Now that security on the net is becoming more of a concern, here are two websites for testing the soundness of your web connections. SSL/TLS is a negotiation between client and server, so you need to see what settings each endpoint will accept.
For the Server side, there is SSL Labs. With this site, you can put any URL in and get a score for how well configured the settings of that server are.
For the client side, there is How’s My SSL. This site will give you a readout on the browser that you’re currently using.
As an Engineer at a storage company, I’m often working to characterize how different drives will perform in an environment. As you go down the stack from application to OS to hardware, there are a lot of different factors that come into play. It’s amazing to see what types of differences in performance, you’ll see with varying drives and workloads.
Here are some example results from a testbed looking at a single Seagate 15K 600G drive connected to an LSI 2008 HBA on a CentOS 6.5 machine.
The Random Read tests are using fio with 100% random reads of the specified block size and queue depth against the entire raw drive. There is no filesystem caching in these tests. The Random Write test is the same, but with 100% writes. The Mixed tests are 65% read and 35% writes.