[Mono-list] Sockets severe non-linear performance degradation

Rodrigo Kumpera kumpera at gmail.com
Tue Jun 25 15:29:49 UTC 2013

Please file a bug with a test case if you think it's a bug on mono's stack.

On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 10:58 AM, Ian Gardner <ian at cambsgardner.me.uk>wrote:

> Platform: linux ubuntu 12.04 AMD64
> Mono version
> I have just started with C# and have a simple client-server test app
> that measures throughput and latency from the client for a typical
> send+recieve message scenario. As I increase the message size to more
> than the socket send+recieve buffer size performance falls off a cliff,
> whereas I would expect latency (round trip time) to increase approx
> linearly with the ratio round_up((message size) / (socket buf size))
> and throughput (bytes/sec) to stay approx constant.
> I set socket buffer send and receive sizes = N
> When message size < N:
> Roundtrip Latency: 1-3 milliseconds
> Throughput: ~2 Mbyte/sec
> This compares well with my equivalent java/C code on the same machine,
> about equalling java as I would expect and being a bit slower than
> native C sockets (I can comfortably get sub-millisecond round trips
> with C, throughput around 5Mbyte/sec)
> When N < message size < 2 * N:
> Roundtrip Latency: 400-1000 milliseconds
> Throughput: 50-100 Kbyte/sec
> Machine shows very low CPU usage so it appears that the IO subsystem is
> not rescheduling a thread blocked on IO in a timely manner. This
> puzzles me since a direct mapping of the Socket methods onto the C
> library counterparts should achieve what is required. So have I missed
> some critical option, or does mono do something with IO/thread mapping
> onto the OS that is causing this?
> Some more detail on my test app:
> The basic loop I am timing is.
> 1. Client writes random sized buffer to socket
> 2. Server reads data
> 3. Server writes random sized buffer to socket
> 4. Client reads data and stops timer
> A message consists of a small fixed header indicating the size of
> following data.
> Thus:
>   write requires one system call since I coalesce header+data
>   read requires two system calls, one for fixed header and one for
>     variable data
> Both client and server sockets are given the same options:
>   socket.ReceiveBufferSize = 16000;
>   socket.SendBufferSize = 16000;
>   socket.NoDelay = true;
>   socket.SetSocketOption(**SocketOptionLevel.Socket,
>                          SocketOptionName.DontLinger, false);
> I have tried three basic approaches to the read/write loop.
> A. socket.Blocking = true and use socket.Receive()/socket.Send()
> B. socket.Blocking = true/false and use the async versions of
>    socket.Receive()/socket.Send()**. I.e. socket.BeginReceive() followed
>    immediately by socket.EndReceive()
> C. socket.Blocking = false and use socket.Receive()/socket.Send() and
>    socket.Poll(SelectMode.**SelectRead or SelectWrite)
>    to wait for data where appropriate.
> All three approaches show the same problem.
> Both A and C map to the same approach I have used in native sockets
> programming, and B may map to C internally so I did not really expect
> it to be any better.
> A few more points:
> 1. The code is operating correctly in the sense that it reliably
>    transfers data (which I CRC32 check), it is solely performance which
>    is the problem.
> 2. I use the high resolution System.Diagnostics.Stopwatch.**GetTimestamp()
> 3. I call an explicit System.GC.Collect() before starting each timed
>    test to reduce chances of GC skewing the timings.
> 4. I have tested over a standard TCP socket on main machine address and
>    also on local loopback address, no change.
> 5. I have not tested on windows since I purged microsoft from my life
>    several years ago and currently have no windows machine.
> 6. It is not possible from test code to know if delay is in read, write
>    or both read+write blocking.
> Any help would be appreciated.
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