E-Businesses of all types must deal with the mounting demands placed on their infrastructure. A stable environment is no longer enough to stand out from the competition. Companies must be ready to quickly deploy new solutions and services without disrupting current operations.
Infrastructure analysts at the META Group recommend an N-tier architecture to meet the demands of growing e-Businesses. It is a departure from traditional 2-tier architecture in which core applications and data are stored on a mainframe. The old 2-tier architectures place great stress on the network and lack the flexibility to adapt to change.
In the following solution brief, Intel describes the META Group's best practice recommendations, which include:
- Become proficient at designing and deploying N-tier architecture. Partitioning presentation logic, business logic, and data management functionality will simplify upgrades and integration.
- Deploy high-quality application server software (middleware). Proper implementation will reduce application development costs and help to standardize your e-Business environment.
- Scale out at the front-end. Redundant arrays of inexpensive servers (RAIS) can be scaled incrementally and affordably, and provide virtually unlimited levels of performance and availability.
- Scale out at the middle tier. With appropriate middleware, the advantages of scaling out can also be realized at the application layer. For best results, use middleware tools rather than the operating system to configure failover and clustering solutions.
- Scale up in the back-end. Intel® Pentium® III Xeon" processor-based servers configured with 8, 16, and 32 processors lead the industry in absolute performance, price/performance and compatibility for back-end applications
For more details about N-tier architectures, read the complete Intel e-Business white paper, "Building a Better e-Business Infrastructure: N-tier Architecture Improves Scalability, Availability and Ease of Integration."