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Utilities to benchmark UNIX systems - Lmbench

Lmbench is a suite of simple, portable, ANSI/C microbenchmarks for UNIX/POSIX. In general, it measures two key features: latency and bandwidth. lmbench is intended to give system developers insight into basic costs of key operations.

There are two attributes that are critical for performance - latency and bandwidth,  and  lmbench  timing harness makes it easy to measure and report results for both.  Latency is usually important  for  frequently executed  operations,  and  bandwidth  is usually important when moving large chunks of data.

Bandwidth benchmarks
 * Cached file read
 * Memory copy (bcopy)
 * Memory read
 * Memory write
 * Pipe
 * TCP

Latency benchmarks
 * Context switching.
 * Networking: connection establishment, pipe, TCP, UDP, and RPC hot potato
 * File system creates and deletes.
 * Process creation.
 * Signal handling
 * System call overhead
 * Memory read latency

 * Processor clock rate calculation

lmbench Installation:
Open the terminal and type following command to install lmbench:
sudo apt-get install lmbench
Using lmbench:
Open the terminal and type the following command to run the lmbench
sudo lmbench-run
lmbench-run is a wrapper program to run the lmbench benchmarking  suite in  Debian  GNU/Linux.   Due  to  the nature of this program you should first check that the system is in the condition you want to test it and be sure to run this as the root user. lmbench-run  will  first  configure  the benchmark and adapt it to your system and then run it.

Be warned that many of these benchmarks are sensitive to other things being run on the system, mainly from CPU cache and CPU cycle effects. So make sure your screen saver is not running, etc.


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