advice on chip and memory - Solaris

This is a discussion on advice on chip and memory - Solaris ; I want to run solaris 10 on a somewhat older machine too. It runs very smooth on my athlonxp3400+ with 1Gb memory. I have four zones and a large enough hardrive. On what computer would solaris with four zones still ...

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Thread: advice on chip and memory

  1. advice on chip and memory

    I want to run solaris 10 on a somewhat older machine too.
    It runs very smooth on my athlonxp3400+ with 1Gb memory.

    I have four zones and a large enough hardrive.
    On what computer would solaris with four zones still run rather smootly?
    My main concern is the amount of (really needed) memory and the
    processor speed (to support a smooth running of the zones). The software
    will be mainly a LAMP (zone), mail (sendmail, MIMEDefang, spamassassin,
    Cyrus) (another zone).

    --
    http://nagual.nl/ -- PGP/GnuPG key: F86289CE
    ++ Running FreeBSD 6.1 ++ Solaris 10 6/06 ++

  2. Re: advice on chip and memory

    quoting Andrew Gabriel (05 Nov 2006 11:01:13 GMT):
    > In article ,
    > Dick Hoogendijk writes:
    >> I want to run solaris 10 on a somewhat older machine too.
    >> It runs very smooth on my athlonxp3400+ with 1Gb memory.
    >>
    >> I have four zones and a large enough hardrive.
    >> On what computer would solaris with four zones still run rather
    >> smootly? My main concern is the amount of (really needed) memory and
    >> the processor speed (to support a smooth running of the zones). The
    >> software will be mainly a LAMP (zone), mail (sendmail, MIMEDefang,
    >> spamassassin, Cyrus) (another zone).

    >
    > Zones is almost irrelevant here -- just imagine running all those apps
    > on a single system, and the extra overhead for Zones is tiny (pretty
    > much just the overhead of running multiples of all the small daemons you
    > normally find running on a system), other than disk space you say is
    > already covered. There's no emulation layer, hypervisor, or the like
    > grabbing any resources with Zones.


    OK, thanks for this insight ;-)
    Remains the question about the processor. Would a P4-2.2 with 512Mb ram
    suffice or is this too low.

    --
    http://nagual.nl/ -- PGP/GnuPG key: F86289CE
    ++ Running FreeBSD 6.1 ++ Solaris 10 6/06 ++

  3. Re: advice on chip and memory


    "Dick Hoogendijk" wrote in message
    news:slrnekrfk3.22cv.dick@arwen.nagual.nl...
    >I want to run solaris 10 on a somewhat older machine too.
    > It runs very smooth on my athlonxp3400+ with 1Gb memory.
    >
    > I have four zones and a large enough hardrive.
    > On what computer would solaris with four zones still run rather smootly?
    > My main concern is the amount of (really needed) memory and the
    > processor speed (to support a smooth running of the zones). The software
    > will be mainly a LAMP (zone), mail (sendmail, MIMEDefang, spamassassin,
    > Cyrus) (another zone).
    >
    > --
    > http://nagual.nl/ -- PGP/GnuPG key: F86289CE
    > ++ Running FreeBSD 6.1 ++ Solaris 10 6/06 ++


    I currently run Solaris 10 on a Dual 650 P III, an AMD 1200MHz PC and a
    X100, both PCs with 756M of RAM and the sparc with 2G or RAM. A run well
    with a variety of tasks. But I generally don't do a few things to keep
    performance up.

    I tried zones on them but...

    Zones/containers are great for some uses, but my experience is that unless
    you have bigger hardware they are like Java, a performance dog. If you
    don't have at least 4 modern processors (> 1.2GHz each) zones and lots of
    RAM they are generally counter productive but a few exceptions might exist.
    Good to learn zones is one of them, big iron is another, but performance is
    definitely not one of them.

    For example, I have applications that run faster in VMWare on a P4 2.8 GHz
    2GB RAM with Windows as the host OS, Solaris 10i in the VM. It outperforms
    the same app 4:1 that is on a T2000 in a Solaris zone. Now I know there is
    more to this than this simple statement, but zones are being oversold to IT
    departments as some panacea their not. There has to by logic be an overhead
    to their use. So I do my development on my desktop, move it to the server
    and when they call me and complain about performance on the T2000 I say it
    isn't a problem on my VMWare with a 3 year old PC with dev and toolbars all
    over, surf here to see! I ask if we can put the app on a non-zoned system
    and of course the answer is no. I know what they have done is overextended
    the capabilities of zones, but sooner or later they will get the drift that
    every application does not need it's own zone and some apps should never see
    a zone. I used to be an admin too and know when I see these games.

    Another gotta on zones is shared libraries. Mess one of those up and you
    have to reboot the whole system, all the zones on that hardware. Ran into a
    nasty like this a few weeks ago. The admin didn't believe me, but rebooted
    anyway. Problem fixed. Moral here, don't mix development and production on
    the same physical CPU box/hard partition.

    It may sound like I am down on zones, but not really. It is like any other
    tool in an admins tool box. When used correctly it will give you what you
    want. When used incorrectly, it will give you problems.

    But performance aside, zones should work on low end systems for development
    purposes. May your swap space large. I have never taken a course on zones,
    but would not doubt they use a Blade or X100 with GB of RAM to train on.

    My 2 cents..






  4. Re: advice on chip and memory

    On Sun, 5 Nov 2006, Canuck57 wrote:

    > Zones/containers are great for some uses, but my experience is that unless
    > you have bigger hardware they are like Java, a performance dog. If you


    Nonesense; the performance overhead of zones is very small.

    > don't have at least 4 modern processors (> 1.2GHz each) zones and lots of
    > RAM they are generally counter productive but a few exceptions might exist.
    > Good to learn zones is one of them, big iron is another, but performance is
    > definitely not one of them.
    >
    > For example, I have applications that run faster in VMWare on a P4 2.8 GHz
    > 2GB RAM with Windows as the host OS, Solaris 10i in the VM. It outperforms
    > the same app 4:1 that is on a T2000 in a Solaris zone. Now I know there is


    So, you have a (presumably) single threaded app that is faster on a 2.8 GHz
    CPU that places importance on single-threaded execution than it is on a (at
    most) 1.2 GHz CPU that places more importance on overall throughput and low
    power consumption thant it does on single-threaded throughput? That's hardly
    surprising, is it?

    Try running 8 of those applications at the same time on the P4 and the T2000,
    and tell us your results.

    > and of course the answer is no. I know what they have done is overextended
    > the capabilities of zones, but sooner or later they will get the drift that
    > every application does not need it's own zone and some apps should never see
    > a zone. I used to be an admin too and know when I see these games.


    Again, you attributing performance to the wrong thing: the overhead of zones
    is very low.

    > Another gotta on zones is shared libraries. Mess one of those up and you
    > have to reboot the whole system, all the zones on that hardware. Ran into a
    > nasty like this a few weeks ago. The admin didn't believe me, but rebooted
    > anyway. Problem fixed. Moral here, don't mix development and production on
    > the same physical CPU box/hard partition.


    Why would developers be messing with system libraries?

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  5. Re: advice on chip and memory

    On Sun, 5 Nov 2006, Dick Hoogendijk wrote:

    > Remains the question about the processor. Would a P4-2.2 with 512Mb ram
    > suffice or is this too low.


    I'd add more RAM, but more to the point, I personally avoid Intel
    processors. If you have the option, get a 64-bit AMD CPU and at
    least 1 GB of RAM.

    HTH,

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  6. Re: advice on chip and memory

    Rich Teer wrote:
    > On Sun, 5 Nov 2006, Canuck57 wrote:
    >
    >>Another gotta on zones is shared libraries. Mess one of those up and you
    >>have to reboot the whole system, all the zones on that hardware. Ran into a
    >>nasty like this a few weeks ago. The admin didn't believe me, but rebooted
    >>anyway. Problem fixed. Moral here, don't mix development and production on
    >>the same physical CPU box/hard partition.

    >
    >
    > Why would developers be messing with system libraries?
    >

    More to the point, how could someone mess with something on a read-only
    loopback mounted file system?

    --
    Ian Collins.

  7. Re: advice on chip and memory

    On 2006-11-05 20:14:09 +0000, Rich Teer said:

    > Nonesense; the performance overhead of zones is very small.


    This is obviously correct - I suspect the performance overhead may be
    basically zero, since presumably all the places in the OS that need to
    be zone aware are *already* zone aware, so structures will have some
    kind of zone tag and that tag will be being checked even if there's
    only one zone. The overhead ought to be just increased memory
    footprint and the machine just plain doing more.

    For what it's worth I recently used an x86 (actually some Opteron I
    think, I'm not sure of the details, it was whatever destktop I got
    given) with zones to simulate a replicated LDAP using the JES LDAP
    server. With 4 zones, all running the LDAP server and one running JDS
    as well, it was a serious pain (lots of paging, especially at boot)
    with 640M but absolutely fine with 1280M of memory.

    One thing I wondered about: are sparse zones more memory efficient than
    non-sparse? it seems to me that for a sparse zone, with certain mild
    assumptions, read-only pages could often be shared (for instance
    multiple copies of the same executable, coming from the same file, but
    in different zones), but with non-sparse zones that would be very hard
    (because the files the executables belong to would be different, even
    though their bits would be the same).

    --tim


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