Software Archives
A Quick Look At Ubuntu 20.04 LTS vs. 20.10 With The Core i9 10900K

With Ubuntu 20.10 due for release this week I have begun testing near-final Ubuntu 20.10 builds on many more systems in the lab. Larger than our normal distribution/OS comparisons, here is the culmination of running hundreds of benchmarks (366 tests to be exact) under both Ubuntu 20.04 LTS with all available updates and then again on the Ubuntu 20.10 development state while testing on Intel Comet Lake.

20 October 2020 - 3 Comments
Phoronix Test Suite 10.0 Released With Revamped OpenBenchmarking.org For Open-Source, Automated Benchmarking

Phoronix Test Suite 10.0-Finnsnes is now officially available as the latest major feature release for our open-source, cross-platform automated benchmarking software that now has more than six hundred tests/benchmarks available for fully-automated testing. With Phoronix Test Suite 10.0 also comes a significant overhaul to OpenBenchmarking.org and its biggest since its debut back in 2011 alongside Phoronix Test Suite 3.0.

13 October 2020 - 9 Comments
The Current Intel Coffee Lake Mitigation Performance Impact With Linux 5.9

Of the many new features in Linux 5.9 with its debut set for this weekend, one of the performance-related changes is Intel FSGSBASE support finally being mainlined. A half-decade after the Linux patches first appeared for this feature present in Intel CPUs going back to Ivy Bridge, the mainline kernel is now patched for this feature that can help out I/O and other context switching heavy workloads. Given many of the same workloads were negatively impacted by the CPU security mitigations of recent years, here is a look at the current mitigated vs. unmitigated performance difference on the Linux 5.9 kernel with an Intel Core i9 9900K CPU for reference on how the mitigation impact is on recent versions of the Linux kernel.

9 October 2020 - 12 Comments
Intel oneAPI 1.0 Officially Released

After announcing oneAPI at the end of 2018 and then going into beta last year, oneAPI 1.0 is now official for this open-source, standards-based unified programming model designed to support Intel's range of hardware from CPUs to GPUs to other accelerators like FPGAs. Intel's oneAPI initiative has been one of several exciting software efforts led by the company in recent years while continuing to serve as one of the world's largest contributors to open-source software.

28 September 2020 - 13 Comments
AMD Ryzen 9 3900XT CPUFreq Governor Comparison With Linux 5.9

One of the most frequent questions received at Phoronix in recent times is whether the "schedutil" governor is ready for widespread use and if it can compare in performance to, well, the "performance" governor on AMD Linux systems. Here are some benchmarks of an AMD Ryzen 9 3900XT using the latest Linux 5.9 development kernel in looking at the performance differences between the CPUFreq governor options of Ondemand, Powersave, Performance, and Schedutil.

24 September 2020 - 15 Comments
The Latest On The Linux 5.9 Kernel Regression Stemming From Page Lock Fairness

Last week we reported on a Linux 5.9 kernel regression following benchmarks from Linux 5.0 to 5.9 and there being a sharp drop with the latest development kernel. That kernel regression was bisected to code introduced by Linus Torvalds at the start of the Linux 5.9 kernel cycle. Unfortunately it's not a trivial problem and one still being analyzed in coming up with a proper solution. So the short story is it's a work-in-progress while this article has some additional insight and benchmarks done over the course of the past few days.

13 September 2020 - 41 Comments
Why TensorFlow Lite Has Been Running Slower On Recent Linux Kernels

The Linux 5.0 to 5.9 kernel benchmarking posted this week showed TensorFlow Lite running slower since the Linux 5.5 kernel... On top of looking at the new Linux 5.9 regressions, I also spent some time bisecting and figuring out what happened for TensorFlow Lite last year that has at least for the system under test caused it to run slower for all the kernel releases this year as shown in the aforelinked article.

10 September 2020 - 15 Comments
A Deep Dive Into The AMD/Intel CPU + NVIDIA GPU Performance With Blender 2.90

Following the debut of the big Blender 2.90 release and subsequently updating it for the Phoronix Test Suite / OpenBenchmarking.org, here is a deep dive into the Blender 2.90 performance... A number of areas are being looked at with the initial Blender 2.90 benchmarks from how the performance is on various CPUs and GPUs to the performance of the Blender 2.82 vs. 2.90 to looking at the Windows vs. Linux performance for Blender 2.90 with various means of acceleration.

3 September 2020 - 9 Comments
AMD AOCC 2.2 Helping Squeeze Extra Performance Out Of AMD EPYC 7002 "Rome" CPUs

At the end of June AMD quietly released a new version of the AMD Optimizing C/C++ Compiler. Noticing the new release this week, here are some benchmarks of AOCC 2.2 up against LLVM Clang 10 and GCC 10 with Ubuntu Linux while running from an AMD EPYC 7742 2P server for looking at the performance gains possible with the compiler optimizations.

28 August 2020 - 13 Comments
The New OpenBenchmarking.org Now In Alpha For Better Hardware & Benchmark Discovery

As alluded to previously, a major overhaul of OpenBenchmarking.org has been in the works for a number of months now including a completely brand new analytics engine as part of the Phoronix Test Suite 10.0 development with its release due out later this year. With the new OpenBenchmarking.org now in good enough shape at least for the internal infrastructure, this new version is being opened up to the public today while over the weeks ahead more features will continue to be flipped on.

19 August 2020 - 7 Comments
Linux 5.9 Performance Is Off To A Great Start With FSGSBASE Boost

The FSGSBASE support that was finally mainlined a few days ago for Linux 5.9 is off to providing a nice performance boost for both Intel and AMD systems. Looking at FSGSBASE is one of the first areas I've dived into for Linux 5.9 kernel testing with this article serving as some preview/teaser data points.

10 August 2020 - 8 Comments
AMD EPYC 7F72 Performance On A Linux FSGSBASE-Patched Kernel

Slated for Linux 5.9 is finally mainlining the FSGSBASE patches that have been floating around the kernel mailing list for years. Testing last week showed the tentative x86/fsgsbase patches helping Intel Xeon Linux performance but with AMD also supporting this instruction set extension going back to Bulldozer, how is it looking on the likes of AMD? Here are some benchmarks.

29 June 2020 - 6 Comments
Testing Intel FSGSBASE Patches For Helping Elevate Linux Performance

After covering the Linux patches for FSGSBASE for years, it's looking like Linux 5.9 will finally land the support for this CPU capability present since Ivy Bridge on the Intel side and more recently on AMD CPUs with Bulldozer and Zen. Here are benchmarks looking at some of the performance benefits the Linux FSGSBASE patches can provide for an Intel Xeon Cascade Lake Refresh server.

25 June 2020 - 21 Comments
Benchmarking The Updated Intel CPU Microcode For SRBDS / CrossTalk Mitigation

Following yesterday's disclosure of CrossTalk / SRBDS after a nearly two year embargo period for this Special Register Buffer Data Sampling vulnerability, I have been running benchmarks on multiple systems for the past nearly 24 hours. Here are some preliminary data points for both synthetic and real-world workloads on various Intel CPUs before/after mitigating SRBDS with the updated Intel microcode.

10 June 2020 - 24 Comments
CrossTalk/SRBDS Shows Possibility Of Leaking Information Across Physical CPU Cores

This morning I noted CrossTalk / SRBDS as the newest side-channel vulnerability following Intel's monthly security advisories being sent out. It turns out Intel broke their own embargo on the disclosure and I happened to spot it quickly before they retracted it. In the hours since, the university researchers behind this CrossTalk vulnerability reached out and have provided an embargoed copy of the whitepaper. As of now, the formal disclosure time has passed so information on this new side-channel Intel CPU vulnerability is public and it shows for the first time that speculative execution can enable attackers to leak sensitive information across physical cores on Intel CPUs.

9 June 2020 - 5 Comments
PHP 8.0 JIT Is Offering Very Compelling Performance Ahead Of Its Alpha

With the PHP 8.0 schedule putting the first alpha release for the middle of June, I've been trying out its latest Git state in recent days for looking at its performance as well as when enabling its brand new JIT (Just In Time) compiler support that is new to PHP8. The results are quite compelling and here are metrics going back to the days of PHP 5.4 for comparison.

2 June 2020 - 17 Comments
GCC 10 vs. Clang 10 Compiler Performance On AMD Zen 2 + Intel Cascade Lake

We delivered many benchmarks of Clang 10.0 on various CPUs following that updated LLVM compiler stack release earlier this year. With GCC 10 released earlier this month, we have begun our benchmarking of this annual feature release to the GNU Compiler Collection. First up is a look at the GCC 9 vs. GCC 10 vs. LLVM Clang 10 compiler performance on AMD Zen 2 and Intel Cascade Lake systems.

19 May 2020 - 7 Comments
A Quick Run With The FSGSBASE Patches On Intel + AMD

FSGSBASE patches for the Linux kernel have been available for years albeit not mainlined to date. However, thankfully, a Microsoft Linux developer has taken up the cause to get them upstreamed given the performance benefits they are even seeing. Here are some benchmarks of the Linux kernel patches for FSGSBASE on both Intel and AMD CPUs.

13 May 2020 - 6 Comments

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