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This paper presents an innovative way to build flexible benchmarks based on micro-architecture independent characteristics. The proposed approach enables the testing and stressing of processors in order to reflect the real nature of applications and give meaningful information to the designers. The use of a limited number of basic blocks hand-coded in assembly, wisely chosen and arranged, enables to copy the behaviour of proprietary applications. An integer linear programming approach is used to find the number of basic blocks and their iterations. An enumerative method is used to build the basic blocks base. Our approach is used to generate synthetic test benches representative of the MediaBench applications suite. Real measurements conducted on an Intel processor show interesting and promising results, which will be discussed in details in this paper.