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Hyper-Threading Speeds Linux
By Duc Vianney, Ph. D. - 2003-12-31 Page:  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Kernel performance measurement

To assess the effects of Hyper-Threading on the Linux kernel, we measured the performance of kernel benchmarks on a system containing the Intel Xeon processor with HT. The hardware was a single-CPU, 1.6 GHz Xeon MP processor with SMT, 2.5 GB of RAM, and two 9.2 GB SCSI disk drives. The kernel under measurement was stock version 2.4.19 configured and built with SMP enabled. The kernel Hyper-Threading support was specified by the boot option acpismp=force for Hyper-Threading and noht for no Hyper-Threading. The existence of Hyper-Threading support can be seen by using the command cat /proc/cpuinfo to show the presence of two processors, processor 0 and processor 1. Note the ht flag in Listing 1 for CPUs 0 and 1. In the case of no Hyper-Threading support, the data will be displayed for processor 0 only.

Listing 1. Output from cat /proc/cpuinfo showing Hyper-Threading support


   processor  : 0
   vendor_id  : GenuineIntel
   cpu family   : 15
   model  : 1
   model name   : Intel(R) Genuine CPU 1.60GHz
   stepping   : 1
   cpu MHz  : 1600.382
   cache size   : 256 KB
   . . .
   fpu          : yes
   fpu_exception: yes
   cpuid level  : 2
   wp           : yes
   flags        : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr
   pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht
   tm
   bogomips     : 3191.60
   processor    : 1
   vendor_id    : GenuineIntel
   cpu family   : 15
   model        : 1
   model name   : Intel(R) Genuine CPU 1.60GHz
   stepping     : 1
   cpu MHz      : 1600.382
   cache size   : 256 KB
   . . .
   fpu          : yes
   fpu_exception: yes
   cpuid level  : 2
   wp           : yes
   flags        : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr
   pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht
   tm
   bogomips     : 3198.15


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First published by IBM developerWorks


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