If you are looking at adding a dedicated server to your business infrastructure, then first of all congratulations! You are taking the first step towards implementing a private cloud solution for your company, which can help you to provide a great many features and services as an organization. Of course, it is important to know just what you are going to need out of your machine, as there are many options regarding processors, RAM, and more.
The first thing you may want to take a look at when evaluating servers is the processor. If you are going to host a relatively light application such as a website that won’t draw too much traffic, then an entry-level dual-core machine will meet your needs. If you are looking at virtualization and hosting multiple applications on the machine, the last thing you would want to do is get a dual-core – ideally, you should be looking at least at a Xeon Quad-Core CPU that supports Intel’s Hyper Threading technology to get more out of the machine, and you may require a 2 processor configuration depending on just how many applications you are considering. If you are going to utilize a database or offer your own hosting service from the machine, then a Quad-Core should be adequate. Of course, if you feel that your needs will vary, you can absolutely select a larger machine than the recommendations we have provided; however it would not be wise to engage a smaller processor for these applications, especially for a virtualization solution.
If you are not familiar with Hyper Threading, the technology allows you to perform two tasks on the same core with software compatible with the technology. This effectively enables you to treat a Dual Quad-Core Xeon configuration as 16 CPUs (2 Processors X 4 Cores X 2 threads effectively equals 16 CPUs). Of course, not all software supports Hyper Threading, notably older legacy programs, so be sure to evaluate your current software before deciding to take advantage of the technology.
RAM is the next major consideration, and many will tell you that the more RAM you have the better. They would be right, and although you can always request to upgrade RAM after you have your dedicated private server, it’s always best to have what you need from the get go. Virtualization platforms and SQL databases are particularly memory hungry, so be sure to upgrade these components. If you are using a server with Java, Ruby, or Windows you will also want to be sure to have a good amount of RAM as well, since these applications are known to be memory hungry before you even consider the load you put on the machine.
At this point the brains of the server have been determined, and most of the remaining factors aren’t necessarily sensitive to the specific server in mind. These include:
-Hard Drive space is important if the machine will be storing customer information or databases. If this data is particularly sensitive then it would be prudent to get a second drive in a RAID configuration and invest in backups.
-If you are offering hosting services CPanel and Plesk are good investments to make managing your own customers easier.
-Firewall solutions are very important if you have any data that is sensitive or is potentially a regulatory issue. Private networks would also be a good idea if this is a factor
-Operating Systems can vary depending on your task, though again keep in mind that if you utilize virtualization (VMWare, Citrix) or Windows then you will want a comparably hefty machine compared to a server using Linux to host a website
-If you are transmitting a lot of data out to the internet then an upgrade to your uplink speed is a good idea. You may also want to consider upgrading bandwidth if you will be sending a lot of data as well
For a free consultation on how to configure your dedicated server, please reach out to us at email@example.com or by calling (305) 735-8098 option 2. We look forward to speaking with you and getting you setup in your very own private cloud!