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Old 12-13-2002, 06:25 AM
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clausb clausb is offline
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Graphics benchmark for OneSpace Designer Modeling

Hi all,

inspired by the recent discussions on graphics card selection and benchmarking, I have uploaded the current version of our "viewbench" graphics benchmark to ftp://ftp.cocreate.com/sdtestpackage/viewbench/.

This version is meant to be used with the latest release code on the Windows platforms. I split the package into two parts for easier updates:
  • viewbench_code.zip - This contains the benchmark code.
  • viewbench_models.zip - Contains the models used for benchmarking.
The code is much smaller than the models, but changes more often.

This benchmark has served us well for several year, but is slowly running out of steam now that graphics cards have become so fast. Nevertheless, the results are still meaningful if interpreted correctly, and there seems to be considerable interest in such a benchmark.

By adding larger test models, we can prolong the lifecycle of the benchmark. This is, of course, the tricky part. I'm always looking for models which meet the following requirements:
  • Typical customer models
  • Meaningful size (shouldn't spin faster than 20 frames/second on recent graphics hardware)
  • Requires less than 200 MB of memory after loading
  • Freely distributable
Instructions:
  • Download the two ZIP files
  • Unpack them into the same directory
  • Start OSDM
  • Change into the viewbench directory
  • (load "viewbench")
  • (viewbench)
The benchmark produces two output files: A result file which summarizes the frame rates, and a summary of the machine configuration. As suggested by John previously, if everybody posts their results publicly somewhere here on the cocreateusers web site, we could build a performance database which helps users to decide on hardware upgrades.

Enjoy,

Claus

Last edited by clausb; 12-26-2002 at 01:56 PM.
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  #2  
Old 12-13-2002, 10:35 AM
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John Scheffel John Scheffel is offline
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Lightbulb Please Post Your Results Here

Thanks Claus. I would encourage people to run viewbench and post their results along with PC specs as replies to this thread. If we keep all the results together in a single thread, it could be a handy reference. Be aware that it takes about 10 minutes to run and you shouldn't be doing anything else on your PC, so allocate some time for it and close all other applications.

You can attach the "perf_viewbench_name" file that it creates, but you will have rename the file to add a ".txt" extension so you can attach it. You could also just copy and paste into your post, but it is pretty long. Try to include your system specs, but you may not want to attach your "viewbench_conf_name.log" file since it contains a lot of info about your PC which you may not want to be public.

If we get enough results, maybe we can summarize them into a table or spreadsheet file.

A few issues

I downloaded viewbench and tried it out in Modeling 11.6, but it stopped with an "out of memory" message. I have 1000 MB of Virtual Memory and the Modeling memory limit is set to 1370 MB. However, it did produce the log files, so maybe it was finished and this error didn't matter. I will post my results.

The Readme.html file says:
Quote:
These files will be created in the system's temporary directory; viewbench will echo the path of those files to stdout (i.e. into the terminal window which you used to start up OneSpace Designer).
Under Windows 2000, I never see the "terminal window" unless I click View, Console first. The files are written to the METMPDIR directory, which under Windows defaults to the TMP environment variable (if you don't set it to something else). You can find out the path for TMP or METMPDIR by opening a Command Prompt window and entering:
Code:
set TMP
set METMPDIR
The Readme.html file indicates that the performance log file will be named "perf_viewbench_machinename.log", but on my PC it did not have a ".log" extension.

Another issue is that the log files created contain Unix line feeds, so you cannot view them in NotePad. You can view them in WordPad. With Windows becoming the dominant OS for Modeling, it might be better to use DOS line feeds.
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:07 AM
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John Scheffel John Scheffel is offline
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HP Visualize X550 with fx4+

To get the ball rolling, here are the viewbench results for my primary work PC. It is pretty old and obsolete, so probably not of much use to someone looking to buy a new PC. I'm sure the hot new PCs will blow it away, but it might be a good reference for someone who has something similar who is looking to upgrade.
Code:
PC Model: HP Visualize X550 (x-class)
CPU: P3 Xeon at 550 MHz
RAM: 512 MB PC100
Graphics: HP Visualize fx4+
OS: Windows 2000 SP3
Version: Modeling 11.60.0.13
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_x550.txt (3.0 KB, 826 views)
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:37 AM
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clausb clausb is offline
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John,

thanks a lot for trying out the benchmark and for your feedback. I will take care of the mentioned issues next week, with the possible exception of the Unix linefeeds, since this is simply how LISP writes text lines. But maybe I can simply reformat the output in HTML syntax and with an .html extension, which would allow everyone to just double-click the file and view it in the browser, no matter which platform.

Thanks again,

Claus
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  #5  
Old 12-16-2002, 02:21 AM
John Struthers John Struthers is offline
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HP Visualize X550 with fx4+ / WinNT / SDv9

Hi Claus:
Many thanks for posting CoCreate's Viewbench utility. Here are the results for my main PC ... another old and somewhat obsolete piece of hardware -

Code:
PC Model: HP Visualize X550 (x-class)
CPU: P3 Xeon at 550 MHz
RAM: 768 MB PC100
Graphics: HP Visualize fx4+
OS: WinNT 4 SP6
Version: SolidDesigner 9.1.5.2
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_x550b.txt (3.0 KB, 673 views)
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Last edited by John Struthers; 12-16-2002 at 02:56 AM.
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  #6  
Old 12-16-2002, 03:36 AM
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clausb clausb is offline
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Hi all,

just uploaded a new version of the benchmark code at ftp://ftp.cocreate.com/sdtestpackage/viewbench . If you have already downloaded the previous version, you only need to update the viewbench_code.zip part; the models are unchanged.

(Hopefully) fixed issues:
- Out of memory warning at the end of the test
- Logfile should now have a .txt extension
- Version number is now 1.66

Claus
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  #7  
Old 12-16-2002, 08:42 AM
May Kung May Kung is offline
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This is from one of our test stations.

Code:
PC Model: Dell Precision 530
CPU: P3 Xeon at 2.2 GHz
RAM: 1 GB PC800
Graphics: 3DLabs Wildcat III 6110
OS: Win2K SP2
Version: SolidDesigner 9.1.4.3
This program runs quite well. I've tried using Viewspec in the past and it hangs our systems on half the benchmarks. I'll run it on a few of the other stations here and post the results.
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_530cad2k.txt (3.1 KB, 692 views)
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  #8  
Old 12-16-2002, 09:14 AM
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clausb clausb is offline
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May,

thanks for posting the results.

Your message reminded me that the SPEC organization maintains several very useful OpenGL benchmarks which can be helpful in determining the performance potential of a graphics card upfront.

SPECviewperf (http://www.spec.org/gpc/opc.static/opcview70.html) uses datasets from some CAD and rendering packages and displays/animates them using low-level OpenGL command sequences. Some of the tests used there can be misleading, though, since they focus on special display modes which are typically not used in CAD applications these days, such as wire mode, fully textured mode, or special modes which are only relevant in the particular application where the model originated from. Therefore, it is a good idea to read the detail descriptions of the tests in SPECviewperf and only pick the test results for comparison which also make sense for applications such as OSDM.

Another interesting set of benchmarks iis the family of SPECapc tests (http://www.spec.org/gpc/apc.static/apcfaq.htm). The tests are designed for a particular CAD or rendering application and run in the application itself. This means that you need to have the application in order to run the benchmark (just like for viewbench), which makes it harder to apply in practice, of course. On the other hand, these tests are a little more likely to reflect real-world performance.

In any case, perusing the results posted regularly to the SPEC web site can help tremendously to narrow down the choice and make a good and informed decision.

Claus

Last edited by clausb; 12-16-2002 at 09:34 AM.
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  #9  
Old 12-16-2002, 12:30 PM
fteixeira fteixeira is offline
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Benchmarked: Dell M50 Precison Laptop

Hi all,

Here are my results from my laptop.

PC Model: Dell Mobile Precision M50 Laptop
CPU: P4 Mobile 1.8 GHz
RAM: 512MB DDR SDRAM
Graphics: nVidia Quadro4 500 GoGL 64MB
OS: Win2K SP2
Version: SolidDesigner 9.1.5.2

I have also inserted the description shown above in the attached file for reference. It does seem that these newer laptops pack globs of power. I use this laptop exclusively for all my CAD work. Since purchasing it 4 months ago, I have had no problems.

I was logged on to our internal network and had Norton Antivirus running (Realtime protection turned on) when I ran this benchmark. While I believe the benchmark is mainly graphics focused, I'm not sure if my results would have been slightly better if I were to do an absolutely "clean" test.
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_dellm50.txt (3.3 KB, 837 views)
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  #10  
Old 12-16-2002, 12:50 PM
May Kung May Kung is offline
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[QUOTE]This is from one of our Dell 420 stations.

Code:
PC Model: Dell Precision 420
CPU: P3 at 800 MHz
RAM: 1 GB PC800
Graphics: 3DLabs Wildcat II 5110
OS: Win2K SP2
Version: SolidDesigner 9.1.6.1
For some reason on this workstation, the system hangs when I start running the benchmark. I have to end Solid Designer and restart the session and the benchmark. The config file Viewbench generates stays "in use" until a hard reboot of the system, so the second attempt will not be able to generate a valid config file, though it will generate a valid log file.

I tried hard rebooting and soft rebooting the system, but it refuses to work on the first attempt, only after it "crashes" once in the session. I'm wondering if there is a conflict with Novell Netware (the 530 I posted earlier is not running Netware, while the above 420 is running it).
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_cad4208g.txt (3.1 KB, 644 views)
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  #11  
Old 12-16-2002, 03:45 PM
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John Scheffel John Scheffel is offline
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Re: Benchmarked: Dell M50 Precison Laptop

Quote:
Originally posted by fteixeira
Here are my results from my laptop.
PC Model: Dell Mobile Precision M50 Laptop
Pretty impressive for a laptop. The frame rates average about twice as fast as my Visualize x550, which was a top of the line desktop PC just a few years ago. Amazing how much improvement there has been in graphics processors in the last few years.
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Old 12-16-2002, 08:28 PM
WuFan WuFan is offline
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Benchmark on compaq Evo N800w

System
Product . . . . . . . Compaq Evo N800w
Processor . . . . . . Mobile Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 - M CPU 2.20GHz at 2.200GHz
Total Memory . . .. 512 Megabytes

Graphics
Adapter Type . . .. MOBILITY FIRE GL 9000
Chip Type . . . ...... Mobility Radeon 9000 (LF)
Chip Memory . . . . 64 Megabytes

OS
Windows2000 sp2

Application
Modeling 11.60.0.13
Attached Files
File Type: txt perf_viewbench_wufan.txt (3.0 KB, 665 views)
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Last edited by WuFan; 12-16-2002 at 08:35 PM.
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  #13  
Old 12-16-2002, 10:27 PM
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clausb clausb is offline
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by May Kung
Quote:
For some reason on this workstation, the system hangs when I start running the benchmark. I have to end Solid Designer and restart the session and the benchmark. The config file Viewbench generates stays "in use" until a hard reboot of the system, so the second attempt will not be able to generate a valid config file, though it will generate a valid log file.
When the benchmark starts, it tries to generate configuration information by running Microsoft's "winmsd" (Windows NT) or "msinfo32" utilities (Windows 2000, XP). Especially msinfo32 takes quite a while to complete, so maybe the system isn't really hanging, but only takes a lot of time to generate the config data. Hmmm...

Claus
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Old 12-17-2002, 12:04 PM
May Kung May Kung is offline
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Perhaps. I did let it sit for about half an hour and it wasn't doing anything, so if it's taking that long to make a config file, I'd be a little concerned.
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Old 12-19-2002, 09:04 AM
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clausb clausb is offline
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When the system hangs, is there a process which consumes CPU (check using Task Manager), or is the system idle?
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