SysAdmin: Which OS is Fastest for High Performance Network Applications?
Jun 14, 2001, 19:37 (46 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jeffrey B. Rothman, John Buckman)
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Everyone loves a benchmarking story, and SysAdmin ventures in
with a four-way shootout between Linux, Solaris, FreeBSD and Win2k.
The focus of the comparison is "high performance network
applications," involving three tests: a real-world e-mail
processing series, a file system test, and an application
architecture test. We'll spoil the surprise and note that Linux
"In this article, we compare Linux, Solaris (for
Intel), FreeBSD, and Windows 2000 to determine which operating
system (OS) runs high-performance network applications the fastest.
We will describe which software designs to look for from your
network software vendor, explaining how each design yields
different performance characteristics, and determine which OS
platform is best suited for each common network programming design.
We present our OS benchmarks with both simulated and real-world
tests, then evaluate the results.
We found that the software application's architecture determines
speed results much more than the operating system on which it runs.
Our benchmarks demonstrate a 12x performance difference between
process-based and asynchronous task architectures. Significantly,
we found up to a 75% overall performance difference between OSes
when using the most efficient asynchronous architecture. We found
Linux to be the best performing operating system based on our
metrics, performing 35% better than Solaris, which came in second,
followed by Windows, and finally, FreeBSD."
We now hand the story over to our readers for appropriate
qualifications, quibbles, and insights.