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Compaq Sets Price Benchmark on TPC-C

The cost per database transaction on industry standard benchmarks continues to drop for Windows-based servers, with Compaq Computer Corp. showing off the latest economy results on the Transaction Performance Processing Council's OLTP benchmark, the TPC-C.

Compaq this week highlighted a benchmark run on the closely watched TPC-C benchmark that achieved 17,000 tpmC (transactions per minute on the TPC-C benchmark) at a cost of $3.99 each.

The TPC-C is one of several benchmarks overseen by the TPC and is a standard measure of large online transaction processing systems typical of those used in the back-end of large companies' order-entry systems.

Vendors such as Compaq, IBM, Dell, Sun and others compete in two ways on the TPC-C benchmark. They push for scalability on one hand and price/performance on the other. Systems that perform best on scale are typically anchored by large Unix-based SMP database machines or clusters of Windows servers. Systems aimed at achieving low price/performance tend to be anchored by very small servers, such as the two-processor ProLiant ML370 Compaq used in its test. That system ran Windows 2000 Server and SQL Server 2000.

The Compaq number, which is the first result to go below $4 per transaction, is not radically better in price/performance than other current systems from Dell and IBM, which are at $4.38 and $4.67 per transaction, respectively.

As a measure of how much system cost has dropped in recent years, however, Compaq notes that it was first to produce a system that cost less than $100 per transaction in 1996.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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