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Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

Hardware

Published on 16 July 2012 10:59 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware
8 Comments

When it comes to advancing Linux and open-source benchmarking, a number of breakthroughs are on the horizon with the Phoronix Test Suite and OpenBenchmarking.org.

In recent days, a number of enhancements have been committed to the open-source Phoronix Test Suite software and the OpenBenchmarking.org collaborative web-based platform. One of the latest OpenBenchmarking.org features is that -- in conjunction with the Phoronix Test Suite pts-core engine -- it can now determine and track for any test profile what CPU instruction set extensions can be taken advantage of (e.g. AVX, FMA4, SSE4, etc) on advanced Intel/AMD x86_64 CPUs, what OpenGL extensions a program actually uses, and what libraries are dynamically linked to from a given test binary.

For now with this data it's being exposed via the OpenBenchmarking.org web-site on select test profile pages -- e.g. OpenSSL, John-The-Ripper, x264, and C-Ray. So this allows more information when you are manually deciding what tests to run, but this is moving in the direction of the Phoronix Test Suite being able to query from OpenBenchmarking.org what tests should be run depending upon what component(s) you are wanting to test and the installed hardware/software.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

The Phoronix Test Suite and OpenBenchmarking.org already track and compare the CPU instruction sets supported between different processors (e.g. the details reported when searching for a processor) and going forward if say you wanted to benchmark your CPU, OpenBenchmarking.org will be able to make intelligent recommendations from the growing list of test profiles on what would be good tests to run to best stress the processor. The instruction set monitoring is in addition to already tracking what test profiles are multi-threaded friendly, etc.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

Aside from pro-actively making test recommendations based upon the installed hardware, we're also working in the direction for OpenBenchmarking.org being able to provide automated notes on test results (e.g. when performing a CPU comparison, to explain a possible difference in performance for a processor test result, if that test is able to generate instructions that benefit one of the compared CPUs but not the other, note that for the user as a possible explanation for the difference). With the tracking of what OpenGL extensions are being used, the same logic will also become applicable to graphics cards and graphics drivers.

More work in this area will be happening to the Phoronix Test Suite and OpenBenchmarking.org in the coming weeks and months. Like with most everything in the Phoronix Test Suite, this determining of instruction set use, OpenGL extensions, shared library use, etc is all done automatically and in a turn-key manner without requiring extra input from users or test profile creators.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

Also enhanced on the side of the OpenBenchmarking.org web interface are minor enhancements to the test profile pages, beyond the aforementioned details. There's been slight reformatting of the page with more icons to make it more user-friendly, restructuring of some text, and screenshots are also beginning to appear where relevant. During the Phoronix Test Suite auditing process of OpenBenchmarking.org test profiles, in an automated manner, if the screen contents are changing while a benchmark is running, screenshots will be automatically taken during this special audit process. Again, this is done in an automated manner for test profile creators without needing to update their test profiles or manually upload screenshots of their test.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

Also committed recently is the beginning of search enhancements to OpenBenchmarking.org to provide faster and more relevant results. More on this will be coming in the coming days and next few weeks as additional optimizations are made. Various other algorithms are also being revised.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

On the client side for Phoronix Test Suite 4.0, there is a new PTS Results Viewer interface. The new interface is more visually rich than the earlier PTS3 interface and also begins to unify the color palette and theme that's shared by the OpenBenchmarking.org interface.

Nearing Autonomous Linux Benchmark Selections

To go with the new PTS Results Viewer interface and the forthcoming release of Phoronix Test Suite 4.0, as of this morning there's also a new Phoronix-Test-Suite.com web-site with a new theme that works towards unifying the Phoronix / OpenBenchmarking.org brand as well as new and updated content on the benchmarking software's web-site.

Since Phoronix Test Suite 4.0 Milestone 4, in the Git repository there's been many other enhancements and fixes for the 4.0-Suldal release. Right now the plan is to make the official Phoronix Test Suite 4.0-Suldal release next week.

Stay tuned for more forthcoming improvements to the Phoronix Test Suite and OpenBenchmarking.org. As always, feature requests, suggestions, and other comments on this Linux/BSD/Windows/Solaris software is 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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