Apache 2.4 vs Nginx 1.4

Having setup Apache 2.4 and Nginx 1.4 I wanted to see how they performed. I am not trying to do a scientific performance test here, I am just interested in how Nginx behaves because I haven’t used it before.

I took a simple page with a table, some JavaScript and CSS in a separate file. I am running the tests using Apache JMeter.

<td colspan=10 BGCOLOR=CECBCB> 1 user, 1000 times <td colspan=10 BGCOLOR=CECBCB> 10 users, 1000 times <td colspan=10 BGCOLOR=CECBCB> 100 users, 1000 times <td colspan=10 BGCOLOR=CECBCB> 1000 users, 1000 times <td colspan=10 BGCOLOR=CECBCB> 10000 users, 10 times
Server Samples Average Median 90% line min max error % Throughput KB/sec
apache 1000 2 3 4 1 7 303 1122
nginx 1000 2 2 3 6 355 1301
apache 10000 2 2 3 1 13 3013 11147
nginx 10000 2 3 4 1 8 2617 9571
apache 100000 20 14 30 1 441 4583 16952
nginx 100000 33 19 37 1805 2800 10239
apache 1000000 211 194 238 1 7508 4629 17124
nginx 1000000 265 28 181 248243 0.05 2647 9678
apache 100000 596 37 704 31064 49 3035 7783
nginx 100000 575 3 144 32559 53 2823 6920

Looking at the results it seems that in the beginning there is no big difference. The difference starts with bigger numbers where Nginx shows higher average numbers because it fails to respond or responds very late in some cases. Although the average numbers are high because of the reasons managed you can see that most calls are handled faster.

Nginx is supposed to use less resources so I used the “uptime” command before starting the test and right after the test, here are the results (measured only for test: 1000 users, 1000 times):

Server Average load before the test Average load after the test
apache 1,55, 0,33, 0,11 18,74, 9,97, 4,02
apache 0,69, 0,16, 0,05 1,02, 0,77, 0,36

It clearly shows that Nginx uses less CPU than Apache for the same work, the difference is so big you can see it by just looking at the system monitor.

I like what I see from Nginx and I am definitely going to play more with it.