The beta version of the Metatrader 5 Strategy Tester (Metatester 5) was released a few months ago. It is a integral part of the new Metatrader 5 trading terminal and like in the old version of Metatrader it is used to optimise and test MQL5 expert advisors. Metatester 5 is the last component of MetaTrader 5 tools that is needed in the process of efficient development of MQL5 Expert Advisors. The new tester is still in development and the final version will be released end this year.
One of the new features of Metatester 5 is the possibility to use agents (individual calculation frameworks) to highly increase the speed of trading strategies calculation and optimization. Each agent represent one logical cpu core, so for example, if you have a dual-core cpu, you will have 2 agents. The agents can also be installed on remote computers in a local network or on the Internet. A big advantage of this is that you can use endless cpu power like in the popular grid computing projects called Folding at Home or SETI at home. MetaQuotes, the company behind Metatrader 5, will also launch a commercial service where processor power of remote agents will be sold.
Another great feature of Metatester 5 is the forward optimization mode. Via this option you can modify the optimization results to eliminate testing on certain time periods. During the forward expert advisor optimization, the time period is divided into two parts – the main history period and the forward period. The results of the best passes in the optimization process on both time periods can then be compared in the “Optimization Results” window after the process is finished.
The new Metatrader 5 strategy tester will be much faster than in MT4 because the tester will function as a standalone application. Compared to the old tester it is a more accurate and powerful tool. The fast genetic based algorithm optimization parameter is now much faster because it can use all the power of modern 64-bit multi core processors. The new expert advisor MQL5 language has also many new features that are working in combination with the new strategy tester.
At last, there is the option to backtest multi-currency expert advisors. Many traders requested this feature which was also not available in the old version of the tester. Metatester 5 will automatically read the source code of the EA for multiple-currency testing. The final optimization results and the equity curve graph will combine all symbols in one result. If you have a one-currency EA, you can also test it on multiple symbols using the “All Symbols Selected in Market Watch” option. This also helps to speed up the strategy testing process, because each symbol will be tested automatically unlike in Metatrader 4, where the testing was done by hand.
The quote history that is used during the testing process is also improved, now it is stored in the accurate 1-minute format and is available from 1999. In the current beta of the strategy tester, there is no option to use external history like in the MT4 DDE server, but according to MetaQuotes, this option will be added later. The file size of the history per symbol is smaller than the previous version – around 15MB in compressed format. This helps to save traffic, especially when multiple-symbol history is downloaded.