[Gluster-users] Diagnosing Intermittent Performance Problems Possibly Caused by Gremlins

Justin Clift justin at gluster.org
Tue Feb 3 10:58:07 UTC 2015

----- Original Message -----
> Hello List,
> So I've been frustraded by intermittent performance problems throughout
> January. The problem occurs on a two node setup running 3.4.5, 16 gigs
> of ram with a bunch of local disk. For sometimes an hour for sometimes
> weeks at a time (I have extensive graphs in OpenNMS) our Gluster boxes
> will get their CPUs pegged, and in vmstat they'll show extremely high
> numbers of context switches and interrupts. Eventually things calm
> down. During this time, memory usage actually drops. Overall usage on
> the box goes from between 6-10 gigs to right around 4 gigs, and stays
> there. That's what really puzzles me.
> When performance is problematic, sar shows one device, the device
> corresponding to the glusterfsd problem using all the CPU doing lots of
> little reads, Sometimes 70k/second, very small avg rq size, say 10-12.
> Afraid I don't have any saved output handy, but I can try to capture
> some next time it happens. I have tons of information frankly, but am
> trying to keep this reasonably brief.
> There are more than a dozen volumes on this two node setup. The CPU
> usage is pretty much entirely contained to one volume, a 1.5 TB volume
> that is just shy of 70% full. It stores uploaded files for a web app.
> What I hate about this app and so am always suspicious of, is that it
> stores a directory for every user in one level, so under the /data
> directory in the volume, there are 450,000 sub directories at this
> point.
> The only real mitigation step that's been taken so far was to turn off
> the self-heal daemon on the volume, as I thought maybe crawling that
> large directory was getting expensive. This doesn't seem to have done
> anything as the problem still occurs.
> At this point I figure there are one of two things sorts of things
> happening really broadly: one we're running into some sort of bug or
> performance problem with gluster we should either fix perhaps by
> upgrading or tuning around, or two, some process we're running but not
> aware of is hammering the file system causing problems.
> If it's the latter option, can anyone give me any tips on figuring out
> what might be hammering the system? I can use volume top to see what a
> brick is doing, but I can't figure out how to tell what clients are
> doing what.
> Apologies for the somewhat broad nature of the question, any input
> thoughts would be much appreciated. I can certainly provide more info
> about some things if it would help, but I've tried not to write a novel
> here.

Out of curiosity, are you able to test using GlusterFS 3.6.2?  We've
had a bunch of pretty in-depth upstream testing at decent scale (100+
nodes) from 3.5.x onwards, with lots of performance issues identified
and fixed on the way through.

So, I'm kinda hopeful the problem you're describing is fixed in newer
releases. :D

Regards and best wishes,

Justin Clift

GlusterFS - http://www.gluster.org

An open source, distributed file system scaling to several
petabytes, and handling thousands of clients.

My personal twitter: twitter.com/realjustinclift

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