Whether you are leasing a server from a remote service or buying your own on-premise dedicated server, it is important to know what is under the hood and what you are getting for your money.  The following are five tips that should help you evaluate servers and make an informed decision.

1. Look for server-grade CPUs.  Not all processors are created equal.  While there are some situations where a consumer processor model is nearly identical to its server counterpart, there are times when you will actually end up getting less speed, cache, or memory capacity by opting for a low-end processor.  Look for processors designed for servers, like Intel’s Xeon or AMD’s Opteron.

2. Get as much space as possible for your money.  Hard drive space is generally not expensive, but every byte counts.  If you can afford it, get as much space as possible to be prepared for expansion.

3. Plan for scalability.  Your business plan for five or even ten years should include a plan for your server’s growth.  Build an infrastructure now that can handle whatever you envision your online presence being in the future.

4. Conserve energy without compromising performance.  There are many hardware options available today that will reduce energy consumption but still give you what you need.

5. Build future-proof servers.  You should know the shelf life of whatever you buy.  If you know hardware you are purchasing will soon be phased out, consider waiting until the newer hardware is available, or look for other options.  You do not want to spend big money on hardware that your vendor will not support for the duration of its life.  Furthermore look for technology that will meet standards of the future, not the present.

By: Tavis J. Hampton