FreeBSD 12 Is Running Great On The Dell PowerEdge R7425 EPYC 2P Server

Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems on 8 December 2018 at 06:10 PM EST. Page 1 of 3. 6 Comments.

With FreeBSD 11.2 the support wasn't up to scratch, but with the brand new FreeBSD 12 it is running well on the Dell PowerEdge R7425 dual EPYC server.

AMD EPYC on BSDs has generally worked out well though in the case of motherboards occasionally there are mishaps in the FreeBSD kernel support -- just as we often see with new Intel platforms too when trying out the BSDs. With the Dell PowerEdge R7425 it was hanging during the boot process on the older FreeBSD 11.2 (granted, I didn't spend much time exploring workarounds for that older BSD release), but when testing this week with FreeBSD 12.0-RC3 it has been running well. OpenBSD 6.4 was also tested on this Dell PowerEdge EPYC 2P server and it too has been running without a hitch. Unfortunately, the new DragonFlyBSD 5.4 release isn't panning out yet on the hardware: when booting the USB installer media, the system ends up rebooting during the boot process.

This PowerEdge R7425 test system as a reminder has dual AMD EPYC 7601 processors to yield a combined 64 cores / 128 threads, 16 x 32GB DDR4-2666 memory, 20 x 500GB Samsung 860 EVO SSDs, and all fits within a Dell EMC 2U chassis. Since receiving the dual EPYC test system in early October, it's been running excellent with all of the Linux distributions benchmarked while with FreeBSD 12.0 it's our first time looking closely at the BSD support and performance.

And, yes, with having twenty SSDs in there, ZFS on FreeBSD benchmarks are in the works... Including some fresh Btrfs RAID and EXT4/XFS MD-RAID benchmarks in the days ahead.

For those curious about the FreeBSD 12.0 performance on the dual EPYC 7601 server, I ran some benchmarks of it against CentOS 7.6, Clear Linux 26700, and Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS. These results are complementary to our other recent and upcoming FreeBSD 12.0 benchmarks on different hardware. All of these BSD and Linux benchmarks were carried out in a fully-automated and standardized manner using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite benchmarking software.

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