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Hardware configuration help for MS SQL server

This is what one of the tables looks like - they are all similar and there
are about 60 different tables:

smalldatetime TimeStamp,
varchar(8) CustomerID,
numeric S1,
numeric S2,
numeric S3,
numeric S4,
numeric X

I'm not sure on the data types, S1 thru S4 are actually float values with
two decimal places. X is an unsigned long value.

Anyway, the bigger question is what do we need at *minimum* for hard drives
and RAM, if we are using SQL 7.0* under these circumstances:

1. Inserting up to 600,000 records every 10 minutes
2. Updating up to 70,000 records every 10 minutes

We can use BCP for inserting the data. There are many different tables with
an average of 10,000 records being inserted into each one every 10 minutes.

I nearly ordered a couple servers with dual 400GB SATA hard drives using
RAID1, but someone told me that with only 2 drives - it would cause SQL
server to work harder. So do we need a whole bunch of smaller 40GB drives??
Should they be SATA drives?

Could one server with dual Xeon CPUs do this, or do we need more than one
And would 2GB of RAM be sufficient?

All I know is that we will be inserting 600k records, updating 70k records,
and reading 500,000 every 10 minutes.

Do I need to provide more info on anything specifically?

We should have an SQL consultant helping us in the near future - I'm just
trying to get a head start with the hardware. Our budget is small, in fact I
may have to build the servers myself out of spare parts and things on sale
at Fry's :)

Thanks for your help. I will provide more info if needed.

*Can't afford to upgrade to SQL 2000
Jul 27 '05 #1
3 2004
I highly recommend that you check out Kevin Kline's article Bare Metal
Tuning in SQL Server Magazine. He gives a step-by-step breakdown of
how changes in ahrdware affect performance; granted, it's written from
a SQL 2000 perspective, but it might give you some ideas.


Note that the article requires a subscription, but it's a great


Jul 27 '05 #2
"Stu" <st************ **@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:11******** **************@ f14g2000cwb.goo glegroups.com.. .
I highly recommend that you check out Kevin Kline's article Bare Metal
Tuning in SQL Server Magazine. He gives a step-by-step breakdown of
how changes in ahrdware affect performance; granted, it's written from
a SQL 2000 perspective, but it might give you some ideas.


Note that the article requires a subscription, but it's a great


Based on that article, how does this look (if I understand correctly):

Dual 64bit AMD processors, 4GB fast RAM.

Drive C: is 20GB SATA drive using FAT32 without RAID. The OS goes here.

Drive E: is 40GB total storage RAID 1 (two 80GB SATA drives) with NTFS. SQL
program files and logs go on here.

Drive F: to Q: are 40GB drives using NTFS and RAID 5. Data storage goes

Jul 27 '05 #3
Actually one thing he mentioned in his presentation was that AMD
Opterons actually performed worse than 32-bit XEON processors, although
he didn't mention it in his article. XEON processors act like dual
standard CPU, so two XEON's = 4 virtual processors.

If you have RAID 5, then you wouldn't have logical drives F through Q;
it would just show up as F. Be sure that you're using hardware RAID,
and not software-based RAID.

Other than that, it looks good. Get the biggest processors you can; fo
that much data, you'll need it.

Jul 28 '05 #4

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