Mysql on the T2000

by Mads
April 07, 2006 at 22:01 | categories: hardware, sun

T2000 Ian Holsman has a nice writeup of the benchmarks he has been doing with the T2000 in "How does MySQL perform on a sunfire?".
I've still got plenty of ideas for sqeezing a bit more out of the box, but I don't really have much time to test it myself before I don't have access to the T2000 Try & buy at work.

Dtrace support in non-global zones

by Mads
March 28, 2006 at 23:32 | categories: sun, solaris, asf

Dan Price has just announced support for dtrace in non-global zones. The mail went to dtrace discuss.

Well, I guess this is as good a time as any to announce that I've
integrated initial support for DTrace inside of Containers (a.k.a.
non-global zones) as of Friday, Mar 24, 2006.  This means that in
future Solaris Express and Community Express builds (those based on
Nevada B37 or higher), you can use a subset of DTrace functionality
inside of non-global zones.

Here's how to use this functionality:

        # zonecfg -z myzone
        zonecfg:myzone> set limitpriv=default,dtrace_proc,dtrace_user
        zonecfg:myzone> ^D

        # zoneadm -z myzone boot

        # zlogin myzone
        myzone# dtrace -l

        myzone# plockstat -Ap `pgrep startd`

Note that either or both of the dtrace_proc and dtrace_user privileges
may be granted to a zone, but dtrace_kernel may not be (zoneadm will
enforce this).  The lack of dtrace_kernel means that not every DTrace
script will work, since kernel state is not available to DTrace inside
of a zone; but we think this represents a good start.

Additional virtualization work has been done to ensure that data from
other zones is not visible inside the zone, and to ensure that the
interactions with other relevant privileges (proc_owner and proc_zone)
behave as expected.


The whole thread is here.

I'm really looking forward to getting this in a release so that we can bring it onto the ASF zones server.

Nevada at 37

by Mads
March 28, 2006 at 14:26 | categories: sun, solaris

Dan Price has a really interesting set of slides about Solaris Nevada and the features that are in it or on the way in the near future.
A few highlights:

  • ~7,500 bug fixes / RFEs (since S10)
  • Performance
    • Sparc: RSA in the kernel is now about twice as fast as before
    • x86/64: Much faster memmove, strcpy and more
  • Networking: too many things to mention
  • In kernel SSL proxy - not something I've been able to find much info on, but there's a few parameters for it in this SPECweb2005 config.
  • Trusted Extensions
  • NFS
    • 200 megabytes/sec (1.6Gbs) on x64/10Gbs gear
    • Future: async RPC, request scheduling. wirespeed!
  • x86/64: Many fixes and improvements in drivers and FMA
  • Zones
    • rename, move, clone
    • Attach, detach (migration)
    • Future?: dtrace_proc and dtrace_user
    • Future: dhcp and snoop support
  • Xen support
  • ZFS

There is a lot more, but these are just the features that makes this interesting to me with the day job and the bits of AMD based gear I run Solaris on outside of work.

Solaris 10 U2-beta

by Mads
March 27, 2006 at 21:18 | categories: sun, solaris

I've just finished downloading the beta of Solaris 10 update 2. The list of new features is not overly exciting, but that doesn't matter too much. Small driver updates, various iSCSI updates and other bits and pieces seen in Solaris Express.
With a bit of luck, my new machine should be delivered tomorrow (it left SHG friday). While express and opensolaris can be fun, I want to give the beta a spin before getting back to work and a pile of sparc gear next week. Obviously it goes on the T2000, but maybe I can dig out an e25k domain or something.

T2000 Benchmarking

by Mads
March 24, 2006 at 11:16 | categories: hardware, httpd, solaris, sun

I said that I was going to take httpd for a spin and see how much it could do on a T2000, but Colm MacCarthaigh beat me to it with some impressive numbers.
Later discussion on irc show that the numbers could probably be even better! than what Colm found in his testing - having turning keepalives on makes a whole lot of difference.
So the testing opportunities aren't quite over for me yet. I want to hit the machine on a consistent high load and then start tweaking little bits and pieces to see what happens to resource usage. There's also the beta of Solaris 10 Update 2 which I've been wanting to test anyway.
Many of the ideas I have for tweaking solaris itself came from a tutorial by James Mauro and Richard McDougall at last years LISA where they spoke about "Solaris 10 Performance, Observability, and Debugging". I haven't seen the slides from that talk anywhere but on the conference cd, but has a similar set of slides with a few extras. If you ever get a chance to attend a similar tutorial, I highly recommend doing so as I thought it was well worth the whole trip to LISA.

I've written earlier about ideas for using a t2000 at the ASF. Lately we've seen some very heavy hitting of which has very many gigs of mails spread over quite a few files. A T2000 alone wouldn't do it, but a T2000 on top of a large number of disks (not so much for spaces as for spindles) might very well do the trick. That's another thing that I'm hoping to get a clearer picture of with the T2000 that arrived at work yesterday (worst timing ever as I've got a couple of weeks off) because we plan to hook it up to a spare Hitachi if we can find a couple of extra HBAs.

Unfortunately I'm also hit by the "So many shiny toys, so little time" problem.

Update: Anandtech gets some different numbers from their type of testing. Their numbers doesn't seem quite as favorable as Colms, but they're running a different type of workload.

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