A computer server can be the lifeline of a business. It’s the channel that allows you to run programs and other things that makes business management easier, and also stores important data. Even if you run a brick-and-mortar store, you can’t escape the necessity of computer servers, given the modern world’s dependence on online services.
So as an entrepreneur, it’s essential that you select a computer server that’ll accommodate your technological needs. That way, you’ll survive the tests of time without draining your energy or bank account.
Read on to find out how you can select the best computer server.
Identify Your Needs First
Some business owners don’t want to deal with the hassle of in-depth research, so they think throwing money at something is the solution. However, if you don’t identify your needs first, then the server selection process can be inefficient and ineffective.
It’s a good idea to think about what the server’s purpose will be, as well as the specific tasks it needs to perform. In addition, factor in the number of users, types of apps and services it’ll run, expected data storage and processing requirements, and any other specific software or hardware compatibility needs your business has.
When you have a clear picture of what your server’s supposed to do, it can make things a lot easier and smoother!
Define Your Budget
Having a powerful server can be great, but it won’t do your company any good if you’re bleeding money. This means you have to balance your business needs with a reasonable budget to get something that works well.
While the initial costs can be the largest chunk of money you’ll have to pay up front, don’t forget to factor in other things too. Most importantly, you should also consider ongoing maintenance and operational expenses.
Choose the Server Type You Want
There are several types of servers available, with their own pros and cons. They include:
Tower servers are ideal for small businesses since they have few components. They’re housed in chassis and are small enough that they look like desktop computer towers.
Rack servers can be up to 10 feet tall and fit into standardized racks. What’s great is they can function as standalone systems, and with adequate cooling systems, can fit in smaller data centers.
Blade servers are another excellent option if you don’t have much space. These are circuit boards housed in blade enclosures and can be either individual or clustered servers.
Modular servers have their components housed in separate modules, which makes it very easy to add or remove parts. Because they’re so flexible, modular servers are outstanding for scalability.
Determine the Server Specifications
To ensure you pick a server that’s powerful enough for your business, consider the following specs:
- Processor (CPU)
- Memory (RAM)
- Network connectivity
- Expansion slots and bays
- Redundancy and fault tolerance
- Management and remote access
For example, you can find cloud block storage solutions that address issues that traditional storage methods don’t. These can allow businesses of all sizes to have the trinity of scalability, flexibility, and reliability.
Consider the Operating System
If you’re not very tech-savvy, then you’ll want to stick to a familiar operating system, such as Windows. This OS supports most applications and services too, so you’ll have an easier time configuring things.
However, Windows can have its limitations, so if you want more flexibility, options like Linux distributions (such as Ubuntu and CentOS) or specialized server operating systems (like VMware ESXi) can be better alternatives.
Research the Server Brands and Vendors
Now that you have a clearer picture of what you want and how much you’re willing to spend, the next step is to research the brands and vendors available.
Not only should they have reliable products, but they should have fantastic warranty coverage and customer support too. Another thing to consider is their after-sales service, especially if you anticipate needing assistance.
It can be beneficial to read product reviews to see if these brands and vendors deliver what they promise. This can help you avoid costly mistakes.
Evaluate Scalability and Future Needs
It’s always wise to look to the future and anticipate your future growth and expansion requirements. After all, the server you pick can be perfect for now, but what about five or 10 years down the line?
It’s in your best interest to choose a server that can be upgraded or expanded on demand. Also, you should be able to do so without major disruptions.
Consider Energy Efficiency
It’s undeniable that servers consume lots of energy, especially if yours will be running 24/7. Not only can this be costly, but it can leave a huge carbon footprint too.
When shopping your options, look for servers with energy-efficient components. For instance, processors with low power consumption can help decrease your operating expenses.
Consult With Experts
If you’re having a tough time determining things like your specific requirements, or you can’t understand technical details, then consulting with IT professionals, server administrators, or consultants can be insightful. All you have to do is tell them your specific needs, and they’ll provide guidance.
Pick the Best Computer Server
If your business needs a computer server, then you should carefully weigh your options and dig into research. Many entrepreneurs mistakenly think they can quickly select one and move on, but this just creates problems in the future.
It’s vital that you get a computer server that meets your current needs and allows for future growth. So do your due diligence to see it pay off for your company’s well-being.
Interested in upgrading more of your tech? Then keep reading our blog posts for some inspiration.