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  1. #1

    Heavy DB usage, what's the best set-up?

    Hi everybody,

    I have an ASP/MSDE web app running on a NAC Celeron 2.4 Ghz, with 1024 Megs of Memory, and 2 x 80 GB IDE (RAID-1), but it is struggling with the current amounts of traffic I've been getting and I need to upgrade.

    I'm thinking to move to a 2-server configuration, with a separate web and database server.

    This web application is quite heavy on the database. It runs multiple queries for the vast majority of the pages.

    It gets about 30,000-50,000 page views a day and this number is expected to grow (maybe double within 4-6 months). During peak times there are about 25-35 concurrent users using it.

    The web server will be running Windows 2003 Server (the app is written in ASP), and the database server will be running mySQL, on either Windows or Linux.

    Could you please suggest the hardware (processor(s) - single/dual, memory, hard disk, etc) that you think will be needed to meet these requirements for both the web and database server, as well as the Operating System for the database server (mySQL)?

    Many thanks,

    Dimitri

  2. #2
    For databases, nothing beats dual opteron setups in terms of performance per dollar. With a machine like that, you could keep everything on one box. If not, just have your host/colo put a P4 box on the same subnet as you are now, and have it handle all the databasing, and relegate all the webserving to the celeron box. Can you give us a hint as to your budget?

    If it were me, I'd go with the dual opteron setup.

  3. #3
    Celerons do not perform well at all for DB intensive tasks. I'd say upgrade to a Pentuim 4/AMD Athlon or get a second server. Depending on your budget a Dual Opteron would allow for significant growth, but may be a bit of an overkill.
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  4. #4
    Guys, thanks for your replies.

    The budget is around $300-400/month, but obviously I'm trying to keep my costs down, so the less money that will allow me to meet my requirements the better.

    Cheers,

    Dimitri

  5. #5
    LiquidWeb has dual opteron boxes with 2GB RAM and 2GB BW starting at $260. Looks like you can afford that kind of setup if you wanted it.
    Dan Grossman - dan @ awio.com
    My Blog | Affiliate Program for Web Hosts

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    133
    Originally posted by dimitri502
    Guys, thanks for your replies.

    The budget is around $300-400/month, but obviously I'm trying to keep my costs down, so the less money that will allow me to meet my requirements the better.

    Cheers,

    Dimitri
    Single Opteron should do fine too: http://www.layeredtech.com/order.php?packageId=39

    Ask yourself this: Do you want to make another move/server switch in the next year or so? If so, get a server that just fits your needs, if you don't, invest in some good hardware and be safe for the next few years.

  7. #7
    Originally posted by dimitri502
    Guys, thanks for your replies.

    The budget is around $300-400/month, but obviously I'm trying to keep my costs down, so the less money that will allow me to meet my requirements the better.

    Cheers,

    Dimitri
    If I were in your position, I'd choose one of these:

    http://layeredtech.com/order.php?packageId=40

  8. #8
    Originally posted by Dan Grossman
    LiquidWeb has dual opteron boxes with 2GB RAM and 2GB BW starting at $260. Looks like you can afford that kind of setup if you wanted it.
    I have one of these with SCSI at LiquidWeb. Highly recommended.

  9. #9
    Originally posted by Dan Grossman
    LiquidWeb has dual opteron boxes with 2GB RAM and 2GB BW starting at $260. Looks like you can afford that kind of setup if you wanted it.
    Do you have a link to these? The cheapest that I can find them is $330/mo.

  10. #10

  11. #11
    Ok guys,

    Thanks very much for all the replies.

    So, the consensus is that a dual Opteron should do the job, and I won't have to use two servers for web and database.

    Problem is that the server will have to be a windows 2003 box.

    I was going to go with Liquid web's professional series, but apparently they don't do windows on Opteron.

    When I asked one of their sales people, he came back to me with this comment:

    "Currently we do not support windows on dual Opterons since it is not compatible with 64 bit cpus and has proven to be unreliable. If you need a windows server I would recommend a dual Xeon based system as they are fully compatible with windows 2003."

    Do you agree that for Windows 2003 Server Intel is a better choice? As I mentioned before, the bulk of the work of this server will be accessing/writing to a mySQL database.

    Many thanks,

    Dimitri

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    995
    Originally posted by dimitri502
    Ok guys,

    Thanks very much for all the replies.

    So, the consensus is that a dual Opteron should do the job, and I won't have to use two servers for web and database.

    Problem is that the server will have to be a windows 2003 box.

    I was going to go with Liquid web's professional series, but apparently they don't do windows on Opteron.

    When I asked one of their sales people, he came back to me with this comment:

    "Currently we do not support windows on dual Opterons since it is not compatible with 64 bit cpus and has proven to be unreliable. If you need a windows server I would recommend a dual Xeon based system as they are fully compatible with windows 2003."

    Do you agree that for Windows 2003 Server Intel is a better choice? As I mentioned before, the bulk of the work of this server will be accessing/writing to a mySQL database.

    Many thanks,

    Dimitri

    Erm, yes and no. Microsoft released a 64bit version of Windows 2003 Server a few weeks ago. Microsoft then deployed this on a bunch of SUN and HP Opteron machines (V20z/V40zs and DL585s respectively.) They went from 250 32bit machines hosting MSN Chat to 25 64bit machines.

    There are some reports of driver oddities - but I imagine if they're using SUN/IBM or HP hardware, it wouldn't be an issue. The problems with drivers usually arrive when they build the machines themselves.

    Another contributing factor is I'm not sure offhand whether the 64bit version is part of SPLA licensing yet.

    Cheers,
    Sam
    Sam Machiz / Director, Product Development / Ubersmith
    smachiz[at]ubersmith.com / [direct] 212-812-4194

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    sydney.au
    Posts
    246
    In my experience with databases* the three most important factors in improving performance are memory, memory and memory.

    You might want to check out LiquidWeb's current offers. They have nice dual Xeons as well as the dual Opterons.

    * Long, painful experience...

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