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Is it possible to build a cheap memcached server?

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Price, Features, Performance. You get to pick two. If you want specific features and a cheap price, performance is going to suck (in general). – Chris S May 23 '10 at 23:58
up vote 3 down vote accepted

It's always "cheap" to build a "server" (I use those terms loosly, as you'll see below), but we can't answer this question for you. Only you can, by making decisions based on the following questions:

  • Your definition of "Cheap" (your budetary needs may differ from others)
  • Are you happy to go with commodity hardware and wear the risks?
  • Are you concerned with hardware support
  • Are you concerned with hardware replacement service agreements?
  • How long do you want the hardware to last?

Once you've got these items figured out, then you need to shop around and see what you can get within your budget and then that will answer that question for you.

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As mentioned, "Cheap" is a subjective term. Since memcached is a RAM based service, paint your target based on available RAM costs. Find the most favorable Capacity/technology(DDRx)/cost ratio and pick the rest of your components from there.

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Sure. If your site gets 10 hits a day and has 50 kilobytes of data to store in RAM, you could make a memcached server out of an flip phone.

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great ;-) really ;-) – Marcel Nov 22 '11 at 10:47

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