[Samba] Slow and unpredictable Samba performance?

Jakov Sosic jakov.sosic at srce.hr
Mon Aug 25 21:04:39 GMT 2008


I've installed Solaris 10 x86 (Core2Duo - x64) server, with Samba over ZFS 
RAID-Z. Samba is a part of Active Directory Domain. I've managed to join it 
to domain, to get the users and groups from A.D. and to translate them to 
Unix IDs. Everything works really good. Samba is installed from the packages 
from Solaris 10 DVD.

Only problem I have is the performance :( It's disastrous!
On 100Mbit Realtek NIC, Samba can manage around 4 MB/s if log level is set to 
very high (10). If I lower it to 0, then transfer rates go up to 7.5-8.5MB/s 
and they fluctuate in that interval.

On the same network, there is a Debian Samba server, and transfer rates go 
high as 10.5-11.0MB/s.

Next test I did was switching to Gbit interface. That increased transfer rates 
up to 25 MB/s, but that is still 5 times slower than the theoretical limit.

So, next thing I've tried was to switch to Blastwave (CSW) Samba instead of 
SUNW Samba.... My transfer rates went back to normal immediately! It was a 
bit of shock for me... I could transfer about 10MB/s on 100Mbit interface, 
and around 45MB/s on 1Gbit interface. 45MB/s is theoretically limit of the 
workstation hard drive I was doing transfers from.

Sun packaged (SUNW) Samba is 3.0.28 patched today to the latest patchlevel, 
and CSW uses 3.0.23. I used CSW Samba with the exact same smb.conf file. Only 
problem is - I never managed to connect CSW samba to ADS on my network :( So 
I gave up on that, and I'm facing a dilemma. Managers request full speed of 
the Samba server (comparable to Linux/Windows shares), but I just can't 
connect to Domain with CSW package.

So I'm asking you guys - any ideas what could be the problem with SUNW Samba 
and performance? Is it just the 3.0.28 vs 3.0.23 issue, or what? Why is there 
so big difference in transfer rates? :( I'm puzzled...

|    Jakov Sosic    |    ICQ: 28410271    |   PGP: 0x965CAE2D   |
| start fighting cancer -> http://www.worldcommunitygrid.org/   |
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