SUMMARY: Speed differences for 2.6, 7, 8 and 9

From: tony bourke <>
Date: Thu Jun 20 2002 - 15:46:59 EDT
Hi All,

Thanks to all that have responded, I apologize for not listing everyone as
there were quite a few.  

I've gotten somewhat varied and conflicting reports about performance
improvements and degradation betwixt the various versions, but here are a
few things everyone seems to agree on:

Disk Space:

The more recent the Solaris version you go, the more disk space is 
required.  They just seem to keep adding more and more stuff, not 
necessarily things you need, but you probably won't be comfortable with 
Solaris 9 on a Ultra 2 with a 2 GB drive.


Graphical environments seem to suffer more as you go up the versions.  I 
went from 8 to 9, and I'm not sure but I think the graphical environment 
is slower, but then again the frame buffer is an older Raptor on an E450.  


There seems to be greater memory requirements, although 8 and 9 have 
improved memory management significantly.  9 is also supposedly compiled 
with the new Forte compilers, and therefore more optimized.  

Other than that, people have varied opinions on performance.  Sun itself 
recommends a 400 MHz or faster processor for Solaris 9, so it's difficult 
to know what to believe about performance.  

I've got an Ultra 5 333 256 RAM, and I've got access to Solaris 2.6
through 9 media.  I think I'll do some testing on my own. I'll post the 

Extra note:

UFS LOGGING:  Someone mentioned this as a great performance boost so I
decided to do a little research.  

UFS logging was introduced with Solaris 7, and can greatly speed up file
system speed compared to the old, notoriously slow UFS.  

It's akin to what the ext3 file system does on Linux and UFS with
soft-updates does on FreeBSD.  It's basically file system journaling,
similar to VxFS without all the extra fancy features.  However, UFS
snapshots was just introduced in Solaris 9, and somewhat available for
Solaris 8.

I did a simple tar test, and I got over *triple* the performance with
logging enabled.  You can use logging on any file system, including / and

To convert to using logging, all you need to do is remount the file system
with "logging" as an option (either with mount or logging in the last
field of /etc/vfstab.  This also greatly reduces the time it takes to fsck
a file system in case of a crash or hard shutdown.  Reverting back to
non-logging is just as simple.



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Tony Bourke

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 18 Jun 2002 15:14:46 -0400 (EDT)
From: tony bourke <>
Subject: Speed differences for 2.6, 7, 8 and 9

Hi All,

Has anyone had any experience various versions of Solaris on the same 
hardware and seeing what the performance differences were?  I'm wondering 
what the performance hit, if any, is when moving up a couple of Solaris 



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Tony Bourke
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Received on Thu Jun 20 15:56:04 2002

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