Hidden Scalability Gotchas in Memcached and Friends

Operations 209/210
Average rating: ****.
(4.62, 21 ratings)

Most web deployments have standardized on horizontal scaleout in every tier—web, application, caching and database—using cheap, off-the-shelf, white boxes. In this approach, there are no real expectations for vertical scalability of server apps like memcached or the full LAMP stack. But with the potential for highly concurrent scalability offered by newer multicore processors, it is no longer cost-effective to ignore their underutilization due to poor, thread-level, scalability of the web stack. In this session we show you how to quantify scalability with the Universal Scalability Law (USL) by demonstrating its application to actual performance data collected from a memcached benchmark. As a side effect of our technique, you will see how the USL also identifies the most signficant performance tuning opportunities to improve web app scalability.

Photo of Neil Gunther

Neil Gunther

Performance Dynamics Company

Neil J. Gunther, M.Sc., Ph.D., SMACM, SMIEEE, is an internationally known IT researcher and computer performance analyst. Prior to starting his own research and consulting company in 1994, Dr. Gunther held teaching, research and management positions at San Jose State University, JPL/NASA, Xerox PARC and Pyramid/Siemens Technology. His “Guerrilla Capacity Planning” training courses have been presented world wide at both corporate and academic institutions including: AOL.com, Boeing, FedEx, Motorola, Nokia, Sun.com, Stanford University and UCLA. He has written several books, as well as a multitude of papers, on performance analysis and capacity planning based on consulting work at large-scale web sites like eBay.com and EA.com. He is currently finalizing the 2nd edition of his Perl::PDQ book. Dr. Gunther received the prestigious A.A. Michelson Award from the Computer Measurement Group in 2008, and was elected a senior member of both ACM and IEEE in 2009. He is also a member of American Mathematical Society and the American Physical Society. http://perfdynamics.com, http://perfdynamics.blogspot.com, http://twitter.com/DrQz

Photo of Shanti Subramanyam

Shanti Subramanyam

Orzota, Inc.

Shanti Subramanyam is an independent performance consultant currently working for Box. She was performance architect in the Exceptional Performance team at Yahoo! Inc. Prior to joining Yahoo!, she led the web2.0 performance efforts at Sun Microsystems. She is a workload and benchmark development expert who has helped craft many standard (TPC, SPEC) and in-house workloads for web, middle-iter and database servers. She blogs on performance topics at http;//perfwork.wordpress.com. Follow her on twitter at shantiS.

Photo of Stefan Parvu

Stefan Parvu

Oracle Finland

Stefan Parvu is a system administrator focused on performance analysis and capacity planning for customers in Finland. He is a member of the OpenSolaris community and the author of System Data Recorder and various other software packages and customer training classes.

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Picture of Zach Snyder
Zach Snyder
06/25/2010 8:10am PDT

This was my favorite presentation of the entire conference. I only wish it had been twice as long and much more in depth. Outstanding!

Vincent Kenney
06/24/2010 9:36am PDT

Hardcore! Knocked me off my feet.

Picture of Stephen Oconnell
Stephen Oconnell
06/24/2010 7:19am PDT

Great presentation.

Chetan Ahuja
06/24/2010 7:07am PDT

Awesome presentation. Rarely do I leave a presentation so satisfied with the information presented yet so hungry for more.

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