The Week in Chess

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Stockfish 2.3.1 Starves in AMD Quad Core Multiple Tournaments

In my quest to know which open source engine is the strongest, I accidentally discovered that Stockfish 2.3.1 is like a moron when running in AMD Quad Core with simultaneous chess tournaments.

In the first test between Fire 2.2 and Stockfish 2.3.1 32 compiled in 32-bit mode with the same Intel C++ Compiler where Fire won, I expressed doubts that Stockfish is the most powerful open source chess engine.  Then in a rematch with Firenzina in 64-bit mode, I noticed that Stockfish performs badly when many chess tournaments were running at the same time in the AMD computer but is better when only one tournament is running.

The third instance where Stockfish sucks badly was when it was competing against Houdini, Robodini and Critter in a tournament intended for rating list classification.  It was running with the official stable version compiled by Jim Ablett but the scores were so devastating that I stopped the tournaments after 50 rounds.

And the fourth event that convinced me that Stockfish 2.3.1 is truly an idiot when there are lots of processes running is when it lost to Stockfish development version dated April 8, 2013 with a score of 12.5 out of 100 game without winning a single game.  These 2 Stockfish engines were also personally compiled with the Intel C++ Compiler.

Here is the actual scoreboard:

Stockfish 2.3.1 x64 owl vs. Stockfish 130408 x64 owl - Test Match
1Stockfish 130406 x64 owl 87.5/100· ·· ·· ·75-0-25 1093.75 
2Stockfish 2.3.1 x64 i owl12.5/1000-75-25· ·· ·· · 1093.75 

100 games played / Tournament finished

Tournament start: 2013.04.09, 23:06:40
Latest update: 2013.04.10, 03:33:29
Level: Blitz 0:10/1
Hardware: AMD Phenom(tm) II X4 945 Processor 3000 MHz with 4.0 GB Memory
Operating system: Microsoft Windows XP 64 Bit Professional Service Pack 2 (Build 3790)
Table created with: Arena 3.0

I think it is time for the Stockfish team to issue a patch to update the Stockfish 2.3.1 version because it is the one used for official chess engines tournaments and some users may have the same tournament condition as mine which could affect the true strength of Stockfish.

Stockfish 2.3.1 is ranked #8 in the Owl Computer Chess Engines Rating List - all 32-bit chess engines, but is ranked #3 in the 64-bit tournament for the top chess engines and #3 overall in the rating list to be posted shortly.  It may not be case had I not taken measures to avoid the situation where Stockfish 2.3.1 sucks.

Download computer chess engines tournament games here.


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