Automatically Managing The Linux Benchmarks Firing Constantly
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 29 March 2015 at 06:41 PM EDT. 2 Comments
HARDWARE --
In continuation of this morning's article about Turning A Basement Into A Big Linux Server Room that detailed my month-long process of building out the new Linux automated benchmark server room, here's details on the software deployment side.

The dozens of systems deployed (and about to be deployed systems) are using various Linux distributions but the bulk of them are Fedora and Ubuntu. The Phoronix Test Suite development code runs on all these systems and it supports virtually any Linux distribution along with BSDs, OS X, Solaris, and to some extent Windows and GNU Hurd. Sitting in the electrical closet is then the lone CentOS Server that's running the Phoromatic Server, which is all part of open-source Phoronix Test Suite GitHub repository.

Phoromatic provides the centralized web-interface for managing all of the systems and their test results and test schedules/tickets. From the single web UI (sometimes shown on the projector in the new server room and screenshot above) allows seeing a real-time state of all the systems via the Phoromatic Dashboard. We can get an immediate look at the system state, the estimated time to completion based on each system's previous run-time, and other pertinent information provided by the Phoronix Test Suite.

Once the "servers" are deployed with the Phoronix Test Suite and then set to auto-start via the Upstart or systemd files, basically all management is done from the Phoromatic web UI as far as benchmarking / automated testing is concerned. There's just the occasional system experiencing an OS or hardware problem which is why the couple monitors/keyboards are in the server room. New functionality continues to be added to PTS / Phoromatic almost daily.

Test schedules allow for running of tests either on a daily basis (most of what these systems do currently) or on a triggered basis, such as whenever the software being tracked has a new Git commit or other external process to fire off a "trigger" to the Phoromatic web server.

All tests can then be automatically gathered and analyzed from this centralized interface, similar to OpenBenchmarking.org.

Each system can be specially customized and various details from the system are pulled via the Phoronix Test Suite, such as through its Phodevi (Phoronix Device Interface) library for various real-time hardware/software information.

And tons of other benchmarking capabilities, one-time benchmarking via "benchmark tickets", automated email notifications, managing auto power-on/off settings, etc. Again, it's all in the Git code and is being extended constantly.

Among the other near-term Phoromatic / Phoronix Test Suite items are working out a Phoromatic WebSockets back-end for avoiding so much HTTP traffic between systems and maintaining bi-directional communication, redoing the web UI prior to Phoronix Test Suite 6.0, and implementing a ton more features focused on both enterprise and personal Linux benchmarking via a centralized interface. Phoromatic has come a long way since writing about it for years. Companies deploying the open-source Phoronix Test Suite or Phoromatic software can continue to obtain commercial support, custom engineering, sponsorships, etc.

If you're an individual just wishing to show a sign of appreciation for all of the work being done on open-source/Linux benchmarking and the upstream test farm for catching kernel and compiler regressions (among others) in the future, you can show your appreciation via subscribing to Phoronix Premium or making a PayPal tip, etc. If you wish to get involved with PTS/Phoromatic development, stop by the GitHub page!
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About The Author
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com 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 OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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