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WebLogic Server Performance and Tuning

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Top Tuning Recommendations for WebLogic Server

Performance tuning WebLogic Server and your WebLogic Server application is a complex and iterative process. To get you started, we have created a "top ten" list of recommendations to help you optimize your application's performance. These tuning techniques are applicable to nearly all WebLogic applications. Although we highly recommend performing these tasks in the sequence they are presented, this isn't a requirement.


Understand Your Performance Objectives

Gather information about the level of activity expected on your server, the anticipated number of users, the number of requests, acceptable response time, and an optimal hardware configuration (e.g., fast CPU, disk size vs. speed, sufficient memory, and so on.).

There is no single formula for determining your hardware requirements. The process of determining what type of hardware and software configuration is required to meet application needs adequately is called capacity planning. Capacity planning requires assessment of your system performance goals and an understanding of your application. Capacity planning for server hardware should focus on maximum performance requirements.

For more information about capacity planing for WebLogic Server, see the BEA WebLogic Server Capacity Planning Guide.


Tune the Operating System

Each operating system sets default tuning parameters differently. For Windows platforms, the default settings are usually sufficient. However, the UNIX and Linux operating systems usually need to be tuned appropriately.

UNIX Tuning Parameters

Use the following guidelines when tuning UNIX operating systems supported by WebLogic Server.

Solaris TCP Tuning Parameters

For better TCP (transmission control protocol) socket performance, set the tcp_time_wait_interval parameter as follows:

ndd -set /dev/tcp tcp_time_wait_interval 60000

This parameter determines the time interval that a TCP socket is kept alive after issuing a close call. The default value of this parameter on Solaris is four minutes. When a large number of clients connect for a short amount of time, holding these socket resources can have a significant negative impact on performance. Setting this parameter to a value of 60000 (60 seconds) has shown a significant throughput enhancement when running benchmark JSP tests on Solaris. You might want to reduce this setting further if the server gets backed up with a queue of half-opened connections.

Note: Prior to Solaris 2.7, the tcp_time_wait_interval parameter was called tcp_close_wait_interval.

For additional recommended Solaris tunable settings, see:

For more information about Solaris tuning options, see:

HP-UX Tuning Parameters

For HP-UX tuning information, see:

AIX Tuning Parameters

See the AIX 5L Version 5.2 Performance Management Guide.

Linux Tuning Parameters

For better packet transfer performance, set the /sbin/ifconfig lo mtu parameter as follows:

/sbin/ifconfig lo mtu 1500

The mtu (maximum transfer unit) parameter refers to largest number of bytes that a packet can carry over the network. If the packet size is set too low, then your network performance will decrease due to fragmented data.

For additional recommended Linux tunable settings for WebLogic Server, see Linux Tuning Parameters. For general information about Linux tuning, consult your Linux vendor's documentation. Also, the Ipsysctl Tutorial 1.0.4 describes all of the IP options provided by Linux.

Windows Tuning Parameters

For Windows platforms, the default settings are usually sufficient. For more information about Windows 2000 tuning options, see:


Optimize Your Database

Your database can be a major enterprise-level bottleneck. Configure your database for optimal performance by following the tuning guidelines in this section and in the product documentation for the database you are using.

General Suggestions

Here are some general database tuning suggestions:

Database-Specific Tuning

Here are some basic tuning suggestions for Oracle, SQL Server, and Sybase. Again, you should also check the tuning guidelines in your database-specific vendor documentation.


This section describes performance tuning for Oracle 8.1.7.

Microsoft SQL Server

The following guidelines pertain to performance tuning parameters for Microsoft SQL Server databases. For more information about these parameters, see your Microsoft SQL Server documentation.


The following guidelines pertain to performance tuning parameters for Sybase databases. For more information about these parameters, see your Sybase documentation.


Identify the Best JVM Settings

Tune your JVM's heap garbage collection and heap size parameters to get the best performance out of your JVM. The Sun HotSpot and WebLogic JRockit JVM parameters that most significantly affect performance are listed below. For more detailed information, consult your JVM vendor's tuning documentation, as well as the JVM-related reading material at Java Virtual Machine (JVM) Information.


When using the HotSpot VM option (-server or -client), experiment with the following garbage collection parameters:

For more information about tuning the HotSpot JVM, see JVM Heap Size and Garbage Collection.

JRockit JDK

When using JRockit's JVM, experiment with the following garbage collection parameters:

Also, see WebLogic JRockit Documentation.


Tune WebLogic Server Performance Parameters

The WebLogic Server configuration file (config.xml) contains a number of OOTB (out-of-the-box) performance-related parameters that can be fine-tuned depending on your environment and applications. Tuning these parameters based on your system requirements (rather than running with default settings) can greatly improve both single-node performance and the scalability characteristics of an application.

Try experimenting with the following WebLogic Server configuration tuning parameters to determine your system's "sweet spot" for optimal performance:


Monitor Disk and CPU Utilization

After following the previous steps, run your application under a high load while monitoring the:

To check your disk utilization on Solaris or Linux, use the iostat -D <interval> command, where the interval value determines how many seconds you want to elapse between monitoring cycles. To check your CPU utilization, simply leave off the -D flag (iostat <interval>).

For Windows, use the Performance Monitor tool (perfmon), to monitor both your disk and CPU utilization.

The goal is to get to a point where the application server becomes 100 percent utilized. If you find that the application server CPU is not close to 100 percent, confirm whether the database is bottlenecked. If the database CPU is 100 percent utilized, then check your application SQL calls query plans. For example, are your SQL calls using indexes or doing linear searches? Also, confirm whether there are too many ORDER BY clauses used in your application that are affecting the database CPU.

If you discover that the database disk is the bottleneck (for example, if the disk is 100 percent utilized), try moving to faster disks or to a RAID (redundant array of independent disks) configuration, assuming the application is not doing more writes then required.

Once you know the database server is not the bottleneck, determine whether the application server disk is the bottleneck. Some of the disk bottlenecks for application server disks are:

The disk I/O on an application server can be optimized using faster disks or RAID, disabling synchronous JMS writes, using JTA direct writes for tlogs, or increasing the HTTP log buffer.


Monitor Data Transfers Across the Network

Check the amount of data transferred between the application and the application server, and between the application server and the database server. This amount should not exceed your network bandwidth; otherwise, your network becomes the bottleneck. To verify this, monitor the network statistics for retransmission and duplicate packets. This can be done using the following command:

netstat -s -P tcp

For instructions on viewing other TCP parameters using the netstat -s -P command, see Setting TCP Parameters With the ndd Command.


Check For Frequent Standard I/O or Logging

Make sure your application is not doing too much standard I/O or excessive logging. Either situation could significantly slow system performance. In production environments, remove all system.out.println statements from your code, as these statements should only be used in development environments for debugging purposes.


Locate Bottlenecks in Your Applications

If you determine that neither the network nor the database server is the bottleneck, start looking at your WebLogic Server applications. Most importantly, is the machine running WebLogic Server able to get 100 percent CPU utilization with a high client load? If the answer is no, then check if there is any locking taking place in the application. You should profile your application using a commercially available tool (for example, JProbe or OptimizeIt) to pinpoint bottlenecks and improve application performance.

Tip: Even if you find that the CPU is 100 percent utilized, you should profile your application for performance improvements.

For more information about application profiling tools, see Using Performance Analysis Tools.


Tune Your Application

This section contains recommended application-specific tuning suggestions for performance improvement.


See Tuning WebLogic Server EJBs.

JSPs and Servlets

See "Introduction to Programming" in Programming WebLogic HTTP Servlets.


See the "WebLogic JMS Performance Guide" white paper on BEA dev2dev. For administrative tuning guidelines, see "JMS Tuning" in the Administration Console Online Help.


See How JDBC Connection Pools Enhance Performance and "Performance Tuning Your JDBC Application" in Programming WebLogic JDBC.


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