I tend to agree, a MacMini, around 600.00, would build php out as 64 bit no issue. If you are a baby startup, that should really cover you and be able to handle a lot more load than you would think. You may have to pop your database on something more robust, but it works quite well as a php front end.

Take it to 1000.00 or so, and you can built out your own 1U server that is going to hold it's own very very well. Or, rent a 1U, they are a few hundred bucks a month, you get to pick the OS, pick the bit'ness, etc.

If you are a startup, on a shoestring, part of the fun is being creative, and making due with what you have.

And don't laugh at that MacMini, you can easily get to the SATA port, and plug it right into a SATA array elsewhere, getting SATA II on full size dives. I just pegged the drives to a cork board, its not pretty, but it works. I have a second on standby in case that one craps. I just had them laying around, and made them up from parts.

While I am not going to mention the site, I can tell you, it is php on the front, apache2 with a good deal of mod_rewriting going on, and substantial database work, all happening on the MacMini, handling 500,000+ average unique visitors, which is a lot more requests when you add in images and the rest. (this site is not twitter related)

If I was sloppy, that database would fall on it's face under that load. I have added in some caching where needed, so pages are rendered to disk at the expense of a php include of the data.

I am in this thread to learn about the issue, but so far, getting to 64 bits should not be a barrier. Isn't this really a php issue anyway? Why can't php handle a 64 bit int in a 32 bit system? Maybe they need a bug report or a patch. MySql seems to handle 64 bit on my 32 bit test system here just fine. Maybe someone can write a wrapper for the json encode/decode that fixes this in that part of php?
Scott * If you contact me off list replace talklists@ with scott@ *

On Sep 25, 2009, at 12:23 PM, David Fisher wrote:

Saying that startups can't afford 64 bit processors in systems is
crazy. Most startups I know are running on EC2 or have fairly new
hardware. I bought a killer 64-bit quad xeon server for less than
$1,500 for our startup and its rocking. If your startup doesn't have
$1,500 for a primary capital computing expense that's another problem
you have there.

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