After providing benchmarks last week of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS on different Amazon EC2 instance types, up today are more benchmarks from the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud. Rather than just tossing out a lot of Amazon EC2 numbers of the different instance types to judge their performance, this article offers benchmarks of different Linux distributions on the same cloud. Tested here are Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, Amazon Linux AMI 2012.03, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3, and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11.
An Amazon EC2 c1.xlarge instance was used when benchmarking these four x86_64 Linux distributions with their stock settings and packages. The c1.xlarge is Amazon's "High-CPU Extra Large Instance" with 20 EC2 Compute Units comprised of eight virtual cores with 2.5 EC2 Compute Units per core, 7GB of system memory, 1690GB of instance storage, and high I/O performance.
As shown in the auto-generated Phoronix Test Suite table, Ubuntu 12.04 LTS is using the Linux 3.2 kernel with GCC 4.6, the Fedora-based Amazon Linux is using the Linux 3.2 kernel with GCC 4.4.6, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3 has the Linux 2.6.32 kernel with GCC 4.4.6, and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 ships with the Linux 3.0 kernel on GCC 4.3. All of these Linux distributions were using an EXT4 file-system except for SLES that is still on EXT3. Those are the main details to note between distributions, with additional information being available from the Phoronix Test Suite table and the system logs and other data hosted via OpenBenchmarking.org. One caveat to note is that while a c1.xlarge instance was selected throughout, for the Ubuntu and Amazon AMI testing this was on underlying Intel Xeon E5410 hardware while the RHEL and SLES instance got pushed to a different but similar Intel Xeon E5506-powered hardware.