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Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation



The SERT tool (Server Efficiency Rating Tool) was created by the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC), the world's leading organization for benchmarking expertise, at the request of the US Environmental Protection Agency. It is intended to measure server energy efficiency, initially as part of the second generation of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ENERGY STAR for Computer Servers program. Designed to be simple to configure and use via a comprehensive graphical user interface, the SERT tool uses a set of synthetic worklets to test discrete system components such as processors, memory and storage, providing detailed power consumption data at different load levels. Results are provided in both machine- and human-readable forms, enabling automatic submission to government-sponsored certification programs as well as both summary and detail reports for use by potential customers.

The SERT tool is available for purchase via the SPEC order form.

Update notices:

March 10th, 2015: The SERT Tool V1.1.0 released
Version 1.1.0 of the SERT tool is now available for license holders. This is a major update which includes many enhancements.
• Automated determination of correct current and voltage ranges.
• Full GUI support for multi-node (multi-server) and multi-power-analyzer configurations.
• More extensive warning messages to help ensure compliant testing results.
• Support for a wider range of system configurations and processor architectures.
• Reduced measurement time for systems with high core/thread counts.
• Updated version of the SPEC PTDaemon.
• Automatic calculation of overall workload scores.
• Adjustment of the memory worklet scoring algorithm.

Current licensees of previous versions of the software are eligible for a free upgrade; please check the SERT Update Process Page for details on downloading and applying the patch.

May 28th, 2014: The SERT Tool Memory Worklet Invalid Coefficient of Variation Messages
On May 28th, 2014 the SPECpower committee agreed that validity messages in SERT 1.0.2 for memory worklets regarding the "coefficient of variation among clients" should be treated as warnings. Therefore, results containing these messages are considered valid as long as there are no other validity issues.

Example of a coefficient of variation message that can be treated as a warning:
INVALID: The coefficient of variation among clients was 11.5%, which is greater than the threshold of 10.0% in the Flood_Full interval of worklet Flood

Please note that all other INVALID messages in a result will still cause that result to remain invalid, including coefficient of variation messages for non-memory worklets.

The EPA’s ENERGY STAR for Computer Server Specification version 2 and SPEC

SPEC applauds the EPA for its goal to drive toward greater energy efficiency in IT Equipment, and SPEC considers the EPA ENERGY STAR Program an industry partner in this effort. The development of an Active Mode Efficiency Rating Tool is an essential component in the ongoing effort to reduce worldwide energy consumption and paves the way for a successful ENERGY STAR for Computer Server program that has the potential to harmonize energy efficiency programs worldwide.

SPEC welcomes this opportunity to work with the EPA on the SERT tool in support of the ENERGY STAR Specification for Computer Server v2 and is proudly looking forward to continuing our long-standing association with the EPA ENERGY STAR Development Team.

Development of the SERT tool is an international effort, with interest being expressed in adoption by national bodies from the European Union, China, Japan and Korea.

Government Programs that use the SERT tool

EPA Energy Star v2.0 for Servers

Information on the Tool

Press Releases
Press release material, documents, and announcements:  

SERT Tool 1.1.0 Release Announcement  (March 2015)
SPEC releases SERT tool (Server Efficiency Rating Tool)   (February 2013)
SERT Tool Beta Release Announcement  (September 2012)
Beta Testers Sought  (June 2012)

Technical and support documents, run and reporting rules, etc.

JVM Options Guide for SERT 1.1.0
JVM Options Guide for SERT 1.0.2 and earlier User Guide 
Run and Reporting Rules
SERT Result File Field Descriptions 

Technical Design Documents:   
          Design Overview
          PTDaemon Tool Design

Power and Performance Methodology
Accepted Measurement Devices

Training/Demo session

A SERT Tool Training/Demo session in conjunction with the SPEC Annual Meeting in Austin, TX was held on January 23, 2013 from 1:30 PM - 5:00 PM CST at the Austin Convention Center.

Presentation from the EPA 
Training Presentation 

Related Publications 

Analysis of the Influences on Server Power Consumption and Energy Efficiency for CPU-Intensive Workloads
ICPE'15 Proceedings of the 6th ACM/SPEC International Conference on Performance Engineering

Further Implementation Aspects Of The SERT Tool (Server Efficiency Rating Tool)
ICPE'13 Proceedings of the 4th ACM/SPEC International Conference on Performance Engineering

The Implementation Of The SERT (Server Efficiency Rating Tool)
ICPE'12 Proceedings of the 3rd ACM/SPEC International Conference on Performance Engineering

The Design And Development Of the Server Efficiency Rating Tool
ICPE'11 Proceedings of the 2nd ACM/SPEC International Conference on Performance engineering


Technical support requiring involvement of specialists is done by volunteers from our member institutions (see member list). Please do not send us any proprietary information in your queries. If you feel you cannot clearly ask your question without reference to proprietary information please clearly mark such communications and we will not involve our SERT tool specialists, but rather will answer your query only if SPEC's own staff SERT tool generalists are able to do so.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) - Installation and runtime issues raised by users of the SERT tool.
Support Request Form
Power Measurement Setup Guide


An update is available for the SERT tool (v1.1.0), released March 10th, 2015. This major update includes numerous enhancements.

Update Process Page

An update is available for PTDaemon (v1.7.1), released March 10th, 2015. This update is included with version 1.1.0 of the SERT tool. Please note that DC power measurements are not supported by the tool at this time. For users of the SERT tool 1.0.0, 1.0.1, or 1.0.2 the PTD v1.7.1 update can be downloaded here :

SPEC PTDaemon Update Process Page


SERT Credits