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After spending many years working in various UNIX environments, I began working concurrently with a new operating system called Windows NT Advanced Server version 3.1b. Windows NT generated some initial excitement, but it started relatively slow. That has changed. With the release of NT 4.0, this operating system has really built up steam. While researching, testing, benchmarking, and developing new solutions on NT from the workgroup to enterprise level, I am continually collecting troves of information on tuning and sizing NT Server. Developing NT Server-based solutions either as a Senior System Architect for NCR or as Chief of Technology for OAO, the same questions about NT Server arise again and again. Can NT actually be tuned? What size server is required? Will it scale as needed? How do we size it correctly? Why does system performance appear sluggish? How do you determine if NT has run out of resources? How can we help our solution to scale? Anyone developing NT solutions has commonly run into these questions. This book addresses these questions and more.
The goal of this book is to provide a practical approach to tuning and sizing NT Server so that you can immediately begin to maximize your server's overall performance. This book's approach is to discuss server technologies and then explain how NT Server takes advantage of these server technologies. Once this knowledge base is in place it will eliminate the guess work that revolves around tuning and sizing. This enables you to make more intelligent decisions regarding your NT Server's performance and optimization. Instead of providing lists of registry or other NT Server variables that canpossibly be changed (or found in the NT Server documentation), specific "rules of thumb" are provided to help you get a jump start in the tuning and sizing of your NT solution.
To help with the integration of all the information provided in this book, the final chapter incorporates in-depth sizing and tuning case studies for Microsoft Exchange, NT File Server, and Microsoft Internet Information Server. These case studies utilize the strategies, methodologies, rules of thumb, bottleneck detection, tuning, and sizing techniques presented throughout this book to highlight the improvements that are possible in an NT Server environment. Again, specific recommendations and results are provided. It is important to note that although numerous specific recommendations are provided, the concepts and principles discussed throughout this book are applicable even as new NT Server versions are released and server technology continues to mature. Of course the tools used to implement these concepts and principals will change. To aid you in keeping up with the new tools that can help your performance improvement efforts, periodically visit ...