Three ways to improve Network File System performance

Please let us know how useful you find this tip by rating it below. Do you have a useful Windows tip, timesaver or workaround to share? Submit it to our tip contest and you could win a prize!

Microsoft Services

Requires Free Membership to View

for Network File System in Windows Server 2003 performs well out of the box, but you can make storage performance improvements with some registry tweaks.

Here are three ways to do this if you use both Windows Server 2003 and UNIX.

1. Turn off CountOperations
Although the system and process level I/O counters are useful for troubleshooting and system tuning, they do consume resources. Create the following registry entry (if it doesn't already exist): HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Session Manager\I/O System\CountOperations.
Set the value to 0 (REG_DWORD)

Next: reboot. The counters can be turned back on by setting the value to 1 or removing the registry entry.

2. Don't verify Random Drivers
This is another useful debugging tool that consumes resources when it is running. When it is on the driver, verifier randomly verifies drivers. If you don't need it, turn it off by changing the value of HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Session Manager\Memory Management\DontVerifyRandomDrivers
To 1 (REG_DWORD), and reboot.

3. Tune the number of requests
You can instruct Windows to give more disk requests to a logical disk by setting NumberOfRequests to a value between 32 and 96. The real advantage to this comes when you have a fast RAID array with an adapter that supports concurrency. Because each logical disk spans several physical disks and because some arrays are faster than others, this can improve data throughput.

The setting is found at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\MINIPORT_ADAPTER\Parameters \DeviceN\NumberOfRequests (REG_DWORD)

Where 'MINIPORT_ADAPTER' is the name of the adapter and NumberOfRequests is a number between 32 and 96.

Make an entry for each device and replace DeviceN with Device1, Device2 and so on, depending on the number of devices you are adding.

Rick Cook has been writing about mass storage since the days when the term meant an 80K floppy disk. The computers he learned on used ferrite cores and magnetic drums. For the last 20 years he has been a freelance writer specializing in storage and other computer issues.

This was first published in January 2005

There are Comments. Add yours.

TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to:

Disclaimer: Our Tips Exchange is a forum for you to share technical advice and expertise with your peers and to learn from other enterprise IT professionals. TechTarget provides the infrastructure to facilitate this sharing of information. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or validity of the material submitted. You agree that your use of the Ask The Expert services and your reliance on any questions, answers, information or other materials received through this Web site is at your own risk.