Tag Archives: AMD


Our second LEBRE-X review of the year goes to Bandit Host, a provider who specialises in offering AMD VPSes. They offer both AMD EPYC and Ryzen VPSes, but under review today is the Bandit Host AMD EPYC UT-S-NVMe-VPS. Let’s get into the specs:

  • Processor: AMD EPYC Processor
  • 2 vCPUs @ 1996.250 MHz
  • 2GB RAM
  • 25GB NVMe Disk
  • 1Gpbs Port
  • AES-NI: Enabled
  • VM-x/AMD-V: Disabled
  • Location: Ogden, Utah

With AES-NI enabled, there is no performance penalty on LUKS encryption using AES on the VPS. However, VM-x/AMD-V is disabled, which is not good news for those who wish to run nested virtualization solutions such as Proxmox. Nonetheless, this is not a deal-breaker for most people; nested virtualization offers are relatively uncommon.

We now turn to the results of our extended benchmarking, which we ran daily for 35 days from 13 December 2019 to 16 January 2020. All charts are interactive (i.e. you can mouse over the lines to examine each data point).

Geekbench 5 Test

Geekbench 5 offers a quick overview of CPU and RAM performance in a single score. The following chart shows the single and multi-core scores of the Bandit Host AMD EPYC UT-S-NVMe-VPS across our test period.

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Bandit Host adopts a fair-share policy, but it can be seen that the VPS is both very high performing and the performance is very consistent for both single (mean score 614, SD 7.52) and multi-core (mean score 1177, SD 16.8) over the period of testing. The AMD EPYC is not as much as a performance beast relative to the Ryzen family, but it packs plenty of punch for most web applications.

What is very noteworthy is the very, very low standard deviation, which indicates an extreme level of consistency of CPU performance. This suggests that Bandit Host manages the host node really well. Also, the high number of cores in the EPYC could have contributed to the stability as well; with many more cores, processing can be distributed far more evenly resulting in much more stable performance across VPSes at any random point of time.

fio Random Read-Write

We use fio to benchmark disk performance because random read-write is more indicative of real-world use compared to sequential read-write, which normally generates impressive metrics but is a poor indicator of real-world performance. The following charts show the random read and write IOPS performance at 4k, 64k and 256k block sizes.

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The NVMe disk clearly show its superior performance in terms of IOPS relative to other storage media in terms of random reading (mean IOPS 43128, SD 1579) and writing (mean IOPS 43138, SD 1565) at 4k block sizes. The standard deviation is very low, suggesting very consistent performance.

Speed is still excellent for random reading (mean IOPS 23372, SD 1008) and writing (mean IOPS 23424, SD 1008) at 64k block sizes. Once again, the standard deviation is really low, a very positive indication of consistent performance.

Finally, in terms of our toughest 256k block size random read-write test, the speed in terms of reading (mean IOPS 6868, SD 116) and writing (mean IOPS 6921, SD 118) was still very, very decent, with an ultra-duper low standard deviation.

The common thread across the fio test data is very, very stable and consistent performance. The AMD EPYC is not a brand new node, and to maintain this level of stability and consistency is a very positive sign of Bandit Host’s management of its host node. There was a weird outlier data point on 15th December, but that appears to be totally random considering all the other data points, so we can safely ignore that outlier.

If you need to host database intensive applications, the NVMe performance of Bandit Host’s VPS is more than sufficient to meet the requirements of most medium websites.

ioping Latency

We use ioping to measure how responsive the disk is to requests. The chart below shows the results of average response times to 30 requests.

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Again, the disk response times (in microseconds) are excellent (mean 287.8, SD 42.2). Once again, with the exception of that outlier data point on 15 December, the overall latency is fairly stable and consistent.

iperf3 Speeds

We use iperf3 to measure outbound internet speeds (i.e. how fast the VPS sends data out to users) to our own collection of iperf3 servers. Keep in mind that there are many factors involved in transmitting data across networks, especially across vast geographical distances. Spikes are not unusual. Note that we present our data in megabytes per second.

We first present the chart for European locations.

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Again, our internal Romanian test server’s (mean 63.0, SD 14.6) network isn’t very stable, but there clearly very consistently strong throughput to our Polish (mean 100.3, SD 18.3) and German (mean 110.0, SD 3.7) servers, except for a couple of outlier readings for the Polish server nearing the end of our testing period, which isn’t a major cause for concern.

We now present the chart for our North America servers.

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We only have one American test server in Chicago for this round of testing, and the results are again one of very sustained and consistently high performing throughput to Chicago (mean 109.5, SD 4.6), except for that outlier blip on 15th December.

Finally, we present the charts for our APAC servers.

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Bandit Host appears to have one of the best networks to Asia. Network performance to our Singaporean test server is particularly strong (mean 91.7, SD 15.3). The performance to Australia tends to be kind of spiky (which is actually not unusual when packets travel over vast distances) but the performance one of the better ones that we’ve seen to Perth (mean 22.1, SD 23.0) and Sydney (mean 33.4, SD 15.3).

Final words

If you’ve made it to this part of the review, you can already predict what we are going to conclude: consistently stable high performing VPS. Although the Bandit Host AMD EPYC is not the beast that Ryzen is, the EPYC is pretty decent and more importantly, you can expect it to perform when you need it (if you want to shatter benchmarks, Bandit Host has Ryzens too). If you are an Asian customer, the good news is that Bandit Host has one of the better networks across the Pacific to Asia, and coupled with reliable performance of their hardware, you can’t go wrong with Bandit Host, unless you are willing to be extorted by Asian providers (not their fault because bandwidth in Asia is generally expensive, but you get the drift).

tl;dr: You will sleep well every single night with a Bandit Host VPS

Note: we have reached out to Bandit Host for their response to our LEBRE-X review because we believe that our reviewed providers should also have the opportunity to respond to our observations. We will publish their response in full if we receive any.

Response from Bandit Host’s Management (23 January 2020):

First, thank you for taking your time and the effort required to perform these extended benchmarks! It is a fantastic service you are providing to the community!

Our mission and goal is to provide reliable and consistent performance across the board. Without those two items you are unable to fully utilize any service without worry. Ultimately, we want to provide a rock solid platform everyone can depend on for growth, whether that be a personal project or a business project. We appreciate the fact that this analysis reflects some of our core values.

Additionally, while AMD-V is showing Disabled on your VPS we have updated the flags on most current VPSes to include nested virtualization. All new VPS’s deployed by default have that flag enabled now.

At the end of the day, we’re here to understand what the community wants and see how we can best provide that in a way that everyone can grow and thrive. With that, we’d like to invite you to review and bench our East Coast, Washington DC based services once they are online in late February/Early March. Everyone else, stay tuned!

Thanks again!

Stephen Delacalzada-Delong

Nexus Bytes LA Ryzen 3900X Pre-order Special

The very first offer to be reviewed for price-performance value in 2020 is the Nexus Bytes LA Ryzen 3900X pre-order special. Nexus Bytes should be familiar with all the readers of LowEndBoxes Review because our reference REBOX1 comes from them. The question is, do they have a better offer than REBOX1 in 2020? Their LA pre-order special looks to be one that exceeds expectations! Let’s look at the specs of the VPS-1G-Pre-Order-Special plan:

  • AMD Ryzen 3900X @ 3.8Ghz
  • 1 vCPU
  • 1GB RAM
  • 30GB disk storage
  • NVMe disk type
  • 1TB Monthly Bandwidth
  • 1 Gbps Port
  • $1.76 per month (annual payment with Switcher and Bencher special, otherwise $3/m)
  • KVM Virtualization
  • Location: Los Angeles, California

Nexus Bytes have done something very interesting of late to give greater value for their products. They have introduced the Switcher special, where if you currently own a VPS with other providers, you can “trade in” for up to four months worth of extra service credit. That means with an annual payment, you get 16 months instead of 12 months with the Switcher special.

In addition, if you post a benchmark of your new VPS on the LowEndSpirit Forum, Nexus Bytes will give you an additional month of service credit, making a total of 17 months for your first annual payment. Effectively, the monthly price stacking all these promos together works out to be $1.76. What a deal!

The results of the LEBRE scoring methodology (using the $1.76 per month amount) is as follows:

Well, it is clear that this LA pre-order special is more than a match for our 2019 REBOX1! Aside from the bandwidth (which is still decent), it effectively matches REBOX1 in terms of the value you are getting for the number of vCPUs and RAM, but you are getting almost double value in terms of the CPU Passmark, disk size, disk type and port speed! The overall LEBRE score of 141 clearly indicates that you are getting much more value per dollar than the previous excellent REBOX1 offer!

Of course, you might be thinking that this is a teeny-weeny little sparrow of a VPS and you need a bad-ass bald eagle instead. Nexus Bytes actually allows you to scale this smallest plan all the way up to 12 vCPUs, 12GB RAM, 360GB NVMe and 12TB monthly bandwidth for pre-order, and all the switcher and bencher perks apply. We just didn’t have time to calculate them all. The range of plans can be found here.

As with all Nexus Bytes plans, you get a free backup NAT storage VPS equivalent to your VPS storage size, free Blesta billing software and for annual payment, a free Windows server 2019 license.

TL;DR Basically REBOX1 rebooted with better value when trading in your current VPS plan, with the option of up-sizing or supersizing to suit your requirements.

If you are afraid of missing this excellent Nexus Bytes LA Ryzen 3900X Pre-order Special, buy your box immediately (or check out their up-sized and supersized variants) and support Nexus Bytes, who is on The Whitelist.

HostDoc LES Ryzen LA Special

Today, we have with us the HostDoc LES Ryzen LA offer that is unusual because it is the first AMD Ryzen VPS offering that is being offered by them! They join the select few hosts on The Whitelist such as ExtraVM and Nexus Bytes in offering AMD-based VPSes. The specs of this latest offering from HostDoc is as follows:

  • AMD Ryzen 3900X @ 3.80GHz
  • 4 vCPU
  • 4GB RAM
  • 50GB Disk
  • NVME
  • 5TB Monthly Bandwidth
  • 10 Gbps Port
  • £4.99 per month (annual payment; otherwise £6.99 per month)
  • KVM Virtualization

The results of the LEBRE scoring methodology (using the lower £4.99 amount) is as follows:

Compared to REBOX1, which is also an AMD VPS, the value of this HostDoc Dallas sale offering is acceptable in terms host node single-core Passmark and disk type. Although HostDoc’s Ryzen 3900X is a little more powerful than the Ryzen 3700X which our REBOX1 uses and similar Nvme storage type, the higher asking price pulled down its value in these areas.

Aside from these two aspects, this HostDoc Ryzen offering goes head to head with our REBOX1 in every other aspect and completely obliterates the REBOX1 with a blazing 10 Gbps port speed (a rare offering for lowend boxes).

The overall LEBRE score of 137 suggests that this HostDoc Dallas sale offering is of excellent value compared to the reference REBOX1. You are pretty much getting the value of REBOX1 except that this HostDoc offer is on steriods in terms of port speed. If we put value aside, in terms of the raw specs, this HostDoc offering will beat many of the Intel VPSes on the market because of the powerful Ryzen 3900X, which can outperform even low-end dedicated machines. If you are shopping for a low end VPS that can rival cheap dedicated machines at a fraction of the cost, this HostDoc offer is your answer.

TL;DR If you missed out on the REBOX1 previously, don’t miss out on this Ryzen VPS that is just as good value for money, but leaves REBOX1 in the dust when it comes to port speed.

Stocks are limited and if you don’t want to miss out this first ever HostDoc LES Ryzen LA deal, buy your box immediately and support HostDoc, who is on The Whitelist.

Update: real-world VPS benchmarks

  • https://talk.lowendspirit.com/discussion/comment/9587/#Comment_9587

New Intel ZombieLoad vulnerability

Security researchers have discovered that the latest CPUs from Intel are still vulnerable to exploits.

The Zombieload vulnerability disclosed earlier this year in May has a second variant that also works against more recent Intel processors, not just older ones, including Cascade Lake, Intel’s latest line of high-end CPUs — initially thought to have been unaffected.

Source: https://www.zdnet.com/article/intels-cascade-lake-cpus-impacted-by-new-zombieload-v2-attack/

Given the spate of vulnerabilities discovered even in Intel’s latest processors, if you are concerned about the security of your existing lowend box, please ask your provider if they offer AMD servers. If you intend to purchase a new lowend box or feel a need to change provider because your provider does not offer AMD servers yet, you can check with providers in The Whitelist.

We will update The Whitelist with a note next to the provider if we get information that they offer AMD servers.