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I have a LAMP development server running debian linux that I'm using for load testing for this website i've been working on. the site is an event listing and search. I wrote a php script to populate the database for my site with some fake data to see how it behaves when there are many records so I can tweak my queries and create the proper indexes.
My problem is that the server is taking FOREVER to create new records. It averages between 2.5 and 6.5 seconds to enter a single event and its related association records. This of itself is not entirely surpising because the machine is just an 800mhz p3 and the routine to create the fake info does a lot of random number generation...
HOWEVER what *is* surprising is that i cannot get the load average above 2.0 no matter how many instances of the script i run. It has taken almost 2 hours to create a mere 25,000 records. I've been checking the load average using UPTIME and watching the TOP results sorted by CPU time. no process ever gets more than a couple of percent of the total CPU.
I'm wondering if there is some part of my LAMP config that could be altered to get it moving faster....like maybe i need more threads running apache or php or mysql or something. Can anyone recommend how I might get the server to enter data more quickly? I was hoping to get a million records in.