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How much RAM does a server need

The amount of server RAM is one of the key parameters along with the characteristics of the processor, motherboard and storage size.

Types of server memory

  • RDIMM (Registered DIMM) - uses buffering, which allows a separate register for address and command signals. It has an additional register for command buffering, which reduces the load on the memory controller and ensures stable operation. Such memory modules often contain the ECC function and are labeled as ECC REG.
  • LRDIMM (Load-Reduced DIMM) - faster and larger capacity compared to 2- and 4-rank RDIMMs due to the increased buffer.
  • Low voltage (with L indicator) and Very Low Profile server memory.
The amount of RAM on a single card can be from 4 to 256 GB.
There are four generations of server RAM: DDR, DDR2, DDR3 and DDR4. Each new generation differs from the previous one by increased bandwidth, reduced power consumption and base frequency. For example, DDR3 has standard frequencies from 1333 to 1866 MHz and DDR4 has standard frequencies from 2133 to 2933 MHz.

Differences of RAM for servers

Unlike ordinary memory used in home computers, server RAM must withstand significant loads over long periods of time.

Functions of server RAM

  • Storing temporary information required for current operations.
  • Providing rapid data exchange between the processor and other components.
  • Improving overall system performance.
Unlike a home computer or an office workstation, a server runs continuously: days, months, years. Its components are characterized by improved performance and undergo more thorough factory testing.
Stability of server RAM is achieved due to design features. On its strips there are additional chips responsible for automatic error correction - ECC (Error Correcting Code). They increase the stability of the server.

Factors affecting server RAM consumption

  • Tasks performed.
  • Number of simultaneously connected users.
  • Volume of data and queries.
  • Type of operating system and additional software. Typically, Linux requires less memory than Windows Server.

How many gigabytes of RAM do you need for a server?

The relationship between the motherboard, processor and memory must be considered. All components must be compatible in terms of frequency, speed, voltage, memory type, ranks and chipsets.
  • It is recommended to choose DDR4 ECC REG.
  • Determine the required capacity depending on your tasks, programs and operating system.
  • Make sure that the selected RAM frequency is compatible with the CPU and motherboard. It is important that the RAM frequency corresponds to the CPU parameters and does not exceed them. Keep in mind that older processors may not support newer generation memory. Study the specifications of the motherboard for compatibility with the selected RAM: supported memory types, voltage, multi-channel mode, frequency and maximum capacity of the module. Otherwise, the RAM may not start, or it may have to run at maximum frequency.
  • When choosing RAM taking into account timings, remember that models with lower values are more expensive, but overpayment is not always justified. It is better to focus on the average parameters.
  • When selecting a motherboard, take into account the number of available memory slots and compatibility with it.
  • When installing a new memory module, choose one that is identical to the one already installed.

Recommendations for selection

The amount of RAM has an impact on the performance and efficiency of the server.
  • For web server, hosting - minimum 2 GB for small websites without databases. Large websites with databases require more space.
  • For a database server - from 4 GB and more, depending on the size of data and the activity of using the database.
  • For a game server - 32 GB or more, depending on the game and the number of players.
  • For virtualization - depends on the number of virtual machines and configuration.
If the company plans to grow, it is better to choose a server with the ability to expand memory or consider horizontal scaling. Load monitoring with the help of special tools allows you to promptly respond to changes.


The principle of "the bigger the better" is not always the key. It is important to consider the limitations of the processor, the number of available slots on the motherboard, and the maximum supported capacity. In addition, the requirements of the operating system should be taken into account.
23 Apr 2024, 13:01:47