
Linux hardware and software detection has been stabilizing quite well with the Phoronix Test Suite and now in this latest release the total disk space (of a single or multiple drivers) is now reported under the hardware section with the PTS test results. On the software side of things, common processes that could affect the test results (such as Compiz or Firefox) are now reported in the software section if they are in use while the tests are being executed.
The Phoronix Test Suite now attempts to shutdown the Linux screensaver while any tests are running. If this test suite is running on GNOME, the Phoronix Test Suite will attempt to shutdown the screensaver using GConf and then restore it upon test completion. For other desktop environments, right now xdg-screensaver reset will be called to (hopefully) interrupt any screensaver process prior to the test(s) commencing.
PTS External Dependencies had premiered in version 0.2.1 and in this latest release are some major improvements for detecting installed packages in a distribution-neutral fashion, supporting more packages, and there is initial Fedora packaging support. Right now Fedora and Ubuntu are the only Linux distributions with this External Dependencies support, and so we look for additional contributors to submit information on their distributions. Running phoronix-test-suite install-dependencies pts will also attempt to install additional dependencies for Phoronix Test Suite itself (such as the PHP GD library for local graph rendering). The install-dependencies argument is now automatically called when using the Phoronix Test Suite benchmark argument.
Another new feature in Phoronix Test Suite 0.3.0 is initial support for PTS Batch Mode. The batch mode will allow the Phoronix Test Suite to run with greater autonomy. Found in ~/.phoronix-test-suite/user-config.xml are batch mode options of whether to automatically save results, opening the web browser window with test results by default, and auto-uploading results by default. To run Phoronix Test Suite in a batch mode, instead of running say phoronix-test-suite benchmark universe, run phoronix-test-suite batch-benchmark universe. The batch-run argument is also supported.
On the PTS Global side of the Phoronix Test Suite, there is now support for adding tags when uploading your results. When opting to upload your results to PTS Global, you'll be prompted to enter any tags you wish to associate with the test results. The tags could be say the type of benchmarks (i.e. Linux audio tests) or the type of hardware (i.e. dual-core SMP benchmarks) or any other descriptors to identify your results. These tags will be used for better sorting and organizing the results. If your free software project wishes to use the Phoronix Test Suite for regression testing, by having your users enter the same tag(s) you can construct an RSS feed of all those results (coming soon). In the near future, we will also be introducing other exciting PTS Global features. For those graphic artists out there, we are looking for help.
This release does include a variety of other fixes and minor improvements. More information can be found on the Phoronix Test Suite website and can be downloaded here. We're still delivering the first stable release of Phoronix Test Suite "Trondheim" in early May so please test out this release and share your results in the PTS Forum as well as submitting any patches, test profiles, or other resources.