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Multicore OS benchmarks: we can do better


Ihor Kuz, Zachary Anderson, Pravin Shinde and Timothy Roscoe



ETH Zurich


Current multicore OS benchmarks do not provide workloads that sufficiently reflect real-world use: they typically run a single application, whereas real work- loads consist of multiple concurrent programs. In this paper we show that this lack of mixed workloads leads to benchmarks that do not fully exercise the OS and are therefore inadequate at predicting real-world behav- ior. This implies that effective multicore OS benchmarks must include mixed workloads, but the main design chal- lenge is choosing an appropriate mix. We present a prin- cipled approach which treats benchmark design as an op- timization problem. Our solution leads to a workload mix that uses as much of a system’s resources as possi- ble, while also selecting applications whose performance is most sensitive to the availability of those resources.

BibTeX Entry

    author           = {Kuz, Ihor and Anderson, Zachary and Shinde, Pravin and Roscoe, Timothy},
    month            = may,
    year             = {2011},
    keywords         = {os, multicore, benchmark},
    title            = {Multicore {OS} benchmarks: we can do better},
    booktitle        = {Workshop on Hot Topics in Operating Systems},
    pages            = {1--5},
    address          = {Napa, CA, USA}


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