Friday, April 7, 2017

DBMT still creates fragmented NSF files on volumes that are fragmented

On a busy server Compact -C fragments NSF files left, right and center. It sprays bits of the file all over the place. The only thing we have seen in Domino that does a worse job are full text indexes. 

As previously discussed and referenced by others and IBM,  DBMT does a much better job. It tries to create a contiguous NSF file, but it can ONLY do that it the freespace on the server is not highly fragmented, and the only way that is going to happen is if you have taken steps to keep it in shape (for example by using  DDO or Defrag.NSF). We have covered this before, but here is a recent real world example.

It starts off with a 600MB NSF that is in one piece (thanks to DDO)

DBMT runs on the database (this server has over 1TB of fragmented freespace)

And now we see the results. What was once a single fragment is now 567 fragments.

So in summary DBMT does a MUCH better job than compact -c, but it can still make a mess of things and that is why in DDO we have wrapped DBMT with a bunch of smarts and then incorporated Defrag.NSF in the deal. The results are and will always be much much better.

DDO - Domino Optimized.

Note: Example server was Windows Domino 9.01 FP7 Server, 2.5TB of data. It was a VM using Enterprise SAN storage.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Virtualizing Domino is NOT a "Get Out Of Jail Free" card

Further to yesterday's blog we wanted to point out that recently VMware updated their latest documentation for VSphere 6.5, included is the recommendation to "Defragment the file system on all guests" to enhance Disk I/O performance.

It is so often not understood that fragmentation in the virtualized environment can have a devastating impact on Domino server performance and also the O/S, and yep, we see this a LOT. This negative impact happens because as far as the Guest  O/S (Windows) is concerned it is still working with fragmented files and that causes Windows to issue many more I/O requests to access these files. This creates Split I/O's where unnecessary multiple I/O requests are generated to access fragments of each file and that contributes to I/O bottlenecks with some requests being blocked while other are fulfilled. Basically the end result is Windows still perceives the fragmentation at the file system level and must deal with it the same as if you were running the O/S and Domino server on a physical box.

Fragmentation happens on File System level, regardless of virtualization or storage medium, there's always some impact, and it won't go away simply because you are running Domino virtualized.

Running Domino virtualized or with SAN storage is not a Get Out Of Jail Free card with regard to fragmentation and it's effects, getting the best from your system investment involves optimizing all the components in the "system" and that includes the Guest OS and the Domino server.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A simple way to reduce backup times by 55%

Last week DDO went into action at an Australian Coal mining organisation. The server was a mess, with exceptionally long backup times. It is a VM, running on a high powered SAN, but none of that matters, because if Windows sees fragmentation it acts accordingly, it slows down and in this case was issuing millions of additional I/Os to get backups done.

DDO ran and optimised the files.

In the chart below you can see the positive effect of removing 742,289 fragments from just 144 databases. Backup times plummeted from 6 hours, 40 min to just over 3 hours. A fantastic result.

The backups are now faster and the SAN less stressed with everything connected to it more performant.

Find out more about the Domino Database Optimizer.

Update: The server is running 9.01 FP6 and in such a mess that even when DBMT ran, the resultant database became MORE fragmented. More on this later.

Monday, March 27, 2017

How healthy are your Domino System Databases?

Are the System Databases on your Domino servers optimized and healthy? You know, the really important ones that seem to never get maintenance, log.nsf, names.nsf, mailjrn.nsf etc, are they getting huge, sluggish to open, slow to backup, wasting GB of disk space?

DDO makes this often never done Domino and database maintenance as simple as ticking a few boxes, set and forget,. If this is scheduled once a week the difference it makes to Domino is quite amazing.

Here are some screen shots from a customer's server showing DDO taking care of business while the admin was at home enjoying the weekend.

Here's the schedule they run each Friday Night at 10PM, targeting the Domino System Databases for maintenance.

At 10PM DDO ran the scheduled maintenance and we see the following in the log.nsf:

24/03/2017 10:04:32 PM DDO: Info - Running System Database Maintenance
24/03/2017 10:04:33 PM Router: Shutdown is in progress
24/03/2017 10:04:38 PM Router: Mail Router shudown

We can see System databases like names.nsf and catalog.nsf targeted:

We can clearly see by sorting the "Last Compact" column that during the 10PM maintenance on Friday night these System Databases were compacted:

Early the following morning (Saturday), as part of the scheduled 2:30AM DDO maintenance we can see these System databases such as catalog.nsf, log.nsf and names.nsf being defragged, removing the fragmentation introduced via the previous night's Compact maintenance.

The Bottom line here is that everything about this server runs faster and better, this means WAY less I/O and everything else from user response times through to backup windows just runs more efficiently and faster. DDO takes care of this so easily while the admin is at home enjoying the weekend as we see in the customer example above.

More performance means getting more value for this company's Domino investment.

Get more information and a trial version of DDO here.

Monday, March 20, 2017

The easiest way to enable Feature Pack 8 View Separation

In this 2 minute video, we will show how to use DDO to:

- Enable Feature Pack 8 View Separation (NIFNSF) with a single selection
- Direct the View NDX files into their own directory
- Schedule View Separation for all Mail 9 databases
- Schedule a Domino restart at 12:05 am to enable View Separation. Just for good measure, we'll run DBMT over all the System Databases at the same time.
- Schedule DBMT to run at 2:30 am for 2 hours, during which View separation will occur on Mail 9 databases.

One more thing, once that's all done, DDO will defragment the newly optimized NSF files. Optimizing the optimized files - it's just fantastic.

Want to know more ? Why not give DDO a trial run.

Friday, March 3, 2017

IBM Patents out-of-office email.


Thursday, December 8, 2016

DBMT Optimizations in DDO - real world example

Further to my previous post on "DBMT Optimizations in DDO that can reduce its workload by over 90%"  here is a real world screen shot of what is happening at one of our clients.

Now that's optimization.

Why not try DDO for yourself with a free 30 day trial?