Appeared in the Proceedings of the Computer Measurement Group (CMG) Conference, December 1995, pp. 1263­1269.

Generating Representative Synthetic Workloads: An Unsolved Problem

Gregory R. Ganger

M.I.T. Laboratory for Computer Science
http://www.pdos.lcs.mit.edu/

Abstract

Synthetic disk request traces are convenient and popular workloads for performance evaluation of storage subsystem designs and implementations. This paper develops an approach for validating synthetic disk request generators. Using this approach, commonly­used simplifying assumptions about workload charac­ teristics (e.g., uniformly­distributed starting addresses and Poisson arrivals) are shown to be inappropriate, often leading to inaccurate performance predictions. Also, workload characteristics that require additional study are identified.

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