The linearity of response of X-ray detectors is tested. Examples of linearity tests demonstrate the remarkable range of linear response of flowing-gas ion chambers in the synchrotron environment. The diagnostic is also highly sensitive to the presence in the X-ray beam of harmonic X-rays diffracted by a higher-order reflection of the monochromator. The remarkable range of linearity of ion chambers has enabled the accurate measurement of the absolute X-ray attenuation of a number of elements. It should now be possible to measure the absolute intensity of Bragg reflections, provided such measurements are carried out with extended-face single crystals. The advantages of the extended-face crystal technique for Bragg intensity measurements are summarized and a number of approaches to absolute Bragg intensity measurement are discussed.