SD and microSD cards are not known for their speed, but their slim size makes them the default choice for storage in the Raspberry Pi. Most users will install the Raspberry Pi OS to a microSD or SD card, and then use additional hard drives if the need for greater read and write speeds arises. In order to use an SD card or microSD card for storage on the Raspberry Pi, it should pass the benchmark test for minimum speeds.
We can run the benchmark test using the
agnostics tool that is maintained and developed by the same people behind the Raspberry Pi. In this tutorial, you will see how to benchmark the SD card on a Raspberry Pi. This will give you a PASS or FAIL result as to whether your card meets the minimum speed requirements to be used as the operating system drive on the Raspberry Pi.
In this tutorial you will learn:
- How to install the agnostics tool
- How to perform benchmark test for SD card on Raspberry Pi
|Category||Requirements, Conventions or Software Version Used|
|Other||Privileged access to your Linux system as root or via the
# – requires given linux commands to be executed with root privileges either directly as a root user or by use of
$ – requires given linux commands to be executed as a regular non-privileged user
Benchmark SD card on Raspberry Pi step by step instructions
Follow along with our steps below to get the agnostics tool installed, and then use it to benchmark the SD card and generate a PASS or FAIL result. We can also take a closer look and see the maximum read and write speeds of our SD / microSD card, as you will see below.
- Let’s start by executing the following two commands to install the agnostics tool:
$ sudo apt update $ sudo apt install agnostics
- Open the system application launcher, then go to Accessories > Raspberry Pi Diagnostics.
- On the Raspberry Pi Diagnostics window that pops up, click on the ‘Run Tests’ button to begin testing the speed of your SD card.
- Once the test has finished running, you will be shown either a PASS or FAIL result, and the option to view the log file to see the details of test results.
A sequential write speed of 10000 KB/sec, random write speed of 500 IOPS, and random read speed of 1500 IOPS is considered good enough to get a PASS result on the performance test. This means that the SD card is fast enough to be suitable as an OS drive, and can perform normal read and write tasks relatively quickly.
- Viewing the log file will show you the SD card’s sequential write speed, as well as the random read and random write speed, measured in IOPS.
In this tutorial, we saw how to benchmark an SD or microSD card on a Raspberry Pi system. If your storage did not get a PASS result, then you should definitely consider replacing it with a better one before continuing to use the Raspberry Pi. Otherwise, you will likely notice performance problems down the road. In case you need more speed, you can always plug in additional hard drives or solid state drives.