Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)
Date:      Thu, 16 Aug 2012 13:16:26 -0500
From:      Paul Schmehl <>
Cc:        Steve O'Hara-Smith <>
Subject:   Re: Best file system for a busy webserver
Message-ID:  <175D3B4E21331C5682EE2148@localhost>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <47AFB706686083E99B3A3F3E@localhost> <>

Next in thread | Previous in thread | Raw E-Mail | Index | Archive | Help
--On August 16, 2012 6:02:57 PM +0100 Steve O'Hara-Smith <> 

> On Thu, 16 Aug 2012 10:45:25 -0500
> Paul Schmehl <> wrote:
>> Does anyone have any opinions on which file system is best for a busy
>> webserver (7 million hits/month)?  Is anyone one system noticeably
>> better  than any other?
> 	That's an average of about 3 hits per second. If it's static pages
> then pretty much anything will handle it easily (but please don't use
> FAT). If it's dynamic then the whole problem is more complex than a
> simple page rate. If that load is bursty it may make a difference too.

Thanks for the reply.  It's a combination.  There are many static pages, 
but there is also a php-mysql forum that generates pages on the fly.  It 
accounts for about half of the traffic.  I've always used ufs but am 
wondering if switching to zfs would make sense.

This stats page might answer some of your questions: 

Basically traffic is steady but it's busiest in the evenings (US time zones)

> 	Other considerations may come into play - how big is this
> filesystem (number of files, maximum number of entries in a directory,
> volume of data) ? Are there many users needing to be protected from each
> other ? What about archives ? snapshots ? growth ? churn ? uptime
> requirements, disaster recovery time ?

I don't even know where to begin.  There's about 15G of data on the server.

Maybe this will help answer your questions:
# sysctl -a | grep file
kern.maxfiles: 12328
kern.bootfile: /boot/kernel/kernel
kern.maxfilesperproc: 11095
kern.openfiles: 492
kern.corefile: %N.core
kern.filedelay: 30
p1003_1b.mapped_files: 1

last pid: 40369;  load averages:  0.01,  0.03,  0.00 
up 104+09:33:44 13:14:49
137 processes: 1 running, 136 sleeping
CPU:  0.7% user,  0.0% nice,  0.1% system,  0.0% interrupt, 99.2% idle
Mem: 229M Active, 6108M Inact, 1056M Wired, 15M Cache, 828M Buf, 514M Free
Swap: 16G Total, 28K Used, 16G Free

The system is not being stressed.

If by users, you means shell accounts, there's two, so that's not really an 
issue.  The site has grown organically over the years from a few hundred 
hits a month to the now 6-8 million hits (depends on the time of year and 
the weather - mechanics are usually out in the garage if it's sunny and on 
the computer when it's not).

Uptime is not an issue.  The owners have repeatedly said if the site is 
down for two days they don't care.  (The forum users don't feel that way 
though!)  We've had one "disaster" (hard drive failure and raid failed 
while I was on vacation), and it took about 36 hours to get back online, 
but that was 10 years ago.  The site doesn't go down - it's running on 
FreeBSD. :-)

Paul Schmehl, Senior Infosec Analyst
As if it wasn't already obvious, my opinions
are my own and not those of my employer.
"It is as useless to argue with those who have
renounced the use of reason as to administer
medication to the dead." Thomas Jefferson
"There are some ideas so wrong that only a very
intelligent person could believe in them." George Orwell

Want to link to this message? Use this URL: <>