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Readily supporting millions of users...?
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Readily supporting millions of users...?

Hi All,

I'm about to take on a new project, and I'm in need of some input. Basically, I've never done a project of this size before with Rails, and I'm curious about its capabilities. I basically need to create a simple Personnel Tracking System where each member is able to manage their own profile, etc. The system needs to support close to 3 million.

Obviously the advantage Rails provides is quick prototyping and quicker time to production. However, I fear Rails may lack the ability to handle such a load. As with any corporate or semi-corporate environment, I wouldn't expect more than a few hundred thousand to be using it at any particular point in time. Still I want to develop this as defensively as is reasonable.

Although I would be very interested in using Rails, don't feel the need to go too deep with it. If it can potentially support the load, great -- if not, I'll work with other technologies. Be aware that I am very open to suggestion(s).

Thanks in advance.

Hi Michael,

I have only been learning Rails for a few (enjoyable) months now, but for what it's worth, i recently spotted this blog post from Obie Fernandez (who is highly respected within the Rails community, most notably for writing 'The Rails Way'), The most relevant part is near the end, where he lists high-traffic sites which are built using Rails, hope this helps:




Hi Michael,

great to hear that you're considering RoR. I personally am developing web-applications for about ten years now. I have used a lot of PHP (1998-2002) and am now using C#/ASP.NET or Java/JBOSS and of course Ruby/Rails depending on the clients needs and situation.

I can generally say that Ruby is slower than C#/Java and depending on the problem to solve this may mean slower by some orders of magnitude. However keep in mind that this has not so much to do with whether Ruby/RoR scales or not. The performance loss induced by Ruby is in O(1) meaning that if you can handle some load using one server you can handle twice as much load with two servers and so on as long as you're application does not depend on shared state (Database, MemCache, ..) So as long as you're database can handle the load and you keep use of caching reasonable there is no reason to believe you're application may not scale.

Btw. there is plenty of stuff out there about "Rails and Performance Tricks" etc. but if you have any questions feel free to contact me.

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