Bapco releases Sysmark 2004

Calcs 'thing time - the time where the user is assessing what to do next'

Benchmark consortium Bapco has released the latest version of its PC performance testing suite.

Sysmark 2004 uses an "updated" range of commercial applications in its scoring system, including Adobe's Acrobat 5.0.5, After Effects(R) 5.5, Photoshop 7.01 and Premiere 6.5; Discreet 3DS max 5.1; Macromedia Dreamweaver MX and Flash MX; Microsoft Windows Media Encoder 9 Series, Access 2002, Excel 2002, Outlook 2002, Word 2002, PowerPoint 2002 and IE 6.0; Network Associates McAfee VirusScan 7.0; and WinZip 8.1.

Most of these apps have been superseded by more recent versions, and we're surprised Sysmark 2004 doesn't use these later releases. However, Bapco does say that the latest suite is the first to contain app-level tests devised by "application experts".

The 2004 release also attempts to take into account usage scenarios involving multiple apps running simultaneously, with users frequently switching between them. It also sends keystroke data "at a rate that approximates how fast a human will type" and copes with what Bapco calls "thing time... the time where the user is assessing what to do next. To reflect this real world occurrence, Bapco's workloads include think times between user interactions."

Sysmark 2004 requires Windows XP and is on offer for the princely sum of $400, give or take five cents. ®