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Kevin Kline

Cheaters Never Win, Even in TPC Benchmarks

In this column, I want to tell you about one of my favorite aspects of the TPC benchmarks – CHEATING. Keep in mind that I use the term “cheating” in a joking manner with my tongue planted firmly in my cheek.  But I’m also half-serious.  One of the of the things that is great about the TPC benchmarks is that each of the vendors are required to fully describe all of the shortcuts, tweaks, and special operating configurations they use in order to achieve their spectacular performance numbers.  In a sense, the Transaction Processing Counsel requires that all benchmarked platforms declare all of the ways that they cheat in order to achieve peak performance. more...

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Published Monday, May 6, 2013 10:57 AM by KKline

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sql_noob said:

i never liked TPC. it seems all the tests are done on hardware configurations that you will never see in the real world.

May 9, 2013 10:36 AM

KKline said:

There's definitely some truth to that. I've often wished for benchmarks at specific budget levels for hardware, such as at the $10k, $25k, and $50k spend.  Otoh, servers are getting even more powerful these days. You can get a decent server for just $5k, not counting the software licensing cost.  So low cost benchmarks would be a very useful addition...


May 9, 2013 10:56 AM

Greg Linwood said:

The costs of TPC hardware configurations have fallen hugely in the last few years since introduction of the TPC-E benchmark. TPC-C hardware was measured in $millions but TPC-E are only a fraction of what TPC-C hardware costs. TPC-H can be even smaller again depending on the category.

SQL Server costs have exploded however. Software licensing for every SQL 2012 benchmark has been above $530K which is a huge increase over SQL 2008 benchmarks when SQL licensing costs used to be in the tens of thousands to low hundreds of thousands

May 9, 2013 5:35 PM

KKline said:

Great point, Greg. I've been thinking that the whole licensing costs subject is very worthy of blog post. The licensing costs have gotten out of control.

May 10, 2013 11:08 AM

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About KKline

Kevin Kline is a well-known database industry expert, author, and speaker. Kevin is a long-time Microsoft MVP and was one of the founders of PASS,

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