Right now I'm running Windows Server 2003 on a VPS with 640mb RAM and it works fine. I would like to upgrade OS to Windows Web Server 2008 or Windows Web Server 2008 R2.

I understand that it is difficult to say how much RAM is needed, but can you make a comparison between 2003 and the two new 2008 versions?

RAM on VPS is by far the most expensive item, so I wonder if I can get similar performances with 1GB and 2008 or 2008R2 compared to 640MB and 2003.

Basically I run IIS, SQL Server and MailEnable.


Let's try to say this in another way: Do 2008 and/or 2008 R2 need much more RAM than 2003? For example, with a similar situation (same DB, same web sites and programs running etc), can I say that I need the same amnount of RAM? 1.5x? 2x? How much more consuming is 2008 vs 2003 in terms of RAM?

  • Pietro, you have to log in with your openid and visit the accounts tab to regain ownership of the question. This isn't even a registered user. – splattne May 12 '10 at 9:25
  • In case you don't know, SQL Server (out of the box) will use just about all available memory. – jftuga Dec 27 '10 at 0:17

Server 2008 and R2 progressively require a little less RAM than Server 2003 if you're using the same features. Each version has more features available, and when installed/enabled they require more RAM; but the core OS itself actually requires less.


It REALLY depends on your load. I have a SQL here with 8gb in a VPS, I have systems with 256mb (core, dns only). Especially with a database it really depends on the database. I would just stay with what you have, and see what happens. Then upgrade as needed.


SQL Server R2 is only 64bit so, i suggest you to upgrade the server to 1GB of RAM because a 64 operating system in some situation can get a little more RAM, however i personally suggest to upgrade the system to 1Gb of RAM with Windows Server 2008.

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