WMP Stress is a platform- and provider-neutral multimedia player object that uses the Windows Media Player interfaces to play back any media content supported by the currently configured Windows Media environment. For the purposes of this project, I selected a single media file -- the welcome2.asf file from an earlier generation Windows Media Services platform -- and then configured the workload to play the clip continuously, with a one second delay loop. Here again, I configured the workload to create 10 concurrent instances of itself at package launch.
If you've been paying attention, you've probably realized that the above scenario represents a massive workload of mixed database, workflow, and media playback tasks -- 30 concurrent processes in all, generating a whopping 430 concurrent execution threads. (See the 30-way workload in action on XP.) I repeated this scenario across all three Windows operating systems installed in a triple-boot configuration on both dual-core and quad-core test beds (a Dell OptiPlex 745 with Core 2 Duo E6700, 4GB RAM, and 10K RPM SATA disk and an HP EliteBook 8730w with Core 2 Extreme Q9300, 8GB RAM, and 7200 RPM SATA disk, respectively).