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  1. #1

    Do I need more RAM or more Cores?

    I have three websites on my VPS server at Daily.

    I currently have 1 core and 2GB of RAM running Parallels Plesk.

    During traffic spikes where I receive in total 100,000 visitors as opposed to the usual 70-80k (ish) the server becomes really slow and I cannot access my websites unless I keep refreshing the page.

    So what do I need here? More CPU cores or more RAM?

    When I check the stats, RAM is only 70% used (so i guess Ill need to upgrade RAM soon) but the CPU goes up to 300%.

    I think I've answered my own question - that in the short term i need more Cores - but I cant find a definitive answer anywhere so I just want to be sure...

    Not sure what processor is being used etc, but to be honest I only have around 30/month to spend on servers so I just need something that works.

    Also, as a side.. I'm looking to move from Daily to Leaseweb and have never migrated with Plesk before (my previous hosting was cPanel shared!). Leaseweb can give me an extra core and still charge me 10 less. Is migrating worth the effort? My websites are all Wordpress run and backed up so they can easily be restored anywhere any time (on any domain!) as long as I have FTP and SQL data base access.

    Appreciate any response/feedback/tips from anyone. If anyone's response answers everything I'll throw in a months hosting on my site for the sake of Christmas!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    You probably need both CPU + Memory.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Its not enough to 1 core to handle your traffic, also did you try to optimize software side like installing nginx ?
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Portland, Oregon
    You've absolutely answered your question. There must be some major bottlenecking at peak times. If this is a VPS (container) it can be scaled up in a matter of seconds.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Surrey, BC
    I would try upgrading both the CPU and RAM to see if the performance issues persist. Try with 2 CPUs and maybe 4GB of RAM for your level of traffic.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Lafayette, IN
    I agree, increasing your cores just a little and doubling your RAM should do it. You don't need under 100% at peek times, as they are just that peek times, so why pay for something that is only used part of the time, so doubling your current core should be sufficient.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Probably Cores, but you probably should just upgrade both.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Michigan, USA
    You must have more than 1 core to begin with if your CPU was at 300%. Do you have burstable CPU? Depending on your host's policies, you may need more CPU, but if you won't get more access to burstable CPU, then it won't make a difference since it seems you are using 3 cores at peak hours.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Kepler 62f
    Is this on OpenVZ, Virtuozzo, Xen, KVM, other?
    That matters.
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  10. #10
    The Virtual Machine CP is an important one. But, as said above, 2 cores & 4GB RAM would be a place to try and see if there are any updates.

    Youre hitting 100k views now and then? Sweet. Would your port speed be affecting this atall? Wouldnt think it would, but you never know..

  11. #11
    Cpu : quad-core and RAM : 4 GB is ideal for the sort of traffic your website receives...
    And u must get it in 30-35 pounds

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Everything aside; are you running a combination of MySQL and PHP? If so, more CPU will do you good yes.

    But do note, efficient coding will always save you money! You don't need to redo the MySQL query every time a visitor enters a page, however, that's just an example.

    If you're maintaining connections then yes, RAM will do you good.

    I recommend installing htop and monitoring this when you hit high traffic (or a combo of the uptime and free -m command). Whichever you run out of you need more of.
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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Texas, United States
    I would take a slightly different approach...Certainly add more CPU power to your system as that seems to be completely consumed. However, I would not (yet) add RAM as your server may not really need it. You say your RAM is 70% utilized but how is that broken down? Does your RAM utilization spike to 100% where you are swapping a lot (a little swapping is OK)?

    Assuming this is a Linux server, output of the "free" command will paint a better picture of what your "Available" (not "Free" but "Available") RAM is. Once you have that then you can make a better informed decision about adding additional RAM, otherwise save the money.
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  14. #14
    upgrade your VPS at your current provider first before going to do all the hassle migrating your websites.

    you mentioned that you use wordpress on all your website, have you installed caching plugin, it might help reducing the server load Half Dedicated Half Price
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  15. #15
    Seems you have to upgrade your CPU and Ram ^^ not only one of them.. :/

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