Performance regression testing results or just statistics?

We’re very excited to see MySQL 5.1.30 make it to GA status and are very proud of the work that the MySQL engineering team has done to get MySQL 5.1 out of the door.

Maybe you’ve seen some claims by others in the MySQL community that MySQL 5.1 runs slower than MySQL 5.0. Maybe you’ve also seen some claims by others in the MySQL community that MySQL 5.1 runs faster than MySQL 5.0.

Guess what? They’re both right.

With database or any other hardware/software performance tests, you’re always going to see different results because there are \*so\* many variables that go into the equation.

That being the case, I thought I’d share a little of what we in the MySQL QA group have seen on the 5.1 vs. 5.0 front. Part of our job in MySQL QA is to routinely test each MySQL build and compare it to prior versions before release, to see if any performance regressions have occurred and I would like to share the most recent results with you.

We did multiple tests with dbt2 benchmark on 5.1.30 GA and 5.0.72 and the charts below represent the outcomes with different settings for innodb_thread_concurrency parameter. Finding the optimal setting for this parameter largely depends on hardware, OS and workload.

In our case we ran CPU bound scenario (dbt2 benchmark with 10 warehouses that fits into buffer pool) and 
varying innodb_thread_concurrency parameter by setting it to: 0, 8, 16, 1000.

Chart 1.Results per threads for the 5.0.72 and 5.1.30

Chart 2 Results per threads for the 5.0.72 and 5.1.30 innodb-thread-concurrency=8

Chart 3.Results per threads for the 5.0.72 and 5.1.30 innodb-thread-concurrency=16

Chart 4. results per threads for the 5.0.72 and 5.1.30 innodb-thread-concurrency=0


As seen above, with  innodb_thread_concurrency of 8,16 and 1000, MySQL 5.1  out performs 
MySQL 5.0, by 21-41% depending upon the threads we use. This also demonstrates improvements 
in scalability in 5.1
The best throughput for this combination of hardware, OS and workload for both 5.0 and 5.1 servers were 
achieved with innodb_thread_concurrency=0. There is very little difference between 5.0 and 5.1 in this test
(5.0 has very slight edge over 5.1) 

Additionally we also run other tests (sysbench) prior to every release. For 5.1 GA release, we found that in some cases 5.1 performed better, while in some others there was a dead heat between 5.0 and 5.1.In few others we found 5.0 winning over 5.1

So what does it mean?

To summarize, the performance numbers will always vary when running benchmark tests based on variety of factors, so the prudent thing for you to do is download the latest MySQL 5.1 for your platform, put it through the wringer in your environment, and go with what works best for you

Test Details:

  - dl360-g5
  - Intel x86_64 (Dual Quad-Core Xeon 5345)
  - RAM 16GB
  - RAID: Smart Array P400i/ 1+0, CACHE 256MB, 4 SAS Disks 10000RPM
  - SLES 10
  - kernel - 2.6.16
  - fs - ext3

dbt2 test details:
  - version of dbt2 test - 0.37
  - scale factor - 10 warehouses
  - zero "think time" (-z)

How we run the test:
 - each run performed 3 times so represented results are average values 
 - test sequence for each run looks as following:
   - copying data files prepared in advance
   - start server
   - start test
   - test for 15 mins
   - stop test
   - stop server
The following packages were used:
   - 5.0.72 x86_64-glibc32
   - 5.1.30 x86_64-glibc32

The following InnoDB options were used:

About the author

Trim Pershad manages the MySQL database System QA team, since joining the company over a year ago. He also has extensive prior experience in testing databases Part of his team's responsibility is to test the MySQL database and compare performance results with earlier releases to identify any performance regressions.


Why is 5.1 so much faster? From the results for innodb_thread_concurrency=0 it looks like the code that enforces thread concurrency is much more of a bottleneck in 5.0 than in 5.1.

Posted by Mark Callaghan on December 11, 2008 at 01:10 PM GMT #

> --innodb_support_xa=0

This potentially makes the binary log inconsistent with the InnoDB internal state, essentially breaking ACID compliancy in case of a power outage or similar event.

> --innodb_doublewrite=0

Again, trouble on unscheduled restarts.

Cute for high numbers in a graph, but not for the real world. As a QA person, isn't your focus the real world, rather than high numbers? /me confused.

Posted by Arjen Lentz on December 11, 2008 at 01:19 PM GMT #

How does it prove that scalability is improved?

Setting InnoDB thread concurrency is a hack that can be used to restrict the amount of work InnoDB is working on internally specifically because it doesn't scale. In your case unrestricting InnoDB seems to be the best option (setting=0) - so the only chart worth looking at is the last one.

In which case 5.1 and 5.0 basically score the same. 5.0 is marginally better.

Unless I read something incorrectly?

Posted by Morgan Tocker on December 11, 2008 at 03:39 PM GMT #

hi trim

nice work with the benchmarks, any chance you could also the same tests on OpenSolaris? Would like to compare any performance improvements between 5.0 vs 5.1 as well as between OpenSolaris and SLES.

Posted by Sam K Tan on January 05, 2009 at 02:37 PM GMT #

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