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Joel on Software

What's your minimum hardware?

I recently started a job, where they have us developing ASP.NET with Visual Studio.NET 2002 on Windows XP Pro.

I'm currently running a 2.53GHz Pentium Penium 4.  At my last job (Visual Studio 6, developing for Win CE), I had a 400MHz Pentium II, with 512 meg of RAM if I remember correctly.

When I started the new job, I was psyched about the upgraded hardware, but then I found out that I had 256 meg installed!  I was blown away.

Basically I'm trying to convince management that a RAM upgrade is in order, but need to justify it.  My VS.NET is an absolute dog right now, though I've heard it's never been the speediest, even with adequate resources.  Basically my questions are this:

* Am I being a big baby, and should I just deal with the RAM I have?

* Would I see considerable improvement at 512 or a 1G of RAM.  (Please bear with the subjectivism.)

* What do you guys run under, and what do you consider to be excellent vs. acceptable vs. wholly inadequate?

It seems like this should be a no brainer "Use the best tools that money can buy", especially since I think the cost to *double* the RAM of the ENTIRE development team would be under $1,000... It's a pretty small shop.

Your comments would be most appreciated.  Cheers!

Dignified
Friday, August 29, 2003

Go for the RAM upgrade to 512MB and the $29 upgrade to VS.NET 2003.

GuyIncognito
Friday, August 29, 2003

vs.net will run way faster with 512MB of RAM. Go for the upgrade.

John Rosenberg
Friday, August 29, 2003

Keep adding RAM until you don't hit the swap file any more with your normal complement of programs open. I ended up with 1.5 GB on my main development box. Cheap compared to the time I could be waiting around for it to do things.

Mike Gunderloy
Friday, August 29, 2003

Of course, Mike keeps about 400 IE windows open at a time. ;) Seriously, memory is the cheapest and best upgrade you can make to a machine. I consider 1GB to be the minimum for a development machine, especially if you're doing any web development at all.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Saturday, August 30, 2003

Oh, and while I agree that the $29 upgrade price (expiring soon) is good, and should be bought, I disagree that it should necessarily be used. If you're targetting .NET 1.0, then you should stay with 2002 until such time as you move the target to .NET 1.1.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Saturday, August 30, 2003

Thanks for the replies guys, I'll be hassling my manager shortly!

Dignified
Tuesday, September 02, 2003

PIII 500 384Mb VS.NET 2002 + VS.NET 2003. I'm not saying it is incredibly fast but doable. Well if your previous reference point was JBuilder on the same machine  you would say it is incedibly fast.

Just me (Sir to you)
Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Notebook -- 1.6 Ghz Pentium 4.  I upgraded from 256 MB to 640 MB, and it made a huge improvement.  Not so much for VS .Net when running by itself, but for my typical setup -- IE open for Goolging help, Outlook Express open for newsgroups, etc.

For what it's worth, VS.Net 2003 is supposed to be much more responsive than VS 2002.  Do you need to be targeting 1.0?

Robert Jacobson
Tuesday, September 02, 2003

"Do you need to be targeting 1.0?"

No, in fact, we host the servers so we installed 1.1 to alleviate some sort of server.transfer() problem.  Am I assuming correctly then that 2003 won't target 1.0?  I think there are some web apps still in production that were developed with 1.0 on the server (both frameworks are installed), but I would doubt that they'd be incompatible with 1.1.

Dignified
Tuesday, September 02, 2003

You can target both 1.0 and 1.1 with vs.net 2003

John Rosenberg
Wednesday, September 03, 2003

"You can target both 1.0 and 1.1 with vs.net 2003"

I feel the need to clarify this, because it's (perhaps unintentionally) misleading.

For standard applications (console & GUI), there are configuration settings that you can make that will tell the underlying system that you prefer to run on 1.0 instead of 1.1. However, the compiler you use and the libraries you link against are still 1.1. This could cause you to use a library that isn't available from 1.0.

Additionally, ASP.NET applications don't have a config file like that. You pick the version of .NET you wish to use by which version of the ASPNET_ISAPI.DLL that's bound to serve your ASP.NET pages.

So, yes, code you compile with VS.NET 2003 can be run on 1.0. I wouldn't recommend it, though. Since 2002 and 2003 can co-exist, I would leave your 1.0 projects in 2002, move your 1.1 projects to 2003, and use the appropriate tool for the job.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Wednesday, September 03, 2003

"However, the compiler you use and the libraries you link against are still 1.1. This could cause you to use a library that isn't available from 1.0."

hmm... I didn't know that.

John Rosenberg
Wednesday, September 03, 2003

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