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Our company sells its software through a web site that is hosted on the company's network. As the company grew, we came to find that the web server couldn't handle the load generated by the traffic on the site. The need to come up with a solution for managing the load on the server, and clustering came to mind. What considerations must be taken into account before we can attempt to configure clustering on our network? What must we do in order to analyze business and application requirements? How can we plan storage methods? How can we plan server capacity? How can we plan failover policies? Any and all help is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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The question as asked, which is more a whole series of questions, would require answers of a complexity level well outside the scope of a Q&A site such as this (in fact it would take an entire book). I suggest you break this down into separate questions, taking it one piece at a time. – John Gardeniers Sep 20 '10 at 10:17
Not like they've been asking questions for very long. Seems harsh to leave that comment for someone with only 11 reputation... – dunxd Sep 20 '10 at 10:27
Rlopez6570 might want to attack the problem by breaking it down into a series of guided questions. The first, outline your problem with the server being overloaded (give specs on the server; the software used, the web site logic/architecture (ASP? ruby? .NET?), and then ask what can be done to handle a higher load. Perhaps clusters aren't the answer, as clustering may require some architecture support on the part of your site application. – Bart Silverstrim Sep 20 '10 at 11:45
If you invest time in breaking the questions down and cruising SF to pick our collective brains, I'm pretty confident that you will find a decent solution to your issue. You just have to invest the time to work with the site and the volunteers. – Bart Silverstrim Sep 20 '10 at 11:46
up vote 1 down vote accepted

You could load balance your server. Commercial products exist, which as "Alteon", or you can use a product such as Apache (when used as a reverse proxy), Squid or HAProxy. In a Windows world, this can be done using ISA proxy or others.

You will basically instruct this load balancer to forward requests to a pool of web servers. This will also usually take care of failover scenario's.. as it won't forward requests to a server that is down.

If you have transactions on your webserver, and need synchronization, you might have to change certain things in your application.

There's multiple ways to increase the performance. Is your server overloaded, or is the site "slow"?

Without too much information, it's rather difficult to provide "your website can handle X hits per minute" or so. Depends on your application logic.

Hope this helps a bit.

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Thanks I appreciate your time and feedback. – rlopez6570 Oct 7 '10 at 3:18

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