server farm

a.k.a. compute farm -or- hosting farm -or- ranch -or- server cluster

A group of networked servers that are housed in one location in order to streamline internal processes, distributing the workload between the individual components. In other words, a server farm expedites computing processes by harnessing the power of multiple servers. The farms rely on load-balancing software that tracks demand for processing power from different machines, prioritizes the tasks, and schedules and reschedules them depending on the priority and demand that users put on the network. When one server in the farm fails, another can step in as a backup.

Combining servers and processing power into a single entity has been relatively common for many years in research and academic institutions. Today, more and more companies are utilizing server farms to handle the enormous amount of computerized tasks and services they require.

See also : Web server farm  
NetLingo Classification: Net Hardware