Friday, December 31, 2010

OpenBSD 4.8 vs FreeBSD 8.1 em0 Network Performance

As mentioned in one of my earlier postings, I have been looking into OpenBSD as a possible firewall OS.

I'll post a more opinion-based article shortly on what I think about OpenBSD vs FreeBSD, but for now, I thought I'd report this tidbit of info;

When benchmarking with netperf, OpenBSD 4.8 wasn't as fast as FreeBSD 8.1 until I tweaked some sysctls.

OpenBSD 4.8 - 520.49 Mbits/sec
FreeBSD 8.1 - 941.49 Mbits/sec

I then applied the speed tweaks for OpenBSD found here: , and then was able to match FreeBSD's performance using NetPerf.

While this was with the em driver (Intel), I believe it would show on other drivers as well, as the sysctl's adjusted weren't specific to the em driver.

Conclusion? Make sure you're applying these tuning tips if you're running OpenBSD 4.8

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