On 11/18/05 7:55 AM, "Bill McGonigle" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> There is some truth to it.  For an app I'm currently running (full-text
> search using tsearch2 on ~100MB of data) on:

Do you mean 100GB?  Sounds like you are more like a decision support
/warehousing application.
> Dev System:
> Asus bare-bones bookshelf case/mobo
> 3GHz P4 w/ HT
> 800MHz memory Bus
> Fedora Core 3 (nightly update)
> 1 SATA Seagate disk (7200RPM, 8MB Cache)
> $800
> worst-case query: 7.2 seconds

About the same machine I posted results for, except I had two faster disks.

> now, the machine I'm deploying to:
> Dell SomthingOrOther
> (4) 2.4GHz Xeons
> 533MHz memory bus
> RedHat Enterprise 3.6
> (5) 150000 RPM Ultra SCSI 320 on an Adaptec RAID 5 controller
>> $10000
> same worst-case query: 9.6 seconds

Your problem here is the HW RAID controller - if you dump it and use the
onboard SCSI channels and Linux RAID you will see a jump from 40MB/s to
about 220MB/s in read performance and from 20MB/s to 110MB/s write
performance.  It will use less CPU too.
> Now it's not apples-to-apples.  There's a kernel 2.4 vs. 2.6 difference
> and the memory bus is much faster and I'm not sure what kind of context
> switching hit you get with the Xeon MP memory controller.  On a
> previous postgresql app I did I ran nearly identically spec'ed machines
> except for the memory bus and saw about a 30% boost in performance just
> with the 800MHz bus.  I imagine the Opteron bus does even better.

Memory bandwidth is so high on both that it's not a factor.  Context
switching / memory bus contention isn't either.
> So the small machine is probably slower on disk but makes up for it in
> single-threaded access to CPU and memory speed. But if this app were to
> be scaled it would make much more sense to cluster several $800
> machines than it would to buy 'big-iron'.

Yes it does - by a lot too.  Also, having a multiprocessing executor gets
all of each machine by having multiple CPUs scan simultaneously.

- Luke

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