Choosing the Right Droplet for Your Application
DigitalOcean has three different classes of Droplet plans for you to build your application: Standard, High CPU and High Memory. Each of these plans has its own benefits which will be talked about in this article.
Standard Droplets contain a healthy balance of CPU, RAM and local SSD and were originally the only set of Droplet plans available. Typically, people use Standard Droplets when they’re just getting started with their applications and are either unsure of how much of each resource they’ll need or just want to keep things simple.
If you’re just getting started with a new application or are generally unsure of what plan to use, you should start with Standard Droplets. As your application grows and has new demands you can explore either High CPU or High Memory Droplets which are described below.
Get Started with Standard Droplets in the Control Panel.
High CPU Droplets
High CPU Droplets are optimized for computationally intensive workloads. They have smaller proportions of RAM and local SSD relative to Standard Droplets. High CPU Droplets run on top of compute-optimized hardware separate from Standard Droplets which are powered by best in class CPUs. Additionally, these Droplets have been engineered to have committed underlying physical resources so that other guests on the same hardware very rarely impact your Droplet performance.
Workloads that typically run on High CPU Droplets are high performance application servers, data analysis, batch processing, and video and image transcoding.
Get Started with High CPU Droplets in the Control Panel.
High Memory Droplets
High Memory Droplets are optimized for applications which have stronger demands for RAM. These plans are priced 25% cheaper per gigabyte of RAM than Standard Droplets. These Droplets are predominantly used for databases and in-memory caches like memcached or redis.
Typically, customers will start off on a Standard Droplet and notice that they’re hitting constraints on RAM but will be fine from a CPU perspective then augment their application to run on a High Memory Droplet.
To measure how much RAM your instance is using you can run the command
free -m regularly which will inform you how much free memory you have available. A simpler solution is to use the free DigitalOcean monitoring agent which will give you the ability to see memory utilization graphs on your Droplet page like the following:
Get Started with High Memory Droplets in the Control Panel.