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Version 5.1.2 -- 2007-12-26 ================================================================ To use Unixbench: 1. UnixBench from version 5.1 on has both system and graphics tests. If you want to use the graphic tests, edit the Makefile and make sure that the line "GRAPHIC_TESTS = defined" is not commented out; then check that the "GL_LIBS" definition is OK for your system. Also make sure that the "x11perf" command is on your search path. If you don't want the graphics tests, then comment out the "GRAPHIC_TESTS = defined" line. Note: comment it out, don't set it to anything. 2. Do "make". 3. Do "Run" to run the system test; "Run graphics" to run the graphics tests; "Run gindex" to run both. You will need perl, as Run is written in perl. For more information on using the tests, read "USAGE". For information on adding tests into the benchmark, see "WRITING_TESTS". ===================== RELEASE NOTES ===================================== ======================== Dec 07 ========================== v5.1.2 One big fix: if unixbench is installed in a directory whose pathname contains a space, it should now run (previously it failed). To avoid possible clashes, the environment variables unixbench uses are now prefixed with "UB_". These are all optional, and for most people will be completely unnecessary, but if you want you can set these: UB_BINDIR Directory where the test programs live. UB_TMPDIR Temp directory, for temp files. UB_RESULTDIR Directory to put results in. UB_TESTDIR Directory where the tests are executed. And a couple of tiny fixes: * In pgms/tst.sh, changed "sort -n +1" to "sort -n -k 1" * In Makefile, made it clearer that GRAPHIC_TESTS should be commented out (not set to 0) to disable graphics Thanks to nordi for pointing these out. Ian Smith, December 26, 2007 johantheghost at yahoo period com ======================== Oct 07 ========================== v5.1.1 It turns out that the setting of LANG is crucial to the results. This explains why people in different regions were seeing odd results, and also why runlevel 1 produced odd results -- runlevel 1 doesn't set LANG, and hence reverts to ASCII, whereas most people use a UTF-8 encoding, which is much slower in some tests (eg. shell tests). So now we manually set LANG to "en_US.utf8", which is configured with the variable "$language". Don't change this if you want to share your results. We also report the language settings in use. See "The Language Setting" in USAGE for more info. Thanks to nordi for pointing out the LANG issue. I also added the "grep" and "sysexec" tests. These are non-index tests, and "grep" uses the system's grep, so it's not much use for comparing different systems. But some folks on the OpenSuSE list have been finding these useful. They aren't in any of the main test groups; do "Run grep sysexec" to run them. Index Changes ------------- The setting of LANG will affect consistency with systems where this is not the default value. However, it should produce more consistent results in future. Ian Smith, October 15, 2007 johantheghost at yahoo period com ======================== Oct 07 ========================== v5.1 The major new feature in this version is the addition of graphical benchmarks. Since these may not compile on all systems, you can enable/ disable them with the GRAPHIC_TESTS variable in the Makefile. As before, each test is run for 3 or 10 iterations. However, we now discard the worst 1/3 of the scores before averaging the remainder. The logic is that a glitch in the system (background process waking up, for example) may make one or two runs go slow, so let's discard those. Hopefully this will produce more consistent and repeatable results. Check the log file for a test run to see the discarded scores. Made the tests compile and run on x86-64/Linux (fixed an execl bug passing int instead of pointer). Also fixed some general bugs. Thanks to Stefan Esser for help and testing / bug reporting. Index Changes ------------- The tests are now divided into categories, and each category generates its own index. This keeps the graphics test results separate from the system tests. The "graphics" test and corresponding index are new. The "discard the worst scores" strategy should produce slightly higher test scores, but at least they should (hopefully!) be more consistent. The scores should not be higher than the best scores you would have got with 5.0, so this should not be a huge consistency issue. Ian Smith, October 11, 2007 johantheghost at yahoo period com ======================== Sep 07 ========================== v5.0 All the work I've done on this release is Linux-based, because that's the only Unix I have access to. I've tried to make it more OS-agnostic if anything; for example, it no longer has to figure out the format reported by /usr/bin/time. However, it's possible that portability has been damaged. If anyone wants to fix this, please feel free to mail me patches. In particular, the analysis of the system's CPUs is done via /proc/cpuinfo. For systems which don't have this, please make appropriate changes in getCpuInfo() and getSystemInfo(). The big change has been to make the tests multi-CPU aware. See the "Multiple CPUs" section in "USAGE" for details. Other changes: * Completely rewrote Run in Perl; drastically simplified the way data is processed. The confusing system of interlocking shell and awk scripts is now just one script. Various intermediate files used to store and process results are now replaced by Perl data structures internal to the script. * Removed from the index runs file system read and write tests which were ignored for the index and wasted about 10 minutes per run (see fstime.c). The read and write tests can now be selected individually. Made fstime.c take parameters, so we no longer need to build 3 versions of it. * Made the output file names unique; they are built from hostname-date-sequence. * Worked on result reporting, error handling, and logging. See TESTS. We now generate both text and HTML reports. * Removed some obsolete files. Index Changes ------------- The index is still based on David Niemi's SPARCstation 20-61 (rated at 10.0), and the intention in the changes I've made has been to keep the tests unchanged, in order to maintain consistency with old result sets. However, the following changes have been made to the index: * The Pipe-based Context Switching test (context1) was being dropped from the index report in v4.1.0 due to a bug; I've put it back in. * I've added shell1 to the index, to get a measure of how the shell tests scale with multiple CPUs (shell8 already exercises all the CPUs, even in single-copy mode). I made up the baseline score for this by extrapolation. Both of these test can be dropped, if you wish, by editing the "TEST SPECIFICATIONS" section of Run. Ian Smith, September 20, 2007 johantheghost at yahoo period com ======================== Aug 97 ========================== v4.1.0 Double precision Whetstone put in place instead of the old "double" benchmark. Removal of some obsolete files. "system" suite adds shell8. perlbench and poll added as "exhibition" (non-index) benchmarks. Incorporates several suggestions by Andre Derrick Balsa <email@example.com> Code cleanups to reduce compiler warnings by David C Niemi <firstname.lastname@example.org> and Andy Kahn <email@example.com>; Digital Unix options by Andy Kahn. ======================== Jun 97 ========================== v4.0.1 Minor change to fstime.c to fix overflow problems on fast machines. Counting is now done in units of 256 (smallest BUFSIZE) and unsigned longs are used, giving another 23 dB or so of headroom ;^) Results should be virtually identical aside from very small rounding errors. ======================== Dec 95 ========================== v4.0 Byte no longer seems to have anything to do with this benchmark, and I was unable to reach any of the original authors; so I have taken it upon myself to clean it up. This is version 4. Major assumptions made in these benchmarks have changed since they were written, but they are nonetheless popular (particularly for measuring hardware for Linux). Some changes made: - The biggest change is to put a lot more operating system-oriented tests into the index. I experimented for a while with a decibel-like logarithmic scale, but finally settled on using a geometric mean for the final index (the individual scores are a normalized, and their logs are averaged; the resulting value is exponentiated). "George", certain SPARCstation 20-61 with 128 MB RAM, a SPARC Storage Array, and Solaris 2.3 is my new baseline; it is rated at 10.0 in each of the index scores for a final score of 10.0. Overall I find the geometric averaging is a big improvement for avoiding the skew that was once possible (e.g. a Pentium-75 which got 40 on the buggy version of fstime, such that fstime accounted for over half of its total score and hence wildly skewed its average). I also expect that the new numbers look different enough from the old ones that no one is too likely to casually mistake them for each other. I am finding new SPARCs running Solaris 2.4 getting about 15-20, and my 486 DX2-66 Compaq running Linux 1.3.45 got a 9.1. It got understandably poor scores on CPU and FPU benchmarks (a horrible 1.8 on "double" and 1.3 on "fsdisk"); but made up for it by averaging over 20 on the OS-oriented benchmarks. The Pentium-75 running Linux gets about 20 (and it *still* runs Windows 3.1 slowly. Oh well). - It is difficult to get a modern compiler to even consider making dhry2 without registers, short of turning off *all* optimizations. This is also not a terribly meaningful test, even if it were possible, as noone compiles without registers nowadays. Replaced this benchmark with dhry2reg in the index, and dropped it out of usage in general as it is so hard to make a legitimate one. - fstime: this had some bugs when compiled on modern systems which return the number of bytes read/written for read(2)/write(2) calls. The code assumed that a negative return code was given for EOF, but most modern systems return 0 (certainly on SunOS 4, Solaris2, and Linux, which is what counts for me). The old code yielded wildly inflated read scores, would eat up tens of MB of disk space on fast systems, and yielded roughly 50% lower than normal copy scores than it should have. Also, it counted partial blocks *fully*; made it count the proportional part of the block which was actually finished. Made bigger and smaller variants of fstime which are designed to beat up the disk I/O and the buffer cache, respectively. Adjusted the sleeps so that they are short for short benchmarks. - Instead of 1,2,4, and 8-shell benchmarks, went to 1, 8, and 16 to give a broader range of information (and to run 1 fewer test). The only real problem with this is that not many iterations get done with 16 at a time on slow systems, so there are some significant rounding errors; 8 therefore still used for the benchmark. There is also the problem that the last (uncompleted) loop is counted as a full loop, so it is impossible to score below 1.0 lpm (which gave my laptop a break). Probably redesigning Shell to do each loop a bit more quickly (but with less intensity) would be a good idea. This benchmark appears to be very heavily influenced by the speed of the loader, by which shell is being used as /bin/sh, and by how well-compiled some of the common shell utilities like grep, sed, and sort are. With a consistent tool set it is also a good indicator of the bandwidth between main memory and the CPU (e.g. Pentia score about twice as high as 486es due to their 64-bit bus). Small, sometimes broken shells like "ash-linux" do particularly well here, while big, robust shells like bash do not. - "dc" is a somewhat iffy benchmark, because there are two versions of it floating around, one being small, very fast, and buggy, and one being more correct but slow. It was never in the index anyway. - Execl is a somewhat troubling benchmark in that it yields much higher scores if compiled statically. I frown on this practice because it distorts the scores away from reflecting how programs are really used (i.e. dynamically linked). - Arithoh is really more an indicator of the compiler quality than of the computer itself. For example, GCC 2.7.x with -O2 and a few extra options optimizes much of it away, resulting in about a 1200% boost to the score. Clearly not a good one for the index. I am still a bit unhappy with the variance in some of the benchmarks, most notably the fstime suite; and with how long it takes to run. But I think it gets significantly more reliable results than the older version in less time. If anyone has ideas on how to make these benchmarks faster, lower-variance, or more meaningful; or has nice, new, portable benchmarks to add, don't hesitate to e-mail me. David C Niemi <firstname.lastname@example.org> 7 Dec 1995 ======================== May 91 ========================== This is version 3. This set of programs should be able to determine if your system is BSD or SysV. (It uses the output format of time (1) to see. If you have any problems, contact me (by email, preferably): email@example.com --- The document doc/bench.doc describes the basic flow of the benchmark system. The document doc/bench3.doc describes the major changes in design of this version. As a user of the benchmarks, you should understand some of the methods that have been implemented to generate loop counts: Tests that are compiled C code: The function wake_me(second, func) is included (from the file timeit.c). This function uses signal and alarm to set a countdown for the time request by the benchmark administration script (Run). As soon as the clock is started, the test is run with a counter keeping track of the number of loops that the test makes. When alarm sends its signal, the loop counter value is sent to stderr and the program terminates. Since the time resolution, signal trapping and other factors don't insure that the test is for the precise time that was requested, the test program is also run from the time (1) command. The real time value returned from time (1) is what is used in calculating the number of loops per second (or minute, depending on the test). As is obvious, there is some overhead time that is not taken into account, therefore the number of loops per second is not absolute. The overhead of the test starting and stopping and the signal and alarm calls is common to the overhead of real applications. If a program loads quickly, the number of loops per second increases; a phenomenon that favors systems that can load programs quickly. (Setting the sticky bit of the test programs is not considered fair play.) Test that use existing UNIX programs or shell scripts: The concept is the same as that of compiled tests, except the alarm and signal are contained in separate compiled program, looper (source is looper.c). Looper uses an execvp to invoke the test with its arguments. Here, the overhead includes the invocation and execution of looper. -- The index numbers are generated from a baseline file that is in pgms/index.base. You can put tests that you wish in this file. All you need to do is take the results/log file from your baseline machine, edit out the comment and blank lines, and sort the result (vi/ex command: 1,$!sort). The sort in necessary because the process of generating the index report uses join (1). You can regenerate the reports by running "make report." -- ========================= Jan 90 ============================= Tom Yager has joined the effort here at BYTE; he is responsible for many refinements in the UNIX benchmarks. The memory access tests have been deleted from the benchmarks. The file access tests have been reversed so that the test is run for a fixed time. The amount of data transfered (written, read, and copied) is the variable. !WARNING! This test can eat up a large hunk of disk space. The initial line of all shell scripts has been changed from the SCO and XENIX form (:) to the more standard form "#! /bin/sh". But different systems handle shell switching differently. Check the documentation on your system and find out how you are supposed to do it. Or, simpler yet, just run the benchmarks from the Bourne shell. (You may need to set SHELL=/bin/sh as well.) The options to Run have not been checked in a while. They may no longer function. Next time, I'll get back on them. There needs to be another option added (next time) that halts testing between each test. !WARNING! Some systems have caches that are not getting flushed before the next test or iteration is run. This can cause erroneous values. ========================= Sept 89 ============================= The database (db) programs now have a tuneable message queue space. queue space. The default set in the Run script is 1024 bytes. Other major changes are in the format of the times. We now show Arithmetic and Geometric mean and standard deviation for User Time, System Time, and Real Time. Generally, in reporting, we plan on using the Real Time values with the benchs run with one active user (the bench user). Comments and arguments are requested. contact: BIX bensmith or rick_g