Help Me Beat NT--Red Hat Performance Help Needed

Frank Morton fmorton at
Wed Apr 1 22:06:17 GMT 1998

I have tried all I can think of to resolve a samba performance
problem. Below is a description of the problem. The Red Hat
server is actually a higher performance machine than the NT
machine, though they are close in capabilities:

> When I first installed 5.0 I notices slow samba performance.  By slow I
> mean around 80K/second doing a normal copy to the server from a Windows
> 95 machine. Really slow. We have a workgroup attached through a 100 Mb/s
> 3Com hub with the combination 10base-T/Fast connection NICs.
> Here is what is confusing. If I send from this a Windows 95 or NT
> machine to an NT server on the same network, I get about 2000K/second,
> 25 times faster than going to the linux server. If I ftp from/to the
> same machines I get about 600K/second. Not what we want to get, but lots
> better than 80K/second. This makes it look like the server is not
> configured correctly.
> However, if I use smbclient from another linux box to this same server,
> I get about 1200K/second. Getting closer to my target. If I ftp between
> the same linux machines, I get around 2000K/second, our target goal.
> Since I am doing the transfers from different Windows and NT machines
> with the same results, it makes it look like it is the server's problem.
> However, when the linux machines are doing the transfers, all is
> acceptable, so it makes the server look like it is configured correctly.
> I am out of ideas.
> I have tried many different things with samba. I messed with the
> smb.conf file a lot as the software was installed right out of the box.
> I am now in a state where I have compiled and installed version
> 1.9.18p3. I have compiled it and tested performance with roughly the
> same results with almost all combinations of options. Last attempt, I
> went back to the suggested options:
> -DNO_ASMSIGNALH -DGLIBC2 LIBSM = -lnsl -lcrypt
> I have tried it with and without glibc. I also tried it with the glibc
> errata rpm installed, saw no difference, but begin having some nfs
> related problems, so I just reinstalled the entire OS to make sure I was
> ok, went through these rounds of tests again with no material
> difference.
> I have tried MANY smb.conf options, with no material change. Currently,
> I have the following options in the smb.conf file:
> oplocks = true
> locking = no
> strict locking = no
> max xmit = 8192
> read raw = no
> socket options = TCP_NODELAY
> I have tried basically with all combinations of the above. My last attempt
was adding the "max xmit" and "read raw" stuff, which did nothing.
> I did not install your smbfs*.rpm general errata as it looks like it only
dealt with authentication, plus I am now running a new version and thought I
> Don't think it will make much difference, but just FYI, the new samba
software is installed in /usr/local/samba and I changed /etc/rc.d/init.d/smb
by removing the "daemon" startup lines for smbd and nmbd and inserted in
their place:
> /usr/local/samba/bin/smbd -D
> /usr/local/samba/bin/nmbd -D
> I have tried higher debug logging levels and did not see anything that
stood out, though I have not done much of that.
> Basically I am out of ideas and I am trying to prevent NT server from
beating out linux. I won't be able to resist the forces here much longer, so
I need to resolve this.
> Another FYI, we are also running the asun netatalk for AppleTalk services
and getting 800-1000K/second performance from Macintosh clients to this same
> I have seen on mailing lists that people are running the 2.0.33 kernel,
which we are still on 2.0.31. I'd appreciate a pointer to a place to
describe how to install a new kernel.
> Also, we have 256MB of RAM in this server. Does linux use it? I have read
a number of places that beyond 64MB either it slows the system down or it
does not use RAM above 64MB. Is there any truth to this?
> I've told you all I can.

Frank Morton (fmorton at
Voice: (317) 876-3355
FAX: (317) 876-3398
Home: (317) 574-0815

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