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Author Topic: The battles on! Opinion please, OpenBSD vs. *nix...  (Read 12054 times)
perkiset
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« on: May 11, 2007, 07:32:08 AM »

Hello all -

I have two very powerful new multiprocessor boxes going into my cluster. they will simply be LAMP or OBAMP boxes  Wink (Apache, MySQL, PHP) - I've heard some compelling arguments that OpenBSD is way cleaner and faster but I'd love some opinions. There won't even be a GUI on these boxes so that is immaterial. They're strictly command line access web service appliances. Is there even a difference between different linux distros when it comes to speed? I don't think so - but I'd love to hear anything you've got.

Let'r rip!

Thanks,
/p
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« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2007, 09:02:06 AM »

Not an expert here but, don't think the OS will make as much difference as the internals.

ie.  The hard drive speed, the memory capacity and access time, and so on.

<where'd the $.02 smiley go?>

D
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perkiset
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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2007, 09:39:39 AM »

Moved it to the front of the line d

The machines are rocking. all the way down the line - gonna bump the ram a WAY lot (prolly around 16G) and cache my ass off.

I agree, I don't know just how much the OS will affect speed (although prolly some Windows/OS-X/*nix/Solaris arguments could clearly be taken up here...) but what are the other benefits / downsides of these to OS bases in relationship to each other? I've been told that load time on OpenBSD is incredibly quick... well the way I reboot, that'd affect me about once every 3 years  ROFLMAO - so that might be cool a bit... perhaps this is just a simple Lutheran versus Methodist sort of thing... not a whole bunch of difference when you break it down... but if that's the case, then why did they choose OpenBSD as the base for OS-X? Why is Linux so much more popular than OpenBSD? Enquiring minds want to know!

/p
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« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2007, 11:08:28 AM »

Quote
perhaps this is just a simple Lutheran versus Methodist sort of thing...
Subjective.  Biased by who is using which OS for what.

I think that if there were big differences in the various flavors, the folks who push the $*AMP projects would be shouting from the roof tops.

qq.  Do you have to have Apache?

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perkiset
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« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2007, 11:10:34 AM »

Interesting question - I am curious about lighttpd but I use mod_rewrite pretty significantly. What is your thought?

BTW - the "lighty" thread @ sk8 has me thinking, so I am very open to this line of thought.
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« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2007, 11:26:01 AM »

Ya.  That's what caused me to ask.  Also might check this one out>

Code:
thttpd  http://www.acme.com/software/thttpd/

Configuration: Athlon 700, 800MB RAM. Before: Apache, load=170, machine unusable, capped at 4Mbits, SWAPPING. After: thttpd, load=.09 (yes, that's point-zero-nine), happy at 8Mbits, only using ~300MB of RAM.

You didn't specify what the new boxes would be required to do.  That's fine, and none of my biz.  However, if you are going to use one box for a database server (for instance), or for image storage, or (?), then the overhead load from Apache may be a factor.

 
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perkiset
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« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2007, 11:34:46 AM »

gonna look at that service...

they are both *n[u|i]x flavor machine running MySQL and PHP apps. Some really tight ajax responses, some huge dynamic page stuff as usual. Cron jobs as necessary, but predominantly http request delivering machines. Of course graphics delivery as well, perhaps some vids.

All of my machines are behind an IPCop, but still want to make sure of security issues (buffer overflow attacks and such) against the machines via any public service I offer.

I'm wondering as well if SQUID in front then proxied back to Apache et al would be a good fit if my caching is almost entirely graphical...
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« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2007, 11:47:29 AM »

Quote
I'm wondering as well if SQUID in front then proxied back to Apache et al would be a good fit if my caching is almost entirely graphical...

Very likely.

Would the services performed by the boxes be close enough to offer a comparison?  For instance, load one of the boxes up with a full blown OpenBSD, with all the bells and whistles (as required), load the other one with thttpd.

<aside>
If these two screaming machines are gonna be housed in your cage there in "Butterfly" county, I'm gonna notify the Sheriff to disregard reports of tires burning and such.   Grin
</aside>
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« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2007, 11:57:11 AM »

Would the services performed by the boxes be close enough to offer a comparison?  For instance, load one of the boxes up with a full blown OpenBSD, with all the bells and whistles (as required), load the other one with thttpd.
unfortunately not apples-for-apples, but close enough that I could try it. But since I'm really fine with Linux, I am hoping a BSDboi will come sell me on why I should take the time/headache of getting comfy with anotherOS...

If these two screaming machines are gonna be housed in your cage there in "Butterfly" county, I'm gonna notify the Sheriff to disregard reports of tires burning and such.   Grin
lol good plan - they've both got cold air intake, DOHC, blowers and tuned exhaust... I expect delightful things from them.

/p
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« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2007, 12:36:17 PM »

i dont read every post above this buuuut...

openBSD or freeBSD (i would go with freeBSD) are better scalable, take hard loads without giving up and are in fact the better "workers".

for example:
back in 2001 we had a huuuge site on a suse box with a intel cpu and apache/mysql as services. after a time we found out that in the peak times the load goes up and the server gets slow as hell.
a good friend told us to use a sun box with solaris. so we tried freeBSD on solaris because my coworker worked with it since a few years.
and guess what happend? a sun box with a BSD os is freakin fast.

i try to display the results back then in a little graph here...

Code:
     Linux
     -----
     |      ********************
     |     *
     |    *
     |   *
     |  *
     | *
     |*
 load|__________________________
      time


     freeBSD
     -------
     |
     |     *****
     |    *     *****
     |   *           ***********
     |  *
     | *
     |*
 load|__________________________
      time

thats in short what we found out back then... linux takes the load and stays in that high load mode. freeBSD takes the load and tries to optimize... somehow. im not good in OS things but i learned from the opinions of my coworkers and friends.

...and all those guys would say "take freeBSD and better take BSD on a SUN box and you're save for years."

same with lighttpd.
i made a similar "graph" for jan (inventor of lighttpd, german like me Grin):
Code:
APACHE 2
 ========

 fast|
     |
     |  ** *** ***  ***   **
     | *  *   *   **   ***  ****
     |*
 slow|__________________________
      past                   now



 LIGHTTPD
 ========   * * ** * ***********
           * * *  * *
 fast|    *
     |   *
     |  *
     | *
     |*
 slow|__________________________
      past                   now

thing is, apache is extremly blown up, has more than a handfull of developers in the back and tries to match all possibilities...
lighttpd on the other site is startet as "how small can a webserver be"-project and has less than a handfull of coders who are not trying to blow up the code - in fact more in the other direction - how to get useless code out of the daemon...

so its not unussual that you get 20-40 requests per second with apache on a normal project and 500 and much more with lighttpd. because lighttpd has some nasty build in tricks to handle huge loads and the php/rewrite stuff.
for example php is included in a fast-cgi container. thats what ppl tell you to do with apache to get more speed out of it.
its default with lighttpd.
same with the mod_rewrite module for lighttpd and everything else...

lighttpd is what i would call the best example for "reduce to the max".

(and its pretty easy to install  )

(sorry for my horrible english hehe.)


(oh and btw. hi, i'm tobias.)
« Last Edit: May 11, 2007, 12:39:08 PM by tobsn » Logged

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perkiset
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« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2007, 12:54:52 PM »

man I knew inviting you over here was the ticket  ROFLMAO

QQs:
Looking at the lighttpd site I must've missed the mod_rewrite portion... is it the same as apache? Same code? How is url rewriting handled?
PHP: I've never used php in a fast-cgi kind of way - why is this faster than hooking it up with apsx and such?
PHP in Fast-cgi: do you know how this affects the APC cache? Is it still available then or would I lose that capability? (BIG drag here)

thanks,
/p
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« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2007, 01:04:23 PM »

Thread mod: I really meant free bsd rather than open bsd I think... I am a bsd n00b but didn't think there's a diff. The little devil seems much cooler than the penguin imo  ROFLMAO

/p
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« Reply #12 on: May 11, 2007, 01:15:43 PM »

This is old, but loks like a pretty good raw comparison. The Windows portion is extremely dated, but I think the Linux/FreeBSD columns prolly still apply

http://people.freebsd.org/~murray/bsd_flier.html

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« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2007, 05:13:10 PM »

lol. that windows column makes it sound dire dont it.
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« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2007, 05:59:47 PM »

IMHO the OS does't make as much of a difference as the ability to manage it.  If you're comfortable with Linux, use that.  I wouldn't choose BSD just because some benchmark said it has somewhat better performance.  You're going to have to have a bunch of servers, you want to spend as little time as possible playing sysadmin.  Personally I like RedHat Linux, either Fedora, CentOS, or RH Enterprise.

Separate out the db from the web servers if you can, tune that thing properly, and make sure to start using memcached from the beginning.  The fastest query is one that never touches a database.  If you plan on heavy reads, make sure your application can handle separate read and write handles for databases for when you start replicating.  Don't forget about PHP opcode caching!

Squid is nice as a frontend, at a side job of mine I have squid fronting 6 LAMP boxes and just on static content I get 60% of the load off the backend servers at virtually no CPU expense.

You're going to get your best performance gain by writing a good application, and laying it out properly on the servers.  Make sure the DB is tuned, you pounce on every slow query, and that your configurations are consistent.  Monitoring is also another excellent idea Smiley
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