Seven months after the release of OpenSolaris 2008.05 (a.k.a. Project Indiana) its successor was finally released earlier this week. OpenSolaris 2008.11 was released on Tuesday with many updated packages and new features. To see how this new work has affected the performance of Sun's OpenSolaris operating system, we have benchmarked both releases through some different tests.
For these tests we used the Phoronix Test Suite, specifically Tydal 1.6.0 Alpha 2. The tests used included Gzip compression, Tandem XML, Sunflow Rendering System, Bork File Encrypter, and Java SciMark. Due to some issues with OpenSolaris 2008.05, some of the other tests found in the Nevada test suite were left out.
For testing we used an AMD Phenom 9500 quad-core processor, ECS A790GXM-A motherboard, 2GB of OCZ Reaper HPC DDR2-800MHz memory, Western Digital 160GB SATA HDD, and ECS GeForce 8800GT 256MB. OpenSolaris 2008.05 is based upon Solaris Nevada Build 86a while OpenSolaris 2008.11 is descended from Solaris Nevada Build 101b. Both the 2008.05 and 2008.11 releases use X Server 1.3, the ZFS file-system, and other defaults. The NVIDIA binary driver used in the first OpenSolaris binary release was version 169.12 while in this most recent release is the 177.80 driver. When it comes to Java on these two open-source operating systems from Sun Microsystems, 2008.05 was using build 1.6.0_04-b12 while 2008.11 depends upon build 1.6.0_10-b33.