Exploring Riak, need to confirm throughput

Matthew MacClary macclary at lifetime.oregonstate.edu
Tue Apr 2 18:48:10 EDT 2013

Hi all, I am new to this list. Thanks for taking the time to read my
questions! I just want to know if the data throughput I am seeing is
expected for the bitcask backend or if it is too low.

I am doing the preliminary feasibility study to decide if we should
implement a Riak data store. Our application involves rendering chunks of
data that range in size from about 1MB-9MB or so. This rendering work is
CPU intensive so it is spread over a bunch of compute nodes which write the
output into a data store.

After rendering, a second process consumes that data chunks from the data
store at a rate of about 480MB/s in a streaming configuration so there is >
480MB/s of new data coming in at the same time the data is being read.

My testing so far involves a one node cluster on a dev box. What I wanted
to show is that Riak writes were limited by the hard disk throughput. So
far I haven't seen writes to localhost come anywhere close to the hard disk

$ MYFILE=/tmp/output.png
$ dd if=/dev/zero of=$MYFILE bs=8k count=256k
262144+0 records in
262144+0 records out
2147483648 bytes (2.1 GB) copied, 4.48906 seconds, 478 MB/s
$ rm $MYFILE

So the hard disk throughput is around 478MB/s for this simple write test.

The next test I did was to load a 39MB binary file into my one node
cluster. I used a script to do 12 POSTs with curl and 12 POSTSs with wget.

curl --tcp-nodelay -XPOST http://${IP}:${PORT}/riak/test/file3 \
    -H "Content-Type:application/octet-stream" \
    --data-binary @${UPLOAD_FILE} \
    --write-out "%{speed_upload}\n"

wget --post-file ${UPLOAD_FILE}

What I found was that I could get only about 26MB/s with this command line
testing. Does this seam about right? Should I see an 18x slow down over the
write speed of the disk drive?

Thanks for your comments on my application and test approach!


Dev Environment Details:
dev box  running RHEL6.2, 12 cores, 48GB, 6Gb/s SAS 15k HD
Riak 1.2.1 from

Deploy Environment Details:
 Node to node bandwidth > 40Gb/s
 similar config for node servers
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