SPEC to develop ‘performance per watt’ benchmark

“Standard Performance Evaluation Corp. (SPEC), an organization behind industry’s widely used CPU benchmark, said Wednesday that it would develop a special benchmark that measures performance per watt ratio of server-class computers. The initiative is similar to what Advanced Micro Devices and Sun Microsystems have proposed several weeks earlier. ‘Balancing performance with power consumption has emerged as a major issue for datacenter managers, computer manufacturers, government, and the industry at large,’ said Larry Gray of HP, chairman of the newly formed SPEC Power-Performance committee,” Anton Shilov reports for X-bit labs.

“The initial product from the SPEC power-performance committee will address small- to medium-sized computer server platforms. Actual methods and metrics have not been defined, though SPEC will use its current benchmarks – considered worldwide standards – as the basis for generating loads typical of day-to-day server use,” Shilov reports. “The first SPEC energy and performance benchmark is scheduled for release in Q1 2007. SPEC expects that a wide range of computer server manufacturers, systems integrators, and resellers will run the benchmark and report results.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Massimo” for the heads up.]

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  1. You know, I didn’t hear ANYTHING about performance per watt until Apple announced the transition to Intel chips.

    Maybe it is all coincidence, maybe it is just due to the higher price of gas, maybe I wasn’t paying attention to the news, but Apple continues to be on the forefront of technology.


  2. Lurker, performance per watt has been a big deal for years in the server farm arena; every watt of increased power use means building in more cooling capacity and power costs.

    This is a large part of what’s driving things like blade servers, etc.

  3. Performance per watt sounds interesting, but it usually comes at a expense of less performance.

    “The processors of today are similar in performance of processors six years ago, but hey! they use half the power now”

    Big deal.

  4. How much total energy is used annually to power computers in United States compared to the energy consumed yearly for commuting, cooking, heating, cooling, and lighting? Will reducing computer power consumption by fifty percent really make a significant difference in total energy used? Is absolute reduction in power usage only applicable to laptops?

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