[linux-lvm] pvmove speed

Roy Sigurd Karlsbakk roy at karlsbakk.net
Fri Mar 31 16:27:53 UTC 2017

>> One aspect that has confused me in this discussion, that I was hoping somebody
>> would address...
>> I believe I have seen slower than expected pvmove times in the past (but I
>> only rarely do it, so it has never particularly concerned me). When I saw it,
>> my first assumption was that the pvmove had to be done "carefully" to ensure
>> that every segment was safely moved in such a way that it was definitely in
>> one place, or definitely in the other, and not "neither" or "both". This is
>> particularly important if the volume is mounted, and is being actively used,
>> which was my case.
>> Would these safety checks not reduce overall performance? Sure, it would
>> transfer one segment at full speed, but then it might pause to do some
>> book-keeping, making sure to fully synch the data and metadata out to both
>> physical volumes and ensure that it was still crash-safe?
>> For SAN speeds - I don't think LVM has ever been proven to be a bottleneck for
>> me. On our new OpenStack cluster, I am seeing 550+ MByte/s  with iSCSI backed
>> disks, and 700+ MByte/s with NFS backed disks (with read and write cached
>> disabled). I don't even look at LVM as a cause of concern here as there is
>> usually something else at play. In fact, on the same OpenStack cluster, I am
>> using LVM on NVMe drives, with an XFS LV to back the QCOW2 images, and I can
>> get 2,000+ MByte/s sustained with this setup. Again, LVM isn't even a
>> performance consideration for me.
> So let's recap some fact first:
> lvm2 is NOT doing any device itself - all the lvm2 does - it manages dm tables
> and keeps metadata for them in sync.
> So it's always some 'dm' device what does the actual work.
> For pvmove there is currently a bit 'oldish' dm mirror target
> (see dmsetup targets for available one).
> Once it will be possible lvm2 will switch to use 'raid' target which might
> provide slightly better speed for some tasks.
> There is some 'known' issue with old mirror and smaller region size if there
> is parallel read&write into a mirror - this was not yet fully addressed,
> but if the device in the mirror the have 'bigger' latencies, usage of
> bigger chunks size does help to increase throughput.
> (In simple words - bigger --regionsize has less commit points)
> However this is likely not the case here - all devices are supposedly very
> fast and attached over hyperfast network.
> When looking at this graph: https://karlsbakk.net/tmp/pvmove-dev-util.png
> it strikes in the eyes that initial couple hours were running fine, but after
> a while  'controller' started to  prefer /dev/sdd  over  /dev/sde  and the
> usage is mostly 'reflected'.
> So my question would be - how well the controller works over the longer period
> of time of sustained load ?
> To me this looks more like a 'driver' issue for this iSCSI hardware blackbox?
> Could you also try the same load with 'dd' ?
> i.e. running 'dd'  1/2 day whether the performance will not start to drop as
> can be observed with pvmove ?
> dm mirror target is basically only using kernel  kcopyd  thread to copy device
> 'A' to device 'B' and it does sync bitmap (a bit of slowdown factor)
> So in theory it should work just like 'dd'. For 'dd' you could however
> configure some better options for 'directio' and buffer sizes.

Just to cap this up, we kept on using pvmove with the disks where we couldn't vmotion the data (that is, on raw devices) or where we setup new things and rsynced the data over. This took some time for the large servers (the 45TiB machine spent three weeks or more on this), but the data was moved and now, a few weeks later, no issues have turned up. Seems to be that although pvmove may be slow compared to the hardware, at least it works flawlessly.


Roy Sigurd Karlsbakk
(+47) 98013356
GPG Public key: http://karlsbakk.net/roysigurdkarlsbakk.pubkey.txt
Da mihi sis bubulae frustrum assae, solana tuberosa in modo Gallico fricta, ac quassum lactatum coagulatum crassum. Quod me nutrit me destruit.

More information about the linux-lvm mailing list