Step 4: Choose a reliable hardware brand

Contributor Hilary Cotter explains what to look for in a hardware vendor.

Choose a hardware vendor that delivers products that are on the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL). Microsoft supports HCL products. Your vendor should also offer 24-hour support and have both a solid industry reputation and a promising future.

For instance, many companies invested heavily in equipment from Bay Networks only to find those investments lost when the company was purchased by Nortel Networks, which did not support Bay Networks equipment. When Hewlett-Packard/Compaq CEO Carly Fiorina was fired in 2004, there was industry concern about HP's future in the server space, and several large companies jumped vendors only to find a strong earnings report in the last quarter of the year. Dell's low-price marketing strategy has resulted in a perception of low quality, making some companies look elsewhere for fear of Dell's long-term viability. Clearly, there are many factors -- both technological and environmental -- to consider and weigh when choosing your hardware vendor.

Spec your SQL Server hardware needs

 Home: Introduction
 Step 1: Invest in good application design
 Step 2: Understand your workload
 Step 3: Know your memory support limitations
 Step 4: Choose a reliable hardware brand
 Step 5: Take advantage of 64-bit
 Step 6: Take advantage of storage area networks
 Step 7: Properly configure your RAID arrays
 Step 8: Use separate disk controllers
 Step 9: Choose and optimize your disks wisely
 Step 10: Optimize CPU activity and speed
Hilary Cotter
Hilary Cotter has been involved in IT for more than 20 years as a Web and database consultant. Microsoft first awarded Cotter the Microsoft SQL Server MVP award in 2001. Cotter received his bachelor of applied science degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Toronto and studied economics at the University of Calgary and computer science at UC Berkeley. He is the author of a book on SQL Server transactional replication and is currently working on books on merge replication and Microsoft search technologies.
Copyright 2006 TechTarget

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