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Can you help me with my capacity planning?

We are in a process of building up a social app.
Initially we will have only a few thousands of users than will grow with time. Which would be the best and suitable hosting for this purpose? Grid, cloud or VPS? (it has to be economic, as we are just starting up)
The hosting needs to be strong, so, in case our app has increase in the user base all of a sudden it wont break up or slow down the app. Our app is in PHP, MySQL.

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marked as duplicate by splattne Oct 18 '12 at 10:57

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question.

how much is economic to you ? a few thousands but what is a more accurate number you expect (this may be your most crucial question between economic and what sort of enviroment you will host with) ? – Prix Aug 9 '10 at 7:50
I do love unwarranted optimism. :) – John Gardeniers Aug 9 '10 at 10:03
Well if you can't provide that information it makes hard to tell you what will be the best option for you to start with and from that upgrade your package within a econimic price ... This days cloud and vps have a very low price and differences between what you lose or gain within both ... – Prix Aug 9 '10 at 20:11
Thanks for your comment guys. The last app that we created has around 6k users (active users), this is the next version of it. The last app was on a shared hosting and crashed when it was hit by a lot of users concurrently. This new app is certainly going to have more users than the previous. – happyhardik Aug 12 '10 at 11:20
I am not sure how much concurrent users I will get but the numbers could be/would be/should be in 100's. – happyhardik Aug 12 '10 at 11:29

we will have only a few thousands of users

That's a meaningless metric. Your requirements will depend on the complexity of the app, the size of the data and the number of concurrent hits.

it has to be economic, as we are just starting up

Again - that's not a meaningful metric - how much do you plan on spending?

IMHO a VPS gives you the most control over how the application is managed, but this is not even the tip of the iceberg in planning a scalable architecture.


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Thanks for your answer. I would give you some idea of what I am expecting. The app is a dating website, and we are trying our best to optimize it. The data is going to be the user profiles and there is going to be a search functionality. (: For giving you an idea of the concurrent hits, say I have about 20k monthly active users or 100k monthly users or 500k monthly users. What will be the best option to host for these three figures? – happyhardik Aug 12 '10 at 11:34
And what would be the average hosting cost for these three figures. If I have 20k monthly active users, 100k and 500k. – happyhardik Aug 12 '10 at 11:36
Still a meaningless metric - how many concurrent hits are you handling? With what hardware? – symcbean Aug 12 '10 at 16:54
I manage a site with 35k users and spent about U$700/month with hosting. – Paulo Scardine Nov 6 '10 at 7:02
Although number of users is not a good metric for scaling an app, I think Paulo's cost is very high - at these kind of prices it'd be cheaper to do your own hosting. I've previously run a site fielding 2M pages/day - doing our own hosting it cost approx 300UKP/month (approx 450 USD) and link costs tend to be much higher in the UK than US. – symcbean Nov 6 '10 at 23:06

If you want 90% of your site done for you out of the box, check out Pinax ( If you don't grok Python or Django, It may be worth your while to learn it (or hire out the customization) rather than writing the app from scratch in PHP or Perl.

You will be happy with Webfaction for hosting django or ruby on rails. Their shared hosting will work for a while, and even their VPS plans are pretty competitive.

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If you not quite sure about your exact requirements, which is common for start up, you never know if you going to have linear or exponential growth of your app. You can be well prepared for this if you code your app and install infrastructure that can scale out as you grow.

Go back and think about the requirements you can specify. You have a lot of unknowns, but think about best and worse case.

Shop around for the best deal on hosting, The competition is fierce, but beware there are a lot of hosting companies that 'sell a good config' on paper, but can't delivery what their glossy web site offers. At least try and get a company that will offer you a good SLA.

Again, what's you budget. ? $0, $1000 a month..? unlimited?

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