I have previously written about this, but feel it’s worthy of another mention. Microsoft have hidden away on their WHDC (Windows Hardware Developer Central) website, an excellent document on Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2008 R2. It is worthy of a read as it details lots of changes in functionality that can affect performance.
The paper was last updated on the May 16th 2011 and details:
Choosing and Tuning Server Hardware
Performance Tuning for the Networking Subsystem
Performance Tuning for the Storage Subsystem
Performance Tuning for Web Servers
Performance Tuning for File Servers
Performance Tuning for Active Directory Servers
Performance Tuning for Remote Desktop Session Host (formerly Terminal Server)Performance Tuning for Remote Desktop Gateway
Performance Tuning for Virtualization Servers
Performance Tuning for File Server Workload (NetBench)
Performance Tuning for File Server Workload (SPECsfs2008)
Performance Tuning for Network Workload (NTttcp)
Performance Tuning for Remote Desktop Services Knowledge Worker Workload
Performance Tuning for SAP Sales and Distribution Two-Tier Workload
Performance Tuning for TCP-E Workload
October 2012 Update:
Updated Server Core Installation Option, Correct Memory Sizing for Child Partitions, and Correct Memory Sizing for Root Partition.
September 2012 Update:
Further updates to the Performance Tuning guidance for the TPC-E Workload section
May 2011 Update:
“Performance Tuning for Web Servers” – Updated guidance to reflect that Http.sys manages connections automatically.
“Performance Tuning for File Servers” – Fixed typos in NFS Server tuning parameter registry keys.
“Performance Tuning for Virtualization Servers” – Added information about Dynamic Memory tuning.
“Performance Tuning for TPC-E Workload” – Clarified tuning guidance.
“Resources” – Updated references.
October 15th Update:
Throughout the paper – Clarified some explanations; clarified energy consumption vs. power consumption.
“Interrupt Affinity” – Added recommendation to use device-specific mechanism for binding interrupts, if supported by the driver model.
“Network-Related Performance Counters” – Added IPv6 and TCPv6.
“Performance Tuning for the Storage Subsystem” – Various minor updates throughout.
“Performance Tuning for File Servers” –Added guidance for NtfsDisableLastAccessUpdate; added “Tuning Parameters for NFS Server”, “File Server Tuning Example”, and “File Client Tuning Example”.
“Performance Tuning for Remote Desktop Session Host” – Added references to two new white papers on capacity planning.
“Monitoring and Data Collection” (multiple sections) – Updated the list of counters to monitor.
“Performance Tuning for File Server Workload (SPECsfs2008)” – New section.
“Performance Tuning for SAP Sales and Distribution Two-Tier Workload” – Substantial updates to the whole section.
“Performance Tuning for TPC-E Workload” – New section.
“Resources” – A few additions and updates.