32-Bit Version of Linux up to 37% Higher Throughput Compared to 64-Bit Version

White paper with detail test results: [Word Format] [PDF Format]

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Summary of Test Results
(Click here to display a graph of the data)
Active Users Trans./Min. 32-bit OS Trans./Min. 64-bit OS 32-bit OS
Percent Faster
1 515 515 0
64 5311 5086 4
128 6405 4932 30
192 6173 4847 27
256 6354 4634 37
320 5325 4574 16
384 5058 4393 15
448 4169 4151 0
512 4151 3883 7

Chicago, IL, September 22, 2006 -- Neal Nelson & Associates, a Chicago area computer performance consulting firm, has announced test results that show a possible 37 percent throughput advantage when a Web-based application is run under the 32-bit version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 from Novell, in comparison to the same machine running a 64-bit version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10. The tests were run on a computer configured with two AMD Opteron 64-bit processors.

"Computer performance is affected by many factors, including the operating system software," stated Neal Nelson, president of the consulting firm. "By running an application on a given machine with two different versions of the operating system, we have successfully isolated the performance impact on this application on the 32-bit version versus the 64-bit version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server."

The tests were conducted in the client/server benchmarking laboratory at Nelson's Chicago area offices. During the tests, as many as 512 emulated users processed credit card transactions on an AMD Opteron-based server. The transactions were accepted through Apache2 ".cgi" web pages.

"Novell offers both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of SUSE Linux Enterprise because we have long realized some applications will run faster under a 32-bit operating system while others will require a 64-bit operating system," said Justin Steinman, director of marketing for Linux and Open Platform Solutions at Novell. "This test confirms that this Small Business Transaction Benchmark(TM) application running under Apache2 delivers higher throughput with the 32-bit version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10."

A white paper is available that describes the test methodology and provides more information about these findings. The white paper can be found at the web site or by sending an email request to or by calling (847) 851-8900.

The Neal Nelson benchmarking laboratory is available to commercial and government users for independent computer performance tests.

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