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From Paul A Houle <>
Subject Re: OT: performance FUD
Date Tue, 29 Nov 2005 20:40:11 GMT
Brian Akins wrote:

> This is probably way off topic for this list.  I was searching for 
> something related to php this morning (I know, I know... But some 
> people here need php) and the majority of the google hits where FUD 
> sites. Most of them generally say "Apache is bloated and slow, you 
> should use X."  I know we have several people on this list who run 
> Apache on very high traffic sites.  While we cannot answer every 
> single piece of FUD out there, do we need a general page to answer 
> some of them.  Maybe "testimonials" or something.  I know, with my 
> config, I can easily saturate multiple gig interfaces and have a 
> rather full feature installation.

    Apache isn't the fastest web server -- at least without mod_event.  
I've seen data corruption with all of the free single-process web 
servers,  although I'd assume that products like Zeus do better.

    Looking at Alexa,  the logs from a few sites I run,  and 
benchmarking I've done,  there are probably only a few thousand web 
sites in the world that push the limits of a single Apache web server.  
Perhaps 100x as many PHB's ~might~ pick a web server because of numbers 
in a glossy ad.  The real competition is with IIS,  and people don't 
choose Apache or IIS based on performance numbers -- they choose it 
because they are familiar with Unix or familiar with Windows.  Other web 
servers are at the 1% market share level:

    Don't make it a "fudbusting" site,  make it a "apache performance 
tuning" site.

    There are all of these statements in the apache docs that

* .htaccess is slow
* ExtendedStatus on reduces performance

    We did a round of performance testing on a server that we 
commissioned last year and took measurements of these things,  and found 
that we'd need to put >1000 rewriting rules to harm performance 
noticably,  that the overhead of ExtendedStatus On is negligible for a 
site that gets 500 hits/sec,  etc.

    I might see if I can find my report about this on this and put it 
online -- there some things that I know,  and even more that I don't...

* prefork and worker seem to be about equally fast on linux?
* is the case on Solaris?
* MacOS X?
* Solaris 9 is embarassingly slow running Apache compared to Linux -- is 
the same the case with Solaris 10?

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