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Testing Methodology

I had the opportunity to test the Santa Rosa platform under two OSes, Windows XP and Windows Vista because Sony’s website offered Windows XP drivers. So, the CR11SR/P was tested alone under Windows XP and together with the Dell Vostro 1400 under Windows Vista.

In the first part of the tests the notebook’s hard disk was formatted in NTFS. Then I installed Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2 with DirectX 9.0c and system drivers (from the manufacturer’s website), and Windows Media Encoder 9.0 with Windows Media Player 9.0. We also install Windows Media Player 10.0 for such tests as PCMark 2005.

The following settings are used during the tests:

  • Power-saving services – Off
  • Audio subsystem – Off
  • Network services – Off
  • Maximum screen brightness
  • Maximum display resolution (1280x800)
  • Windows Taskbar is Unlocked
  • Windows Taskbar hides automatically
  • Classic Desktop theme
  • No background image on the Desktop
  • No screensaver
  • Low security level
  • Pop-ups blocking disabled

There were two exceptions: I returned to the Windows XP desktop theme for PCMark 2005 since the program required that. And for SYSMark 2004 SE to work normally, I had to roll each parameter back to its default (as they are set right after you install Windows).

Two power modes were used. First, I selected the Always On power mode for maximum performance and the shortest battery life. Then I switched to the Max Battery mode for the maximum battery run-down time.

Our tests:

  1. Performance benchmarks: synthetic (SiSoftware Sandra 2005, SiSoftware Sandra 2007, PCMark 2004 1.3.0, PCMark 2005 1.2.0), office and multimedia (SYSMark 2004 SE), and games (3DMark 2001SE Pro, 3DMark 2003 3.6.0, 3DMark 2005 1.3.0, 3DMark 2006 1.1.0, Quake 3, Quake 4)
  2. Battery life tests (Battery Eater Pro 2.60)

There are three test modes in Battery Eater:

  • Classic (the system is under a high and evenly distributed load)
  • Reader’s test (the pages are browsed through each 15 seconds)
  • Idle mode

I used the first two modes as they are in Battery Eater, but in the Idle mode (when the test utility doesn’t put any load of its own on the notebook) I played a DVD movie.

In the second part of the test I installed Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate x86 and drivers (from a prepared system recovery disc) on the notebook’s hard disk formatted in NTFS.

The following settings were used:

  • Sidebar – Off
  • Welcome Center – Off
  • Screensaver – Off
  • Windows Defender – Off
  • System Protection – Off
  • Windows Update – Off
  • Scheduled defragmentation – Off
  • User Account Control – Off
  • Maximum screen brightness
  • Maximum display resolution (1280x800)
  • Aero interface
  • Windows Vista desktop theme
  • 10% volume level

Two power modes were used. First, I selecteded the High Performance power mode for maximum performance and the shortest battery life. Then I switched to the Power Saver mode for the maximum battery run-down time.

Our tests:

  1. Performance benchmarks: synthetic (SiSoftware Sandra 2007, PCMark 2004 1.3.0, PCMark 2005 1.2.0, PCMark Vintage, SYSMark 2007), real-life applications (DivX 6.7, iTunes 7.3, Photoshop CS2, Microsoft Excel 2007, WinRAR 3.7, Microsoft Movie Maker 6.0, CINEBENCH 10), and games (3DMark 2001SE Pro, 3DMark 2003 3.6.0, 3DMark 2005 1.2.0, 3DMark 2006 1.1.0, Half-Life 2, F.E.A.R., Quake 4)
  2. Battery life tests (MobileMark 2007)

There are three test modes in Mobile Mark 2007:

  • Productivity (the system is under a high load)
  • Reader’s test (the emulation of the user’s reading a PDF file; the pages are browsed through each 2 minutes)
  • DVD playback mode
 
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