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System optimization for OLTP workloads

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3 Author(s)
Kunkel, S. ; IBM Corp., Rochester, MN, USA ; Armstrong, B. ; Vitale, P.

Major performance enhancements in large commercial systems are best achieved when advances in hardware technology are matched with advances in software technology. This article connects recent AS/400 hardware advances with the corresponding approaches used to tune the system performance for large online transaction processing (OLTP) workloads. We particularly emphasize those tuning efforts that affect the memory system. OLTP workloads are large and complex, stressing many parts of both the software and hardware. These workloads quickly expose software bottlenecks caused by contention on software locks. They also have large working sets, populated with hard-to-predict access patterns that make cache miss rates high. This causes the processor to spend a significant part of its execution time waiting for memory accesses. In multiprocessor systems, compilers alone have minimal effect on cycles spent in storage latency. Other optimizations are needed to affect this portion of the execution time, and many of those require direct involvement of the system software

Published in:

Micro, IEEE  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 3 )