SPARC T4-4 Servers Set World Record on SPECjEnterprise2010, Beats IBM POWER7, Cisco x86

Oracle produced a world record SPECjEnterprise2010 benchmark result of 40,104.86 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS using four of Oracle's SPARC T4-4 servers in the application tier and two more SPARC T4-4 servers for the database server.

  • The four SPARC T4-4 server configuration (sixteen SPARC T4 processors total, 3.0 GHz) demonstrated 2.4x better performance compared to the IBM Power 780 server (eight POWER7 processors, 3.86 THz) result of 16,646.34 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS.

  • In the database tier, two SPARC T4-4 servers with a total of eight SPARC T4 processors at 3.0 GHz, processed 2.4x more transactions compared to the IBM result of 16,646.34 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS which used four POWER7 processors at 3.55 GHz.

  • The four SPARC T4-4 server configuration demonstrated 1.5x better performance compared to the Cisco UCS B440 M2 Blade Server result of 26,118.67 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS.

  • The four SPARC T4-4 server configuration demonstrated 2.3x better performance compared to the Cisco UCS B440 M1 Blade Server result of 17,301.86 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS.

  • This result demonstrated less than 1 second average response times for all SPECjEnterprise2010 transactions and 90% of all transaction times took less than 1 second.

  • This result demonstrated a sustained Java EE 5 transaction load generated by approximately 320,000 users.

  • This result using 16 Oracle WebLogic 10.3.5 server instances demonstrated 4.8x better performance per application server instance when compared to the IBM result which used 32 WebSphere instances.

  • The SPARC T4-4 servers delivered a 6.7x price/performance advantage over the IBM Power 780 for the servers used in the application tier (see disclosure statement below for details). This price/performance advantage in the application tier was accomplished with a SPARC T4-4 server configuration with 2 TB of total memory compared to the IBM solution with 0.5 TB of memory.

  • The SPARC T4-4 servers had a 1.9x advantage over IBM in performance per space for the application tier (see disclosure statement below for details) even though the Oracle solution had four servers.

  • The four SPARC T4-4 servers used for the application tier used Oracle Solaris Containers to consolidate four Oracle WebLogic application server instances on each server to achieve this result.

  • The two SPARC T4-4 servers used for the database tier hosted Oracle Database 11g Release 2 and Oracle RAC cluster software using Oracle Automatic Storage Management (ASM).

  • Oracle Fusion Middleware provides a family of complete, integrated, hot pluggable and best-of-breed products known for enabling enterprise customers to create and run agile and intelligent business applications. Oracle WebLogic Server's on-going, record-setting Java application server performance demonstrates why so many customers rely on Oracle Fusion Middleware as their foundation for innovation.

Performance Landscape

Complete benchmark results are at the SPEC website, SPECjEnterprise2010 Results.

SPECjEnterprise2010 Performance Chart
as of 10/11/2011
Submitter EjOPS* Java EE Server DB Server
Oracle 40,104.86 4 x SPARC T4-4
4 chips, 32 cores, 3.0 GHz SPARC T4
Oracle WebLogic 11g (10.3.5)
2 x SPARC T4-4
4 chips, 32 cores, 3.0 GHz SPARC T4
Oracle 11g DB 11.2.0.2
Cisco 26,118.67 2 x Cisco UCS B440 M2
4 chips, 40 cores, 2.4 GHz Xeon E7-4870
Oracle WebLogic 11g (10.3.5)
1 x Cisco UCS C460 M2
4 chips, 40 cores, 2.4 GHz Xeon E7-4870
Oracle 11g DB 11.2.0.2
Cisco 17,301.86 2 x Cisco UCS B440 M1
4 chips, 32 cores, 2.26 GHz Xeon X7560
Oracle WebLogic 10.3.4
1 x Cisco UCS C460 M1
4 chips, 32 cores, 2.26 GHz Xeon X7560
Oracle 11g DB 11.2.0.2
IBM 16,646.34 1 x IBM Power 780
8 chips, 64 cores, 3.86 GHz POWER7
WebSphere Application Server V7.0
1 x IBM Power 750 Express
4 chips, 32 cores, 3.55 GHz POWER7
IBM DB2 Universal Database 9.7

* SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS (bigger is better)

Configuration Summary

Application Servers:

4 x SPARC T4-4 servers, each with
4 x 3.0 GHz SPARC T4 processors
512 GB memory
2 x 10GbE NIC
Oracle Solaris 10 8/11
Oracle WebLogic Server 11g Release 1 (10.3.5)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM on Solaris, version 1.6.0_26 (Java SE 6 Update 26)

Database Servers:

2 x SPARC T4-4 servers, each with
4 x 3.0 GHz SPARC T4 processors
1024 GB memory
2 x 10GbE NIC
4 x 8Gb FC HBA
Oracle Solaris 10 8/11
Oracle Database 11g Enterprise Edition Release 11.2.0.2
Oracle Real Application Clusters 11g Release 2

Storage Servers:

8 x Sun Fire X4270 M2 (12-Drive)
1 x 3.0 GHz Intel Xeon
8 GB memory
1 x 8Gb FC HBA
Oracle Solaris 11 Express 2010.11
8 x Sun Storage F5100 Flash Arrays

Switch Hardware:

2 x Sun Network 10GbE 72-port Top of Rack (ToR) Switch
1 x Brocade 5300 80-port Fiber Channel Switch

Benchmark Description

SPECjEnterprise2010 is the third generation of the SPEC organization's J2EE end-to-end industry standard benchmark application. The new SPECjEnterprise2010 benchmark has been re-designed and developed to cover the Java EE 5 specification's significantly expanded and simplified programming model, highlighting the major features used by developers in the industry today. This provides a real world workload driving the Application Server's implementation of the Java EE specification to its maximum potential and allowing maximum stressing of the underlying hardware and software systems,
  • The web container, servlets, and web services
  • The EJB container
  • JPA 1.0 Persistence Model
  • JMS and Message Driven Beans
  • Transaction management
  • Database connectivity
Moreover, SPECjEnterprise2010 also heavily exercises all parts of the underlying infrastructure that make up the application environment, including hardware, JVM software, database software, JDBC drivers, and the system network.

The primary metric of the SPECjEnterprise2010 benchmark is jEnterprise Operations Per Second (SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS). The primary metric for the SPECjEnterprise2010 benchmark is calculated by adding the metrics of the Dealership Management Application in the Dealer Domain and the Manufacturing Application in the Manufacturing Domain. There is NO price/performance metric in this benchmark.

Key Points and Best Practices

  • Four Oracle WebLogic server instances on each SPARC T4-4 server were hosted in 4 separate Oracle Solaris Containers to demonstrate consolidation of multiple application servers.
  • Each Oracle Solaris Container was bound to a separate processor set, each contained 7 cores (total 56 threads). This was done to improve performance by reducing memory access latency by using the physical memory closest to the processors. The default set was used for network and disk interrupt handling.
  • The Oracle WebLogic application servers were executed in the FX scheduling class to improve performance by reducing the frequency of context switches.
  • The Oracle database processes were run in 2 processor sets using psrset(1M) and executed in the FX scheduling class. This improved performance by reducing memory access latency and reducing context switches.
  • The Oracle log writer process was run in a separate processor set containing 2 threads and run in the RT scheduling class. This insured that the log writer had the most efficient use of CPU resources.

See Also

Disclosure Statement

SPEC and the benchmark name SPECjEnterprise are registered trademarks of the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation. Results from www.spec.org as of 10/11/2011. SPARC T4-4, 40,104.86 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS; Cisco UCS B440 M2, 26,118.67 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS; Cisco UCS B440 M1, 17,301.86 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS; IBM Power 780, 16,646.34 SPECjEnterprise2010 EjOPS.

SPECjEnterprise2010 models contemporary Java-based applications that run on large Java EE (Java Enterprise Edition) servers, backed by network infrastructure and database servers. Focusing on the critical Java EE server hardware & OS, the IBM result includes a Java EE server with a list price of $1.30 million. The Oracle Java EE servers have a list price of $0.47 million. The Java EE server price versus delivered EjOPS is $77.97/EjOPS for IBM versus $11.67/EjOPS for Oracle. Oracle's $/perf advantage is 6.7x better than IBM ($77.97/$11.67).

Pricing details for IBM, IBM p780 512GB based on public pricing at http://tpc.org/results/FDR/TPCH/TPC-H_1TB_IBM780_Sybase-FDR.pdf. Adjusted hardware costs to license all 64 cores. AIX pricing at: http://www-304.ibm.com/easyaccess3/fileserve?contentid=214347 and AIX Standard Edition V7.1 per processor (5765-G98-0017 64*2,600=$166,400). This gives application tier hardware & OS Price/perf: $77.97/EjOPS (1297956/16646.34)

Pricing details for Oracle, four SPARC T4-4 512 GB, HW acquisition price from Oracle's price list: $467,856 http://www.oracle.com. This gives application tier hardware & OS Price/perf: $11.67/EjOPS (467856/40104.86)

The Oracle application tier servers occupy 20U of space, 40,140.86/20=2005 EjOPS/U. The IBM application tier server occupies 16U of space, 16,646.34/16=1040 EjOPS/U. 2005/1040=1.9x

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BestPerf is the source of Oracle performance expertise. In this blog, Oracle's Strategic Applications Engineering group explores Oracle's performance results and shares best practices learned from working on Enterprise-wide Applications.

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