[Gluster-users] Practical limits to the number of volumes?

Joseph Santaniello joseph.santaniello at gmail.com
Wed May 22 08:28:08 UTC 2013

On Wed, May 22, 2013 at 3:30 AM, Toby Corkindale
<toby.corkindale at strategicdata.com.au> wrote:
> On 21/05/13 22:45, Joseph Santaniello wrote:
>> Hello All,
>> I am exploring options for deploying a Gluster system, and one
>> possible scenario we are contemplating would involve potentially
>> thousands (1-2000) of volumes with correspondingly thousands of
>> mounts.
>> Are there any intrinsic reason why this would be a bad idea with Gluster?
> Two thoughts occur to me - firstly, memory consumption:
> Gluster spawns a process for every volume on the servers and for every mount
> on the client. So you'd end up with a lot of glusterfs processes running on
> each machine. That's a lot of context switching for the kernel to do, and
> they're going to use a non-negligible amount of memory.
> I'm not actually sure what the real-world memory requirement per process
> is.. On a couple of machines I just checked, it looks like between 15-30M
> (VmRSS-VmLib), but your mileage my vary.
> If your memory use per-gluster-process is just 24M, that's still 48G of ram
> required to launch a couple of thousand of them. If it turns out they need
> more like 128M each, that's quarter of a terabyte of memory required per
> machine.
> The second thing that worries me is that gluster's recovery mechanism
> doesn't have anything to prevent simultaneous recovery across all the
> volumes on a node. As a result, as soon as a bad node rejoins the cluster,
> all your 2000 volumes will simultaneously start rebuilding, causing massive
> random i/o load, and all your clients will starve.
> That happens to me even with just a couple of dozen volumes, so I hate to
> think how it'd go with thousands!

That is along the lines of what I suspected, but was hoping there was
perhaps some sort of optimization to magically make it different. I
might have been able to live with the memory, but the recovery
scenario you paint is grim indeed!

Thanks for the info!


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