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Posted Nov 16, 2004

New Performance/Pricing Specs to be released by the TPC in the Near Future

By Linda Cole

The TPC will announce new performance and pricing specifications in the near future. A major revision of TPC-W is in development and scheduled for release in late 2004. Also targeted for a late 2004 release is a revised pricing specification. A new OLTP benchmark, TPC-E, is currently under review.

During the revision process, the TPC recognized some limitations in the original W benchmark. TPC-W was a large system level benchmark that tried to emulate a very large e-commerce environment and allowed full implementation. The result was so many different components and replications, so many application servers and application devices, that it was difficult to recognize exactly what was impacting the performance. To compensate for these difficulties, the benchmark was revamped and has been renamed TPC-AP.

Another aspect that has been modified is in the collection of the TPC-W benchmark. Previously, you could put together any combination of servers. Now there is a replication rule that states you can have multiple application servers, but all of the servers must be identical. The elimination of a collection of different types of servers makes understanding the contribution of the server component easier.

Another effort that The TPC is focusing on is the Pricing Spec. The TPC feels it is important for each benchmark to include a pricing specification for several different reasons. One, customers need an indication of price to aid in purchasing decisions. Two, pricing helps in keeping configurations more realistic in that it discourages the use of something that is very expensive to get a little more performance. Three, currently each benchmark has slightly different pricing rules. The TPC as an organization decided to create a specification that unifies pricing methodology for all of the different benchmarks.

Other benchmarks that are under revision include TPC-E, an expanded version of TPC-C, TPC-H and TPC-DS.

The TPC is a non-profit, vendor-neutral organization that was founded to define server transaction processing and database benchmarks, and to disseminate objective and verifiable performance data.

For additional information, please visit http://www.tpc.org.

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