synchronous_commit = off does make a significant difference.
Sure, but I had thought about that and kept this one...
But why are you then saying this is fundamentally limited to 160
I'm just saying that the tested load generates mostly random IOs (probably
on average over 1 page per transaction), random IOs are very slow on a
HDD, so I do not expect great tps.
I think I found one possible culprit: I automatically wrote 300 seconds for
checkpoint_timeout, instead of 30 seconds in your settings. I'll have to
rerun the tests with this (unreasonnable) figure to check whether I really
get a regression.
I've not seen meaningful changes in the size of the regression between 30/300s.
At 300 seconds (5 minutes) the checkpoints of the accumulated takes 15-25
minutes, during which the database is mostly offline, and there is no
clear difference with/without sort+flush.
Other tests I ran with "reasonnable" settings on a large (scale=800) db did
not show any significant performance regression, up to now.
Try running it so that the data set nearly, but not entirely fit into
the OS page cache, while definitely not fitting into shared_buffers. The
scale=800 just worked for that on my hardware, no idea how it's for yours.
That seems to be the point where the effect is the worst.
I have 16GB memory on the tested host, same as your hardware I think, so I
use scale 800 => 12GB at the beginning of the run. Not sure it fits the
bill as I think it fits in memory, so the load is mostly write and no/very
few reads. I'll also try with scale 1000.
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