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Optimizing Microsoft SQL Server 2022 on Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3

Solution Brief

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Change History

Changes in the August 1 update:

  • Added solution information and configuration for SQL Server 2022 Standard Edition

Data growth problem and a solution

In today’s world information is a valuable asset that demands the right tools to collect and manage critical business data. As the volume and velocity of data increase, however, extracting meaningful insight in a timely manner becomes more complex. It’s important for businesses of all sizes to choose a database solution that matches the requirements of the company, resulting in the most efficient outcome.

Lenovo Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server on ThinkSystem SR650 V3 are optimized for both Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) and Data Warehouse (DW) and are Accelerated by Intel offerings. This technical brief features Microsoft SQL Server 2022 running on a high-performance Lenovo dual-socket 2U rack mount enterprise server. The server is configured with 4th Generation Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors, TruDDR5 4800MHz memory and P5620 NVMe drives among a variety of storage options, including support for the PCIe 5.0 standard devices for I/O. These new processors from Intel offer up to 60 cores and 16x 4800 MHz DDR5 DIMMs per socket.

The SR650 V3 server is a storage dense offering, with up to 40 2.5" drive bays in the front, middle and rear of the server and 5 different slot configurations at the rear of the server. Onboard NVMe PCIe ports allow direct connections to 16 NVMe SSDs, which frees up PCIe slots and lowers NVMe solution acquisition costs.

Enterprise database solutions with faster time-to-value

Lenovo SR650 V3 systems are methodically tested and tuned to save you months of configuration, setup, testing, and tuning. With these new servers, you get the following advantages:

  • Realize 40% better performance for workloads running on 4th generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors than on similar servers equipped with previous generation processors
  • Improve performance of SQL Server solutions with higher core counts, memory bandwidth and PCIe Gen 5 devices
  • Improve density and support more and larger databases per host

 

Highlights
  • Reduce time to value with pretested and sized hardware configurations
  • Simplified evaluation, fast and easy deployment and workload optimized performance
  • Database sized solution with optimal compute, memory, storage and networking components
  • Reduce TCO through better performance, rapid deployment and advanced hardware
  • Optimize performance with pretested ThinkSystem SR650 V3 hardware configurations

Microsoft SQL Server 2022

SQL Server 2022 includes updates to existing features like Intelligent Query Processing in addition to management, platform or language.

Starting with SQL 2022, runtimes for R, Python, and Java are no longer installed with SQL Setup. Instead, install any desired custom runtime(s) and packages.

Here are some performance enhancements in SQL Server 2022:

  • Improvements have been made to all columnstore indexes that benefit from enhanced segment elimination by data type.
  • Concurrent updates to global allocation map pages reduce page latch contention
  • Improvements in buffer pool scan operations on large-memory systems by using multiple CPU cores for parallel scans
  • Improvements to Clustered ColumnStore Indices to sort existing data in memory before index builder compresses the data
  • Support for Intel QuickAssist Technology (QAT) backup compression with software or hardware acceleration
  • TempDB performance enhancements for scalability
  • Shrink database uses low priority processing to minimize impact on performance
  • In-memory OLTP enhancements

Here are some management improvements:

  • Additional Azure integration
  • Link to Azure SQL Managed Instance
  • Accelerated Database Recovery (ADR)
  • Always On Availability Group enhancements

SQL Server Enterprise Edition delivers comprehensive database capabilities with end-to-end business intelligence, enabling high service levels for mission-critical workloads. SQL Server Standard Edition includes basic database and business intelligence for smaller organizations that need less features, benefiting from the lower cost compared to SQL Server Enterprise Edition. A detailed comparison of SQL editions can be found here.

 

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3 offerings are ideal for modernizing your legacy SQL Server applications because of their low cost and high-performance capabilities. They are industry standard x86 servers providing cost effective computing and fast high-density local storage.

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3 servers offer the necessary performance for bare metal or virtualized SQL Servers. High performance can be achieved using Hyper-V and Storage Spaces Direct technology which are built into Windows Server. Several technologies like NVMe storage and Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) networking are natively supported in Windows Server to enable the highest levels of performance.

The configurations feature the following main components:

Table 1. Lenovo Solution Configurations
Database Microsoft SQL Server 2022 Enterprise Edition Microsoft SQL Server 2022 Standard Edition
OS Microsoft Windows Server 2022 Microsoft Windows Server 2022
Server Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3 Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3
Processor 2x 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable, 8480+ 56 core 2x 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable, 8444H 2.9 Ghz 16 core
Memory 4TB of TRUDDR5 4800 MHz memory 2TB of TRUDDR5 4800 MHz memory
DB Storage 6x Intel P5620 1.6TB NVMe SSDs 6x Intel P5620 1.6TB NVMe SSDs
Log Storage 2x Intel P5620 1.6TB NVMe SSDs Raid1 2x Intel P5620 1.6TB NVMe SSDs Raid1
OS Storage 2x 480GB M.2 SATA SSDs for the operating system (RAID 1) 2x 480GB M.2 SATA SSDs for the operating system (RAID 1)

These high-performance database solutions with Microsoft SQL Server 2022 Enterprise and Standard Editions feature the latest Intel Optane NVMe SSDs. These SSDs help build a low latency solution for mission critical SQL Server applications.

Backup Compression and Off-Loading

SQL Server 2022 introduces backup performance improvements with a new compression algorithm and hardware offloading and acceleration with Intel QuickAssist Technology (QAT).

Improvements can be seen with either software only compression or by using Intel hardware that supports QAT offloading and acceleration. Intel offers on-chip QAT hardware offloading with the latest Intel Xeon Scalable processors. SQL Server 2022 Enterprise Edition supports hardware or software QAT while SQL Server 2022 Standard Edition only supports software QAT.

The benefits of hardware QAT include:

  • Reduced backup capacity
  • Minimal CPU impact
  • Minimal workload impact
  • Faster backups
  • Faster restores

In software only mode, it still utilizes the Intel QAT algorithm to improve backup times.

The table below shows Lenovo test results of hardware mode QAT backups. We saw considerable performance improvement over the standard MS_XPRESS compression method.

Backup and Restore Tests

The tests were run with the server under load, at 98% CPU usage, backing up a 1000 scale TPCH database. This is where the most benefit can be seen with QAT as it performs a hardware offload to improve backup performance. There is significant improvement over the standard SQL compression during heavy loads.

Table 2. Comparison of MS_XPRESS and Intel QuickAssist Technology (QAT) Compression
Compression Type Time (sec) MB/sec Backup File Size
MS_XPRESS  
Backup 2299 216 390 GB
Restore 994 500  
QAT HW Offloaded  
Backup 919 542 357 GB
Restore 447 1112  

Enable and Configure QAT

Enable QAT:

sp_configure 'show advanced options', 1

GO

RECONFIGURE with override

GO

 

sp_configure 'hardware offload enabled', 1

GO

RECONFIGURE with override

GO

 

Restart SQL to apply

 

Enable QAT hardware mode

ALTER SERVER CONFIGURATION

SET HARDWARE_OFFLOAD = ON (ACCELERATOR = QAT)

 

Restart SQL to apply

 

Verify QAT status:

SELECT * FROM

sys.dm_server_accelerator_status;

GO

 

Restart the SQL instance to apply changes

Run Backups

No compression

BACKUP DATABASE [TPC-H1000] TO DISK = 'D:\backups\MSSQL1.bak' WITH FORMAT, NO_COMPRESSION

 

MS_XPRESS compression

BACKUP DATABASE [TPC-H1000] TO DISK = 'D:\backups\MS-XPRESS.bak' WITH FORMAT, COMPRESSION (ALGORITHM = MS_XPRESS)

GO

 

QAT compression

BACKUP DATABASE [TPC-H1000] TO DISK = 'D:\backups\QAT-DEFLATE.bak' WITH FORMAT, COMPRESSION (ALGORITHM = QAT_DEFLATE)

GO

Best practices for running SQL Server Enterprise Edition on ThinkSystem SR650 V3

For a high-performance SQL Server solution, implement the following best practices:

  • Configure UEFI (Bios) settings to set Operating mode to Maximum performance.
  • Configure power profile in Windows Server to ‘High performance’.
  • SQL server database and log drives are recommended to be formatted with 64KB NTFS cluster size.
  • SQL server database and log files should be on separate physical drives.
  • The OS and SQL server binary drives are recommended to be formatted with standard 4KB NTFS cluster size.
  • TempDB is shared by many processes and users as a temporary working area and should be configured appropriately. Default configuration will be suitable for most workloads. Use the install experience for guided configuration. More info in Microsoft TempDB Database documentation.
  • If the server is dedicated to the SQL Server workload, use the default dynamic memory management model or follow Microsoft SQL documentation guidelines for manually configuring memory options if finer grain control is desired.

 

Figure 1. Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3

 

Best practices for running SQL Server Standard Edition on ThinkSystem SR650 V3

For a high-performance SQL Server Standard Edition solution, implement the following best practices:

  • Configure UEFI (BIOS) settings to set Operating mode to Maximum performance.
  • Enable Hyper-threading in the BIOS
  • In the Bios, set the core count per processor to 12 because SQL Standard Edition is limited to 48 processors. With 2 sockets, and Hyper-threading enabled this equals 48.
  • Configure power profile in Windows Server to ‘High performance'.
  • SQL server database and log drives are recommended to be formatted with 64KB NTFS cluster size.
  • SQL server database and log files should be on separate physical drives.
  • The OS and SQL server binary drives are recommended to be formatted with standard 4KB NTFS cluster size.
  • TempDB is shared by many processes and users as a temporary working area and should be configured appropriately. Default configuration will be suitable for most workloads. Use the install experience for guided configuration. More info in Microsoft TempDB Database documentation.
  • If the server is dedicated to the SQL Server workload, use the default dynamic memory management model or follow Microsoft SQL documentation guidelines for manually configuring memory options if finer grain control is desired.

Performance Testing Details and Results

HammerDB Configuration and Intel Gen 3 - Gen 4 Comparison

HammerDB is an open-source load testing / benchmarking tool for databases available at: http:///www.hammerdb.com. It offers tools for testing performance on OLTP and Analytics workloads. The OLTP workload is based on TPC-C benchmark from http://www.tpc.org and the Analytics workload is based on TPC-H benchmark from tpc.org. Hammerdb 4.7 was run on a separate load server. Below are details of the testing and results.

Table 3. TPC-C and TPC-H performance testing details and results
Database tested MS SQL Server 2022 Enterprise Edition MS SQL Server 2022 Enterprise Edition MS SQL Server 2022 Standard Edition
Processor Generation SR650 V3 - 4th Gen Intel Xeon SP SR650 V2 - 3rd Gen Intel Xeon SP SR650 V3 - 4th Gen Intel Xeon SP
Hardware Configuration ThinkSystem SR650 V3, 2x Intel Xeon 8480+ processors, 4TB memory, Intel P5620 NVMe drives ThinkSystem SR650 V2, 2x Intel Xeon 8380 processors, 2TB memory, Intel P5600 NVMe drives ThinkSystem SR650 V3, 2x Intel Xeon 8444H 16 core 2.9 Ghz processors, 2TB memory, Intel P5620 NVMe drives
Benchmarks simulated TPC-C and TPC-H TPC-C and TPC-H TPC-C and TPC-H
Database size: TPC-C 100 GB 800 warehouse, distributed over 8 NVMe drives (6 DB, 2 Log) 100 GB 800 warehouse, distributed over 8 NVMe drives (6 DB, 2 Log) 100 GB 800 warehouse, distributed over 8 NVMe drives (6 DB, 2 Log)
Database size: TPC-H 1000 Scale Factor 1000 Scale Factor 1000 Scale Factor
Run time parameters: TPC-C      
Virtual users 150 150 150
User delay 1 ms 1 ms 1 ms
Run time parameters: TPC-H      
Virtual users 7 7 7
Scale 1000 1000 1000
TPC-C results      
TPM (million) 5.67 4.49 3.67
NOPM (million) 2.48 1.95 1.58
TPC-H results      
QpH 1443 1251 95
Query Time (minutes) 6.4 7.2 97

TPM = Transactions per minute; NOPM = New orders per minute; QpH = Queries per hour

Bill of Materials (Enterprise Edition solution)

Table 4. Bill of Materials (Enterprise Edition solution)
7D76CTO1WW Server: ThinkSystem SR650 V3 - 3yr Warranty 1
BLKK ThinkSystem V3 2U 24 x 2.5" Chassis 1
BNOM Intel Xeon Platinum 8480+ 56C 350W 2.0GHz Processor 2
BNFC ThinkSystem 128GB TruDDR5 4800 MHz (4Rx4) 3DS RDIMM 32
B8NY ThinkSystem RAID 940-8i 4GB Flash PCIe Gen4 12Gb Adapter 1
BNEG ThinkSystem 2.5" U.2 P5620 1.6TB Mixed Use NVMe PCIe 4.0 x4 HS SSD 8
B8LU ThinkSystem 2U 8 x 2.5" SAS/SATA Backplane 1
BH8D ThinkSystem 2U/4U 8 x 2.5" NVMe Backplane 1
BM8X ThinkSystem M.2 SATA/x4 NVMe 2-Bay Enablement Kit 1
AUUV ThinkSystem M.2 128GB SATA 6Gbps Non-Hot Swap SSD 2
B93E ThinkSystem Intel I350 1GbE RJ45 4-port OCP Ethernet Adapter 1
BLKM ThinkSystem V3 2U x16/x16/E PCIe Gen4 Riser1 or 2 2
BMUF ThinkSystem 1800W 230V Platinum Hot-Swap Gen2 Power Supply 2
BLL6 ThinkSystem 2U V3 Performance Fan Module 6
BRQ1 ThinkSystem SR650 V3,SATA CBL,SLx8-SLx4,M.2-M.2(MB),150mm 1
BSYM ThinkSystem SR650 V3,PCIe4 Cable,Swift8x-SL8x,2in1,PCIe 6/5(MB) to BP1/BP2/td> 1
BETS ThinkSystem V3 2U SFF C0 (RAID) to Front 8x2.5" BP1 1
BPE3 ThinkSystem SR650 V3 MCIO8x to SL8x CBL, PCIe4, 8x2.5 AnyBay, 200mm 2
BQ12 G4 x16/x16/E PCIe Riser BLKM for Riser 1 Placement 1
BQ19 G4 x16/x16/E PCIe Riser BLKM for Riser 2 Placement 1
7S0XCTO2WW Lenovo XClarity XCC2 Platinum Upgrade 1
5641PX3 XClarity Pro, Per Endpoint w/3 Yr SW S&S 1
1340 Lenovo XClarity Pro, Per Managed Endpoint w/3 Yr SW S&S 1
QAA8 SR650 V3 3Y STANDARD 1

Bill of Materials (Standard Edition solution)

Table 5. Bill of Materials (Standard Edition solution)
7D76CTO1WW Server: ThinkSystem SR650 V3 - 3yr Warranty 1
BLKK ThinkSystem V3 2U 24 x 2.5" Chassis 1
BPPH Intel Xeon Platinum 8444H 16C 270W 2.9GHz Processor 2
BNFC ThinkSystem 128GB TruDDR5 4800 MHz (4Rx4) 3DS RDIMM 16
B8NY ThinkSystem RAID 940-8i 4GB Flash PCIe Gen4 12Gb Adapter 1
BNEG ThinkSystem 2.5" U.2 P5620 1.6TB Mixed Use NVMe PCIe 4.0 x4 HS SSD 8
B8LU ThinkSystem 2U 8 x 2.5" SAS/SATA Backplane 1
BH8D ThinkSystem 2U/4U 8 x 2.5" NVMe Backplane 1
BM8X ThinkSystem M.2 SATA/x4 NVMe 2-Bay Enablement Kit 1
AUUV ThinkSystem M.2 128GB SATA 6Gbps Non-Hot Swap SSD 2
B93E ThinkSystem Intel I350 1GbE RJ45 4-port OCP Ethernet Adapter 1
BLKM ThinkSystem V3 2U x16/x16/E PCIe Gen4 Riser1 or 2 2
BMUF ThinkSystem 1800W 230V Platinum Hot-Swap Gen2 Power Supply 2
BLL6 ThinkSystem 2U V3 Performance Fan Module 6
BRQ1 ThinkSystem SR650 V3,SATA CBL,SLx8-SLx4,M.2-M.2(MB),150mm 1
BSYM ThinkSystem SR650 V3,PCIe4 Cable,Swift8x-SL8x,2in1,PCIe 6/5(MB) to BP1/BP2/td> 1
BETS ThinkSystem V3 2U SFF C0 (RAID) to Front 8x2.5" BP1 1
BPE3 ThinkSystem SR650 V3 MCIO8x to SL8x CBL, PCIe4, 8x2.5 AnyBay, 200mm 2
BQ12 G4 x16/x16/E PCIe Riser BLKM for Riser 1 Placement 1
BQ19 G4 x16/x16/E PCIe Riser BLKM for Riser 2 Placement 1
7S0XCTO2WW Lenovo XClarity XCC2 Platinum Upgrade 1
5641PX3 XClarity Pro, Per Endpoint w/3 Yr SW S&S 1
1340 Lenovo XClarity Pro, Per Managed Endpoint w/3 Yr SW S&S 1
QAA8 SR650 V3 3Y STANDARD 1

Accelerated by Intel

To deliver the best experience possible, Lenovo and Intel have optimized this solution to leverage Intel capabilities like processor accelerators not available in other systems. Accelerated by Intel means enhanced performance to help you achieve new innovations and insight that can give your company an edge.

Why Lenovo

Lenovo is a US$70 billion revenue Fortune Global 500 company serving customers in 180 markets around the world. Focused on a bold vision to deliver smarter technology for all, we are developing world-changing technologies that power (through devices and infrastructure) and empower (through solutions, services and software) millions of customers every day.

 

 

For More Information

To learn more about this Lenovo solution contact your Lenovo Business Partner or visit: https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/servers-storage/solutions/database/

References:

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 V3: https://lenovopress.lenovo.com/lp1601

Microsoft SQL Server 2022: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/sql-server/what-s-new-in-sql-server-2022?view=sql-server-ver16

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Trademarks

Lenovo and the Lenovo logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Lenovo in the United States, other countries, or both. A current list of Lenovo trademarks is available on the Web at https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/legal/copytrade/.

The following terms are trademarks of Lenovo in the United States, other countries, or both:
Lenovo®
AnyBay®
ThinkSystem®
XClarity®

The following terms are trademarks of other companies:

Intel®, Intel Optane™, and Xeon® are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries.

Azure®, Hyper-V®, Microsoft®, SQL Server®, Windows Server®, and Windows® are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

TPC, TPC-C, and TPC-H are trademarks of Transaction Processing Performance Council.

Other company, product, or service names may be trademarks or service marks of others.