Poor PE4600 NFS performance

Rick Gaudette Richard.Gaudette at Colorado.EDU
Mon Aug 5 17:23:01 CDT 2002

Hi Jason,

Thanks for he tips, I have some questions regarding them.
> not sure what advice you've already got, here are some tips on increasing
> your nfs performance - some or all might be applicable.
> o is this an intel gigabit card ? consider using the latest drivers (4.3.2)
It is the onboard broadcom chip.

> o increase the number of nfsds available (128 is the normal maximum, which
>   will increase soon i think)
Would this still apply if there are typically only one or two users
reading at any given time?  Our typical use model is that one or two
users might be trying to read a 1-2 GB data file at any given time. 
That is the type of use model we wish to get the best performance for.

> o if you have end to end gigabit between your server and clients, you could
>   consider increasing the MTU to 9000

Yes end-to-end gigabit for all of the clients.  I have thought of it but
have two concerns.  Some of our clients have the NS83820 based card and
I have heard that they don't support jumbo frames well.  Also, if jumbo
frames are enabled can the machines access the rest of the net?

> o are your clients using 1K, 4K, 8K or 32K mount sizes ?  bigger sometimes is
>   worse!

Anyone have any recommendations here?  We have tried a bunch but the
default seems to work best.  The man pages say the default is 8K but
when we specify 8K we get degraded performance.  The defaults seem to
perform the same as 32K.

> o are you clients using nfs over UDP or TCP ?

UDP.  I would like to try to use TCP but as far as I can tell the RH
kernels don't support it.  Anyone know how to enable TCP based NFS on RH

A bit more info that I have noticed.  nfsstat reports that the number of
retries is pretty significant compared the number of calls.  The clients
all say that there is 1 retrans for every 3 calls to the PE 4600.  This
doesn't sound good to me but I am not sure how to fix it.


> regards,
> -jason
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