SLOB Use Cases By Industry Vendors. Learn SLOB, Speak The Experts’ Language.

For general SLOB information, please visit:

List of Vendors Who Publish SLOB Testing Results

The list of vendors’ SLOB use cases discussed in this blog post are (in no particular order):

  • VMware
  • A joint paper co-branded by Intel and Quanta Cloud Technologies
  • VCE
  • Nutanix
  • NetApp
  • Microsoft (Azure)
  • HPE
  • Pure Storage
  • Nimble
  • IBM
  • Red Hat
  • Dell EMC
  • Red Stack Tech.
  • Vexata
  • Datrium

Beyond vendors, I’ll show SLOB usage at as well.


This is just a quick blog entry to showcase a few of the publications from IT vendors showcasing SLOB. SLOB allows performance engineers to speak in short sentences. As I’ve pointed out before, SLOB is not used to test how well Oracle handles transactions. If you are worried that Oracle cannot handle transactions then you have bigger problems than what can be tested with SLOB. SLOB is how you test whether–or how well–a platform can satisfy SQL-driven database physical I/O.

SLOB testing is not at all like using a transactional test kit (e.g., TPC-C). Transactional test kits are, first and foremost, Oracle intrinsic code testing kits (the code of the server itself). Here again I say if you are questioning (testing) Oracle transaction layer code then something is really wrong. Sure, transactional kits involve physical I/O but the ratio of CPU utilization to physical I/O is generally not conducive to testing even mid-range modern storage without massive compute capability. This is why vendors and dutiful systems experts rely on SLOB.

Recent SLOB testing on top-bin Broadwell Xeons (E5-2699v4) show that each core is able to drive over 50,000 physical read IOPS (db file sequential read).  On the contrary 50,000 IOPS is about what one would expect from over a dozen of such cores with a transactional test kit because the CPU is being used to execute Oracle intrinsic transaction code paths and, indeed, some sundry I/O.

SLOB Use Cases By IT Vendors

The following are links and screenshots from various vendors showing some of their SLOB use cases. Generally speaking, if you are shopping for modern storage–optimized for Oracle Database–you should expect to see SLOB results in a vendor’s literature.


The first case I’d like to share is that of a solution built by FlashGrid. This solution is all about using AWS EC2 instances, along with FlashGrid technology and best practices for Real Application Clusters,  in the AWS Cloud. I am not an expert on Flash Grid and am merely reporting their usage of SLOB as can be seen in the following paper and blog post:

I do recommend getting a copy of this paper!

FlashGrid Characterizing Real Application Clusters Performance with SLOB in the AWS Cloud (EC2 instances)


VMware showcasing VSAN with Oracle using SLOB at:


VMware Using SLOB to Assess VSAN Suitability for Oracle Database

VMware has an additional publication showing SLOB results at the following URL:

VMware have published several blog posts characterizing PMEM integration with Oracle Database 19c and 21c

Thanks to my old friend Sudhir Balasubramanian for sending links to several other of his VMware blogs featuring excellent performance characterizations using SLOB and the SLOB Method.

Intel and Quanta Cloud Technologies – a Co-Branded Whitepaper

The following is a link to a Principled Technologies publication. This whitepaper is co-branded by Intel and Quanta Cloud Technologies. The paper proves platform suitability of  VMware/Quanta Cloud Technologies and Intel processors for Oracle I/O intensive workloads with SLOB results:

Principled Technologies Co-Branded Whitepaper with Intel and QCT


The VCE Solution guide for consolidating databases includes proof points based on SLOB testing at the following link:


VCE Solution Guide Using SLOB Proof Points


Next is Nutanix with this publication:

Figure 2: Nutanix Using SLOB for Platform Suitability Testing

Nutanix Using SLOB for Platform Suitability Testing

More SLOB proof points by Nutanix:


NetApp has a lot of articles showcasing SLOB results. The first is at the following link:


NetApp Testing FlexPod Select for High-Performance Oracle RAC with SLOB

NetApp’s 2021 Paper Covering Oracle Database on ONTAP

Paper by Jeffry Steiner:

NetApp AFF A800 Performance with Oracle RAC Database

In March 2019, NetApp published a great technical article (tr-4767.pdf) on the value of NVMeOF for Real Application Clusters. I recommend this article because NVMeOF is the emerging best of breed storage connectivity technology the industry has to offer.

Kudos to NetApp for sharing platform performance proof points with a freely available, understandable and believable Oracle Database I/O testing toolkit–SLOB. The paper can be downloaded here.


NetApp’s Memory Accelerated Data (MAX Data)

In December 2018, reported that NetApps’ Memory Accelerated Data (MAX Data) has been proven by SLOB to offer “dramatic” impact on database workloads. There is a paper available to download at the StorageReview site:

NetApp Testing MAX Data with SLOB

The following NetApp article entitled NetApp AFF8080 EX Performance and Server Consolidation with Oracle Database also features SLOB results and can be found here:

Figure 4: NetApp Testing the AFF8080 with SLOB

NetApp Testing the AFF8080 with SLOB

Yet another SLOB-related NetApp article entitled Oracle Performance Using NetApp Private Storage for SoftLayer can be found here:

Figure 5: NetApp Testing NetApp Private Storage for SoftLayer with SLOB

NetApp Testing NetApp Private Storage for SoftLayer with SLOB

NetApp teamed with Enterprise Strategy Group to produce the report at the following link which shows proof points including SLOB: 

Netapp explains their Direct NFS value add using SLOB in this paper: Oracle Databases on ONTAPSelect

When searching the NetApp main webpage I find 11 articles that offer SLOB testing results:


Searching NetApp Website shows 11 SLOB-Related Articles

Netapp’s John Martin with a post on Linkedin showing SLOB proof points with NVMe to 500,000 IOPS:

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft have posting testing results using SLOB on Azure compute with Netapp storage. This is a Direct NFS proof point and is very much worth a read.



Hewlett-Packard Enterprise offers an article entitled HPE Reference Architecture for
Oracle 12c license savings with HPE 3PAR StoreServ All Flash and ProLiant DL380 Gen9 The article can be found at the following link


HPE Using SLOB Proof Points

Pure Storage

In the Pure Storage article called Pure Storage Reference Architecture for Oracle Databases, the authors also show SLOB results. The article can be found here:


Pure Storage Featuring SLOB Results in Reference Architecture

Other Pure Storage publications with SLOB proof points:

Nimble Storage

Nimble Storage offers the following blog post with SLOB testing results:

Figure 9: Nimble Storage Blogging About Testing Their Array with SLOB

Nimble Storage Blogging About Testing Their Array with SLOB


There is an IBM “8-bar logo” presentation showing SLOB results here:


IBM Material Showing SLOB Testing

I also find it interesting that folks contributing code to the Linux Kernel include SLOB results showing value of their contributions such as here:


Linux Kernel Contributors Use SLOB Testing of Their Submissions

Red Hat

Next we see Red Hat disclosing Live Migration capabilities that involve SLOB workloads:


Red Hat Showcasing Live Migration with SLOB Workload

Dell EMC

DellEMC has many publications showcasing SLOB results. This reference, however, merely suggests the best-practice of involving SLOB testing before going into production:


DellEMC Advocates Pre-Production Testing with SLOB

EMC Using SLOB to characterize combining XtremIO array-level compression in combination with Oracle Advanced Compression Option: :

EMC XtremIO Compression Testing with SLOB

EMC Documenting XtremIO X2 Best Practices with SLOB testing:  :

EMC XtremIO X2 Best Practices Testing with SLOB

An example of a detailed DellEMC publication showing SLOB results is the article entitled VMAX ALL FLASH AND VMAX3 ISCSI DEPLOYMENT GUIDE FOR ORACLE DATABASES which can be found here:


EMC Testing VMAX3 All-FLASH with SLOB

Another usage of SLOB by DellEMC can be found at the following link: This paper is a partner effort with Principled Technologies and it showcases a VMAX 250F All-Flash Array performance characterization with SLOB.

Dell EMC Partnering with Principled Technologies: SLOB Testing with VMAX 250F All-Flash

I took a moment to search the main DellEMC website for articles containing the word SLOB and found 76 such articles!


Search for SLOB Material on DellEMC Main Web Page

Red Stack Tech

Red Stack Tech offer DBaaS and even showcase the ability to test the platform for I/O suitability with SLOB:


Red Stack Tech Offering SLOB Testing as Proof of Concept


Vexata and Lenovo teamed up to produce a fantastic SLOB proof point that showcases their VX-100F array as the following graphic shows:


Vexata / Lenovo 4-Node RAC Configuration

The report can be downloaded at the following link:

Vexata also commissioned ESG to conduct a performance assessment of their Vexata VX-100 Scalable Storage Systems. The results are available in the following paper:

Vexata have updated their literature to include a SLOB proof point of leveraging their all-flash storage via Oracle Database Smart Flash Cache in their paper entitled UTILIZE VEXATA WITH FLASH CACHE TO BOOST ORACLE DATABASE PERFORMANCE available here:

Here is a glimpse:


Datrium have posted SLOB testing results for their Datrium AllFlash suite.

Non-Vendor References

Although not a vendor, it deserves mention that Greg Shultz of Server StorageIO and UnlimitedIO LLC lists SLOB alongside other platform and I/O testing toolkits. Greg’s exhaustive list can be found here:



More and more people are using SLOB. If you are into Oracle Database platform performance I think you should join the club! Maybe you’ll even take interest in joining the Twitter SLOB list:

Get SLOB, use SLOB!

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I work for Amazon Web Services. The opinions I share in this blog are my own. I'm *not* communicating as a spokesperson for Amazon. In other words, I work at Amazon, but this is my own opinion.

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All content is © Kevin Closson and "Kevin Closson's Blog: Platforms, Databases, and Storage", 2006-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Kevin Closson and Kevin Closson's Blog: Platforms, Databases, and Storage with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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