March 01, 2010 -- At Phoronix we have been benchmarking the Linux kernel on a daily basis using Phoromatic Tracker, a sub-component of Phoromatic and the Phoronix Test Suite. We launched our first system in the Linux kernel testing farm just prior to the Linux 2.6.33 kernel development cycle and found a number of notable regressions during the past three months. Now with the Linux 2.6.34 kernel development cycle getting into swing, we have added an additional two systems to our daily kernel benchmarking farm. One of the systems is an Atom Z520 system but what makes it more interesting is that the system is using a Btrfs file-system and then the second new system added to the kernel tracker is a 64-bit setup. However, to provide a historical look at the Linux kernel performance, we have ran some fresh benchmarks going back to the Linux 2.6.24 kernel and ending with the recently released Linux 2.6.33 kernel.
February 25, 2010 -- In December we wrote that Ubuntu 10.04 already shortened the boot time, which has been a great focus amongst Canonical and Ubuntu developers as they strive for a ten second boot. A lot has changed since that article was published last year, including the introduction of Plymouth and many kernel mode-setting improvements along with the introduction of Nouveau for NVIDIA KMS support. We've ran a new boot performance comparison on two laptops and a netbook as we see how the boot times are looking with Ubuntu 10.04 LTS when compared to Ubuntu 9.10. We have also looked at how the power consumption has changed in the Lucid Lynx for these mobile devices.
February 21, 2010 -- This weekend at the Southern California Linux Expo in Los Angeles, Matthew Tippett and I presented a talk entitled Five Stages of Benchmark Loss: PTS and You. In this hour-long talk, we covered Linux benchmarking, what has been learned over the years of benchmarking at Phoronix, the Phoronix Test Suite, and the five stages that users and developers generally go through when they lose out on benchmarking results. For those that were unable to attend this event, here are the slides and recordings.
February 19, 2010 -- Last month we published benchmarks of EXT4 comparing this file-system's performance when it was first marked stable in the mainline kernel and then where it is at now in the Linux kernel while testing every major release in between. This article was followed up by a Btrfs versus EXT4 comparison using the Linux 2.6.33 kernel to see how the two most talked about Linux file-systems are battling it out with the latest kernel. After those Linux file-system benchmarks were published, we received a request from Canonical to look at the EXT3 performance too. With that said, we have done just that and have published EXT3, EXT4, and Btrfs benchmarks from Ubuntu 9.10 and a Ubuntu 10.04 development snapshot from an Intel Atom netbook.
February 02, 2010 -- Phoronix Media has announced the immediate release of Phoronix Test Suite 2.4 (codenamed "Lenvik"), as the latest update to their open-source testing framework that delivers immediate and measurable advantages to its customers. The Phoronix Test Suite 2.4 software is compatible with a greater number of operating systems, introduces support for mobile platforms, offers a new range of test profiles, and other features to further solidify its premiere position within the computer benchmarking industry.
January 21, 2010 -- Earlier this week we published extensive benchmarks of EXT4 that looked at the performance of this Linux file-system under every major kernel release since it was declared stable in the Linux 2.6.28 release. EXT4 has encountered many significant performance losses over time as its developers batten up the data security, but there have been some improvements too. At the same time though the developers working on the still-experimental Btrfs file-system continue to move along and push forward changes with each kernel cycle. Just last month we delivered Btrfs comparative benchmarks using the Linux 2.6.32 kernel, but already out of our own personal interest and requests from readers, we have new tests atop the latest Linux 2.6.33 kernel.
January 19, 2010 -- Over the past week there has been a lot of talk about the EXT4 file-system following the announcement that Google is migrating their EXT2 file-systems to EXT4. Their reasons for this transition to EXT4 are attributed to the easy migration process and Google engineers are pleased with this file-system's performance. However, as we mentioned in that news post last week and in many other articles over the past weeks and months, EXT4 is not as great of a contender as it was in the past, well, for some tests at least. The performance of the EXT4 file-system commonly goes down with new kernel releases and not up, as kernel developers continue to introduce new safeguards to address potential data loss problems that initially plagued some EXT4 users. For our latest EXT4 benchmarks we have numbers that show this file-system's performance using a vanilla 2.6.28 kernel (when EXT4 was marked as stable) and then every major kernel release up through the latest Linux 2.6.33 release candidate.
January 02, 2010 -- For those that may have forgot, at the start of December we launched the Phoronix Kernel Test Farm to begin benchmarking the Linux kernel on a daily basis using the automated tools that we provide via the Phoronix Test Suite and Phoromatic. Towards the middle of December we then unveiled the Phoromatic Tracker, which exposes these test results in real-time to the public. Well, it's now been a month of monitoring the kernel's performance and the entire Linux 2.6.33 kernel development cycle thus far, with many interesting findings.
January 01, 2010 -- With 2009 having come to an end, here are the twelve most popular articles and news stories that were published on Phoronix in 2009. Over 230 original articles and 880 news stories were published on Phoronix.com in 2009.
December 16, 2009 -- Last month Phoromatic went into public beta, which is our remote test management software for the Phoronix Test Suite that allows a wealth of possibilities including the ability to easily build a benchmarking test farm. At the start of this month, we in fact announced that the Phoronix Kernel Test Farm went live and it would be benchmarking the latest mainline Linux kernel on a daily basis. This was followed by the addition of a system in our test farm to benchmark the latest Fedora Rawhide packages on a daily basis. We had not intended to begin pushing out these results publicly through a new web-site until next year, but we have already collected some interesting metrics that are documenting active regressions within the Linux 2.6.33 kernel. As a result, this morning we are rolling out Phoromatic Tracker, the public interface to our test farm.