Oracle’s SPARC T4-4 Server with Oracle Database 11g Beats Itanium and POWER7-based Systems on TPC-H Benchmark at 1 TB Scale Factor


(As of Monday, 26 September 2011)

Oracle delivers an outstanding TPC-H data-warehousing benchmark result at the 1000 GB scale factor, beating HP’s Superdome 2 and IBM’s Power 780 (see table). The result highlights the effectiveness of a complete solution built exclusively on Oracle software and hardware. The superior scalability and integration of Oracle Database 11g Release 2 running on Oracle Solaris 10, Oracle's SPARC T4-4 server and Oracle’s Sun Storage F5100 Flash arrays deliver the best performance among competing POWER7 or Itanium-based solutions from HP and IBM.


The TPC-H benchmark was established by the Transaction Processing Council (TPC) to enable customers to evaluate the performance of various Business Intelligence/Data Warehousing (BIDW) and Decision Support Systems (DSS) systems for various standard database sizes, referred to as the scale factor (SF). The benchmark measures the combined performance of a particular database manager on a specific computer system at various scale factors, including 100 GB, 300 GB, 1000 GB, 3000 GB, 10000 GB, and 30000 GB, and reports the composite TPC-H Query-per-Hour (QphH) performance metric, as well as the price/performance metric, which is the total cost of the solution, consisting of hardware, software, and three-year maintenance costs divided by the QphH.


  SPARC T4-4 HP Integrity Superdome 2 IBM Power 780
Processor Model (CPUs/Cores/Threads) 3 GHz SPARC T4 (4/32/256) 1.73 GHz Intel Itanium 9350 (16/64/64) 4.1 GHz POWER7 (8/32/128)
Performance (QphH@1000GB) 201,487 140,181.1 164,747.2
Price/Performance (US$/QphH@1000GB) $4.60 $12.15 $6.85
Execution times for refresh Functions RF1and RF2 reported from Stream 0 (sec) 17.4 / 18.4 39.7 / 56.0 66.7 / 52.5
Database Oracle Database 11g Release 2 Oracle Database 11g Release 2 Sybase IQ
Server Footprint (RU) 5 22 (18+4) 16
Storage Footprint (RU) 4 50 8
Operating System (OS) Oracle Solaris
10 8/11
HP-UX 11i v3 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6
Availability Date 10/30/11 10/20/10 03/31/11
  • The SPARC T4-4 server, equipped with the latest 3 GHz SPARC T4 processors and running Oracle Database 11g Release 2 on top of Solaris 10, is 43 percent faster than the HP Superdome 2, while delivering 62 percent better price/performance in ¼ of the physical space (see table).
  • The SPARC T4-4 server running Oracle Database 11g Release 2 outperformed the best IBM single-system result, the IBM Power 780 Server running Sybase IQ database software, by 22 percent while delivering 33 percent better price/performance in 1/3 of physical space (see table).
  • As evidenced by these results, the SPARC T4-4 server is capable of reaching and surpassing the performance levels of much larger systems. Specifically, when these results are normalized to a single processor, the SPARC T4-4 is 2.45x faster per socket than the IBM Power 780 with 8 POWER 7 processors and delivers 5.75x more performance per socket when compared to the HP Superdome with 16 Itanium CPUs (see table).
  • The Sun Storage F5100 Flash arrays used in this benchmark delivered measured I/O performance of over 16 GB/sec. The Flash array delivers outstanding performance in a compact 1RU form factor, which enables reduced power consumption and helps free up valuable data center floor space. In fact, Oracle’s solution has 1/2 the storage footprint compared to IBM’s Power 780 benchmark configuration and offers a dramatic 12.5 times reduction of storage footprint compare to HP’s Superdome 2 benchmark configuration (see table).
  • Oracle Automatic Storage Management (ASM) was used to manage all database files across the four Sun Storage F5100 Flash arrays. Moreover, mirroring was used to ensure complete data protection during benchmark execution and while maintaining Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability (ACID). This approach enabled efficient and protected data placement and allowed the system to execute refresh functions up to 3.8 times faster than IBM and up to 3 times faster than HP (see table). Refresh functions insert or remove large amounts of data from the database and deliver better performance when running database software on a system with well-balanced I/O resources.
  • Oracle Solaris is a leading enterprise operating system that provides best-in-class reliability, security, and scalability, and is well suited for large business critical database and application deployments. Oracle Solaris includes Solaris Volume Manager (SVM) software that enables efficient and protected data placement and was used to manage and mirror database log files across four Sun Storage F5100 Flash arrays.
  • New benchmark results highlight Oracle's focus on delivering complete hardware and software solutions optimized to work together to deliver new levels of performance. Moreover, since TPC-H rules require the price of the solution to include hardware, software, and maintenance over a three-year period, these results demonstrate that Oracle provides the best long-term value to its customers.
  • The benchmark underscores the ability of Oracle’s SPARC T-Series servers running Oracle Solaris to handle the increasingly large databases required for decision support and data warehousing systems. Neither IBM nor HP matched this level of performance using a single system in the 1 TB scale factor category, further highlighting the performance capabilities of multi-processor SPARC systems and Flash-based storage for the most demanding enterprise applications.

Oracle is a registered trademark of Oracle Corporation and/or its affiliates. TPC Benchmark H, TPC-H, QphH are trademarks of the Transaction Processing Performance Council (TPC). More info Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners. Source for data in the table: Transaction Processing Performance Council (TPC) As of September 26, 2011.

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