Re: ZFS or UFS? Solaris 11 or better stay with Solaris 10?

  • From: De DBA <dedba@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: oracle-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, przemolicc@xxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 20:21:22 +1000

Thanks, Przemyslaw
When I said that the system won't be able to be upgraded, I was not thinking of 
technical complications. Rather, the importance of this 24/7 database and the 
jitter factor associated with an upgrade project this size will encourage the 
management to sit it out as long as possible. Live Upgrade is not going to help 
there.. ;)

We need to strike a balance  between two conflicting interests here:

 1. Install the newest possible software, so that the system will have the 
longest possible period into the future of active vendor support
 2. Deliver the most stable and robust solution possible so that the system 
will suffer as few hickups as possible.

In this light ZFS sounded not like there was an overriding reason to use it, as 
we do not need any of the extra features that it offers. It is young and not 
necessarily stable, and therefore an unknown risk. In the meantime we have 
decided to give the older and better understood ASM a go (thanks Frits, for 
reminding me of it).

You are right, Solaris 11 is also squeakingly new, just out of the shrinkwrap. 
But, if I understand correctly, its new features have had a good flogging in 
the wild through the OpenSolaris Project and Solaris 11 Express (which is now 
replaced by Sol11), have they not?  So the risk is smaller than it seems at 
first glance, and it stands to reason that Oracle/Sun will put more effort 
towards fixing OS bugs in this new OS, rather than old, trusty Sol10. Our 
project will include a good volume testing phase, which should expose serious 
flaws (if any) and the entire project will not end until the second half of 
this year. Based on previous experience, I would expect that Oracle/Sun release 
an update before that.. ;)


On 29/03/12 17:41, przemolicc@xxxxxxxxx wrote:
> Hi Tony,
> - regarding UFS vs ZFS. The best thing is to do any (!) sort of tests. But if 
> you really cannot do This is really difficult question since:
>       - zfs is brand new filesystem which will be improved more and more. UFS 
> will not be improved.
>               - but does it matter for you if you will keep this system for 
> years without change ?
>       - zfs has much more features which are unknown for UFS (and never will 
> be)
>               - but do you really need them ?
>       - if you insist on using ZFS for Oracle read the following URL: 
>       - there are a lot of knowledge (in terms of people experience) in the 
> internet about using UFS + Oracle
>       - if you can do any sort of tests (ZFS vs UFS):
>               - you can do it on both ZFS and UFS using:
>                       - Orion (Oracle tool to test storage performance)
>                               - of course don't relay on just one tool and 
> its results
>                       - Oracle 11 IO calibration (new feature)
>               and just compare the results
>       - a couple of URLs:
>               -
> - regarding Solaris 10 vs 11
>       - Solaris 11 has many new features. You can read WPs about What's new, 
> etc. It's worth reading.
>               - but do you need them for typical OLTP (DSS ?) environment ?
>       - Solaris 10 is stable and predictable
>               - but does it matter for you ? Maybe you like new environments 
> ? New features ?
>               - having Solaris 10 does not mean that you cannot upgrade to 
> Solaris 11 in the future. Live Upgrade is a feature which helps you in this 
> area.
>       - if you happen to have a bug in Solaris 11 Oracle support is not known 
> to be the best on this planet regarding fixing new bugs ...
> - regarding SAN
>       - if you have typical hardware array I would not mirror at the 
> filesystem level - don't complicate this.
>       - quite old but anyway ... 
> Best regards
> Przemyslaw Bak (przemol)
> --


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