The Data Drive Benchmark is designed to test drives that are used for storing files rather than applications. You can also use this test with NAS drives, USB sticks, memory cards, and other external storage devices.

The Data Drive Benchmark uses 3 traces, running 3 passes with each trace. It typically takes 15 minutes to run, but this can vary due to wide differences in performance across devices, for example, USB sticks.

Traces used

Result file labelDescription
Copying 339 JPEG files, 2.37 GB in total, in to the target drive (write test)
Making a copy of the JPEG files (read-write test)
Copying the JPEG files to another drive (read test)


Overall score

The PCMark 10 Data Drive Benchmark produces an overall score, which is calculated from the bandwidth and average access time sub-scores.

PCMark 10 Storage score    =    geometric mean (bandwidth, 1 / average access time)


The secondary metrics are Bandwidth and Average access time

During a trace playback, the start and end time is measured for each I/O.

access_time_for_an_I/O     =    end time - start time

Specifically, filesystem target type can issue other types of I/O than read and write, for example, create file and close file. To be able to focus on actual data transfer performance:  

average_access_time        =    arithmetic mean of only read and write access time

Busy time is a metric used to quantify the amount of time that the storage device is executing I/Os. It is defined as the sum of all times when at least one I/O was executing. Again, to be able to focus on data transfer performance, we define busy_time_for_read_and_write as the time when at least one read or write operation was executing. Using this and the number of bytes being transferred during the trace playback, we define:

bandwidth                  =    bytes / busy_time_for_read_and_write