Coming Soon: Live

Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems on 13 May 2011 at 10:55 AM EDT. Page 1 of 1. 3 Comments.

To be paired with the release of Phoronix Test Suite 3.2-Grimstad later in the quarter will be the release of Live, which is a new incarnation of our PTS Desktop Live Linux distribution. For those not familiar with PTS Desktop Live, our Live DVD/USB Linux environment completely standardizes the software stack so that enthusiasts or organizations wishing to carry out benchmarks can do so to directly compare hardware differences by eliminating all Linux software differences. It is also one easy way to try out benchmarking under Linux since it is just a matter of booting the DVD/USB drive and the testing environment is pre-configured. With Live, we are taking PTS Desktop Live one big step further.

The last PTS Desktop Live release was 2010.1 "Anzhofen" as the successor to PTS Desktop Live 2009.3 "Gernlinden." PTS Desktop Live has not been updating quarterly, but going forward it should be more in tune with major Phoronix Test Suite updates. The 2010.1 release was based upon Phoronix Test Suite 2.4.1 and shipped with 40 test profiles pre-configured. The Live distribution to launch this quarter will be much greater than any past release.

Besides the improvements provided in Phoronix Test Suite 3.0-Iveland and 3.2-Grimstad itself, and the earlier PTS2 releases after the Phoronix Test Suite 2.4.1 release found in PTS Desktop Live 2010.1, the operating system environment is improved. This new environment is based upon a fork of Ubuntu 10.10. The current expectations are to also use this forked version for the foreseeable future, since we have gutted out most of Maverick and are replacing the important parts of the stack with our own upstream vanilla versions.

One of the key technical package highlights of this first Live release will be the Linux 2.6.39 kernel with select back-ports from the expected 2.6.40 merge, including drm-next, the QEMU KMS Cirrus driver, etc. Mesa Git Master will also be used with Nouveau Gallium3D enabled. LLVMpipe will also likely be the default software rasterizer. The compiler will be GCC 4.6. There are also investigations underway in potentially using LLVM/Clang as another option.

As implied by the name change, will also be heavily integrated with the platform for integrated test profiles, suites, results sharing, and online collaboration. It will also make it a breeze for Linux enthusiasts to archive their results publicly or privately from this live environment.

With previous releases of PTS Desktop Live, it has used the GTK2 GUI to the Phoronix Test Suite. However, as most should be aware, the GTK2 front-end was removed with Phoronix Test Suite 3.0-Iveland and it will not make a reintroduction with As such, new user-interface options for this live Linux environment are being explored.

Stay tuned for more information as this should be a great release for the Live premiere and for Phoronix Test Suite 3.2-Grimstad itself. The 3.2 update also features many updates in its own right as we have begun to share already on Phoronix and for those of you testing out the latest Git code. There are also a number of updates coming soon to the platform and its pending Phoromatic integration. An Internet-independent version of the OS platform is also available for use to PTS Commercial partners and is already available for use by ISVs and IHVs.

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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via