Server Computers have a variety of functions and tasks they perform. Servers are used for anything from enterprise database management to storing media files accessible on a home network. When it comes time to invest in a new server, understanding which server system works best for your unique needs is a big money and time saver.
How do you know you need to update your server? Why do you even need a server? When you get up to 5 to 10 users on a peer-to-peer network model wherein computers communicate through the router becomes overrun and backed up. Here are a few signs you are ready to upgrade your server:
1. Gmail or other web- based email solutions no longer work for your growing network
2. The applications you use require a secure database
3. Due to industry compliance or protection of your company, require mandated network security.
4. You use shared applications and files that multiple users need access to
If you are considering Cloud servers, keep in mind it is a leased data storage and computing resource. This only works for the home office or extremely small business models. As your company grows it makes more sense financially to buy physical servers, hire an on staff IT team, and possibly pull in Cloud servers for part of your backup plan.
You don’t have to be an enterprise to save on server hardware costs. So much of the business has changed over the last decade that even large to medium companies are finding solutions by consolidating infrastructure.
Business Servers store all the programs, peripherals accessible to computers on the office network, applications, operating systems, and all company files. Servers also provide centralised data backup, management, and additional processing storage and power. A big intensive financial trading processor, document management or even imaging software would be an example of things that need the additional processing power. In order to maintain security and proprietary protection your IT Administrators would use server software to manage all user access through a system of authentication or credentials. All data, applications, and content show up in the LAN - Local Area Network- via the Web Server.
Modern Enterprise Solutions offers servers can handle many tasks with virtualization technology. Server Virtualization is a technique of partitioning several small physical servers with virtual servers to help the process of virtualization software. Each virtual server will operating multiple systems at the same time. When you are shopping for a new system make sure the specifications include high memory (RAM) capabilities and high number of CPU cores and CUP threads. These are all big factors that help with workload consolidation.
When building or buying a server, knowing some specifics about the server hardware will help you decide how to connect server specifications to different systems
A Standard Build Server is also known as a continuous integration server (CI Server). It is a stable, reliable, and centralized environment for building distributed development projects. This is most similar to a PC. Most servers are meant to run for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Virtualization servers are more powerful, multi-core processors. They have extensive disk space for handling large workloads and computing.
Server Motherboards: The motherboard serves as the spine of the computer. It is also known as mainboard or system board which allows all system components to connect and interact. It determines all aspects of the system, and also affects your choice of memory (CPU). When discussing scalability in your servers you must keep in mind the number of slots in the motherboard as it is a contributing factor in how far you can go. The more slots means more room for storage and expansion. DIMM slots are for RAM. PCI-e Slots are for graphics cards and your next- generation solid-state storage drives.
Virtualization servers have LGA 2011-3 sockets on the motherboard to support larger CPUs with the X99 chipset. Intel Core i7 X-series processors, for example, have many cores and threads to run virtual machines. There are also motherboards that contain dual CPU sockets that enhance processor redundancy for a 24/7 run time. AMD server CPUs contain a unique socket type that are not compatible with Intel.
Storage is used to define memory that exists on disks or tapes. Memory means the data storage that comes in the form of chips. This is also used as jargon for physical memory which is your actual chips that hold data. ECC DRAM has tolerance for data corruption built in. The majority of servers use an Error Correcting Code memory also known as ECC DRAM. ECC DRAM isn’t compatible with motherboard DIMM slots which are used for your standard DDR4 PC memory.
A home server is defined by 2 or more computers that connect to form a local networking within a home. More often than not a single computer serves as the home server. It just has to have sufficient storage space and memory.
Home servers are most commonly used for storing digital media and streaming files to devices connected to a small home network. Typically accomplished by a single use server (NAS) that is connected to the home network.
They come in multi processors, multi cores, and multi threads. An important thing to consider when deciding is whether they support Symmetric Multi Processing (SMP) & the other applications which should be designed to implement a parallel processing system. The applications will not work properly and will function as if they were on a single thread/core/processor.
Server CPUs performance relies on the number of threads and cores that exist. How fast the processor executes instructions is contingent on how is measures Clock Speed, AKA GHz. Modern servers however don’t gauge performance as much when it comes to frequency. When you have a large amount of cache memory it boosts performance. This happens because the cache stores frequently accessed data for an even quicker memory recall which ultimately speeds up server performance in many instances.
Your more expensive servers have CPUs which are able to process more power and are common in big tower servers and rack models. Lower cost dedicated servers and NAS have lower power dual- or quad-core processors which are common in PCs.
A Network- Attached Storage (NAS), also known as storage servers or file servers, is a file- level computer data storage server which connects the computer network through supplying data access to a group of clients. NAS is for serving files through software, hardware, or configuration.
These are fundamentally important as they protect against data loss in the event there is a drive failure. This is a configurations called RAID array. Storage Area Network (SAN) increases data availability among a large network and can also expand application performance over many satellite office networks. Giving everyone on the network access to all data and files.
Consumer drivers (SATA) are slower interfaces than the Enterprise hard drives which have built in fault tolerance at a heftier price point. Modern Enterprise Solutions can help guide you to make sure your are compatible with your storage drivers and other interfaces for server storage.
Tower Systems are comparable to desktop PCs and have different specifications and computing power. They come in affordable, low- end models which can easily be expanded and are great for retail and back office implications. Server Racks are utilized by Medium and Large Companies which need an IT infrastructure to store data. Server Racks range in size from 1U-4U. The standard height for most Racks is 42U Tall.
Server Software: Server Software specifies the type of software that is to be implemented, operated, and managed by a computing server. This helps you harness the power of the underlying server through use with a variety of high-end computing services and functionality.
Protection is important. Server Software provides an interface and infrastructure that requires authentication or credentials for access. This makes your data accessible beyond the physical LAN.
The Virtual SAN (VSAN) Assessment through VMWare allows you to collect data of your existing vSphere storage environment in just one week and get the technical and business recommendations you need.