Linux Graphics Benchmarking

Warning - Old Content

This post is quite old, and it might not apply anymore, or maybe there's a better way to do the same thing nowadays. Take with a big grain of salt.

With the upcoming beta of Steam for Linux, it seems like a good time to do some benchmarking to see how my graphics card stacks up. In the bad old days, the only real way to test graphics performance in linux was to run glxgears or a game like tuxracer. Luckily, there is now an actual benchmarking tool called glmark2. You can install it in Ubuntu with:

sudo apt-get install glmark2

Once installed, run it from a terminal with:

glmark2

That will run several minutes’ worth of tests, and spit out an overall score. Unfortunately, information is scarce on what that score actually means or what a good score would be - it seems to be an average of the different framerates observed, so higher should be better. My score is 859, which I take to be fairly good based on what I know about my hardware and how 3d games perform on this laptop. Here’s a quick listing of some other results I’ve found while surfing around the net.

Glmark2 comparative scores: Somebody complaining about poor performance: 23 PowerVR SGX 540: 113 Raspberry Pi: 136 Intel 965GM: 172 Intel 965GM GEM: 339 My laptop (ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5440, proprietary drivers): 859

The other results that I was able to find all showed numbers around the 100-300 range, which I think is just a function of the kinds of devices people are testing - anyone with a full desktop video card probably has graphics that work well enough these days.

If anyone knows what a “good” score is, feel free to add notes in the comments!