HP-UX Performance Cookbook
By Stephen Ciullo, HP Senior Technical Consultant
Doug Grumann, HP System Performance tools expert
Have you ever run across a document that sounded really interesting and useful, but after
a short while you found out it was several years old and horribly outdated? Well, if you
are reading this revision of the Performance Cookbook in 2015,then go no further. By
2015 this paper will be obsolete because all systems will tune themselves using ROI-
regeneration beams anyways. If, however, if it’s more like 2009 or 2010, then you are in
luck: you have stumbled across an old document, but we have managed to update it and
keep it (relatively) current! For those of you who have studiously studied the 2008
revision of this cookbook, wehave some more good news for 2009: there are not a whole
lotta changes in this rev so your knowledge has not become obsolete. We have added a
few tidbits about disk I/O, a “gotcha” with regards to memory metrics, and clarified the
NUMA/Oracle discussion, but generally the principles outlined here seem to have
withstood the test of time.
As with previous releases of the cookbook, note that:
-We’re not diving down to nitty gritty detail on any one topic of performance.
Entire books have been written on topics such as SAP, Java and Oracle
performance. This cookbook is an overview, based on common problems we see
our customers hitting across a broad array of environments.
- We continue to take great liberties with the English language. To those of you
who know English as asecond language, we can only apologize in advance, and
give you permission to skip over the parts where Stephen’s New Jersey accent
gets too thick.
- If you are looking for a professional, inoffensive, reverent, sanitized, Corporate-
approved and politically correct document, then read no further. Instead, contact
your official HP Support Representative to submit an Enhancement Request. Theywill send you to a web page. The web page may require you to go through a
complex registration procedure, or it may simply be down. Opinions expressed
herein are the authors’, and are not official positions of Hewlett-Packard, its
subsidiaries, acquisitions, or distant cousins.
- Our target audience is system administrators who are somewhat familiar with the
HP performance tools. Wereference metrics often from Glance and what-used-to-
be-known-as-OpenView Performance Agent, though some of these metrics are
also available in other tools.
This paper’s focus is on HP-UX 11.23 and 11.31, both PA-RISC and Itanium (also called
IA64, IPF, Integrity, or whatever). By now, you should have moved your servers off
11.11 if you possibly could. The 11.2x bits have been out for years now,and 11.31 also
for a while! They’re stable! As HP employees, we’re supposed to call 11.23 by its official
name “11i version2,” and 11.31 by “11i version3” but we REFUSE.
Here are the tried and true general rules of thumb for performance management:
- Don’t fix that what ain’t broke. If your users are happy with their application’s
performance, then why muck with things? You got betterthings to do. Take the
time to build up your own knowledge of what ‘normal’ performance looks like on
your systems. Later, if something goes wrong, you’ll be able to look at historical
data and use your knowledge to drill down quickly and isolate the problem.
- You have to be willing to do the work to know what you’re doing. In other words,
you can’t expect to makeyour systems tick any better if you don’t know what
makes them tick. So... if you really have no idea why you’re changing something,
or what it means, then do the research first before you shoot yourself in the foot.
HP-Education has a good set of classes on HP-UX, and there are several books
(such as Chris Cooper’s “HP-UX Internals”), as well as numerous papers on HP-...
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