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Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

It's Now Your Turn To Benchmark The Web Browser

Phoronix

Published on 29 August 2011 09:25 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Phoronix
34 Comments

It's now time for you to benchmark your web-browser. The test is simple, just takes a few moments, and will affect your browsing experience at Phoronix.com. The long-awaited SVG-driven result graphs, tables, and other media will soon be rolled out, so make sure it works for your system.

Back when OpenBenchmarking.org was rolled out in February, I mentioned there would be the ability to easily embed test results, system software/hardware information, and other data on other web-sites. For example, interactive result charts could be embedded onto Phoronix.com. While the code has been done for a while, over the weekend (which just happened to be its six month anniversary), I finished some tweaks and am nearing ready to roll it out.

What this means is that on future Phoronix articles, rather than standard PNG images for the graphs, there will now be SVG-based graphs that are interactive. The interactivity right now is mostly limited to mouse-overs for more information, the ability to click on various items to view more information on OpenBenchmarking.org, etc. However, more features will come once everything else is settled.

These new graphs will be served in all supported web-browsers (all modern versions of Firefox, Chrome/Chromium, MSIE 9, Safari, etc should work) when JavaScript is enabled. If running an old browser or without JavaScript, OpenBenchmarking.org should fall-back to providing a static PNG image.

Besides basic interactivity, the SVG graphs are scalable and better quality, should result in faster page loads (the bilde_renderer drawing library is outputting SVG graphs on average around ~4KB where as the same PNGs are 20~30KB), and just all-around better.

Besides the graphs, the system tables can also be embedded, so they will also be used on Phoronix.com. This has been a long sought after feature by many Phoronix readers. Below should be an embedding example.


Or overview charts...


To see that your web browser will continue providing a pleasant experience when browsing Phoronix, go to this page where there is a number of OpenBenchmarking.org graphs embedded for testing purposes.

What you need to be checking for is that -- if in a modern browser with JavaScript -- that SVG is being served. The only caveats where SVG support is black-listed is when using KDE's Konqueror and HP's webOS browser, as both seem to incorrectly handle SVG embeds. If not, a static PNG version should be served. The PNG renderer isn't 1:1 the same as SVG, but should be close. When SVG is being served, also ensure that everything appears to render correctly. The only caveats to the SVG rendering that I am aware of is when using Opera, the text alignment for some items are off by a few pixels as Opera's renderer isn't correctly handling a few attributes like other web browsers.


This work is powered by the bilde_renderer and pts_Graph components I designed for the Phoronix Test Suite. The bilde_renderer is a drawing library with a single API that can seamlessly target SVG, SVGZ, PNG, GIF, JPEG, and Adobe SWF formats. The pts_Graph library provides all the graphing needs for OpenBenchmarking.org and the Phoronix Test Suite.

Be sure to test these embedded graphs in your web browser(s) as soon as possible and provide feedback via e-mail or through the Phoronix Forums if there is any issues or feedback concerning areas for improvement with these visuals. When providing feddback it's critical that you provide your HTTP user-agent string (it's shown on the example page, e.g. Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:6.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/6.0). I plan to begin rolling out these new graphs live on Phoronix within the next week or two. Again, here is the test page.

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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