You have a myriad of choices to make when installing and configuring Squid, especially when it comes to the way Squid stores files on disk. Back in Chapter 8, I talked about the various filesystems and storage schemes. Here, I’ll provide some hard data on their relative performance.
These tests were done with Web Polygraph, a freely available, high-performance tool for benchmarking HTTP intermediaries (http://www.web-polygraph.org/). Over the course of many months, I ran approximately 40 different tests on 5 different operating systems.
The primary purpose of these benchmarks is to provide a number of measurements that allow you to compare different Squid configurations and features. In order to produce comparable results, I’ve taken care to minimize any differences between systems being tested.
I used five identical computer systems—one for each of the following operating systems: FreeBSD, Linux, NetBSD, OpenBSD, and Solaris. The boxes are IBM Netfinity servers with one 500-MHz PIII CPU, 1 GB of RAM, an Intel fast-Ethernet NIC, and three 8-GB disk SCSI drives. I realize that these aren’t particularly powerful machines by today’s standards, but they are good enough for these tests. Anyway, it is more important that they be identical than powerful.
The requirement to use identical hardware means that I can’t generate comparable results for other hardware platforms, such as Sun, Digital/Compaq/HP, ...