An Enterprise Database Performance Comparison of the Dell PowerEdge 6850 and the Sun Fire V490 UltraSPARC Server

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1 An Enterprise Database Performance Comparison of the Dell PowerEdge 6850 and the Sun Fire V490 UltraSPARC Server By Todd Muirhead and Dave Jaffe Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center dell.com/setc

2 Contents Executive Summary... 3 Introduction... 4 The Hardware... 5 Database Setup...7 The Application... 9 The Database Schema... 9 The Stored Procedures The Online Transaction Processing Driver Application Results Conclusions Tables Table 1: Comparison of Configuration and Hardware Pricing of Sun Fire V490 vs the Dell PowerEdge 6850 as of 10/09/ Table 2: Dell/EMC Storage...6 Table 3: Database Initialization Parameters... 7 Table 4: Database Tablespaces... 8 Table 5: DVD Store Database Schema Table 6: OLTP Driver Parameters Table 7: Results Page 2 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

3 Section 1 Executive Summary Computer processor vendors continue to bring out higher performing processors. The latest generation from vendors such as Intel and Sun feature two processor cores and a large L3 cache on the processor module. To test the performance of latest generation dual core quad socket servers from Dell and Sun, a performance test using the open source and freely available Dell DVD store database was conducted. Similarly configured Dell PowerEdge 6850 and Sun Fire V490 server were used for the performance comparison. The large (100 GB) version of the DVD store database was built with a leading enterprise database server and was configured with similar settings on both systems. As shown in Table 7, the PowerEdge 6850 with four dual core 3.4 GHz Intel Xeon 7140 processors MP with 16 MB L3 cache was able to handle 83% more orders per minute than the Sun Fire V490 with four dual core 1.8 GHz UltraSPARC IV+ processors with 32 MB L3 cache. Additionally, the Sun Fire V490 cost 226% or over 3x more than the Dell PowerEdge 6850 per order handled. Page 3 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

4 Section 2 Introduction In this past year the major server processor vendors have brought out new computer processing unit (CPU) chips with multiple 64 bit processing cores and large caches in the same module. The fastest such CPUs from Intel and Sun are the dual core 64 bit Intel Xeon 7140 processor MP with 16MB L3 cache, running at 3.4 GHz and the Sun UltraSPARC IV+ processor with 32MB L3 cache, running at 1.8 GHz. Sun claims that their servers with these chips are over 5x faster than previous generation servers (http://www.sun.com/servers/midrange/v490/index.xml). To compare the performance of these two new chips, Dell conducted a study in using an online transaction processing (OLTP) workload against a leading enterprise database to measure the relative performance of a Dell PowerEdge 6850 using four dual core 64 bit 3.4 GHz Intel Xeon 7140 processors MP against a Sun Fire V490 with four dual core 1.8 GHz UltraSPARC IV+ processors. The PowerEdge 6850 was installed with Windows 2003 Server R2 Enterprise x64 Edition and the Sun Fire V490 was installed with Solaris 10. Both systems were configured with 16 GB of RAM. The database was configured as similarly as possible on the two systems. A common Dell/EMC storage area network (SAN) provided identical data storage for both systems. To measure the performance of both systems the large (100 GB) version of the open source Dell DVD Store database was loaded. Orders were simulated with the included driver programs and the results were used as a performance measurement in terms of Orders per Minute (OPM). The Sun and Dell hardware used in these tests is described in the next section, followed by a description of the database setup in Section 4. The DVD store application is described in detail in Section 5, along with details on the tests performed. Results are shown in Section 6. Page 4 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

5 Section 3 The Hardware The servers compared in this paper are quad socket dual core systems that have both been configured with most powerful processors available for their respective platforms. The Dell PowerEdge 6850 was configured with four of the 3.4 GHz dual core Intel Xeon 7140 processors. Each processor has 16 MB of L3 cache that is shared between the two cores. The Sun Fire V490 was configured with four UltraSPARC IV+ 1.8 GHz dual core processors with a 32MB L3 cache. Both systems were installed with 16 GB of RAM, 2 internal disks, and remote access capabilities. Detailed system configurations are shown in Table 1. Sun Fire V490 Dell PowerEdge 6850 Operating System Sun Solaris 10 1/06 Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise x64 Edition CPU 4 x 1.8 GHz UltraSPARC IV+ Dual-core with 32 MB L3 Cache 4 x 3.4 GHz/ Dual-core Intel Xeon 7140 with 16 MB L3 Cache Memory 16 GB (32 x 512MB DIMMs) 16 GB (8 x 2 GB DDR-2 DIMMs) Internal Disks 2x 146 GB 15K RPM FC-AL 2x 146 GB 15K RPM Ultra320 SCSI NICs 2x 10/100/1000 Mb/s (Internal) 2x 10/100/1000 Mb/s (Internal) Disk Controller FC AL (Embedded) LSI Ultra320 SCSI (Embedded) Fiber Channel HBA 2x QLA QLogic 2340 FC2 PCI-X QLogic QLE 2462 dual port FC4 PCI-Express Remote Management Service Hardware Price (without HBAs) Database Enterprise Edition License Price Total Hardware / Database Price Source System Controller Card 3-Year Gold Support w/ 7x24 Onsite $91,557 $25,747 8 cores x.75 x $40K [database software] = $240,000 $331,557 $185, /12/2006 Dell Remote Access Card, Version IV, without Modem 3-Year Gold Support w/ 7x24 Onsite 1 8 cores x.50 x $40K [database software] = $160, /12/2006 Table 1: Comparison of Configuration and Hardware Pricing of Sun Fire V490 vs the Dell PowerEdge 6850 as of 10/12/06. Page 5 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

6 List prices of the two systems are shown in Table 1. Pricing of the configurations did not include the SAN hardware or software. The price of the database manager software is different for the two systems due to different modifiers based on the architecture type. Each UltraSPARC core is charged at 75 percent while each Intel Xeon core is charged at 50 percent. Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise x64 Edition was installed on the Dell PowerEdge Solaris 10 1/06 was installed on the Sun Fire V490 which is also a 64 bit operating system. Storage for both the Dell and Sun servers was provided by a Storage Area Network (SAN) attached Dell/EMC CX3 80 fibre channel storage array. Each server was attached to the SAN via two QLogic Host Bus Adapters. The Dell PowerEdge 6850 supports PCI Express and so the QLogic 2462 PCI Express adapter was used. The Sun Fire V490 only supports the older PCI X adapters, so the QLogic 2340 was used. Each server was assigned to a set of storage logical units (LUNs) that used the same number and type of disk drives. The EMC compatibility matrix (available at which includes both the Dell PowerEdge 6850 and Sun Fire V490, was consulted to ensure that the proper versions of drivers and firmware were utilized on both servers. The version of the QLogic 2462 driver for Windows and PowerPath for Windows was installed on the PowerPath was installed on the Sun Fire V490 and the QLogic fcode version was used on the QLogic 2340 HBAs in the Sun server. PowerPath provides load balancing and failover for the dual HBAs that were present in the systems. The storage components used for both servers in the test are shown in Table 2. Controller Disk Enclosures Disks LUNs Software Table 2: Dell/EMC Storage 1 Dell/EMC CX Dell/EMC DAE3P 50 x 73 GB/ 15K RPM 4 10-Disk RAID 1/0 LUNs for Data 2 2-Disk RAID 1 LUN for Logs 1 5-Disk RAID 0 for Temporary Data Staging for Loading 1 HotSpare Disk Navisphere Manager Access Logix PowerPath Page 6 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

7 Section 4 Database Setup A leading enterprise database server was installed and configured on the Sun Fire V490 and the Dell PowerEdge 6850 servers. Installation and configuration of the database software was done according to the database provider s installation guide for the respective server platforms. The most recent patch set for the database software was applied to both servers keeping them at the same revision level. The provided database creation assistant wizard was used on both systems to create the database instance. The DVD Store build scripts were then used to finish the creation and loading of the test database. The database used consisted of approximately 100 GB worth of data, indexes, and stored procedures. The auto tuning features were used to configure the parameters for the database. Approximately 12 GB of RAM was assigned and the database manager software automatically configured how this memory would be allocated. The resulting database initialization parameters that were used are listed in Table 3. Parameter Sun Fire V490 Dell PowerEdge 6850 DB_BLOCK_SIZE DB_CACHE_SIZE JAVA_POOL_SIZE LARGE_POOL_SIZE OPEN_CURSORS SESSION_CACHED_CURSORS PROCESSES PGA_AGGREGATE_TARGET SGA_MAX_SIZE SGA_TARGET SHARED_POOL_SIZE UNDO_RETENTION Table 3: Database Initialization Parameters Page 7 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

8 Both systems used the database provided automatic storage manager for the database data files and log files. This storage manager reduces the overhead of a file system by allowing the database to access and manage the storage more directly. The database tablespaces were set up exactly the same on each of the systems (see Table 4). The four RAID 1/0 ten drive LUNs were put into one disk group in the storage manager which was used for the data, index, undo and temporary tablespaces. In a similar fashion, the two RAID 1 LUNs was assigned to a disk group and used for redo logs. Tablespace Contains Space Used/Available CUSTTBS Customer Table 50 GB / 51 GB INDXTBS Indexes 40 GB / 40 GB ORDERTBS DS_MISC Orders and Orderlines Tables Product and Categories Tables 25 GB/ 30 GB.03 GB /.5 GB UNDOTBS Undo Tablespace.5 GB / 2 GB TEMP Temporary Table 1 GB / 3 GB Table 4: Database Tablespaces Page 8 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

9 Section 5 The Application The test used Dell s online DVD store database test application, DS2. This database application includes the use of advanced database features such as transactions, triggers and referential integrity constraints. In addition, functionality typical of some online stores is included, including reporting to the user previous purchases and recommendation of titles enjoyed by others. The database, about 100 GB in size, representing an online DVD store with one million DVD titles, was driven by a C# language program simulating users logging in to the online store, browsing for DVDs by title, author or category, and then finally submitting an order. The driver program measures the number of orders per minute that the database can handle as well as the total response time as seen by the simulated end users. The complete DVD Store application code is freely available for public use under the open source GPL license at The Database Schema The DVD store was comprised of seven main tables and one other (see Table 5). The Customers table was pre populated with two hundred million customers, one hundred million US customers and one hundred million customers from the rest of the world. The Orders table was pre populated with ten million orders per month for a full year. The Orderlines table was pre populated with an average of 5 items per order, as was the Cust_Hist table. The Products table contained one million DVD titles. The quantities in stock and sales figures per product were broken off into a separate table, Inventory, for performance reasons. When the QUAN_IN_STOCK value for a product in the Inventory table falls below a specified value, a trigger is set off which calls code to write information about the product to the Reorder table. A separate process (not modeled) would watch this table to initiate reordering of needed titles. Finally, the Categories table listed the 16 DVD categories. Page 9 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

10 Table Columns Number of Rows Customers Orders CUSTOMERID, FIRSTNAME, LASTNAME, ADDRESS1, ADDRESS2, CITY, STATE, ZIP, COUNTRY, REGION, , PHONE, CREDITCARDTYPE, CREDITCARD, CREDITCARDEXPIRATION, USERNAME, PASSWORD, AGE, INCOME, GENDER ORDERID, ORDERDATE, CUSTOMERID, NETAMOUNT, TAX, TOTALAMOUNT 200 million 120 million Orderlines ORDERLINEID, ORDERID, PROD_ID, QUANTITY, ORDERDATE 600 million Cust_Hist CUSTOMERID, ORDERID, PROD_ID 600 million Products PROD_ID, CATEGORY, TITLE, ACTOR, PRICE, SPECIAL, COMMON_PROD_ID 1 million Inventory PROD_ID, QUAN_IN_STOCK, SALES 1 million Reorder PROD_ID, DATE_LOW, QUAN_LOW, DATE_REORDERED, QUAN_REORDERED, DATE_EXPECTED Categories CATEGORY, CATEGORYNAME 16 variable Table 5: DVD Store Database Schema The Stored Procedures The DVD Store database was managed through six stored procedures and one trigger. The first two stored procedures were used during the login phase. If the customer was a returning customer, Login was used to retrieve the customer s information, in particular the CUSTOMERID. If the customer was a new customer, New_customer was used to create a new row in the Customers table with the user s data. Following the login phase the customer might search for a DVD by category, actor or title. These were implemented by Browse_by_category, Browse_by_actor and Browse_by_title, respectively. Finally, after the user had made his or her selections, the Purchase stored procedure was called to complete the transaction. The stored procedures of the DS2 application have features to better model today s online stores. During Login, for example, the user s previous order (up to ten titles) is reported, along with titles that other customers who like those titles have recommended. The Browse_by_category returns those titles in the specified category that are currently on sale. The Purchase stored procedure checks the QUAN_IN_STOCK field from the Inventory table to see if a title is available. This is done using a database transaction, so that if there is insufficient quantity to fill the order neither the QUAN_IN_STOCK data is updated nor is a new record written to the ORDERS table. Finally, when the QUAN_IN_STOCK of a particular title dips below 10, a database trigger, Restock, is fired, causing an entry to be written in the Reorder table. Page 10 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

11 The Online Transaction Processing Driver Application A multi threaded driver program, included with DS2, was used to simulate an order entry or online transaction processing (OLTP) workload. Each thread of the OLTP driver application connected to the database and made a series of stored procedure calls that simulated users logging in, browsing and purchasing. An extremely small delay or think time was used so that the database connections were kept full, simulating what happens in a real multi tiered application where some small number of connections are pooled and shared among the web servers that may be handling thousands of simultaneous customers. Thus a realistic simulation of database activity was achieved without needing to model thousands of users. Each thread of the OLTP driver modeled a series of customers going through the entire sequence of logging in, browsing the catalog several ways and finally purchasing the selected items. Each completed sequence by a customer counted as a single order. The driver measured order rates and the average response time to complete each order. Several tunable parameters were used to control the application and are described in Table 6. Parameter Description Value(s) used in test n_threads Number of simultaneous connections to the See Table 7 database reset_time Warmup time before statistics are kept 2 min run_time Run time during which statistics are kept 10 min think_time Amount of time a thread waits between orders 0 seconds pct_returning Percent of users that are returning users 80% pct_new Percent of users that are new users 20% n_searches Number of searches per order Range: 1-5 Average: 3 search_batch_size Number of items returned in each search Range: 1-9 Average: 5 n_line_items Number of items purchased Range: 1 9 Average: 5 Table 6: OLTP Driver Parameters Page 11 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

12 Section 6 Results The DVD store database running on both the Dell PowerEdge 6850 and Sun Fire V490 was tested using the driver program described in the previous section. The tests measured how many orders per minute each database server could handle, while keeping each server s CPU (central processor unit) utilization about 85%, a typical system target to allow headroom for order spikes. CPU utilization was measured using the Performance Monitor program under Windows 2003 Server and vmstat under Solaris. As seen in Table 7, the Dell PowerEdge 6850, with four dual core 3.4 GHz Intel Xeon 7140 processors, while priced about 78% less than the Sun Fire V490 (including server hardware and software), could handle 83% more orders per minute. In terms of price/performance the Dell PowerEdge 6850 had a 226% advantage over the Sun Fire V490, meaning that the Sun cost over 3 times the Dell per unit of work that the two systems were capable of doing. System Sun Fire V490 w/ 4x 1.8 GHz dual-core 64-bit UltraSPARC IV+ CPUs Dell PowerEdge 6850 w/ 4x 3.4 GHz dual-core 64-bit Intel Xeon 7140 processor MP Simultaneous Database Connections Orders Per Minute (larger is better) Average Response Time (s) CPU Utilization % Dell PE6850 Performance Advantage Over Sun Fire V490 Price of server hardware and software (see Table 1) Price/ Performance ($/OPM) (smaller is better) Dell Price/Perf Advantage Over Sun Fire V % - $331,557 $ % 83% $185,747 $ % Table 7: Results Page 12 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

13 Section 7 Conclusions To test the performance of latest generation dual core quad socket servers from Dell and Sun, a performance test using the open source and freely available Dell DVD store database was conducted. Similarly configured Dell PowerEdge 6850 and Sun Fire V490 servers were used for the performance comparison. The large (100 GB) version of the DVD store database was built with a leading enterprise database server and was configured with similar settings on both systems. The PowerEdge 6850 with four dual core 3.4 GHz Intel Xeon 7140 processors MP was able to handle 83% more orders per minute than the Sun Fire V490 with four dual core 1.8 GHz UltraSPARC IV+ processors. Additionally, the Sun Fire V490 cost 226% or over 3x more than the Dell PowerEdge 6850 per order handled. THIS WHITE PAPER IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, AND MAY CONTAIN TYPOGRAPHICAL ERRORS AND TECHNICAL INACCURACIES. THE CONTENT IS PROVIDED AS IS, WITHOUT EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND. 1 Service may be provided by third party. Technician will be dispatched if necessary following phone based troubleshooting. Subject to parts availability, geographical restrictions and terms of service contract. Service timing dependent upon time of day call placed to Dell. U.S. only. Dell and PowerEdge are trademarks of Dell Inc. EMC, Navisphere and PowerPath are registered trademarks and Access Logix is a trademark of EMC Corp. Intel and Xeon are registered trademark of Intel Corp. Microsoft and Windows are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. Sun Fire and UltraSPARC are trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. Other trademarks and trade names may be used in this document to refer to either the entities claiming the marks and names or their products. Dell disclaims proprietary interest in the marks and names of others. Copyright 2006 Dell Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of Dell Inc. is strictly forbidden. For more information, contact Dell. Information in this document is subject to change without notice. Page 13 Dell Scalable Enterprise Technology Center

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