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This is the README file for my program, "bandwidth". Bandwidth is a benchmark that attempts to measure memory bandwidth. In December 2010 (and as of release 0.24), I extended 'bandwidth' to measure network bandwidth as well. Bandwidth is useful because both memory bandwidth and network bandwidth need to be measured to give you a clear idea of what your computer(s) can do. Merely relying on specs does not give a full picture and indeed specs can be misleading. -------------------------------------------------- MEMORY BANDWIDTH My program bandwidth performs sequential and random reads and writes of varying sizes. This permits you to infer from the graph how each type of memory is performing. So for instance when bandwidth writes a 256-byte chunk, you know that because caches are normally write-back, this chunk will reside entirely in the L1 cache. Whereas a 512 kB chunk will mainly reside in L2. You could run a non-artificial benchmark and observe that a general performance number is lower on one machine or higher on anotehr, but that may conceal the cause. So the purpose of this program is to help you pinpoint the cause of a performance problem, or to affirm a general impression about a memory- intensive program. It also tells you the best-case scenario e.g. the maximum bandwidth achieved using sequential, 128-bit memory accesses. Release 1.1: - Added larger font. Release 1.0: - Moved graphing into BMPGraphing module. - Finally added LODS benchmarking, which proves how badly lodsb/lodsw/lodsd/lodsq perform. - Added switches --faster and --fastest. Release 0.32: - Improved AVX support. Release 0.31: - Adds cache detection for Intel 32-bit CPUs - Adds a little AVX support. - Fixes vector-to/from-main transfer bugs. Release 0.30 adds cache detection for Intel 64-bit CPUs. Release 0.29 improved graph granularity with more 128-byte tests and removes ARM support. Release 0.28 added a proper test of CPU features e.g. SSE 4.1. Release 0.27 added finer-granularity 128-byte tests. Release 0.26 fixed an issue with AMD processors. Release 0.25 maked network bandwidth bidirectional. Release 0.24 added network bandwidth testing. Release 0.23 added: - Mac OS/X 64-bit support. - Vector-to-vector register transfer test. - Main register to/from vector register transfer test. - Main register byte/word/dword/qword to/from vector register test (pinsr*, pextr* instructions). - Memory copy test using SSE2. - Automatic checks under Linux for SSE2 & SSE4. Release 0.22 added: - Register-to-register transfer test. - Register-to/from-stack transfer tests. Release 0.21 added: - Standardized memory chunks to always be a multiple of 256-byte mini-chunks. - Random memory accesses, in which each 256-byte mini-chunk accessed is accessed in a random order, but also, inside each mini-chunk the 32/64/128 data are accessed pseudo-randomly as well. - Now 'bandwidth' includes chunk sizes that are not powers of 2, which increases data points around the key chunk sizes corresponding to common L1 and L2 cache sizes. - Command-line options: --fast for 0.25 seconds per test. --slow for 20 seconds per test. --title for adding a graph title. Release 0.20 added graphing, with the graph stored in a BMP image file. It also adds the --slow option for more precise runs. Release 0.19 added a second 128-bit SSE writer routine that bypasses the caches, in addition to the one that doesn't. Release 0.18 was my Grand Unified bandwidth benchmark that brought together support for four operating systems: - Linux - Windows Mobile - 32-bit Windows - Mac OS/X 64-bit and two processor architectures: - x86 - Intel64 I've written custom assembly routines for each architecture. Total run time for the default speed, which has 5 seconds per test, is about 35 minutes. -------------------------------------------------- NETWORK BANDWIDTH (beginning with release 0.24) In mid-December 2010, I extended bandwidth to measure network bandwidth, which is useful for testing your home or workplace network setup, and in theory could be used to test machines across the Internet. Release 0.25 adds: - Bidirectional network bandwidth testing. - Specifiable port# (default is 49000). In the graph: - Sent data appears as a solid line. - Received data appears as a dashed line. The network test is pretty simple. It sends chunks of data of varying sizes to whatever computers (nodes) that you specify. Each of those must be running 'bandwidth' in transponder mode. The chunks of data range of 32 kB up to 32 MB. These are actually send as a stream of 1 or more 32 kB sub-chunks. Sample output: output/Network-Linux2.6-Celeron-2.8GHz-32bit-loopback.bmp output/Network-MacOSX32-Corei5-2.4GHz-64bit-loopback.bmp output/Network-Mac64-Linux32.bmp How to start a transponder: ./bandwidth-mac64 --transponder Example invocation of the test leader: ./bandwidth64 --network 192.168.1.104 I've tested network mode on: Linux 32-bit Mac OS/X 32- and 64-bit Win/Cygwin 32-bit. -------------------------------------------------- This program is provided without any warranty and AS-IS. See the file COPYING for details. Zack Smith firstname.lastname@example.org March 2013