TrueCrypt 7.1 Benchmark

TrueCrypt is a software application used for on-the-fly encryption (OTFE). It is free, open source and offers full AES-NI support. The application also features a built-in encryption benchmark that we can use to measure CPU performance. First we test with the AES algorithm (256-bit key, symmetric).

TrueCrypt AES

Core for Core, clock for clock, the Xeon E5 - which also supports AES-NI - is about 30% faster than the best Opteron (Xeon E5-2660 vs Opteron 6276). At a similar pricepoint (Opteron 6276 vs Xeon E5-2660 6C) however, the Opteron and Xeon E5 perform more or less the same, with a small advantage for the latter.

We also test with the heaviest combination of the cascaded algorithms available: Serpent-Twofish-AES.

TrueCrypt AES-Twofish-Serpent

The combination benchmark is limited by the slowest algorithms: Twofish and Serpent. This one of the few benchmarks where the Opteron 6276 is able to keep up with the Xeon E5.

It is important to realize that these benchmarks are not real-world but rather are synthetic. It would be better to test a website that does some encrypting in the background or a fileserver with encrypted partitions. In that case the encryption software is only a small part of the total code being run. A large performance (dis)advantage might translate into a much smaller performance (dis)advantage in that real-world situation. For example, eight times faster encryption resulted in a website with 23% higher throughput and a 40% faster file encryption (see here).

7-Zip 9.2

7-zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio. 7-Zip is open source software, with most of the source code available under the GNU LGPL license

7-zip

Compression is more CPU intensive than decompression, meanwhile the latter depends a little more on memory bandwidth. When it comes to load/stores and memory bandwidth, the Xeon E5-2660 is about 13% faster than AMD's flagship. Compression is for a part determined by the quality of the branch predictor. The new and improved Sandy Bridge branch predictor is one of the reasons why a 2.2 GHz 6-core 2660 is able to keep up with a 2.93 GHz (!) Xeon 5670, which is also a six-core processor. The Opterons get blown away in the compression benchmark: each core of Xeon E5 is about twice as efficient in this task. The overall winner is thus once again the Xeon E5.

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  • fredisdead - Saturday, April 07, 2012 - link

    From the 'article' .....

    'The Opteron might also have a role in the low end, price sensitive HPC market, where it still performs very well. It won't have much of chance in the high end clustered one as Intel has the faster and more power efficient PCIe interface'

    Well, if that's the case, why exactly would AMD be scoring so many design wins with Interlagos. Including this one ...

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2394515,00.as...

    http://www.eweek.com/c/a/IT-Infrastructure/Cray-Ti...

    U think those guys at Cray were going for low performance ? In fact, seems like AMD has being rather cleaning up in the HPC market since the arrival of Interlagos. And the markets have picked up on it, AMD stock is thru the roof since the start of the year. Or just see how many Intel processors occupy the the top 10 supercomputers on the planet. Nuff said ...
    Reply
  • InsaneScientist - Wednesday, March 07, 2012 - link

    Johan, where in the specs where you have this line:
    Transistors (Billion) 2,26 2x 1,2 2x 904 1,17

    I sure hope that 2x 904 (Billion) is a typo... otherwise AMD has some serious explaining to do. ;)

    Should be 2x ,904 (I think? Would be 2x .904 for me, I assume you follow the same rules...)
    Reply
  • iliev - Wednesday, March 07, 2012 - link

    Page 5, Benchmark Configuration

    R2208GZ4GSSPP specs table... E5-2660 is 2.2Ghz, and not 2.9GHz
    Reply
  • dodge776 - Wednesday, March 07, 2012 - link

    Hi Johan,
    Always look forward to reading your server reviews at AT, but no SAPS benchmarks this time?
    Reply
  • ppennisi - Wednesday, March 07, 2012 - link

    For maximum VMware performance on Opteron Interlagos cpu under VMWARE it's better to disable C1E and enable, where available, HPC mode.

    I found myself on a fresh installation of ESXi 5.0 on Dell R715 that leaving C1E enable literally crippled vm performance.
    Reply
  • boudini - Thursday, March 08, 2012 - link

    I'm not sure I would recommend using iray as a reliable benchmark renderer in 3ds max. It is not a self configuring mental ray, but an unbiased renderer which behaves fairly differently to mental ray, and most other renderers such as vray, final render and brazil. It is comparible to maxwell and fryrender, but is very new compared to those two longer established unbiased render engines. It also attempts to use the gpu to add to its calculations as well - which could significantly skew results.

    Using mental ray or vray might well give you quite a different result, and besides I don't think iray is widely used in the industry.
    Reply
  • omega4711 - Friday, March 09, 2012 - link

    This. The results of iray are mostly dependent on the GPU. The lack of proper scaling certainly isn't due to Amdahl's law. Just use mentalray with small enough render buckets and you can easily satisfy 64+ threads.

    Also, due to the limitations of iray, it can (at this moment) only be used in about 1-3% of real world scenarios.

    Please, for all the people that care about these benchmarks, use mentalray and/or vray.

    Otherwise, it's a brilliant article.
    Reply
  • silverblue - Thursday, March 08, 2012 - link

    You've put that Interlagos has 4x2MB L2, but that would only be true for Valencia; Interlagos is 8x2MB. Reply
  • aranyagag - Thursday, March 08, 2012 - link

    you forgot the E5-2687W with a 150w tdp and higher speeds Reply
  • colonelclaw - Friday, March 09, 2012 - link

    Hi There,
    Thanks for an excellent article. With regards to the rendering benchmarks, would you consider using VRay as a rendering engine? It's fast becoming industry standard, is compatible with all the big hitters (Max, Maya, Softimage etc), is cross platform, and I believe, is incredibly well coded to scale with cores.
    It's also incredibly popular, not something you could say about iRay right now.
    Reply

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