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Re: OpenLDAP 2.3.38 and Berkeley DB 4.6.19

On 8/28/07, Howard Chu <hyc@symas.com> wrote:
> Quanah Gibson-Mount wrote:
> > --On Tuesday, August 28, 2007 2:44 PM -0400 matthew sporleder
> > <msporleder@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> >> That's an unfortunate development from oracle considering the
> >> presentation that was released showing bdb4.6 to be very fast.
> >
> > Yup.  I believe Howard is working with Sleepycat to find out what was done
> > to 4.6 to make it suddenly be 3-4 times slower instead of significantly
> > faster as it was in the early releases.
> Yes, it's been a long conversation so far. While their new memory manager
> (inspired by Jong-Hyuk Choi's research on BerkeleyDB performance in OpenLDAP)
> is a great improvement, their new lock manager is not.
> This may not be an issue on all platforms. On x86 though, they have a hybrid
> mutex mechanism which is enabled by default. It uses both assembly language
> spinlocks and pthread mutexes, first spinning in the assembly language lock
> some number of times before falling back onto the mutex. They claimed that this
> improved performance in their tests, because pthread mutexes can be very
> expensive on some platforms. In my tests on x86_64 Linux however, it just
> forced CPU usage to 100% (200% actually, dualcore) and slowed down overall
> throughput.
> You can give an explicit "--with-mutex=POSIX/pthread" argument when configuring
> BerkeleyDB to avoid the hybrid mutex scheme, in which case performance of BDB
> 4.6.19 seems to match what we obtained with BDB 4.6.3.
> If you were using BerkeleyDB 4.5.20 before, the early BDB 4.6 releases will
> work well for you. The only difference between 4.5.20 and 4.6.1 was in the
> memory manager. 4.6.2 just tweaked some portability issues to support BREW
> (Qualcomm's cellphone programming environment). 4.6.3 added the ability to
> specify different cache priorities per database operation. (I didn't track what
> changed between 4.6.3 and 4.6.18.)
> And for anyone curious - you can read ITS#3851
> http://www.openldap.org/its/index.cgi/Development?id=3851 for the background on
> the problems in BerkeleyDB's memory allocator. While there was a fair amount of
> debate as to whether Jong's proposed solution was of any benefit, it was pretty
> clear that the existing code in BerkeleyDB could be improved. But the changes
> in the memory allocator may not visibly affect you if you're running a
> small-to-medium sized database. It's only apparent when the total volume of
> data is much larger than the BerkeleyDB cache, because that's the condition
> that leads to memory fragmentation, and it's the fragmentation that causes the
> allocator's performance to degrade.
> The same kind of problem affects the slapd entry cache, when the number of
> active entries is much larger than the entry cache, and you're using the glibc
> malloc. (At least, for glibc 2.3 and older. I haven't retested with glibc 2.5 yet.)
> To sum up - if you're already using BDB 4.5.20 with OpenLDAP 2.3 and the
> performance is acceptable, I wouldn't be in any hurry to upgrade to BDB 4.6.
> Releases 4.6.18 and 4.6.19 are incompatible with OpenLDAP 2.3. BDB 4.6.1 is a
> drop-in replacement for 4.5.20 though.

What do you think your chances are at getting
--with-mutex=POSIX/pthread made the default?  If not very good, it
might be worth mentioning in openldap docs if it's that much of a
performance gain.