PTS Stress-Run Continues To Mature To Push Hardware/Software To Their Limits
Written by Michael Larabel in Phoronix Test Suite on 29 April 2016 at 08:00 AM EDT. Add A Comment
One of the many less advertised features of the Phoronix Test Suite is the ability to re-purpose any available test profile not as a performance metric but simply as part of a stress tool for hammering your hardware or software for deficiencies. The phoronix-test-suite stress-run tool can run any number of the test profiles concurrently and in a random pattern for a defined length of time for fully stressing your system.

Many improvements to the Phoronix Test Suite's stress-run functionality have been seeing improvements as part of the Phoronix Test Suite 6.4 development cycle with the formal 6.4-Hasvik release scheduled for June. Some of the recent work was covered in Further Improvements For Open-Source Stress Testing and Open-Source Stress Testing & Torturing Your Linux Software/Hardware.

If you are unfamiliar with the stress-run functionality, an example command would be PTS_CONCURRENT_TEST_RUNS=4 TOTAL_LOOP_TIME=120 phoronix-test-suite stress-run apache nginx pgbench sqlite redis. You're then prompted about the test run options, but rather than saving any data or showing performance metrics, it jumps over into its stress-run mode. With this example, it will be firing off all these server/database tests four at a time for a total period of 120 minutes. A random combination of four of the selected test options will continually run to stress the system.

Any of the hundreds of test profiles from the Phoronix Test Suite / will work with the stress-run feature. It makes it very easy to deploy some demanding, real-world workloads on hardware.

While testing, various system sensor values are reported and other relevant information you'd want during stress testing. At the end is also a summary report showing the minimum/average/maximum values for all of the dozens of possible sensors supported by the system under test.

You can also use it for stressing your GPU/driver stack with running multiple graphics tests simultaneously, checking out power management behavior of the system, and much more. Like everything else with the design of the Phoronix Test Suite, phoronix-test-suite stress-run is meant to be very extensible and can be driven in a fully-automated manner.

From the benchmark ticket page of Phoromatic it's also possible to drive all of this stress testing remotely from the centralized web interface.

The stress-run improvements continue to be ongoing. If you want to give it a shot to provide your feedback, try out Phoronix-Test-Suite Git. As with the other areas of our benchmarking software, commercial support, custom engineering services, and more are available by contacting us.
About The Author
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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 10,000 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 or contacted via

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