What you need to know about CPU’s in dedicated servers

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If you’ve ever searched the Internet for the best deals on dedicated servers, one particular specification that is almost always noted is the CPU, along with the amount of the RAM and the size of the storage drive. In contrast to shared web hosting or a VPS account, CPU’s on dedicated servers can be customized to best fit your specific hosting requirements.

Most of us know that a CPU is the central processing unit of a server. It’s responsible for interpreting and executing instructions and processing data. The faster you can clock data through a CPU, the better the performance of your server, but that’s just scratching the surface.

Here’s what you need to know when comparing processors for dedicated servers.

  • Clock speed is a measurement in hertz of how fast a processor works, or executes instructions, the faster the better.
  • Chip architecture is equally important because different designs allow processors to execute instructions at the same time (simultaneously). Differences in CPU’s are its number of cores, how it threads instructions and so on.
  • Cache memory plays an important role as well. Essentially, the more cache memory a CPU has, the more it reduces the time needed to pull data from the server’s main memory. Frequently used data is stored or cached on the processor, thus increasing the overall performance of the server.

Newer servers like those at ProlimeHost have multi-core, multi-threaded processors

Even if you find an older processor with a faster clock speed, newer processors will always outperform them because they’re capable of running more tasks at the same time and do those more efficiently. When you see a spec that says a CPU has four cores, it doesn’t automatically mean that it will process instructions at four times the speed of a single core processor, rather that it won’t stall out if a single core is fully utilized.

As newer generations of processors are developed, we’re seeing latency reduced as well as improvements in chip architecture that increase both capacity of performance and speed.

To compare benchmarks of specific processors

One of the best online resources for performance comparisons of specific processors is www.cpubenchmark.net. Over 600,000 processors have been benchmarked on this site. From their site, “CPU Benchmark results (“Baselines”) were gathered from users’ submissions to the PassMark web site as well as from internal testing. PerformanceTest conducts eight different tests and then averages the results together to determine the CPU Mark rating for a system.”

When researching dedicated server performance specs, look at more than just the CPU

Be sure to match CPU clock speeds with the server’s bus speed. It’s like saying my car may be able to race along at 80mph comfortably, but if it’s stuck in a bus lane where the maximum speed limit is 50mph, that would cause bottlenecks.

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Steve

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