Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Dell PowerConnect 2708 Performance

Just a quick note to say that the Dell PowerConnect 2708 is fantastic. I was able to get a sustained 112MB per second (that's 112 megabytes, not megabits) between two Core 2 Duo machines (Vista/Windows 2003 Server R2) using PCATTCP. That means that the connection is completely saturated and that the Dell box is switching at the maximum possible speed. Sweet.

In more real world numbers, I was able to get sustained 2.2GB/minute transfer rate using normal Windows file sharing copying from Vista to the server when the file copy was initiated on the Windows 2003 Server side. That's close to the maximum read speed for the source disk, so presumably the disk was the bottleneck and not the network.

Oddly enough, when the file copy was initiated on the Vista side, I only got about 1.2GB/minute with the same file being copied to the same destination. I can't explain that.

[Edited 8/27/2007 to add information on the read speed of the disk.]


  1. I've had similar issues with vista and GbE. I found that if I rebooted and initiated a large transfer from a dell server (2003) and my desktop (Vista 64) I would get about 93 MB/s which is about as fast as both drives can read and write. Over time however, the tranfer rate from Vista to 2003 would slow down considerably. I suspect the dynamic tcp window "feature" does not do a very good job.

  2. Thank you for sharing this precious review! :)

    Note: I cannot understand sustained speed datas correctly... 112 MB/s is 112 x 8 = 896 Mbit and it is OK but 112 MB/s should give (112 x 60)/1024 = 6.5 GB/min!

  3. jamesjameson,

    The 6.5GB/minute figure is a contrived speed test, with no delays waiting for a hard drive to provide data.

    In consumer PCs, a more realistic number when copying files is 5 to 25% of the maximum, depending on whether the files being copied are small or large (ie. substantially sequential data or substantially random access.)