Monday Apr 21, 2008

Throughput computing series: Utilizing CMT with Oracle

Since we just recently announced mutli-chip based CMT servers that provide up to 128 threads in a 1U or 2U box, it seems fitting to pick up this thread on throughput computing.

The key to fully appreciating the CMT architecture with Oracle is to exploit the available threads. As I have spoke about earlier in the "throughput computing series", this can be done through "concurrency", "parallelism", or both. Oracle, being the mature product that it is, can achieve high-levels of parallelism as well as concurrency.

Concurrent processing with Oracle

For examples of concurrent processing with Oracle, look at recent results on the Oracle Ebusiness payroll benchmark. This shows that using concurrent processes to break up the batch, you can increase batch throughput. By going from 4 to 64 processes, batch time decreased from 31.53 minutes to 4.63 minutes and throughput was increased by 6.8x!

With Oracle's Ebusiness Suite of software, you can increase the number of "concurrent manager" processes to more fully utilize the available threads on the system. Each ISV has different ways of controlling batch distribution and concurrency. You will have to check with your various software vendors to find all the ways to increase concurrency.

Parallelism in Oracle

People often associate parallelism in Oracle with parallel query. In most cases where CMT is involved, I see a lack of understanding of how to achieve parallelism with more basic administrative functions. Oracle excels in providing parallelism for important administrative tasks.

  • Schema analyze
  • Index build/rebuild
  • Parallel loader
  • Parallel export/import with datapump

    While parallelism exists for these administrative tasks, some configuration is required. I will examine the various ways to achieve optimal throughput with CMT based systems on these tasks.
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    This blog discusses performance topics as running on Sun servers. The main focus is in database performance and architecture but other topics can and will creep in.

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