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I'm developing an advertising site for the real estate business. The thing is that it is a startup business and I'm not too positive in thinking that I will get a lot of users very quickly. So, my concern is if it's okay to host all the applications (webserver + appserver + db) in only one machine (for example a VPS) at first and then over time scale the system into more servers or clusters if I need it.

Best to all, I love this site.

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3 Answers 3

Yes, put it all on one machine, but keep your configuration manifests separate so that it is easy to split into separate machines as you scale.

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i'm with womble on this one. there are too many unknowns at this point, how much traffic will the web site get? how much resource (cpu, memory, etc.) useage on the server will there be? start with one server and scale out from there as needed. make sure to document the steps required to separate the various functions later so that you have a plan in place should the need arise. –  joeqwerty Nov 25 '09 at 12:54

Depends, some applications can take a lot of resources and you might be better off seperating the applications. For example, if you want to host a simple PHP application running on Linux, Apache and MySQL for a medium-traffic website, you can probably put all of it on one server.

What are you planning on using?

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For a medium traffic site, using a single host is perfectly fine assuming that physical resources (CPU+Memory+Disk) are not an issue.

I think your biggest concern with using a single machine should be reliability and uptime. Make sure you take appropriate measures to backup any important data or configurations so that if and when the host fails, you can easily recover.

You don't need a cluster of servers, but having a hot standby ready is probably a good idea if all your revenue generating applications are on this single host.

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