We, at computingondemand.com, had been looking for a way to benchmark a NAS in a repeatable form without the need to buy additional software. For us, we had been performing a test in our NAS reviews that benchmarks the speed at which you can transfer the Avatar ISO to and from a NAS. This was a drag and drop process that proved to be a hassle to run more than one time. It was even more of a hassle waiting for the test to near completion to document the transfer speed at that time, and then average the results. Because of this, I created a simple batch file that can perform the test repeatedly and calculate the results, allowing me to walk away while the test was running and perform other duties. Now, I am releasing this repeatable test to our readers so they can directly compare the results they get with ours.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE: First, extract the zip (located below) file to c:\avatartest. After that, all you have to do is execute the StartTest shortcut in the c:\avatartest folder by right clicking it and choosing “Run as Administrator“. Please note that this batch file uses the command for robocopy and fsutil. Windows 7 should have these by default. If you are running Windows XP and do not have robocopy, you need to download the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit (directly from Microsoft).
The batch file requires admin authentication to use the fsutil command. This command creates the Avatar ISO file at 46.6GB (50,050,629,632 bytes). You will be prompted by Windows to allow this application to execute with these privileges. The script will try to find files that may already exist within the C:\avatartest folder and remove them.
Once you are ready to proceed, just press any button on your keyboard. The benchmark will then create a file avatar.iso that is exactly 50,050,629,632 in size (or 46.6GB), the same size as the original Avatar ISO that was used in our benchmarking.
Next, the application will ask you 3 very specific and important questions:
- The hostname or IP of your NAS (example answer would be : SERVER)
- The Shared folder on the NAS to run the test from (example answer would be: documents)
- How many times you want the test to loop (example answer would be: 10)
This will create a path for robocopy of \\SERVER\Documents\avatartest\
The application will then run through the test, looping for as many times as requested. Once completed, it will create a .CSV file with the results in MB/m form as reported by robocopy. At the bottom of this document, it will calculate the average result for each test in “To NAS” and “From NAS” and then divide it by the number 60 (for seconds in a minute) to calculate the results in the form of MB/s.
Just to note, the above results were generated using a file size or 50,050 bytes for the purposes of this tutorial.
Thinking about it, if documented properly, you can use these results to benchmark LAN and WIFI speeds on your network or to calculate your network adapter’s performance.
If you find this useful, please drop us a line in the comment section below. If you find a way to make this better please let us know.
Download the avatartest