Measuring Storage Performance

Vertica lets you measure disk I/O performance on any storage location at your site. You can use the returned measurements to set performance, which automatically provides rank. Depending on your storage needs, you can also use performance to determine the storage locations needed for critical data as part of your site's storage policies. Storage performance measurements apply only to data storage locations, not temporary storage locations.

Measuring storage location performance calculates the time it takes to read and write 1 MB of data from the disk, which equates to:

IO time = time to read/write 1MB + time to seek = 1/throughput + 1/Latency
  • Throughput is the average throughput of sequential reads/writes (expressed in megabytes per second).
  • Latency is for random reads only in seeks (units in seeks per second).

Thus, the I/O time of a faster storage location is less than that of a slower storage location.

Measuring storage location performance requires extensive disk I/O, which is a resource-intensive operation. Consider starting this operation when fewer other operations are running.

Vertica gives you two ways to measure storage location performance, depending on whether the database is running. You can either:

  • Measure performance on a running database.
  • Measure performance before a cluster is set up.

Both methods return the throughput and latency for the storage location. Record or capture the throughput and latency information so you can use it to set the location performance (see Setting Storage Performance).

Measuring Performance on a Running Vertica Database

Use the MEASURE_LOCATION_PERFORMANCE() function to measure performance for a storage location when the database is running. This function has the following requirements:

  • The storage path must already exist in the database.
  • You need RAM*2 free space available in a storage location to measure its performance. For example, if you have 16 GB RAM, you need 32 GB of available disk space. If you do not have enough disk space, the function returns an error.

Use the system table DISK_STORAGE to obtain information about disk storage on each database node.

The following example shows how to measure the performance of a storage location on v_vmartdb_node0004:

=> SELECT MEASURE_LOCATION_PERFORMANCE('/secondVerticaStorageLocation/','v_vmartdb_node0004');
WARNING:  measure_location_performance can take a long time. Please check logs for progress
 Throughput : 122 MB/sec. Latency : 140 seeks/sec

Measuring Performance Before a Cluster Is Set Up

You can measure disk performance before setting up a cluster. This approach is useful when you want to verify that the disk is functioning within normal parameters. To perform this measurement, you must already have Vertica installed.

To measure disk performance, use the following command:

opt/vertica/bin/vertica -m <path to disk mount>

For example:

opt/vertica/bin/vertica -m /secondVerticaStorageLocation/node0004_data