NSTL Benchmark Demonstrates That Microsoft Windows DNA Development Model Delivers High Performance and Availability For Enterprise Web Applications

DALLAS, May 24, 1999 — Today at its annual Tech ·Ed event, Microsoft Corp. announced the results of an independent benchmark test that demonstrates the ability of the Microsoft® Visual Studio® development system and the Windows NT® Server operating system to create and run high-traffic, dynamic Web applications. In the opening Tech ·Ed keynote, Paul Maritz, vice president of the Developer Group at Microsoft, demonstrated the Windows® Distributed interNet Applications (Windows DNA) Web application that formed the basis of the benchmark from NSTL Inc. The application, based on server-side Visual Basic® development system COM components running in Microsoft Transaction Server, was loaded with 5,000 concurrent Web clients while maintaining average response times of less than two seconds per page. Ninety percent of the application pages were generated dynamically on the middle-tier application services, which were connected to a single SQL Server TM 7.0 database server.

The results of the independent benchmark, published today by NSTL, an industry-leading independent software testing agency, show that the Web application, running on Microsoft Windows NT Server’s Internet Information Server (IIS) 4.0 technologies, can scale to meet extremely high loads on a reference Compaq ProLiant hardware platform running Microsoft Windows operating system Load Balancing Services within a Compaq Distributed Internet Server Array (DISA) architecture.

Developer Resource: The Visual Studio Solutions Center

Proper application design and coding practices can make or break an application’s scalability and performance levels. To help developers use proper application design and coding practices, Microsoft also today announced the Visual Studio Solutions Center Web site. It contains a wealth of information about the application design, coding practices and performance tuning for Visual Studio and other Microsoft products for building Web applications, including the following:

  • The source code for the benchmark application

  • Architecture design guides for the application

  • Performance tuning guides and resources for various Microsoft Windows DNA technologies

The site, combined with the NSTL-published testing methodology, serves as an important new resource for developers seeking to deploy Web applications on Windows NT Server using IIS 4.0, Active Server Pages, Microsoft Transaction Server and Microsoft SQL Server TM 7.0.

Testing Methodology

The benchmark measures the
“user experience”
of a reference dynamic Web application as large numbers of concurrent Web users are added to the system, capturing page response times in an easy-to-interpret manner. The benchmark application is based on a fictitious financial management corporation and represents a simplified financial portfolio management and Web-based transaction system. All testing methodology, including detailed hardware and software specifications, is available on the NSTL Web site at .

  • Windows DNA Performance Benchmark Application

    This reference application benchmarked on the NSTL benchmark was implemented as a Windows DNA application using Visual Studio:

  • The application was created using the Visual InterDev TM Web development system 6.0 with Active Server Pages and middle-tier Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 COM components.

  • The application was tested running on the Microsoft Web application server technologies, consisting of Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0, Internet Information Server 4.0 and Microsoft Transaction Server (MTS) 2.0.

  • Four Compaq ProLiant application servers were load-balanced using Microsoft Windows Load Balancing Services.

  • The application was powered by a single SQL Server 7.0 database consisting of over 5 million rows of live data.

  • NSTL Laboratory and Testing Methodology

  • The lab consisted of 70 client computers running RSW Software’s ELOAD load-test software capable of generating up to 7,000 concurrent browser sessions.

  • The tests were conducted on a reference hardware platform consisting of Compaq ProLiant 6400R and 6500R servers designed for corporate data centers and ISPs.

  • Five test scenarios were run simultaneously to emulate real-world usage patterns, including database searching, browsing and transactional pages.

We are pleased to make the benchmark design information and source code available to all developers on the MSDN TM Web site,”
said Tod Nielsen, vice president of Developer Division Marketing at Microsoft.
“The benchmark shows that the millions of developers using Visual Basic and Visual C++® can build highly scalable Web applications with the tools they already know.”

“Our tests revealed that the Visual Studio application was able to maintain average page response times of less than five seconds with up to 7,200 concurrent users, and achieved peak throughput at 880 Web interactions per second on the reference hardware platform consisting of four middle-tier application servers and one database server,”
said Lloyd Holder, director of Testing Operations at NSTL.
“The application demonstrated near-linear scalability as application servers were added to the cluster. In addition, the application demonstrated excellent fail-over and recovery capabilities during our failover tests that simulated catastrophic severe failure. This is important because high availability is a critical requirement for public Web applications, as well as mission-critical intranet applications.”

Customers Attest to Windows DNA Development Model for Building High-Traffic Web Applications

“The modular architecture of Windows NT allows us to scale our service by adding more (often inexpensive) machines instead of trying to cram more and more resources into a monolithic solution,”
said Sean Nolan, development manager at drugstore.com.
“We’ve used technologies like MSMQ and OLE DB to create a truly distributed system in which we place high confidence.”

Windows DNA – The Development Model for Building Distributed Applications Today

Windows DNA is a development model that enables corporate developers and independent software vendors to design and build multitier, distributed business applications. Using technologies that are inherent to the Windows platform, Windows DNA enables seamless integration and interoperability with enterprise applications running on other major platforms such as UNIX, IBM mainframes and AS400s. Windows DNA provides a common service infrastructure that enables more efficient application development by freeing developers from having to build or assemble common middle-tier services.

More information and valuable resources can be found at:

Windows DNA home page: http://www.microsoft.com/dna/

Visual Studio Solutions site: http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/downloads/solutions.asp

NSTL home page: http://www.nstl.com

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, Visual Studio, Windows NT, Windows, Visual Basic, MSDN, Visual C++ and Visual InterDev are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

Related Posts