Abstract - Technical Program - 2nd USENIX Windows NT Symposium
A Performance Study of Sequential I/O on Windows NT(TM) 4
Carnegie Mellon University
Catharine van Ingen, and Jim Gray
Large-scale database, data mining, and multimedia applications
require large, sequential transfers and have bandwidth as a key
requirement. This paper investigates the performance of reading and
writing large sequential files using the Windows NT™ 4.0
File System. The study explores the performance of Intel Pentium
Pro™ based memory and IO subsystems, including the processor
bus, the PCI bus, the SCSI bus, the disk controllers, and the disk
media in a typical server or high-end desktop system. We provide
details of the overhead costs at each level of the system and examine
a variety of the available tuning knobs. We show that NTFS
out-of-the-box performance is quite good, but overheads for small
requests can be quite high. The best performance is achieved by using
large requests, bypassing the file system cache, spreading the data
across many disks and controllers, and using deep-asynchronous
requests. This combination allows us to reach or exceed the half-power
point of all the individual hardware components.
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