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Date:      Thu, 17 Jan 2008 10:12:15 -0500
From:      "Jim Stapleton" <stapleton.41@gmail.com>
To:        freebsd-questions@freebsd.org, darryl@osborne-ind.com
Subject:   CPu Questions
Message-ID:  <80f4f2b20801170712g67cb5028wfda685ab118acb78@mail.gmail.com>

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> In a smaller environment (50 users) will processor selection make
> any real difference ?  Website with some simple php scripting and
> mysql databases tied in .

This is a very tough question to answer. If you already have a test
environment, see how it works on your current hardware, and ascertain
the locations of the bottlenecks. All of the following are possible in
your situation:
-> Network: What is your server using? What is the average connection
speed for the users. All the CPU speed in the world won't help you if
you are attempting to pump out 50 100k pages a second on a 56k line.
-> Disk: How much information are you pulling off of the disk? If you
are doing complex queries on a 1GByte table, and server multi-megabyte
files, and using an ATA66 drive without a RAID setup, that disk is
probably going to be a slowdown for your system, and running 4x Quad
Core Xeons (core-based, not netburst) overclocked to 5Ghz won't be
noticably faster than a single Pentium 4 and 2.8Ghz. (OK, that might
be a slight exaggeration). Memory is helpful in this case. Memory can
help  here too.
-> CPU: How much is there in the way of calculations? Are the queries
simple or complex? Are there a lot of loops (even a "simple" program
with a lot of loops or recursion can be very CPU intensive)?

If it is just serving up pages with fairly simple [insert web language
of choice] code and SQL queries, the old K6-III 450Mhz I have for my
home server is more than sufficient for a fairly large number of
users. For simple timestamps and stylsheet spitting Scripting/SQL,
that machine should be able to handle 50 users at a time without a
problem.

So, in the end, we can't answer your question without more
information, but hopefully this will help you answer it. How fast will
the machine need to pull data off the disk? How fast will it need to
write the data? How much of the data can reside in memory (if it'll
all fit in memory, then disk IO isn't nearly as big of a deal?), and
how calculation intensive is your code?


Does that help answer your question?
-Jim Stapleton



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