Testing Network Performance in Solaris

So you think your wireless link is slow, or your gigabit ethernet card is under performing. How can you tell? Here are two tools I use to test network throughput.

netio


Created by Kai Uwe Rommel, it tests by sending and receiving packets of varying sizes and reports throughput in kilobytes per second.

Installation
  • x86
  • # wget ftp://ftp.sunfreeware.com/pub/freeware/intel/10/netio-1.26-sol10-x86-local.gz
    # gzip -d netio-1.26-sol10-x86-local.gz
    # pkgadd -d netio-1.26-sol10-x86-local
    
  • SPARC
  • # wget ftp://ftp.sunfreeware.com/pub/freeware/sparc/10/netio-1.26-sol10-sparc-local.gz
    # gzip -d netio-1.26-sol10-sparc-local.gz
    # pkgadd -d netio-1.26-sol10-sparc-local
    
    Usage
  • Server-side
  • # netio -u -s
    
  • Client-side
  • # netio -u SERVER_IP_ADDRESS
    

    Here are results on a 100Mbps link:
    UDP connection established.
    Packet size  1k bytes:  11913 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11468 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size  2k bytes:  11954 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11509 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size  4k bytes:  12274 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11687 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size  8k bytes:  12284 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11697 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size 16k bytes:  12292 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11702 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size 32k bytes:  12348 KByte/s (0%) Tx,  11714 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Done.
    
    Sending and receiving hovered around 11-12MB/s which is on par with 100Mbps.

    netperf


    Created by Rick Jones and discovers the maximum throughput of a link, reporting in megabits per second.

    Installation
    # wget ftp://ftp.netperf.org/netperf/netperf-2.4.4.tar.gz
    # tar zxvf netperf-2.4.4.tar.gz
    # cd netperf-2.4.4
    # export CFLAGS="-lsocket -lnsl -lkstat"
    # ./configure
    # make
    # make install
    
    Usage
  • Server-side
  • # netserver
    
  • Client-side
  • # netperf -H SERVER_IP_ADDRESS
    

    Here are results on a 100Mbps link:
    Recv   Send    Send                          
    Socket Socket  Message  Elapsed              
    Size   Size    Size     Time     Throughput  
    bytes  bytes   bytes    secs.    10\^6bits/sec  
    
     49152  49152  49152    10.00      94.88
    

    94.88 Mbps is the final result, not bad.
    Comments:

    I'm a trifle surprised the CFLAGS= was necessary - I thought I had the configure script setup to deal with that automagically for Solaris. Anyhow, for those who want to find more about netperf options, latency tests etc etc the current version of the manual can be found at http://www.netperf.org/svn/netperf2/trunk/doc/netperf.html

    Posted by rick jones on January 15, 2009 at 12:15 PM MST #

    I doubt it's actually necessary, but since it is recommended in README.solaris, I figured it was worth mentioning. By the way, cool utility!

    Posted by Paul on January 16, 2009 at 12:02 AM MST #

    Thanks for this post!

    Do you happen to know what the percentage numbers in brackets mean in the Netio output?

    I notice that your example shows all zeros, but I am getting this:

    NETIO - Network Throughput Benchmark, Version 1.26
    (C) 1997-2005 Kai Uwe Rommel

    UDP connection established.
    Packet size 1k bytes: 107623 KByte/s (55%) Tx, 43374 KByte/s (8%) Rx.
    Packet size 2k bytes: 136998 KByte/s (68%) Tx, 44389 KByte/s (0%) Rx.
    Packet size 4k bytes: 147922 KByte/s (81%) Tx, 59438 KByte/s (11%) Rx.
    Packet size 8k bytes: 174252 KByte/s (68%) Tx, 72402 KByte/s (12%) Rx.
    Packet size 16k bytes: 190121 KByte/s (69%) Tx, 86816 KByte/s (8%) Rx.
    Packet size 32k bytes: 209247 KByte/s (80%) Tx, 89999 KByte/s (14%) Rx.
    Done.

    Thanks!

    Jim

    Posted by guest on January 07, 2012 at 07:39 AM MST #

    Thank you for this post..I am implementing Jumbo frame on 10G interface.
    How can I test the JumboFrame packet trasnfer and performance..

    Posted by ravi on February 08, 2013 at 04:36 AM MST #

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    Hiya, my name is Paul Johnson and I'm a software engineer working on the ZFS storage appliance .

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