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deciding between amd and intel processor

From: Imre Oolberg <imre(at)auul(dot)pri(dot)ee>
To: pgsql-admin(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: deciding between amd and intel processor
Date: 2012-03-20 23:42:53
Message-ID: 4F6915FD.804@auul.pri.ee (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-admin
Hi!

My comerade has to decide for his so to say generic and a bit 
unpredicted PostgreSQL needs for web applications between Intel and AMD 
based server. For now it has been coming down to these processor choices

1. Dell PowerEdge R810 which has 2 x Intel® Xeon® E7­-4830 2.13GHz, 24M 
cache 6.4 GT/s QPI, Turbo, HT, 8C, 1066MHz Max Mem processors

as i see this makes total of 2 x 16 cores (or 2 x 16 threads) amd in 
total of 2 x 24 MB L2 cache

2. Dell PowerEdge R815 4 x AMD Opteron 6272, 2.1GHz, 16C, Turbo
CORE, 16M L2/16M L3, 1600Mhz Max Mem processors

as i see this makes total of 4 x 16 cores and in total of 4 x 16 MB L2 cache

Other computer components are quite similar

- 128 GB 1333 dual ranked lv rdimm MHz memory for AMD
- 128 GB 1066 dual ranked lv rdimm MHz memory for Intel
- PERC H700 Integrated RAID Controller, 1GB NV Cache
- 4 x 600GB 10K RPM SAS 6Gbps 2.5in Hot­plug Hard Drive
- Broadcom NetXtreme II 5709 Gigabit Ethernet NIC

Based on dell.com AMD variant comes about $14 k and Intel $17 k.

And i got following questions in mind

1. do you suggest this Intel or this AMD configuration taking also into 
account price? while it seems obvious to go with AMD so to say 
price-wise are there some hidden rocks behind the surface going with AMD 
(like L2 cache usage, overall system stability)?

2. if it makes much sence to ask like this what could be considered on 
normal postgresql workload (with web applications) reasonable balance 
between cpu cores and memory system has?

3. it is intended to use debian on this system, now squeeze and some day 
wheezy, both hardwares most probably match quite well with debian and 
postgresql?

4. it is intended not to use virtualization (KVM or Xen) but if needed, 
then just use different pg clusters as in pg_lsclusters, and controlling 
resources for each with shared_buffers etc, or should virtualization 
rather be considered?

5. i know that with four physical disks databases are generally 
recommended to use raid10 , but what would be recommended raid setup 
with six drives?

I would be thankful if somebody would find time to answer this letter.


Best regards,

Imre

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Subject: Re: deciding between amd and intel processor
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