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OSS Web Stacks Outperformed by .Net? 349

Gimble writes "eWeek has an article up that looks at the performance of portals using open source stacks and comparing them to their MS equivalents. The article's conclusion is that .Net outperforms the open source stacks, mainly because of its tighter integration, but also notes that running the open source stacks on Windows (WAMP) delivered strong performance." From the article: "Based on our forays into user forums for many top open-source enterprise applications, there are many IT managers attempting to run open-source products on Windows servers--attracted, no doubt, to the benefits and efficiencies of using open source without having to become Linux administrators. The results of our WAMP stack tests indicate that these folks might be on to something."
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OSS Web Stacks Outperformed by .Net?

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  • Left out? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by meburke ( 736645 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:44AM (#15697963)
    From the article: "The criticism we expect to hear most is of the stacks we left out--including commercial J2EE platforms, such as those available from BEA Systems, IBM, Oracle and Sun Microsystems, as well as the many other database and server platform permutations." I can't believe they came to this conclusion on such little data. They did, however, create a blog to disparate results can be shared.
    • Re:Left out? (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by Penguinisto ( 415985 )
      I have no idea as to why they think these results are applicable for enterprise applications, but left out enterprise J2EE solutions. We run both Oracle and WebLogic (the latter being not entirely our fault, honest!) here in various implementations. We wouldn't even think of using, oh ferinstance, MySQL* for the multi-million object DB's that Oracle (in a RAC config, so it gets to sync everything on-the-fly w/ its partners for HA) chews away at on a daily basis.

      *MySQL fans can kindly keep your flames to y

    • Re:Left out? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by happyemoticon ( 543015 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:11AM (#15698203) Homepage

      They seem to have a generalized poverty of data. Their charts seem absurd to the point of being straw men. I mean, come on - I don't think there's anything seriously wrong enough with Linux that WAMP would have a score of 12 transactions/sec, competing with Windows, whereas LAMP would have a performance of 2. My experience with Windows vs. Linux has always been that they are similar in terms of speed from pure processing tasks to 3d games. Sometimes Windows does a little better, sometimes Linux is better. But they're usually in the same ballpark. The numbers are just too neat. It's like they put up a chart saying that Republicans, Germans, Koreans and Canadians have sex once a month, whereas Democrats, Brazilians, and the British have sex five million times per second.

      Moreover, the whole rest of the article is morass of poetic circumlocution. My gut feeling as somebody who works with words a lot is that they're trying to obfuscate something with a giant wall of banal text. I don't know exactly what that is, because I don't feel like reading all of it, but if I had to guess I'd say that the real thing to take away from this article is that anybody can set up .NET and a Windows box, but that it requires a little bit of patience and research to make Linux work properly - research that these people were not willing to do.

    • Default for MySQL on Linux: low RAM shared use box, minimal RAM use. Default for MySQL on Windows: ask some questions about use and make fair use of the resources of the system. On the Linux box you have to copy a sample configuration file by hand and that step wasn't in the installation instructions.

      Net result: use default MySQL and you get a setup that inherently strongly favors Windows, because Windows setup is optimzed while the other isn't.

      I don't know whether they made this mistake or not. If they did
  • WAMP vs LAMP (Score:5, Informative)

    by Poromenos1 ( 830658 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:45AM (#15697968) Homepage
    I'm no system administrator, but I have a home box running WAMP (XAMPP on 2003) and it's good enough for my needs. Recently I tried out Ubuntu Server to see what it's about, and I'm tempted to buy a new pc just to run that. When I tried to run mod_python under WAMP it took a whole lot of debugging and configuration (apparently it didn't like the already installed python 2.4), but with Ubuntu it was as simple as apt-getting it.

    I would very much like it if I could continue using Windows (because I run other programs that are not available on Linux) but it can't match the simplicity of Ubuntu.
  • by Clockwurk ( 577966 ) * on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:46AM (#15697983) Homepage
    If Linux wins, its a fact.

    If M$ wins, its fud and was paid for.

    If apple wins, its because of Steve Jobs.

    If OS/2 wins, we're trapped in a parallel universe.

    • If M$ wins, its fud and was paid for.

      It isn't as if they haven't been caught buying studies before. So the distrust is well justified.

      Plain and simple fact is if Microsoft could compete with the usefulness of a solid Linux distro their product would speak for itself. In some cases this is true but in essentially all technical senses Microsoft is just a plain loser.

      Most of Microsofts problems is that they don't listen to the customers. I mean sure they listen to Dell, RIAA, MPAA, maybe even IBM and other
      • Listen to Dell, RIAA, MPAA, etc etc....uhm... no they don't. They just don't beat them as mercilessly as the home consumer, because they COULD swing back and do some damage over time.

        To Dell/HP/Etc - You must not sell naked or Linux systems or your the price of OEM Windows gets larger. RIAA/MPAA - If you don't do what we like...we won't play with your DRM schemes. Government - If you stop pressuring us we will donate to campaign funds and let you keep using Office.

        Go look at MS campaign fund history..
      • It isn't as if they haven't been caught buying studies before. So the distrust is well justified.

        The difference being: Linux zealots post cooked results for free, because they just hate Microsoft that much.

        Plain and simple fact is if Microsoft could compete with the usefulness of a solid Linux distro their product would speak for itself. In some cases this is true but in essentially all technical senses Microsoft is just a plain loser.

        Unfortunately, posting it slashdot doesn't make it true. I've seen m

      • by JacksBrokenCode ( 921041 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:44AM (#15698504)

        It isn't as if they haven't been caught buying studies before. So the distrust is well justified.

        Justified perhaps, but automatically accurate... not necessarily.

        Plain and simple fact is if Microsoft could compete with the usefulness of a solid Linux distro their product would speak for itself. In some cases this is true but in essentially all technical senses Microsoft is just a plain loser.

        Ok, fanboy.

        Most of Microsofts problems is that they don't listen to the customers. I mean sure they listen to Dell, RIAA, MPAA, maybe even IBM and other big wigs. But what about us users? What does WGA give me in terms of a useful feature? What does the bloat that is WMP give me over a simpler mplayer?

        So when MS doesn't add new features they are slammed for not innovating enough, and when they do add new features they are slammed for contributing to bloat that you don't want. People bitched about IE6 not having tabs, etc. Firefox came out and MS finally realized it had to update IE so it added a lot of features people were asking for and the most-heard comment on Slashdot after IE7b2 was released was "it's ugly". Face it: Microsoft just can't win.

        Why must they invent their own file formats [e.g. Office files, WMV, WMA] that are proprietary instead of using or establishing more open standards? etc, etc, etc. Everything MSFT does is to benefit the stock holders through locking the "customers" into their system. Use our OS, use our office suite, use our media tools, use our development tools. All the while they ignore any sense of established standards [ISO C99 anyone?] which make interoperability a bitch for Windows users. There is simply no reason why MSFT uses these awful platform dependent libraries.

        You sorta' answered yourself there.

        Take DirectX for instance. On any OTHER platform you combine Allegro with OpenGL and have essentially the same thing [just 1/10th the size and in C]. But no, we must use the DX "experience" because somehow the hype makes it shinier!

        Not every product is a winner. MS historically doesn't release every single product as a beta and quietly stop promoting the ones that suck. Instead they release final versions and some fall on their face. No company has a perfect record.

        I know what I'm saying is "no duh", but you seemed to be hinting that MSFT hatred is not warranted. Us "OSS" users don't hate MSFT because it's better. We hate it because it lulls people into a sense of superiority when all it does is move to separate them from their money. It creates nightmares for us who chose to chose.

        The problem is not that criticism isn't warranted, it's that MS can't win no matter what. If they release a weak or buggy product they get slammed, but if they take too long to release they get slammed. If they don't add new features they get slammed, but if they add new features it's called bloat. If an MS product gets bad reviews the reviewers are being honest, but if they get good reviews the reviewers are obviously being paid. For years MS got slammed for security issues, and they beefed up SP2 and suddenly there were waves of "but it broke my application" complaints. The list goes on.

        Microsoft has gotten so big that they are in the impossible position of trying to keep everyone happy. I'm not particularly a Microsoft "fan", but I hate this wanton "Micro$oft is teh suxors!1!" b.s. OSS fanboys need to grow up and realize that Microsoft can't go back in time and correct the sins of the past, and since it is a monopoly it can't just genuinely screw its customers and break every file/application by releasing a new version of Windows that corrects all the problems of the old versions but offers no legacy support. They have a tough balancing act to do and, while they're not perfect, they're getting better.

    • Yeah... I love whoever decided to tag this "fud" (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt) when in it's actually claiming that performance is good. If you're happy with the performance you get under Linux, then there should be no FUD for you... your set up is fine and runs well. But if you'd like to use Windows, but still AMP, I guess you have a little less to fear on the performance tip.

      I use WAMP for development and LAMP for production. The main reason is that the server admins want Linux, but can't provide me with
  • This'll now be a high priority - beating .Net speed-wise - in the next few releases, such that by Christmas, we'll see *AMP performance picking up, whereas we have to wait on MS for .Net
    • I don't understand how waiting for a performance release that may (or may not) happen in 6 months is any different than waiting for another release of the .Net framework (which may or may not happen in 6 months as well).

      Apparently it's different if it's open source, huh?
      • If I cared to learn enough about it, I could do it myself. If it was that important to me, I could also offer small donations to speed that process along. It's great for a company that wants an improvement (speed here), is big enough to be willing to pay a bit for it, but isn't big enough to ask MS to do it.
    • Or you can just use *AMM (Windows/Linux, Apache, MySQL, Mono).

      I use a full windows setups (Win 2k/2k3, IIS5/6, SQL Server, .Net) for a few web sites with great results.

      I also use a WIMP setup for our inhouse documentation Wiki site (Media Wiki running on Windows/IIS5)

      And I use LAMP for my personal web site, primarily because that's what the host offered.

      I've never had a problem performance whys with any of them so long as they are properly configured and coded. A poorly coded site will have performance issu
      • I also use a WIMP setup

        Someone needs to be fired in the marketing department...
        • Windows, IIS, MySQL, Php

          Not that bad of combination for organizations that already maintain a Windows/IIS web configuration. Media Wiki is designed for LAMP, but if you poke it with a stick for a while, it'll run on WIMP.

          • I know what it is. I was making a joke, since "wimp" in American English can mean a weak person, giving a bad implication to the software combination.
            • Yeah, it's not much better than using the GIMP for image modification, or PMS for management software, or running FU Reports. The joy of software development is that you get to use some entertaining acronyms. We were instructed to change one application's name because upper management could not pronounce the acronym with a straight face (La-tee-dah-til).

  • by Yiliar ( 603536 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:48AM (#15698001)
    I am amazed that they got Windows 2003 to run on a wrist watch!

    Running a web server over an RF port from the wrist watch to a phone scewed the results a bit, but its the only communication mode they had.

    The smartphone was the only client they had handy to test with, since the test was carried out on a long flight.

    Amazing stuff!

  • by ThinkFr33ly ( 902481 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:49AM (#15698011)
    I'm still not exactly sure what they tested. They have vague terms like "Request per Second" and "Throughput", yet they don't actually say what each page that is being requested is actually doing.

    For the .NET tests they say they used "Sharepoint". Huh? For what? Considering that Sharepoint is *extremely* complicated and has incredibly rich functionality they should be very clear as to what they used it for.

    Not to mention the fact that using a portal application in your tests means that there is really very little way to isolate if it was a poorly written portal application or a crappy framework that the portal application was built on that's causing perf issues.

    It is very difficult to test framework vs framework, but this is just about the worst way one could even attempt it.

    At absolute best, this compares portal frameworks on various platforms. Even if they were trying to do that, they did a piss poor job.
    • Benchmark studies can have some usefulness in helping you to come up with multiple, viable options. I prefer to pick the "two best" and set up a sandbox in our operating environment to see which alternative works for us. There are so many variables involved that if you can set up a couple pilot projects and compare results, you will be able to determine which alternative is right for your situation. Most companies have a defined system architecture, whether this is intentional or not, that they run their ap
    • by khasim ( 1285 ) <> on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:00AM (#15698110)
      But this is a very close second place.

      #1. NO tuning was done on the LAMP stuff. None at all. They ran the stuff "out of the box".

      #2. They didn't write their own app. That means they didn't test the SAME processes on each system.

      #3. They didn't bother to find WHERE the differences were. Is it in the IP stack? Is it in the OS? Is it in the scripting language? Is it in the app?

      How bad can "research" be and still be published in "eWeek"? There wasn't any research done for that article.

      Microsoft has, in the past, taken various short-cuts when IIS was the server and IE was the browser. Is that the case in this "study"? Are the other "stacks" "slower" because they follow the protocols?

      You won't know because they'd didn't LOOK for the REASON behind their "results".

      At least MindCraft was paid to do poor research.
      • exactly... the only way i can think to test something like this would be to line up the industry respected top devs for each framework at hand, guys who look at each other and say things like "yeah, if you need a good .net thing, he's your guy, sure, i could do it, but it wouldn't be as good as my java", and give them all a series of tasks to implement...

        something like - an html form with 255 input fields, and then write all that data to your database, then serve it all up in another page performing x, y,
        • by khasim ( 1285 ) <> on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:58AM (#15698634)
          You raise some excellent points. If I may be allowed to expand upon them ...

          #1. Set a price limit. You can set multiple limits ($1,000 vs $5,000 vs $25,000 vs $100,000 vs $1,000,000+). The key concept here is that you get different characteristics as your budget increases/decreases. What characteristics does each "stack" offer in each price range? Yep, this does give the advantage to Free stacks (Free like speech, free like beer). Deal with it. In the Real World the bottom line is the bottom line. Each team gets to spend the money however they want to.

          #2. Get the "experts" to tune each stack. BUT they must document each modification they make, including WHY they made that modification (what testing did they run and how did those test results tell them what mod's to make) AND they are only allowed to make mod's that can be found via public websites (no secret tuning parameters that are only known to the organization writing that software) AND they aren't allowed to touch any source code. They get what everyone else gets.

          #3. The fun part. Each team gets to pull apart the work of the other teams. Even if your solution is faster for the specs given, how much wiggle room do you have? Is faster and fragile better than slower and stable? How much "slower" is acceptable for how much more "stable"? Can the other team defeat your security (network access only)?

          #4. Freeze those systems. Then, over the next year, patch them and re-test them. Do the patches break the "tuning" that was done?

          Now that would be an informative test process (and would result in lots of articles and interviews for the magazine publishing it).

          Yeah, you can run Linux / Apache / MySQL / perl on a single drive workstation and get damn good performance for less than $300.

          But that will be completely different from Oracle / Java on a cluster of Suns costing $10,000,000. And not just in the number of boxes you'd be running.
        • Then have a set of freash CS degree "C" grade graduates do it as well. You know to get real worled results.

      • "#3. They didn't bother to find WHERE the differences were. Is it in the IP stack? Is it in the OS? Is it in the scripting language? Is it in the app?" If there's a 7x difference in performance between linux and Win2k3, then the difference is almost certainly nothing to do with systems themselves, and everything to do with configuring it. LAMP is very susceptible to speed-ups by optimizing the configuration, and if they picked the right 'WAMP' stack it would come pre-optimized without their knowledge?
  • by IflyRC ( 956454 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:49AM (#15698012)
    How can you test the performance of a stack and compare it to others when the back end database servers, portal software and web server software is different?

    How is the statement that .NET stacks are faster true when it could be the implementation of SQL being faster than MySQL? This test just doesn't make sense to me.
    • I think you're worried about the opposite effect of what actually happened:

      Suppose you have two stacks built of different components, and they benchmark the performance of the stack. (Which is what happened, apparently.)

      What they CANNOT say is, "The difference in the stacks' performances is attributable to their different database engines". Because for all we know, it was some other component of the stack that really caused the difference in performance. However, the article didn't make this mistake.

      • What the article DID say is, "There's a difference in the stacks' performances. We know because we measured it." That IS valid reasoning.

        Their methodology certainly wasn't valid. That makes the measurements invalid, which makes the reasoning little more than hard worked for conjecture.

        At the very least they should have written software that did the same task for each stack.

        Instead, they threw in an unknown variable with the portal software... each doing it's "own thing" and god only knows what that thing is
    • Well, that's basically the point - their claim is that the higher integration among MS products gives them a greater score, compared to an random selection of OSS components.

      Sharepoint however has got a sizeable portion of native code - hence equating Sharepoint performance with .NET's is a bit misleading, IMO. The throughput could also be due to IIS 6's kernel hooks and other assorted tricks.
  • Retarded (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The .NET CLR runs compiled bytecode and IIS runs in kernelspace, the only httpd I know running in kernel space on nix is tux (redhat content accelerator) and nobody in their right mind is going to serve dynamic content with that. Did they test PHP with an opcode cache and the CLR running a dynamic language? This isn't even apples and oranges, it's apples and teapots. If I wanted performance, I wouldn't be running either Apache or PHP!
    • Re:Retarded (Score:3, Informative)

      by LO0G ( 606364 )
      IIS runs in kernel space? Since when?

      The HTTP server component (http.sys) runs in the kernel, but IIS (everything that isn't involved with the HTTP protocol exchange)is in user mode, and has been for a long while.
      • IIS runs in kernel space? Since when?
        Since "operating system" was redefined to include the solitaire game it appears that "kernel" is the next word in line.

        This is yet another article heading that makes it look to me that Zonk is here for a bit of flamebait. If this site was to expound the coolness of MS Windows without substantiation it would have been called \. - perhaps Zonk is here to balance and change it into |.

    • Maybe they should have included a graph depicting how much the system gets hosed if something is wrong in the portal software... along with a graph depicting how long it will take a hacker to find the problem code.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:51AM (#15698031)
    If you're getting your ass kicked by .net, you are one girly man coder.
  • by aztracker1 ( 702135 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:52AM (#15698033) Homepage
    Not to start a war here, but ASP.Net is a pretty damned nice environment to work under... I've used a lot of PHP, Cold Fusion, some JSP, and Classic ASP in the past. ASP.Net is my favorite.. I've been peeking in with Ruby/Rails but just haven't had the time to dive in much. of the above Ruby/Rails is probably the closest competitor on an ease of development/functionality level.
    • Too true... i came off of struts and tag libraries to .net and it was/is a much better environment. I am not sure what the state of the art is in Java any more but I am glad I switched.

      Classic ASP is a horror from hell and I think soured many from using MS web solutions.
    • I too have to agree. ASP.Net 1.1 should never have been compared to ASP, they're greatly different things (thank the maker). ASP.Net is a great productivity tool. As a developer who is responsible for putting out web applications quickly, that have extremely low maintenance costs (ASP.Net excels here), as well as maintaining a set of global class libraries that align with business processes, ASP.Net is tops.

      Now to talk about 2.0, well, MS really focused on productivity with this release. I'm really ha
  • Linux still wins (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Ryan Amos ( 16972 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:54AM (#15698051)
    Because I don't feel like paying $1500 per machine for Windows 2003 server on every server in my web farm. Shit, that's twice as much as the servers I'd run it on! Grid computing and server farms are very poorly suited to a commercial operating system.
    • Because I don't feel like paying $1500 per machine for Windows 2003 server on every server in my web farm

      I understand (and agree) with your consternation, but your price is 50% more than actual retail for 2003 Standard R2... averages at just over $1000 retail with software assurance if you aren't a volume buyer. Volume buys take this down to around $600-700. If you want Enterprise, then you are paying more like $1400-2200.

      Heck, even RHEL costs $$$. Circa $4500 for ES.

      If you can run a free distro and get
    • Re:Linux still wins (Score:4, Informative)

      by ThinkFr33ly ( 902481 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:18AM (#15698254)
      Ya, I wouldn't want to pay that either. Luckily, Windows doesn't cost that much money.

      Windows Server 2003 Web Edition, 32-bit version - $399 Open NL
      Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition - $999 (5 CALS)
      Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition - $1,199 (10 CALS)
      Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise Edition - $3,999 (25 CALS) y/licensing/pricing.mspx []

      You can also get licenses for a lot less than retail on eBay, and it's perfectly legal. I've purchased Web Edition for as little as $200, and Enterprise for $1200. There are lots of companies who buy these things in bulk and end up not using them.

      In addition, if you're not hosting an external site (customer facing) you can get an Action Pack subscription for about $300 that gives you access to up to 5 licenses for each of these OS's.

      See: []
    • You don't have to.

      You can get the web edition server [] for less than $400 USD [].

      I can usually buy two or three of those with the money that I save in development time. Your results might vary, everybody likes something different. If I had to buy 50 of those then I might consider using something like JBOSS or LAMP.
    • Re:Linux still wins (Score:4, Interesting)

      by corren ( 559473 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:30AM (#15698361)
      It's actually much worse than $1500 a box. And I'm a windows guy, I admit it, however licensing for windows products REALLY sucks for a small business that wants to run legit.

      Here's the price breakdown for a SINGLE webserver that allows external connections to authenticate (non-domain, say a e-commerce site with user accounts) against a SINGLE SQL 2005 Database. Sql Express is free, however it's not licensed for unlimited users in a production environment.

      Web Server (Prices from
      • 1 Copy Windows 2003 R2 (5 CALs): $959.99
      • 1 External Connector License for Windows: $1,969.99
      • Total: $2,929.98
      SQL Server:
      • 1 Copy Windows 2003 R2 (5 CALs): $959.99
      • 1 Copy SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition 1 Processor License: $3,819.99
      • Total: $4,779.98
      Grand Total for a single web and sql box: $7,709.96.

      And don't forget that you'll need SOME hardware to run that OS. Even barebones boxes with no data protection will run you $500 a box.

      So, to start a basic e-commerce site on the legit, you're talking roughly $9,000 for windows and $1,000 for Linux/OSS.

      TOUGH sell for Microsoft for the little guy.
      • by adolfojp ( 730818 )
        For a web server you use the Web Server edition for less than $400. For the web you don't need client access licences $0. For a small to medium database you can always use Postgresql on a debian server for $0. That is the combination that I normally use and the time that I save developing the apps is worth a lot more than the $400 that I spent on the .net web server.
    • Because I don't feel like paying $1500 per machine for Windows 2003 server on every server in my web farm.

      I noticed that there wasn't a graph comparing the cost to run each system as tested, including software costs.

      Especially something like... what would it cost to deploy an OSS solution with the same performance as the wamp solution?

      What is the cost per transactions per second?

      Must be something enterprise customers don't care about...
  • I'm actually wondering how the wonderful non-biased folk here at /. are going to interpret these results.

    I don't know a damn thing about any of this but it says to me from a layman's point of view that invidually maintained and installed components are just not as efficient as a completely integrated suite of applications, and this is exactly how the ignorant bosses of knowledgeable admins will see it. Though I was interested to see the rise in the use of OSS in the workplace.

    I could have gone down the whol
    • Actually, I have a preference to individually installed and maintained components.

      For instance, if I write my code to run on PHP and MySQL, I can swap out the underlying OS and web server. I could run it on a Linux box, Sun blade server, Dell running Windows, Xserve running OS X server... it's kinda nice.

      If I go with .Net 2.0, I'm stuck with Windows 2003 running on x86.

      Plus, if each piece is seperate, it's less likely that any one piece will bring the whole OS down. I like being able to SSH to a box and jus
    • "I'm actually wondering how the wonderful non-biased folk here at /. are going to interpret these results."

      You know "we" are not non-biased...

      Anyway, I'll just say that my linksys router running Linux can do more than 1 transaction per second on web apps with Python. How these guys can pull off showing that that's the speed they get for an actual server is beyond me...

      Actually, it's not... it's e-week... They have always been very MS-centered.

    • I'm actually wondering how the wonderful non-biased folk here at /. are going to interpret these results.

      They would probably tell you that the article lacks so much detail as to even care about trying to determine if it means anything.
    • I don't know a damn thing about any of this but it says to me from a layman's point of view that invidually maintained and installed components are just not as efficient as a completely integrated suite of applications...

      What are you basing this belief upon? Is there some logic and data to back up your belief or is it just what you believe because the Bible says so somewhere?

      I'm being a little facetious here, but it is pretty obvious to any critical thinker that no one aspect of any software will determ

  • "performance"? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:56AM (#15698071) Homepage
    What was the set of measures? For me, "performance" has more to do with uptime, reliability and security. Those are the performance standards I care about.
  • by blazerw11 ( 68928 ) <[blazerw] [at] []> on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:57AM (#15698079) Homepage
    I'm wondering if the high throughput numbers for the .Net stack were caused by it deliving huge binary files to the client. Ya know, 17MB Active X controls. Anyway, I didn't randomly come up with this conclusion, the article didn't mention the transactions per second for .Net. So, I conclude from ALL of the data that it did one transaction of 17MB*.

    *No math was done to come up with the 17MB figure.
    Also, no animals were harmed during the writing of this comment.

    • Replying to myself.

      The do provide the other numbers [] that show the numbers in pretty graphs.
    • I didn't randomly come up with this conclusion, the article didn't mention the transactions per second for .Net.

      The article also didn't mention that each portal was tested on a system using their minimum specs.

      So, the lamp portal ran everything... including the db... on a 386 with 16MB of ram and a modem.

      While the wamp stack required three quad processor servers with 16GB RAM and 10K SCSI RAIDS with 4 gig E network cards each.

      Point is... the article doesn't mention a lot... hyperbole not withstanding.

      With t
  • by MK_CSGuy ( 953563 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @10:58AM (#15698085)
    I've read the article before it hit /. and their conclusion is that there is no clear winner. .Net outperforms OSS solutions on some tests and vice-versa. The surprising(*) results are how good WAMP performed in some of the tests (if you really want specifics RTFA). Here is a direct link to the tests [].

    * - I've seen similar results in benchmarks of Mono & .Net, i.e. Mono apps with .Net framework vs pure .Net and pure Mono, so although there is no connection between JIT compilers and web servers performance, the trend is there.
    Too bad the article haven't touched Mono.
  • Can someone explain it to me?

    I don't think it is FUD, but I do get the impression that they are trying to invent a benchmark that really doesn't make any sense. Different PHP projects can have vastly different performance; and I'm not sure that Plone compares to Sharepoint server. I wouldn't know, though, because I don't use Sharepoint, and I have little/no idea what they did in the test.

    Anyone have a closer hunch?
    • After reading the artical, and I hope there is some more real data somewhere as it's a piece of fluff, what I think they did was take a chunk of different web stacks using portals and compare them. That - to a degree - is fair. If I want to impliment a new setup, the first thing I am going to do is see what everyone else is running & how it works. Duplicating their setup and running a benchmark for web serving is a reasonable way to do that.
      Can I run exactly the same benchmark against the different por
    • Anyone have a closer hunch?

      Just guessing, but...

      They needed an article that would appeal to a certain kind of advertiser and it had to fit in the smallest space possible.
  • From TFBlurb: "...without having to become a Linux administrator"

    Thank $DEITY I did try getting Linux desktops on my home network and shortly after settled for apt-based distros. Linux administration is a breeze compared to windows. Desktop users' life is also good if peripherals are recognized, especially if by OSS drivers. Your mileage may vary cause most of you were familiar with windows in the first place, I came from good old macos. Anyway I don't care to try and convince you with examples. Those who
    • Back to topic: .net is faster? maybe. That is a reason to revert from open source, not memory hungry, nice to code with stacks to Microsoftland? haha, no. Apart from the main reason (Freedom), the secondary reason (smalltalk on net is not like ruby on rails), if people reverted back to Microsoft Microsoft would revert back to itself in the 90's. Are you sure you want that? [N/N]

      Actually, the general consensus I've seen is that .net is a joy to use, more or less no matter which of the .net-managed langua

  • ...but which 'P' did they use? Did they use mod_perl or mod_python, or just call things as straight CGI scripts? That would certainly kill performance. Did they preload often-used subroutines into the embedded apache stuff?
  • stacks? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by MobyDisk ( 75490 )
    Am I the only person who has never heard of the word "stack" in this context?

    Wikipedia: stacks [] - Nope
    Google definition of stack [] - Nope.
    Urban Dictionary: stack [] - Nope. - stack [] - Nope
    Google search "IT stack" [] - Only hit is the eweek article.

    I think they made up this term.

  • by Just Some Guy ( 3352 ) <> on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:30AM (#15698377) Homepage Journal
    For our tests, we ran what is essentially a pure Zope/Plone implementation, with Plone running on a SUSE Enterprise Linux system.

    In some benchmarks, Plone was an average performer, sticking close to the middle. This is actually better than we expected, given that the Plone documentation is very upfront about the fact that Plone shouldn't be used alone in a production environment and should be run behind other servers to improve performance.

    So, they ran an outward-facing Zope server (after being explicitly told not to) and the performace was lackluster? Go figure. In the real world, they'd run Zope behind an Apache or Squid proxy (as per every installation recommendation I've ever seen) which would immediately boost throughput by an order of magnitude. In short, using Zope to dynamically generate static content instead of caching the results whenever possible is insane, and pretty much no one does it. They also apparently forgot about ZEO, although I'm not sure how you can be savvy enough to get Zope up and populated without knowing about it's built-in clustering.

    Apparently they had no interest in any tuning whatsoever, to the point of de-tuning it by installing it in an explicitly unrecommended configuring. And then it lost. Go figure.

    • There are other issues also. Zope/Plone has a far better security system that the .NET stack by a LONG shot. Every connection is run as the user that made the connection, every since object/attribute/method that is accessed is security checked to make sure it is okay. Having security issues with zope is pretty much unheard of. Over the past 5 years or so there have only been a handful of issues and almost all of them required someone to be able to edit things like dtml, python scripts or zpt which is not co
  • Trains and planes (Score:3, Insightful)

    by oglueck ( 235089 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @11:41AM (#15698481) Homepage
    1. They say no word about the problem and the implementation of the solutions. Results may vary depending on the problem.
    2. Comparing J2EE/.NET to PHP/Plone is bollocks. Problems that are solved with J2EE/.NET today are so complex that choosing PHP/Plone instead is no option. It's like comparing trains to airplanes.
    3. Where are tables, figures and graphs?
  • by Maxo-Texas ( 864189 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @12:01PM (#15698659)
    As recently as last month, one of our customers corrected their very peculiar connection issues by replacing their windows server with a linux server. For some reason the windows server was changing the acknoledgement part of the TCP header- for the same client- at the same computer- for every transmission.

    Windows Servers/App languages doesn't seem to scale well. It's a *great* way to get your business up and running asap. But you run into growth problems and need to switch to an enterprise solution (oracle, as/400, java, linux, etc.) once you reach a certain size. I still prefer windows as a desktop OS for now. I still slightly prefer windows office to openoffice. I think part of that is years of using office makes me comfortable but openoffice gets closer every day to replacing it for my home and personal use. I will probably not buy another version of office unless it is super cheap ($50/included free on the PC I buy).

  • by kimvette ( 919543 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @12:22PM (#15698825) Homepage Journal
    It depends on a lot more than just "is it IIS/.Net or is it LAMP?"

    On equivalent hardware, with equivalent RAM, if you're running MySQL with the MyISAM engine it will blow away SQL Server performance for most queries, but at a cost: You do not have stored procedures or transactions. When you switch to InnoDB you gain those but take a performance hit and that advantage over SQL Server disappears. On the plus side, MySQL is free/free (unless you need the commercial license - which in turn depends on whether you bundle it with your application AND how you interface with MySQL AND the "license" of your software).

    As far as .Net itself vs. php or .jsp - it depends largely on several things:

    - What is the architecture and how efficient is the code? If you use, say, DotNetNuke as an example, it's a good argument AGAINST using .Net because performance (of at least 1.x.x versions, I haven't worked with it since) absolutely sucks to almost any PHP application.

    - How much RAM can you throw at it, and is caching appropriate for your application? With fully dynamic web sites where pages may display random content (rotating images, randomized quote of the day, etc.) unless you override the caching mechanism, the cache can effectively break your web site. However if caching IS appropriate and/or you override it when necessary, .Net can provide blazing performance. Your code has to be very efficient and you often need to throw a real large amount of RAM at it. Also, when you start a .Net application, it can take a while for it to serve up the first page - a concern for Tuesday updates when you were forced to reboot for patches to finish installing.

    - (related to above) are you comparing a poorly-coded, inefficient, beastly PHP application to a lightweight highly-optimized .Net application? Say, OS Commerce vs. a custom single-purpose .Net eCommerce application? I'd darn well expect .Net to blow away the LAMP solution, because OS Commerce is an inefficient beast - the only thing going for it is is that it's a "swiss army knife" open source eCommerce application. It does EVERYTHING, but sacrifices efficiency due to its hacked-together design. (yes, I'm using "hacked" as in "that guy is a hack"). On the converse, if you compare, say, DotNetNuke to mambo or Drupal and set out to provide the same or similar functionality, chances are that the LAMP solution will blow away .Net by any load test metrics you can come up with.

    What is my point? Unless you are comparing apples to apples, it's FUD or at best an amateur comparison. The way to test it is to implement the same task with a similar (as possible) architecture on each platform, with the application on each fully optimized, with both IIS and apache/tomcat/whatever fully tuned and streamlined to pull out every bit of performance from it, then load test both of those using the same sorts of tests. Comparing a highly-optimized single-purpose application to a general-purpose portal platform is not a fair test.

    Also: Even though the article says "Even the most ardent PHP fans will admit that PHP is not designed with performance in mind," PHP performs damn well considering it's heritage, the fact that its primary platform is "a patchy server" and that it is FREE.

    Why would one choose LAMP over .Net? Licensing. Hardware costs. Have you ever set up a Windows cluster? It's not cheap, and even if you can come up with a cheap way to do it, you don't WANT to because it will be unreliable. SQL Server licensing is EXPENSIVE (or if the db is real advantage of Microsoft's .Net platform? The development tools, NO one has an IDE which is better than Microsoft's. Zend's PHP Studio is darn good, but the level of integration with documentation, the debugging environment, the code completion, and keyboard navigation does not match Visual
    • Where's that? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Just Some Guy ( 3352 )
      - your average comp sci college grad already knows visual studio

      Depends on your school, I guess, but the average comp sci student at mine would already know Emacs, GCC, a Lisp derivative or two, and BSD/Linux. I literally never once saw Visual Studio on a comp sci lab machine.

  • by Qbertino ( 265505 ) <> on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @12:23PM (#15698834)
    Comparing Sharepoint to Zope is beyond silly.
    Zope is an object relational application server, making it slower than anything else running standard DB's. Technologically wise Zope is ten years ahead of Sharepoint - this is payed for with performance hoging and heavy-weight memory usage. 2Gigs is not enough for running Zope/Plone in a serious production enviroment.
    Sharepoint is a monolithic built-to-fit solution that was grown over the course of almost a decade and finally has turned into something that doesn't crash every odd hour and - at last - performs the way it was supposed to back in 2001.
    Keeping in mind that Zope was allready working back in 2001 and actually hasn't changed all that much since then. The entire redo - Zop 3.0 - still is in developement.
    Sharepoint is usually used for CMS purposes, while Zope is usually used for highly abstracted business application developement.
    Nobody in his right mind would get the idea to build an ERP system with Sharepoint.

    Bottom line:
    These guys didn't know what they where testing.
  • Cost (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MrCopilot ( 871878 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @12:28PM (#15698887) Homepage Journal
    To do a fair comparison I would like to see the Cost of the systems as set up.

    To test the .Net stack, we ran Windows Server 2003 R2, SQL Server 2005 and SharePoint Portal Server 2003. Across the board, this configuration performed very well, with the top overall average throughput (by far) at 4.59M bps.

    Quick check.....
    $2,792.00 (Froogle Directron) Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise, 25 Clients
    $5,489.18 (Froogle Non Academic) SQL Server 2005 Complete
    $5,619.00 (MS Website Retail) SharePoint Portal Server 2003 Server License with 5 CALs

    $1,124.00 (Dell) Suse Enterprise Linux 9 With Server Hardware ?c=us&cs=555&l=en&oc=MLB1580&s=biz [] Couldn't find Suse Enterprise 10 Integrated LAMP Stack eserver/lamp.html []

    Hmmm, Could train a couple of Windows Admins with $11,000. Better yet just Hire a good Linux Admin.

    To a large degree, we credit this strong showing to the high level of integration that exists among the components of this stack. While most of the open-source and Java systems are developed independently of each other, each of the .Net components is designed specifically to integrate and perform well together. Even if the .Net stack had bombed convincingly in these tests, it would probably still maintain popularity in many companies.

    Some people (PHBs) will never come around.

    But its strong showing should give companies confidence that the .Net stack will handle most high-level enterprise needs.

    For more than $12Grand it better blow away the Free Alternatives and configure itself and require zero admin.

    I know I will get slammed for not using TCO but I don't believe those numbers at all. In my experience it takes the same amount of time for day to day maintenance. And when there is a problem (and there will be, no matter which one you choose) It costs me less time and therefore money to bring back up the Linux box.

    Cost is not the only factor in a buying decision but is a factor, and if performance is arguably equal than it is a huge factor.

  • by rs232 ( 849320 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @01:07PM (#15699180)
    A curious mix of flawed logic, marketing waffle and technical language.

    "Probably most surprising was the solid performance that came from the .. mix of a Windows server and open-source components .. businesses should seriously consider the combo for their enterprise applications."

    fud.alert: LAMP runs better on Windows.

    Why would anyone move to Windows to use Open Source? Don't you still have to pay per simultaneous connection.

    "Microsoft's .Net stack performed very well in our tests, clearly showing the benefits of the tight integration among each of the stack components"

    How does 'tight integration', which is a function of how easy the sysop maintains the system, affect the efficiency of a running 'stack'. Does the stack know it is better 'integrated' and therefore runs like a happy bunny?

    "JBoss Portal is relatively immature .. JBoss Portal on Windows performed considerably better than JBoss on .. CentOS"

    fud.injection: JBoss on CentOS is immature. JBoss on Windows is better.

    "we credit this strong showing to the high level of integration that exists among the components of this stack. While most of the open-source and Java systems are developed independently of each other, each of the .Net components is designed specifically to integrate and perform well together"

    fud.injection: open-source and Java don't perform well together. Open Source runs better under Windows. Oh please Mr. Manager don't move off that Windows boxen.

    "Neither the open-source nor the Windows communities seem to be able to accept a marriage of open-source server components and Windows operating systems"

    What licensing restriction do the current ms.EULA put on Open Source projects developed with\and for Windows? Name any possible benefit that would be obtained by running Open Source on Windows? And don't mention the ease of use GUI. A proper sysop writes scripts to maintain the system.

    "there are many IT managers attempting to run open-source .. on Windows .., no doubt, to the benefits and efficiencies of using open source without having to become Linux administrators"

    How by any logic is it easier on Windows? This totally fails the logic test. Apache on Windows requires the same kind of config as Linux. Name any Open Source app that is easier to maintain under Windows. Provide concrete examples not opinion.

    "JBoss on Windows far outpacing its Linux brethren"

    I'm sure Marc Fleury would be interested in how Microsoft managed to get JBoss running faster on Windows.

    "Enterprise IT managers shouldn't hesitate to look into the option of deploying open-source stacks on a Windows Server platform."

    Yea, remember you still have your yearly tithe to pay Redmond. That's five seperate times in that article that you advised people to stick to 'open-source' on Windows. I do believe we have now all fully gotten the sub.text.
  • by m874t232 ( 973431 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @01:25PM (#15699330)
    What they tested were "portals":

    We used portals we consider popular--Microsoft SharePoint Portal Server 2003 (built on ASP), XOOPS (PHP), Plone (Python), and Liferay and JBoss Portal (JSP).

    Now, I know that Plone is a dog, and XOOPS may be popular on Sourceforge, but I don't think it's the most obvious choice for building a high performance portal using PHP. So, using these two as the basis for testing is silly.

    The fact that JBoss Portal on Windows outpaces JBoss Portal on Linux has a simple reason: JBoss isn't fully open source; crucial parts of it (namely the Java runtime itself) are under Sun's control, and hell will freeze over before Sun bothers to do a good job implementing Java for their competitors' Linux systems.

    As for things generally running faster on Windows, that's implausible. Differences between raw Windows and Linux system performance are at most in the single digit percentages, so if they saw any significant differences between the same applications running on top of the two platforms, either the application vendor spends more time tuning for Windows (as in Sun Java), or the testing labs screwed up.

    In fact, the whole test is really ill conceived: none of the "portals" they compared provide the same functionality; it just doesn't make sense to test them against each other. Overall, this test mostly seems to test the competency of eWeek, and they aren't doing too well.
  • Actually RTFA (Score:3, Informative)

    by dschl ( 57168 ) on Tuesday July 11, 2006 @08:38PM (#15702585) Homepage
    Well, most of it, anyways. It appears that the /. article linked to page 2, and the graphs [] are linked from page 1.

    I've played with Plone a little bit, and it is resource intensive, to say the least. However, when you look at their graphs, eweek ran plone under both Windows Server 2003 and Suse Enterprise Linux. Given that they used the built-in Zope application server as the web server for Plone under both Windows and Linux, I would expect the performance to be equivalent.

    When you look at the graphs, Plone on Windows appeared to outperform Plone on Linux by an order of magnitude. Something smelled funny. Like debugging.

    While I'm not sure how Suse configures their Plone packages, by default, the Zope packages come with debugging turned on, which cripples performance. If you look at Chapter 2 of the Plone Book [] by Andy McKay, it states:

    By default in Zope 2.7 debug mode is enabled. Note that Plone runs significantly slower in debug mode, approximately 10-20 times slower. To turn this off, add the following line to the configuration file:

    debug-mode off

    To make the out-of-the-box experience more impressive for Windows users (debug mode slows Plone down on Windows even more than on Linux), it ships with debug mode off already. If you have a Plone site running and want to know if debug mode is running, go to *portal_migration* in the ZMI and look at the variables listed there; this will tell you if debug mode is enabled.

    If I were running an enterprise which needed to use something with the features and robustness of Plone, and was about to devote the hundreds (or thousands) of hours required to fill it with content, and tweak it to my heart's content, I'd read the [expletive deleted] documentation, and notice that I might need to turn off debug mode. Sure, eweek said that they wanted to keep everything untuned:

    But the point was to test the stacks, not their ideal performance points, which is also why we didn't tune or optimize any of the systems but ran them as close to default as possible.

    Too bad that they didn't turn Zope debugging on in Windows, just to be consistent.

    This is not a complex tuning or advanced configuration issue. You don't need to use eye of newt, or sacrifice small animals on the night of a full moon to make this simple change. If debug was left on in Linux, it not only invalidates their results, it also shows their conclusions to be utter garbage. A big part of their conclusion that open source software worked better on Windows was based on the Plone example (the best "apples to apples" comparison in their entire test). Eweek said:

    Probably most surprising was the solid performance that came from the stacks that contained a mix of a Windows server and open-source components.
    Probably most surprising was the solid incompetence that came from the testers, and the failure to configure anything other than a Windows server in spite of readily accessible documentation on setting up these complex systems. The sad part is that some IT managers will rely on these flawed results.

"If you lived today as if it were your last, you'd buy up a box of rockets and fire them all off, wouldn't you?" -- Garrison Keillor