Dear all.
We finally got all the parts for our new fileserver following several
recommendations we got over this list. We use

Dell R715, 96GB RAM, dual 8-core Opterons
1 10GE Intel dual-port NIC
2 LSI 9205-8e SAS controllers
2 DataON DNS-1600 JBOD chassis
46 Seagate constellation SAS drives

The base zpool config utilizes 42 drives plus the STECs as mirrored
log devices. The Seagates are setup as a stripe of 7 times 6-drive-RAIDZ2
junks plus as said a dedicated ZIL made of the mirrored STECs.

As a quick'n dirty check we ran "filebench" with the "fileserver"
workload. Running locally we get

statfile1                5476ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.6ms/op      179us/op-cpu
deletefile1              5476ops/s   0.0mb/s      1.0ms/op      454us/op-cpu
closefile3               5476ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.0ms/op        5us/op-cpu
readfile1                5476ops/s 729.5mb/s      0.2ms/op      128us/op-cpu
openfile2                5477ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.8ms/op      204us/op-cpu
closefile2               5477ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.0ms/op        5us/op-cpu
appendfilerand1          5477ops/s  42.8mb/s      0.3ms/op      184us/op-cpu
openfile1                5477ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.9ms/op      209us/op-cpu
closefile1               5477ops/s   0.0mb/s      0.0ms/op        6us/op-cpu
wrtfile1                 5477ops/s 688.4mb/s      0.4ms/op      220us/op-cpu
createfile1              5477ops/s   0.0mb/s      2.7ms/op     1068us/op-cpu

with a single remote client (similar Dell System) using NFS

statfile1                  90ops/s   0.0mb/s     27.6ms/op      145us/op-cpu
deletefile1                90ops/s   0.0mb/s     64.5ms/op      401us/op-cpu
closefile3                 90ops/s   0.0mb/s     25.8ms/op       40us/op-cpu
readfile1                  90ops/s  11.4mb/s      3.1ms/op      363us/op-cpu
openfile2                  90ops/s   0.0mb/s     66.0ms/op      263us/op-cpu
closefile2                 90ops/s   0.0mb/s     22.6ms/op      124us/op-cpu
appendfilerand1            90ops/s   0.7mb/s      0.5ms/op      101us/op-cpu
openfile1                  90ops/s   0.0mb/s     72.6ms/op      269us/op-cpu
closefile1                 90ops/s   0.0mb/s     43.6ms/op      189us/op-cpu
wrtfile1                   90ops/s  11.2mb/s      0.2ms/op      211us/op-cpu
createfile1                90ops/s   0.0mb/s    226.5ms/op      709us/op-cpu

the same remote client with zpool sync disabled on the server

statfile1                 479ops/s   0.0mb/s      6.2ms/op      130us/op-cpu
deletefile1               479ops/s   0.0mb/s     13.0ms/op      351us/op-cpu
closefile3                480ops/s   0.0mb/s      3.0ms/op       37us/op-cpu
readfile1                 480ops/s  62.7mb/s      0.8ms/op      174us/op-cpu
openfile2                 480ops/s   0.0mb/s     14.1ms/op      235us/op-cpu
closefile2                480ops/s   0.0mb/s      6.0ms/op      123us/op-cpu
appendfilerand1           480ops/s   3.7mb/s      0.2ms/op       53us/op-cpu
openfile1                 480ops/s   0.0mb/s     13.7ms/op      235us/op-cpu
closefile1                480ops/s   0.0mb/s     11.1ms/op      190us/op-cpu
wrtfile1                  480ops/s  60.3mb/s      0.2ms/op      233us/op-cpu
createfile1               480ops/s   0.0mb/s     35.6ms/op      683us/op-cpu

Disabling ZIL is no option but I expected a much better performance
especially the ZEUS RAM only gets us a speed-up of about 1.8x

Is this test realistic for a typical fileserver scenario or does it require many
more clients to push the limits?

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