TestStand Semiconductor Module CPU Optimization on the PXIe-8880

Updated Jan 30, 2018

Reported In

Hardware

  • PXIe-8880

Software

  • TestStand

Issue Details

I'm using the TestStand Semiconductor Module or TSM on a PXIe-8880 in my Semiconductor Test System (STS) and I’m experiencing slower than expected test times. What is causing this behavior and how can I optimize the performance of my system to improve my test times?

Solution

Some configuration options on the PXIe-8880 can lead to slower than expected test times when using the TSM. In order to best optimize the performance of an STS there are two different configurations that can be used. 


The first configuration is to disable Hyper-Threading. Disabling Hyper-Threading allows a test program to run a single thread on a single core which can lead to an increase in performance. 
If disabling Hyper-Threading does not achieve the desired performance levels, a second configuration option is to limit the number of cores the test program uses. Reducing the number of cores used by the program allows the processor to run at a cooler temperature which can increase the processor speed and increase performance. 

Follow the instructions below to complete these configurations.

How to Disable Hyper-Threading
  1. Restart the controller and press Delete (DEL) when prompted to enter the BIOS
  2. On the Main BIOS screen, use the arrow keys to move to the Advanced Tab
  3. Select CPU Configuration
  4. Select Hyper-Threading and press Enter
  5. Use the arrow keys to move to Disable and press Enter
  6. Press Escape (ESC) to return to the selection screen
  7. Use the arrow keys to navigate to the Save and Exit Tab
  8. Select Save and Reset and press Enter


How to Configure a Test Program to Use 4 Cores
  1. Restart your controller and press Delete (DEL) when prompted to enter the BIOS
  2. On the Main BIOS screen, use the arrow keys to move to the Advanced Tab
  3. Select CPU Configuration
  4. Select Enabled CPU Cores and press Enter
  5. Use the arrow keys to move to select the number of cores and press Enter
  6. Press Escape (ESC) to return to the selection screen
  7. Use the arrow keys to navigate to the Save and Exit Tab
  8. Select Save and Reset and press Enter

 

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