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What Is New With SFS?

Spencer Shepler
IBM Corporation
Austin, Texas

Published June, 1995; see disclaimer.

New Products

The System File Server (SFS) committee released SFS 1.1 in January of 1995. The primary criteria for this release was to make sure that all changes to the suite were workload and performance neutral so that comparisons with SFS 1.0 results would be meaningful.

The SFS 1.1 benchmark suite fixes known problems with the source, improves and clarifies the documentation, and corrects and improves the tools. As a result, it is intended that SPEC now has a higher quality and a more useful NFS server benchmark.

The entire SFS working group contributed to SFS 1.1, with special recognition to Judy Piantedosi (Digital Equipment Corp.), David Robinson (Sun Microsystems), Joan Lawler and Tom Spuhler (Hewlett-Packard) for their specific contributions.

Committee Changes

At the January 1995 SPEC annual meeting, the SPEC Open Systems Group (OSG) voted to create, under its guidance, the SFS Steering Committee. This steering committee consists of seven member companies. Between the January 1995 meeting and the April 1995 meeting in Sunnyvale, Calif., nominations were entertained for these seven steering committee positions. On April 5, the OSSC voting concluded with the following companies being selected for the SFS Steering Committee: AT&T, Auspex, DEC, HP, NAC, IBM and Sun Microsystems.

At this meeting the newly formed SFS Steering Committee (SFSSC) developed a charter and an organizational structure. The SFSSC voted in favor of the following charter:

The SFSSC charter is to develop benchmarks to characterize file server systems.

The next item the SFSSC decided upon was the officer structure. In terms of organization, the SFSSC agreed there would be a Chair, Vice Chair and Recorder. It was decided that the first term for these positions would be 13 months with elections being held at the April 1995 meeting, and positions would be reelected at the May 1996 SPEC meeting (to coincide with the OSSC officer elections). The election results for the SFSSC officers are as follows: Chair, Spencer Shepler (IBM); Vice Chair, David Robinson (Sun); and Recorder, Judy Piantedosi (DEC).


The SFS Steering Committee will have a busy year. Current work items include:

  • Creating an SFS benchmark framework to generate NFS version 3 workloads.
  • Creating new workloads for NFS version 2 and for NFS version 3.
  • Understanding what all of these will mean to the customer.
  • Considering a modification of SFS framework to generate WWW/HTTP workloads.

All of this and more will certainly keep the SFS working group busy.

Tom Spuhler's SFS leadership efforts since the release of SFS 1.0 is commendable. His input on the technical side will also be greatly appreciated.

Spencer Shepler has been employed as a Software Engineer at IBM Austin since 1989. During that time, Spencer worked on the AIX operating system with a primary focus on the NFS portion of the product. Spencer's current responsibilities include software development lead for AIX NFS and the chair of the SPEC SFS Steering Committee.

Copyright (c) 1995 Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation