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  • Simple vs Complex (but performance efficient) solution - which one to choose and when?

    - by ManojGumber
    I have been programming for a couple of years and have often found myself at a dilemma. There are two solutions - one is simple one i.e. simple approach, easier to understand and maintain. It involves some redundancy, some extra work (extra IO, extra processing) and therefore is not the most optimal solution. but other uses a complex approach,difficult to implement, often involving interaction between lot of modules and is a performance efficient solution. Which solution should I strive for when I do not have hard performance SLA to meet and even the simple solution can meet the performance SLA? I have felt disdain among my fellow developers for simple solution. Is it good practice to come up with most optimal complex solution if your performance SLA can be met by a simple solution?

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  • In the days of modern computing, in 'typical business apps' - why does performance matter?

    - by Prog
    This may seem like an odd question to some of you. I'm a hobbyist Java programmer. I have developed several games, an AI program that creates music, another program for painting, and similar stuff. This is to tell you that I have an experience in programming, but not in professional development of business applications. I see a lot of talk on this site about performance. People often debate what would be the most efficient algorithm in C# to perform a task, or why Python is slow and Java is faster, etc. What I'm trying to understand is: why does this matter? There are specific areas of computing where I see why performance matters: games, where tens of thousands of computations are happening every second in a constant-update loop, or low level systems which other programs rely on, such as OSs and VMs, etc. But for the normal, typical high-level business app, why does performance matter? I can understand why it used to matter, decades ago. Computers were much slower and had much less memory, so you had to think carefully about these things. But today, we have so much memory to spare and computers are so fast: does it actually matter if a particular Java algorithm is O(n^2)? Will it actually make a difference for the end users of this typical business app? When you press a GUI button in a typical business app, and behind the scenes it invokes an O(n^2) algorithm, in these days of modern computing - do you actually feel the inefficiency? My question is split in two: In practice, today does performance matter in a typical normal business program? If it does, please give me real-world examples of places in such an application, where performance and optimizations are important.

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  • Performance of ClearCase servers on VMs?

    - by Garen
    Where I work, we are in need of upgrading our ClearCase servers and it's been proposed that we move them into a new (yet-to-be-deployed) VMmare system. In the past I've not noticed a significant problem with performance with most applications when running in VMs, but given that ClearCase "speed" (i.e. dynamic-view response times) is so latency sensitive I am concerned that this will not be a good idea. VMWare has numerous white-papers detailing performance related issues based on network traffic patterns that re-inforces my hypothesis, but nothing particularly concrete for this particular use case that I can see. What I can find are various forum posts online, but which are somewhat dated, e.g.: ClearCase clients are supported on VMWare, but not for performance issues. I would never put a production server on VM. It will work but will be slower. The more complex the slower it gets. accessing or building from a local snapshot view will be the fastest, building in a remote VM stored dynamic view using clearmake will be painful..... VMWare is best used for test environments (via http://www.cmcrossroads.com/forums?func=view&catid=31&id=44094&limit=10&start=10) and: VMware + ClearCase = works but SLUGGISH!!!!!! (windows)(not for production environment) My company tried to mandate that all new apps or app upgrades needed to be on/moved VMware instances. The VMware instance could not handle the demands of ClearCase. (come to find out that I was sharing a box with a database server) Will you know what else would be on that box besides ClearCase? Karl (via http://www.cmcrossroads.com/forums?func=view&id=44094&catid=31) and: ... are still finding we can't get the performance using dynamic views to below 2.5 times that of a physical machine. Interestingly, speaking to a few people with much VMWare experience and indeed from running builds, we are finding that typically, VMWare doesn't take that much longer for most applications and about 10-20% longer has been quoted. (via http://www.cmcrossroads.com/forums?func=view&catid=31&id=44094&limit=10&start=10) Which brings me to the more direct question: Does anyone have any more recent experience with ClearCase servers on VMware (if not any specific, relevant performance advice)?

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  • Logging hurts MySQL performance - but, why?

    - by jimbo
    I'm quite surprised that I can't see an answer to this anywhere on the site already, nor in the MySQL documentation (section 5.2 seems to have logging otherwise well covered!) If I enable binlogs, I see a small performance hit (subjectively), which is to be expected with a little extra IO -- but when I enable a general query log, I see an enormous performance hit (double the time to run queries, or worse), way in excess of what I see with binlogs. Of course I'm now logging every SELECT as well as every UPDATE/INSERT, but, other daemons record their every request (Apache, Exim) without grinding to a halt. Am I just seeing the effects of being close to a performance "tipping point" when it comes to IO, or is there something fundamentally difficult about logging queries that causes this to happen? I'd love to be able to log all queries to make development easier, but I can't justify the kind of hardware it feels like we'd need to get performance back up with general query logging on. I do, of course, log slow queries, and there's negligible improvement in general usage if I disable this. (All of this is on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, MySQLd 5.1.49, but research suggests this is a fairly universal issue)

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  • Looking for a short term solution to improve website performance with additional server

    - by Tanim Mirza
    I am working with a small team to run an internal website running with PHP 5.3.9, MySQL 5.0.77. All the files and database are hosted on a dedicated Linux machine with the following configuration: Intel Xeon E5450 8 CPU cores @3.00GHz, 2992.498 MHz, Cache 6148 KB, Cent OS – Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server release 5.4 We started small and then the database got bigger and now the website performance degraded significantly. We often get server space overrun, mysql overloaded with too many calls, etc. We don't have much experience dealing with these issues. We recently got another server that we were thinking to use to improve performance. Since it has better configuration, some of us wanted to completely move everything to the new machine. But I am trying to find out how we can utilize both machine for optimized performance. I found options such as MySQL clustering, Load balancer, etc. I was wondering if I could get any suggestion for this situation "How to utilize two machines in short term for best performance", that would be great. By short term we are looking for something that we can deploy in a month or so. Thanks in advance for your time.

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  • Improving browser performance while using lots of tabs?

    - by Andrew
    My browsing habits cause me to open lots of windows and tabs, either related to different projects I'm working on or things I may want to read later. I use OSX and use about 5 spaces with multiple windows in each space. The problem is eventually I'll have around 200 or more tabs open (spread over 15-20 windows) that I don't want to close. Needless to say, my computer's performance starts to degrade. As I write this on my mobile, Safari on my laptop is locking up the computer. I used to use Chrome but found better performance with Safari. What I'd like to know, is there a graph of browser performance based on tab usage? I don't need a browser that keeps all tabs active. It would be great if the browser could increase performance by "putting tabs to sleep". Or if there was some sort of tool for saving a "workspace" of tabs that you could reactivate the next time you are working on that project. What sort of solution can you recommend to solve this problem?

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  • Load and Web Performance Testing using Visual Studio Ultimate 2010-Part 3

    - by Tarun Arora
    Welcome back once again, in Part 1 of Load and Web Performance Testing using Visual Studio 2010 I talked about why Performance Testing the application is important, the test tools available in Visual Studio Ultimate 2010 and various test rig topologies, in Part 2 of Load and Web Performance Testing using Visual Studio 2010 I discussed the details of web performance & load tests as well as why it’s important to follow a goal based pattern while performance testing your application. In part 3 I’ll be discussing Test Result Analysis, Test Result Drill through, Test Report Generation, Test Run Comparison, Asp.net Profiler and some closing thoughts. Test Results – I see some creepy worms! In Part 2 we put together a web performance test and a load test, lets run the test to see load test to see how the Web site responds to the load simulation. While the load test is running you will be able to see close to real time analysis in the Load Test Analyser window. You can use the Load Test Analyser to conduct load test analysis in three ways: Monitor a running load test - A condensed set of the performance counter data is maintained in memory. To prevent the results memory requirements from growing unbounded, up to 200 samples for each performance counter are maintained. This includes 100 evenly spaced samples that span the current elapsed time of the run and the most recent 100 samples.         After the load test run is completed - The test controller spools all collected performance counter data to a database while the test is running. Additional data, such as timing details and error details, is loaded into the database when the test completes. The performance data for a completed test is loaded from the database and analysed by the Load Test Analyser. Below you can see a screen shot of the summary view, this provides key results in a format that is compact and easy to read. You can also print the load test summary, this is generated after the test has completed or been stopped.         Analyse the load test results of a previously run load test – We’ll see this in the section where i discuss comparison between two test runs. The performance counters can be plotted on the graphs. You also have the option to highlight a selected part of the test and view details, drill down to the user activity chart where you can hover over to see more details of the test run.   Generate Report => Test Run Comparisons The level of reports you can generate using the Load Test Analyser is astonishing. You have the option to create excel reports and conduct side by side analysis of two test results or to track trend analysis. The tools also allows you to export the graph data either to MS Excel or to a CSV file. You can view the ASP.NET profiler report to conduct further analysis as well. View Data and Diagnostic Attachments opens the Choose Diagnostic Data Adapter Attachment dialog box to select an adapter to analyse the result type. For example, you can select an IntelliTrace adapter, click OK and open the IntelliTrace summary for the test agent that was used in the load test.   Compare results This creates a set of reports that compares the data from two load test results using tables and bar charts. I have taken these screen shots from the MSDN documentation, I would highly recommend exploring the wealth of knowledge available on MSDN. Leaving Thoughts While load testing the application with an excessive load for a longer duration of time, i managed to bring the IIS to its knees by piling up a huge queue of requests waiting to be processed. This clearly means that the IIS had run out of threads as all the threads were busy processing existing request, one easy way of fixing this is by increasing the default number of allocated threads, but this might escalate the problem. The better suggestion is to try and drill down to the actual root cause of the problem. When ever the garbage collection runs it stops processing any pages so all requests that come in during that period are queued up, but realistically the garbage collection completes in fraction of a a second. To understand this better lets look at the .net heap, it is divided into large heap and small heap, anything greater than 85kB in size will be allocated to the Large object heap, the Large object heap is non compacting and remember large objects are expensive to move around, so if you are allocating something in the large object heap, make sure that you really need it! The small object heap on the other hand is divided into generations, so all objects that are supposed to be short-lived are suppose to live in Gen-0 and the long living objects eventually move to Gen-2 as garbage collection goes through.  As you can see in the picture below all < 85 KB size objects are first assigned to Gen-0, when Gen-0 fills up and a new object comes in and finds Gen-0 full, the garbage collection process is started, the process checks for all the dead objects and assigns them as the valid candidate for deletion to free up memory and promotes all the remaining objects in Gen-0 to Gen-1. So in the future when ever you clean up Gen-1 you have to clean up Gen-0 as well. When you fill up Gen – 0 again, all of Gen – 1 dead objects are drenched and rest are moved to Gen-2 and Gen-0 objects are moved to Gen-1 to free up Gen-0, but by this time your Garbage collection process has started to take much more time than it usually takes. Now as I mentioned earlier when garbage collection is being run all page requests that come in during that period are queued up. Does this explain why possibly page requests are getting queued up, apart from this it could also be the case that you are waiting for a long running database process to complete.      Lets explore the heap a bit more… What is really a case of crisis is when the objects are living long enough to make it to Gen-2 and then dying, this is definitely a high cost operation. But sometimes you need objects in memory, for example when you cache data you hold on to the objects because you need to use them right across the user session, which is acceptable. But if you wanted to see what extreme caching can do to your server then write a simple application that chucks in a lot of data in cache, run a load test over it for about 10-15 minutes, forcing a lot of data in memory causing the heap to run out of memory. If you get to such a state where you start running out of memory the IIS as a mode of recovery restarts the worker process. It is great way to free up all your memory in the heap but this would clear the cache. The problem with this is if the customer had 10 items in their shopping basket and that data was stored in the application cache, the user basket will now be empty forcing them either to get frustrated and go to a competitor website or if the customer is really patient, give it another try! How can you address this, well two ways of addressing this; 1. Workaround – A x86 bit processor only allows a maximum of 4GB of RAM, this means the machine effectively has around 3.4 GB of RAM available, the OS needs about 1.5 GB of RAM to run efficiently, the IIS and .net framework also need their share of memory, leaving you a heap of around 800 MB to play with. Because Team builds by default build your application in ‘Compile as any mode’ it means the application is build such that it will run in x86 bit mode if run on a x86 bit processor and run in a x64 bit mode if run on a x64 but processor. The problem with this is not all applications are really x64 bit compatible specially if you are using com objects or external libraries. So, as a quick win if you compiled your application in x86 bit mode by changing the compile as any selection to compile as x86 in the team build, you will be able to run your application on a x64 bit machine in x86 bit mode (WOW – By running Windows on Windows) and what that means is, you could use 8GB+ worth of RAM, if you take away everything else your application will roughly get a heap size of at least 4 GB to play with, which is immense. If you need a heap size of more than 4 GB you have either build a software for NASA or there is something fundamentally wrong in your application. 2. Solution – Now that you have put a workaround in place the IIS will not restart the worker process that regularly, which means you can take a breather and start working to get to the root cause of this memory leak. But this begs a question “How do I Identify possible memory leaks in my application?” Well i won’t say that there is one single tool that can tell you where the memory leak is, but trust me, ‘Performance Profiling’ is a great start point, it definitely gets you started in the right direction, let’s have a look at how. Performance Wizard - Start the Performance Wizard and select Instrumentation, this lets you measure function call counts and timings. Before running the performance session right click the performance session settings and chose properties from the context menu to bring up the Performance session properties page and as shown in the screen shot below, check the check boxes in the group ‘.NET memory profiling collection’ namely ‘Collect .NET object allocation information’ and ‘Also collect the .NET Object lifetime information’.    Now if you fire off the profiling session on your pages you will notice that the results allows you to view ‘Object Lifetime’ which shows you the number of objects that made it to Gen-0, Gen-1, Gen-2, Large heap, etc. Another great feature about the profile is that if your application has > 5% cases where objects die right after making to the Gen-2 storage a threshold alert is generated to alert you. Since you have the option to also view the most expensive methods and by capturing the IntelliTrace data you can drill in to narrow down to the line of code that is the root cause of the problem. Well now that we have seen how crucial memory management is and how easy Visual Studio Ultimate 2010 makes it for us to identify and reproduce the problem with the best of breed tools in the product. Caching One of the main ways to improve performance is Caching. Which basically means you tell the web server that instead of going to the database for each request you keep the data in the webserver and when the user asks for it you serve it from the webserver itself. BUT that can have consequences! Let’s look at some code, trust me caching code is not very intuitive, I define a cache key for almost all searches made through the common search page and cache the results. The approach works fine, first time i get the data from the database and second time data is served from the cache, significant performance improvement, EXCEPT when two users try to do the same operation and run into each other. But it is easy to handle this by adding the lock as you can see in the snippet below. So, as long as a user comes in and finds that the cache is empty, the user locks and starts to get the cache no more concurrency issues. But lets say you are processing 10 requests per second, by the time i have locked the operation to get the results from the database, 9 other users came in and found that the cache key is null so after i have come out and populated the cache they will still go in to get the results again. The application will still be faster because the next set of 10 users and so on would continue to get data from the cache. BUT if we added another null check after locking to build the cache and before actual call to the db then the 9 users who follow me would not make the extra trip to the database at all and that would really increase the performance, but didn’t i say that the code won’t be very intuitive, may be you should leave a comment you don’t want another developer to come in and think what a fresher why is he checking for the cache key null twice !!! The downside of caching is, you are storing the data outside of the database and the data could be wrong because the updates applied to the database would make the data cached at the web server out of sync. So, how do you invalidate the cache? Well if you only had one way of updating the data lets say only one entry point to the data update you can write some logic to say that every time new data is entered set the cache object to null. But this approach will not work as soon as you have several ways of feeding data to the system or your system is scaled out across a farm of web servers. The perfect solution to this is Micro Caching which means you cache the query for a set time duration and invalidate the cache after that set duration. The advantage is every time the user queries for that data with in the time span for which you have cached the results there are no calls made to the database and the data is served right from the server which makes the response immensely quick. Now figuring out the appropriate time span for which you micro cache the query results really depends on the application. Lets say your website gets 10 requests per second, if you retain the cache results for even 1 minute you will have immense performance gains. You would reduce 90% hits to the database for searching. Ever wondered why when you go to e-bookers.com or xpedia.com or yatra.com to book a flight and you click on the book button because the fare seems too exciting and you get an error message telling you that the fare is not valid any more. Yes, exactly => That is a cache failure! These travel sites or price compare engines are not going to hit the database every time you hit the compare button instead the results will be served from the cache, because the query results are micro cached, its a perfect trade-off, by micro caching the results the site gains 100% performance benefits but every once in a while annoys a customer because the fare has expired. But the trade off works in the favour of these sites as they are still able to process up to 30+ page requests per second which means cater to the site traffic by may be losing 1 customer every once in a while to a competitor who is also using a similar caching technique what are the odds that the user will not come back to their site sooner or later? Recap   Resources Below are some Key resource you might like to review. I would highly recommend the documentation, walkthroughs and videos available on MSDN. You can always make use of Fiddler to debug Web Performance Tests. Some community test extensions and plug ins available on Codeplex might also be of interest to you. The Road Ahead Thank you for taking the time out and reading this blog post, you may also want to read Part I and Part II if you haven’t so far. If you enjoyed the post, remember to subscribe to http://feeds.feedburner.com/TarunArora. Questions/Feedback/Suggestions, etc please leave a comment. Next ‘Load Testing in the cloud’, I’ll be working on exploring the possibilities of running Test controller/Agents in the Cloud. See you on the other side! Thank You!   Share this post : CodeProject

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  • Query performance counters from powershell

    - by Frane Borozan
    I am trying this script to query performance counters in different localized windows server versions. http://www.powershellmagazine.com/2013/07/19/querying-performance-counters-from-powershell/ Everything works as in the article, well partially :-) I am trying to access a counter ID 3906 Terminal Services Session and works well for English windows. However for example in French and German that counter doesn't exist under that ID. I think I figured to find the exact counter under ID 1548 in french and German, but that ID in English is something completely different. Anybody seen this behavior on the performance counters?

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  • Effects of HTTP/TCP connection handshakes and server performance

    - by Blankman
    When running apache bench on the same server as the website like: ab -n 1000 -c 10 localhost:8080/ I am most probably not getting accurate results when compared to users hitting the server from various locations. I'm trying to understand how or rather why this will effect real world performance since a user in china will have different latency issues when compared to someone in the same state/country. Say my web server has a maximum thread limit of 100. Can someone explain in detail how end user latency can/will effect server performance. I'm assuming here that each request will be computed equally at say 10ms. What I'm not understand is how external factors can effect overal server performance, specifically internet connections (location, or even device like mobile) and http/tcp handshakes etc.

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  • RAID Array performance on an HP Proliant ML350 G5 Smart Array E200i

    - by Nate Pinchot
    We have a client who is complaining about performance of an application which utilizes an MS SQL database. They do not believe the performance issues are the fault of the application itself. The Smart Array E200i RAID controller has 128MB cache and we have the cache set to 75% read/25% write. The disk array set to enable write caching. Recently we ran a disk performance test using SQLIO based on this guide. We used a 10 GB file for the test found that the average sequential read rate was ~60 MB/sec (megabytes/sec) and the average random read rate was ~30 MB/sec. Are these numbers on par for what the server should be performing? Better than on par? Horrible? Amazing?

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  • How does NTFS compression affect performance?

    - by DragonLord
    I've heard that NTFS compression can reduce performance due to extra CPU usage, but I've read reports that it may actually increase performance because of reduced disk reads. How exactly does NTFS compression affect system performance? Notes: I'm running a laptop with a 5400 RPM hard drive, and many of the things I do on it are I/O bound. The processor is a AMD Phenom II with four cores running at 2.0 GHz. The system is defragmented regularly using UltraDefrag. The workload is mixed read-write, with reads occurring somewhat more often than writes. The files to be compressed include personal documents and selected programs, including several (less demanding) games and Visual Studio (which tends to be I/O bound more often than not).

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  • Amazon EC2 performance vs desktop

    - by flashnik
    I'm wondering how to compare performance of EC2 instances with standard dedicated servers and desktop. I've found only comparance of defferent clouds. I need to find a solution to perform some computations which require CPU and memory (disc IO is not used). The choice is to use: EC2 (High-CPU) or Xeon 5620/5630 with DDR3 or Core i7-960/980 with DDR3 Can anybody help, how to compare their performance? I'm not speaking about reliability of alternatives, I want to understand pros and cons from the point of just performance.

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  • SQL Server Performance & Latching

    - by Colin
    I have a SQL server 2000 instance which runs several concurrent select statements on a group of 4 or 5 tables. Often the performance of the server during these queries becomes extremely diminished. The querys can take up to 10x as long as other runs of the same query, and it gets to the point where simple operations like getting the table list in object explorer or running sp_who can take several minutes. I've done my best to identify the cause of these issues, and the only performance metric which I've found to be off base is Average Latch Wait time. I've read that over 1 second wait time is bad, and mine ranges anywhere from 20 to 75 seconds under heavy use. So my question is, what could be the issue? Shouldn't SQL be able to handle multiple selects on a single table without losing so much performance? Can anyone suggest somewhere to go from here to investigate this problem? Thanks for the help.

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  • Server Performance

    - by Burt
    We have a dedicated server that we use to stage websites (our test server). The performance of the server has become really bad and we regularly have to restart it. When performance is poor I have checked task manager for the processes and memory but everything looks OK. We use a content management system and it is always when using the admin section of this CMS that we notice the performance degrade which makes me think it may have something to do with DB calls the CMS is making. Does this sound viable? Any other sggestions of how I can go about testing this? Thanks in advance...

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  • Flushing disk cache for performance benchmarks?

    - by Ido Hadanny
    I'm doing some performance benchmark on some heavy SQL script running on postgres 8.4 on a ubuntu box (natty). I'm experiencing some pretty un-stable performance, even though I'm supposed to be the only one running on the machine (the same script on the exact same data might run in 20m and then 40m for no specific reason). So, remembering my distant DBA training, I decided I should flush the postgres cache, using sudo /etc/init.d/postgresql restart, but it's still shaky! My question: maybe I'm missing some caches in my disk/os? I'm using a netapp appliance as my storage. Am I on the right track? Do I even want to make sure I get repeatable performance before I start tuning?

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  • Enable: Asp.net connection pool monitoring with performance monitor

    - by BlackHawkDesign
    If this question is at the wrong forum, be free to tell me. I'm a c# developer, but I'm running in a system management issue here. Intro: Im suspecting that an asp.net application is having some issues with the connection pool and that the pool is flooding from time to time. So to make sure, I want to monitor the connection pool. After some searching I found this article : http://blog.idera.com/sql-server/performance-and-monitoring/ensure-proper-sql-server-connection-pooling-2/ Basicly it explains stuff about connection pools and how you can monitor the application pool with performance monitor. The problem: So I logged in to the asp.net server(The sql database is hosted on a different server) which hosts the website. Started performance monitor. But when I want to select 'Current # pooled and nonpooled connections', I have no instance to select. There fore I can't add it. Question How can I create/supply an instance so I can monitor the connection pool? Thanks in advance BHD

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  • Recommended website performance monitoring services? [closed]

    - by Dennis G.
    I'm looking for a good performance monitoring service for websites. I know about some of the available general monitoring services that check for uptime and notify you about unavailable services. But I'm specifically looking for a service with an emphasis on performance. I.e., I would like to see reports with detailed performance statistics from multiple locations world-wide, with a break-down on how long it took to fetch the different website resources, including third-party scripts such as Google Analytics and so on (the report should contain similar details such as the FireBug Net tab). Are there any such services and if so, which one is the best?

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  • Revisiting ANTS Performance Profiler 7.4

    - by James Michael Hare
    Last year, I did a small review on the ANTS Performance Profiler 6.3, now that it’s a year later and a major version number higher, I thought I’d revisit the review and revise my last post. This post will take the same examples as the original post and update them to show what’s new in version 7.4 of the profiler. Background A performance profiler’s main job is to keep track of how much time is typically spent in each unit of code. This helps when we have a program that is not running at the performance we expect, and we want to know where the program is experiencing issues. There are many profilers out there of varying capabilities. Red Gate’s typically seem to be the very easy to “jump in” and get started with very little training required. So let’s dig into the Performance Profiler. I’ve constructed a very crude program with some obvious inefficiencies. It’s a simple program that generates random order numbers (or really could be any unique identifier), adds it to a list, sorts the list, then finds the max and min number in the list. Ignore the fact it’s very contrived and obviously inefficient, we just want to use it as an example to show off the tool: 1: // our test program 2: public static class Program 3: { 4: // the number of iterations to perform 5: private static int _iterations = 1000000; 6: 7: // The main method that controls it all 8: public static void Main() 9: { 10: var list = new List<string>(); 11: 12: for (int i = 0; i < _iterations; i++) 13: { 14: var x = GetNextId(); 15: 16: AddToList(list, x); 17: 18: var highLow = GetHighLow(list); 19: 20: if ((i % 1000) == 0) 21: { 22: Console.WriteLine("{0} - High: {1}, Low: {2}", i, highLow.Item1, highLow.Item2); 23: Console.Out.Flush(); 24: } 25: } 26: } 27: 28: // gets the next order id to process (random for us) 29: public static string GetNextId() 30: { 31: var random = new Random(); 32: var num = random.Next(1000000, 9999999); 33: return num.ToString(); 34: } 35: 36: // add it to our list - very inefficiently! 37: public static void AddToList(List<string> list, string item) 38: { 39: list.Add(item); 40: list.Sort(); 41: } 42: 43: // get high and low of order id range - very inefficiently! 44: public static Tuple<int,int> GetHighLow(List<string> list) 45: { 46: return Tuple.Create(list.Max(s => Convert.ToInt32(s)), list.Min(s => Convert.ToInt32(s))); 47: } 48: } So let’s run it through the profiler and see what happens! Visual Studio Integration First, let’s look at how the ANTS profilers integrate with Visual Studio’s menu system. Once you install the ANTS profilers, you will get an ANTS menu item with several options: Notice that you can either Profile Performance or Launch ANTS Performance Profiler. These sound similar but achieve two slightly different actions: Profile Performance: this immediately launches the profiler with all defaults selected to profile the active project in Visual Studio. Launch ANTS Performance Profiler: this launches the profiler much the same way as starting it from the Start Menu. The profiler will pre-populate the application and path information, but allow you to change the settings before beginning the profile run. So really, the main difference is that Profile Performance immediately begins profiling with the default selections, where Launch ANTS Performance Profiler allows you to change the defaults and attach to an already-running application. Let’s Fire it Up! So when you fire up ANTS either via Start Menu or Launch ANTS Performance Profiler menu in Visual Studio, you are presented with a very simple dialog to get you started: Notice you can choose from many different options for application type. You can profile executables, services, web applications, or just attach to a running process. In fact, in version 7.4 we see two new options added: ASP.NET Web Application (IIS Express) SharePoint web application (IIS) So this gives us an additional way to profile ASP.NET applications and the ability to profile SharePoint applications as well. You can also choose your level of detail in the Profiling Mode drop down. If you choose Line-Level and method-level timings detail, you will get a lot more detail on the method durations, but this will also slow down profiling somewhat. If you really need the profiler to be as unintrusive as possible, you can change it to Sample method-level timings. This is performing very light profiling, where basically the profiler collects timings of a method by examining the call-stack at given intervals. Which method you choose depends a lot on how much detail you need to find the issue and how sensitive your program issues are to timing. So for our example, let’s just go with the line and method timing detail. So, we check that all the options are correct (if you launch from VS2010, the executable and path are filled in already), and fire it up by clicking the [Start Profiling] button. Profiling the Application Once you start profiling the application, you will see a real-time graph of CPU usage that will indicate how much your application is using the CPU(s) on your system. During this time, you can select segments of the graph and bookmark them, giving them mnemonic names. This can be useful if you want to compare performance in one part of the run to another part of the run. Notice that once you select a block, it will give you the call tree breakdown for that selection only, and the relative performance of those calls. Once you feel you have collected enough information, you can click [Stop Profiling] to stop the application run and information collection and begin a more thorough analysis. Analyzing Method Timings So now that we’ve halted the run, we can look around the GUI and see what we can see. By default, the times are shown in terms of percentage of time of the total run of the application, though you can change it in the View menu item to milliseconds, ticks, or seconds as well. This won’t affect the percentages of methods, it only affects what units the times are shown. Notice also that the major hotspot seems to be in a method without source, ANTS Profiler will filter these out by default, but you can right-click on the line and remove the filter to see more detail. This proves especially handy when a bottleneck is due to a method in the BCL. So now that we’ve removed the filter, we see a bit more detail: In addition, ANTS Performance Profiler gives you the ability to decompile the methods without source so that you can dive even deeper, though typically this isn’t necessary for our purposes. When looking at timings, there are generally two types of timings for each method call: Time: This is the time spent ONLY in this method, not including calls this method makes to other methods. Time With Children: This is the total of time spent in both this method AND including calls this method makes to other methods. In other words, the Time tells you how much work is being done exclusively in this method, and the Time With Children tells you how much work is being done inclusively in this method and everything it calls. You can also choose to display the methods in a tree or in a grid. The tree view is the default and it shows the method calls arranged in terms of the tree representing all method calls and the parent method that called them, etc. This is useful for when you find a hot-spot method, you can see who is calling it to determine if the problem is the method itself, or if it is being called too many times. The grid method represents each method only once with its totals and is useful for quickly seeing what method is the trouble spot. In addition, you can choose to display Methods with source which are generally the methods you wrote (as opposed to native or BCL code), or Any Method which shows not only your methods, but also native calls, JIT overhead, synchronization waits, etc. So these are just two ways of viewing the same data, and you’re free to choose the organization that best suits what information you are after. Analyzing Method Source If we look at the timings above, we see that our AddToList() method (and in particular, it’s call to the List<T>.Sort() method in the BCL) is the hot-spot in this analysis. If ANTS sees a method that is consuming the most time, it will flag it as a hot-spot to help call out potential areas of concern. This doesn’t mean the other statistics aren’t meaningful, but that the hot-spot is most likely going to be your biggest bang-for-the-buck to concentrate on. So let’s select the AddToList() method, and see what it shows in the source window below: Notice the source breakout in the bottom pane when you select a method (from either tree or grid view). This shows you the timings in this method per line of code. This gives you a major indicator of where the trouble-spot in this method is. So in this case, we see that performing a Sort() on the List<T> after every Add() is killing our performance! Of course, this was a very contrived, duh moment, but you’d be surprised how many performance issues become duh moments. Note that this one line is taking up 86% of the execution time of this application! If we eliminate this bottleneck, we should see drastic improvement in the performance. So to fix this, if we still wanted to maintain the List<T> we’d have many options, including: delay Sort() until after all Add() methods, using a SortedSet, SortedList, or SortedDictionary depending on which is most appropriate, or forgoing the sorting all together and using a Dictionary. Rinse, Repeat! So let’s just change all instances of List<string> to SortedSet<string> and run this again through the profiler: Now we see the AddToList() method is no longer our hot-spot, but now the Max() and Min() calls are! This is good because we’ve eliminated one hot-spot and now we can try to correct this one as well. As before, we can then optimize this part of the code (possibly by taking advantage of the fact the list is now sorted and returning the first and last elements). We can then rinse and repeat this process until we have eliminated as many bottlenecks as possible. Calls by Web Request Another feature that was added recently is the ability to view .NET methods grouped by the HTTP requests that caused them to run. This can be helpful in determining which pages, web services, etc. are causing hot spots in your web applications. Summary If you like the other ANTS tools, you’ll like the ANTS Performance Profiler as well. It is extremely easy to use with very little product knowledge required to get up and running. There are profilers built into the higher product lines of Visual Studio, of course, which are also powerful and easy to use. But for quickly jumping in and finding hot spots rapidly, Red Gate’s Performance Profiler 7.4 is an excellent choice. Technorati Tags: Influencers,ANTS,Performance Profiler,Profiler

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  • Question about network topology and routing performance

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    Hello I am currently working on a uni project about routing protocols and network performance, one of the criteria i was going to test under was to see what effect lan topology has, ie workstations arranged in mesh, star, ring etc, but i am having doubts as to whether that would have any affect on the routing performance thus would be useless to do, rather i'm thinking it would be better to test under the topology of the routers themselves, ie routers arranged in either star, mesh ring etc. I would appreciate some feedback on this as I am rather confused. Thank You

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  • How to measure disk performance?

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    I am going to "fix" a friend's computer this weekend. By the symptoms he describes it looks like he has a disk performance problem with his 5400 rpm disk. I want to be sure that disk is the problem so I want to "scientificaly" measure the performance. Which tools do you recommend me for this job? Is there any standard set of numbers I can compare the result of measurement with?

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  • VMWare Server - Writing files to virtual hard drive performance

    - by Ardman
    We have just moved our infrastructure from physical servers to virtual machines. Everything is running great and we are happy with the result of the move. We have identified one problem, and that is reading/writing performance. We have an application that compiles files and writes to disk. This is considerably slower on the new virtual machines compared to the physical machines. Is there a performance bottleneck when writing to a virtual hard drive compared to a physical hard drive?

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  • After writing SQL statements in MySQL, how to measure the speed / performance of them?

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    I saw something from an "execution plan" article: 10 rows fetched in 0.0003s (0.7344s) How come there are 2 durations shown? What if I don't have large data set yet. For example, if I have only 20, 50, or even just 100 records, I can't really measure how faster 2 different SQL statements compare in term of speed in real life situation? In other words, there needs to be at least hundreds of thousands of records, or even a million records to accurately compares the performance of 2 different SQL statements?

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  • VMWare - Writing files to virtual hard drive performance

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    We have just moved our infrastructure from physical servers to virtual machines. Everything is running great and we are happy with the result of the move. We have identified one problem, and that is reading/writing performance. We have an application that compiles files and writes to disk. This is considerably slower on the new virtual machines compared to the physical machines. Is there a performance bottleneck when writing to a virtual hard drive compared to a physical hard drive?

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  • How to measure disk-performance under Windows?

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  • Linux RAID-0 performance doesn't scale up over 1 GB/s

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