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Server duel: Xeon Woodcrest vs. Opteron Socket F

Woodcrest vs. Dempsey

With Blackford having established a solid basis in conjunction with Dempsey, it is time to take a look at the extras that Woodcrest can put into the equation. That turns out to be more than small potatoes: under heavy load it performs some 39% better in MySQL 4.1.20 and 42% better in MySQL 5.0.20a than the Dempsey. The battle is hardly fair anymore: two Woodcrest cores at 2.66GHz beat four Dempsey cores at 3,73GHz with one hand behind their backs. However, the scaling properties of the new architecture are a little disappointing, since the step from two to four cores raises the performance by only 15%. Although MySQL generally fails to scale up well, the Woodcrest is still, relatively speaking, on the slow side of the spectrum. This can possibly be remedied by using faster memory: with the Woodcrests we used the same 533MHz modules as with the Dempsey, while modules clocked at 667MHz would offer 25% more bandwidth, and, perhaps more importantly, run in sync with the 1333MHz bus.

Woodcrest review - MySQL 4.1 - Dempsey vs. Woodcrest
Woodcrest review - MySQL 5.0 - Dempsey vs. Woodcrest

In PostgreSQL Dempsey was already getting good results, and Woodcrest does not surpass that by a great amount. Still, the result is not bad, because in spite of the fact that Woodcrest lacks HyperThreading (which gave Dempsey an 8% advantage), it performs some 11% better on average. Moreover, the new Xeon has some extra headroom: our 2.66GHz version of the Woodcrest is not the top-of-the-line model, while the 3.73GHz Dempsey leads in both the price and the performance class of the Netburst line. Here too, faster memory might up the numbers some more.

Woodcrest review - PostgreSQL 8.2 - Dempsey vs. Woodcrest

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