Great News on the Performance Impact of BLOB Storage in SharePoint

There are quite a few vendors in the SharePoint BLOB storage space and have been for the last few years but I haven’t really seen formal numbers on the impact on performance with absolute test numbers in a defined environment when somebody uses EBS or RBS for blob storage. I looked pretty high and low and if anybody has additional examples of performance testing with either EBS or RBS let me know as I would like to collect them into one central location and if I missed some earlier performance numbers I apoligize in advance and great to see that this new info is easy to find and it's very useful.
 
Many of you know that Quest is entering this space with a product called Quest® Infinite Storage for SharePoint and we also wanted to make sure that we can explain to our customer base the impact of our product on their environment and not just give a general statement that performance shouldn’t be a worry.
 
Recently our friends over at StorSimple published along with Microsoft a great White Paper on BLOB performance impact, in this case in terms of RBS support which brings some valid numbers to the conversation.
 
For the full report head over here but let’s look at some specifics. The tests were using the StorSimple RBS provider but folks will see similar results in other RBS providers.
 
Let’s start with how much you can compress the database. This is a fairly known statistics and the chart below shows that in general that if you have no general rules you can externalize pretty much the entire data set and the remaining size of the content database is anywhere from 2-5%.

Burzin Patel StorSimple, Inc.,Peter Scharlock Microsoft Corporation SQL Server RBS Performance with SharePoint Server 2010 and StorSimple Storage Solution

 
But how does this impact SharePoint performance? StorSimple and Microsoft did testing on a number of transactions, index impact, file upload tests and search crawl. Some of the results are in the tables below.
 

Metric

Without RBS

With RBS

Reduction

Max User Load

100

100

0.0%

Requests/Sec

84

84.3

-0.4%

Requests Failed

0

0

0.0%

Avg. Response Time

28 msec

21 msec

25.0%

Tests/Sec

6.4

6.42

-0.3%

Avg. Page Time

210 msec

160 msec

23.8%

 
 
 

Transaction

Transaction %

Avg Transaction Time (sec)

Reduction

 

Without RBS

With RBS

MySite Public

16.0%

0.14

0.08

42.9%

Homepage

25.0%

0.43

0.22

48.8%

Page Workflow

1.1%

109.00

109.00

0.0%

Create Page

6.0%

15.72

15.67

0.3%

Create Publishing Site

1.0%

13.00

12.70

2.3%

Create Team Site

1.0%

17.90

18.30

-2.2%

Download Document

12.2%

4.03

4.03

0.0%

MySite Edit Profile

6.9%

29.84

29.90

-0.2%

Large Page

10.1%

0.12

0.09

25.0%

Search Query

14.8%

60.00

60.10

-0.2%

Site Manager

1.0%

0.45

0.31

31.1%

Upload Documents

4.9%

30.20

30.50

-1.0%

MySite Public

16.0%

0.14

0.08

42.9%

               

Burzin Patel StorSimple, Inc.,Peter Scharlock Microsoft Corporation SQL Server RBS Performance with SharePoint Server 2010 and StorSimple Storage Solution

 
Some very good numbers here. Biggest improvements were in terms of File upload times, and this surprised me. I assumed that some improvements would be in the place, but the numbers was startling. These are for BIG files but even with smaller files performance will be better.
 

File size

Time taken to upload file (seconds)

Reduction

 

Without RBS

With RBS

0.5 GB

55

28.8

47.6%

1 GB

69.4

48

30.8%

1.5 GB

138

71

48.6%

1.99 GB

178

87

51.1

           

Burzin Patel StorSimple, Inc.,Peter Scharlock Microsoft Corporation SQL Server RBS Performance with SharePoint Server 2010 and StorSimple Storage Solution

 
Naturally some environmental impacts mean that these won’t always be the case. The external storage has to be local for example. But it means you can easily achieve these types of performance numbers. The White Paper goes into other aspects as well and later in the document you can see that crawl performance for over 500,000 objects in an RBS enabled data store showed only about a 3% decrease in time to crawl so no big concerns there. Grab the White Paper for yourself and dig into the numbers. Great document to justify any Blob storage solution in general.
All of this gets me excited to bring this improvement in performance to those customers who have trusted Quest for their SharePoint management and are looking to fill out their offerings.
 
At TEC Europe in October we gave folks a preview of our new product, Quest® Infinite Storage for SharePoint. Quest is entering a crowded market and we don’t profess that we’ll be the best out of the box, but we watched what other folks were doing and I think you will be mighty happy with the direction we have taken. And Quest never ever sleeps and as we have seen in the Site Administration space (Tech Ed winner again this year!) we are as nimble if not more nimble than some of the smaller players out there and also we are taking, as we did with Recovery Manager for SharePoint, a more cooperative approach to solutions. In that vein we have talked to the folks over at StorSimple and are pleased to announce that the StorSimple device will be supported from the 1st Beta on. If you don’t know about the StorSimple device take a walk over to https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/services/storsimple/ and get acquainted with their Cloud savvy device. We have one of their appliances in house in our lab and I can attest that it works amazing. Coupled with the flexibility within Infinite Storage to have multiple scopes within any given data set we will allow you to optimize you use of the StorSimple device if desired.
 
We are pleased to say that we are now opening up a small Beta pilot for this as we aim for a wide Beta in early January and release in Q1 of 2011. If you would like to see how Quest is solving the storage challenge of SharePoint and making SharePoint storage infinite please ping me at doug.davis@quest.com
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