Highlight Week: The OES Benchmark

I'm going over some of my older posts and am reposting some of the good stuff that's still relevant. I've been at this a while, so there is a good week's worth of good essays hiding in the archives.
Shortly after the release of Novell OES SP1, the version of Open Enterprise Server based on SuSE Linux 9, I ran a benchmark series to determine just how it would hold up in our environment. The results were pretty clear: not that good. I re-ran some of the tests with later versions and it got a lot better. SP2 improved things significantly, and has gotten even better with OES2 (based on SLES10).

The long and short of it is that the 32-bit Linux kernel has some design constraints that simply prevented Novell from designing a NetWare-equivalent system when it came to NCP performance. The 64-bit kernel that came with OES2 helped a lot. Also, more intelligent assumptions about usage.

Our big problem was concurrency. Our cluster nodes regularly ran between 2000-6000 concurrent connections. Anyway, for details about what I found, read the series:

Benchmark Results Summary

It has pictures. Oooo!