SPEC celebrates 30th anniversary with SPECviewperf update

Expanded SPECworkstation benchmark slated for Q2

Jon Peddie

Major versions of SPECviewperf and SPECwpc (to be renamed SPECworkstation) are on tap for Q2 of this year.

SPECviewperf 13 will feature new volume visualization viewsets for energy and medical applications, radically new shaders, and updated viewsets to match more recent versions of the applications on which they are based.

SPECworkstation 3.0 will include new GPU performance measurement, completely redesigned storage workloads based on real application traces, and improved results validation and error reporting.

Both benchmarks will benefit from the new standardized GUI being implemented across all SPEC/GWPG products. SPEC/GWPG benchmarks are free to everyone but sellers of computer equipment and services. They can be downloaded here.

Scan image from the new medical viewset to be introduced in SPECviewperf 13. 


What do we think?

We in the workstation industry live or die by SPEC. The organization is for and by the industry and as a result, they are very aware of the necessity of keeping up to date. For the past 30 years the group’s benchmarks have evolved to keep up with the latest developments in processor and software technologies, and if possible remain compatible or at least consistent with past versions, a tricky enterprise and subject to some criticism. The group handles challenges by openly discussing them. When benchmarking workstation performance, reproducibility is associated with consistency and predictability. But, it is a difficult goal to achieve. SPEC has some thoughts about the issues, and how they do it is listed here.

AMD, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, Intel, Lenovo, and Nvidia are currently the primary SPEC/GWPG members, and if you can imagine them agreeing on anything, then you know what UN-like challenges SPEC faces and has faced over the years — and yet they do it, every time, all the time. – J.P.