Subject: Re: multiple processors on NFS servers
To: Michael Richardson <>
From: Frank van der Linden <>
List: tech-net
Date: 04/13/2000 10:13:22
On Wed, Apr 12, 2000 at 08:13:44PM -0400, Michael Richardson wrote:
>   The origin of this query: I'd rather switch a Linux NFS server for a
> NetBSD one (vs a FreeBSD one). Linux botches NFS, and frankly, simple things
> like "reboot" fail to work if you have exported partitions. I prefer NetBSD
> for administrative reasons (we already have some NetBSD boxes). FreeBSD
> offers big-lock SMP, which I suspect won't help anyway. Another alternative
> is Solaris/x86 if multiple CPUs are really useful in this context.
>   Advice?

Solaris has the best SMP support by far, and its NFS implementation is
pretty efficient too, so it is a good choice. The problem with Solaris/x86
is that its less well supported than its sparc sister. So if you pick
Solaris, be certain that your hardware is on the supported hardware list.

Big lock SMP won't help you much on an I/O bound system, unless someone
wants to run computational jobs on the server as well, they won't get
in the way as much. Also, if you go SMP, you should have a means of
dividing the I/O load as well. It doesn't make much sense to throw
N processors at just one disk or network interface.

- Frank