Is the RAM your paying for dedicated or burst?

For example, on the lowest level plan you get 512mb, is the actual RAM 256mb with a 256mb burst?

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Swapping on SSD will still be terrible, just not as bad as on spinning disks. RAM access latency is measured in single digit nanoseconds, SSD access latency is 50-100 microseconds, HD access latency is 11-20 milliseconds. So, SSDs are 200x quicker to respond than harddrives, but still about 10,000 times slower than RAM.

Good answer cwebersd

The Ubuntu article should work on Debian. We have another article for CentOS: