Gentoo Wiki


This page describes a number of tools you can use to benchmark your installation.

Warning: Benchmarking is like cooking eggs, they are never completely perfect. Always take results of a benchmark with a grain of salt, especially if the benchmark was made with running.


Full suites

There are a couple of full packages to benchmark just about anything about your system.


lmbench is a solid, CLI program to benchmark a lot of core elements of your system, like memory bandwidth, memory latency, TLB size, network speed, pagefault cost, etcetera. Simply install it using:

emerge -av lmbench

Please refer to the website for more information.

Phoronix benchmarking suite is also working on a benchmarking suite. The most recent release(v0.5.0) became available on May 1, 2008 and is available here. The advantage is that it looks pretty good, disadvantage is that it's not as solid as lmbench and doesn't have the more detailed core system tests. The website also contains a list of benchmarks across various setups, but take these with tons of salt, because they weren't made professionally.


xfbsuite, is a little benchmark suite for HDD, Filesystem, RAM, CPU, Cache and 2D (piozone, bonnie++, stream, nbench, cachebench, x11perf...), it's available as Text only, dialog, Xdailog or Tk GUI. The benchmark Programs are included precompiled. To install, keyword it and emerge it:

echo "app-benchmarks/xfbsuite ~x86" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords
emerge -av xfbsuite
Note: Obviously, replace x86 with your architecture.

See their website for more information.

Tools to benchmark specific components

If you have specific needs, you can also use tools not belonging to a full solution package.

Hard drives

For hard drives do 'hdparm -tT' to test speeds and transfer rates, you'll need to search online for any newsgroup or forum posts from someone who has a similar hard drive and setup to compare against their rates. Either that or check your hard drive manual to see what rates are expected from that drive and compare against that.

See also in this Wiki: hdparm.

There are also several other HDD test programs. The most popular seems to be bonnie / bonnie++. Check your nearest portage.


Graphics and everything else should be in the same boat. There is a wine vs winxp comparison benchmark chart here: but that may not suite your needs. The alternative would be to run something such as unreal tournament 2004 in benchmarked time run mode (search the net) and then compare that to other users or possibly for comparison.

Warning: glxgears is nowhere like a benchmark application. Do not use it as such.


GL O.B.S. - GL Open Benchmark Suite, still in development status (help needed) but a good starting point.


For 2D performance, you should take a look at GtkPerf. As of March 2008, I couldn't find it in portage yet, but it is a reliable tool and worth installing manually.

Memory and CPU


There is a way to do some memory and CPU related benchmarks and compare results with others by using "bashmark" (it's in portage). To install bashmark, simply emerge it:

emerge -av bashmark
FIXME: explain usage, website is dead!
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Last modified: Fri, 05 Sep 2008 22:54:00 +0000 Hits: 10,338