One of the most frequently asked questions about server and web application management is whether scalability is an issue. Scalability is the system’s capability to be expanded with minimum disruption to the day-to-day operations of the system. Although scalability seems like a given, not all systems can be scaled easily.
There is a lot you can do to scale a server. You can add an additional processor or replace existing ones for better computing power. You can choose to add hard drives or SSDs as well as change its RAID configurations. Most of the time, however, you want to add more RAM to allow the server to handle more tasks. So, is your server and server memory scalable?
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Motherboard and Available RAM Slots
Whether your server’s memory can be expanded depends highly on the motherboard it uses at its core. Not all server motherboards are created equally. Some have as little as 4 slots of memory, while others may have up to 12 slots that you can fill with memory modules. Chances are, you have available slots to fill. Most servers are not maxed out in specs out of the box. This is to save the initial investment on the server while still allowing easy scalability in the future. All you have to do is find suitable RAM modules and have them installed.
Another scenario is when all of the slots are used. In this case, you can either replace all of the RAM modules with bigger ones or replace part of the memory to expand the available RAM. The first approach is much safe in terms of compatibility; not all RAM modules of different sizes can work together smoothly, especially in a server environment.
System and Compatibility
Expanding the memory of your server may seem like an easy task to complete. You just need to pick up a few more RAMs from Offtek and you are all set. In reality, however, there are other things to consider. The operating system you use will determine if the server is scalable. A 32-bit operating system cannot handle more than 4GB of RAM effectively, which means your upgrade option is very limited. 64-bit servers, on the other hand, can comfortably run with 64GB of RAM.
The operating system and the way the server is set up will also affect the upgrade process. With most servers, all you have to do is shut the system down, install the new RAM modules and reboot. The system will recognise the new RAM immediately.
With other cloud setups, this isn’t the case at all. You will have to reconfigure the entire setup to recognise the additional memory.
If you host your web apps in the cloud, scalability is not something you need to worry about. Adding more RAM to the cloud server is just a matter of allocating more server resources from the clusters of physical hard drive. The same goes for self-managed cloud servers.
So, how scalable is your server memory? Take the steps we’ve discuss in this article and you will be able to answer that question in a couple of minutes. I believe you’re armed with information on making your server memory scalable without having to break the bank. All you should focus on is how to take advantage of the moment.
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