First of all, my apologies if this isn't the correct forum for this. Scanned the forum quickly but couldn't find a decent alternative.
The issue is as follows. As a game-related content site, we have always served downloads. For a long time we had the luck of having an unmetered account concerning space and bandwidth for our downloads with a large European ISP.
Even though nothing is official yet, my expectations are that with all good things they come to an end at some point and I would like to be prepared in case that happens. So this is more or less a little research bit.
Now lets get to the point. What are the important requirements for a download server apart from sufficient bandwidth (as I know what we need in that area)? What should I look into? What is important? Speed of the Harddrives, CPU, Memory? Any of those combined?
I would appreciate it if someone could help me in the right direction here.
Note: I am not looking for hosts or offers, just a piece of advice on what I have to take into account.
If your Just serving files, and not doing anything dynamic a celeron works fine.
If your doing somethign that requires a little CPU processing such as dynamic pages and what not you'll want something a little beefier...it all depends on how much traffic you get though.
Not true, you need fast hard drives, bandwidth, and ram.
A setup like this on cheap bandwidth should do you fine,
Dual Core P4 (3.0Ghz+)
1GB Ram +
On the hard drive, really depends on how much you will use. You should really use SCSI drives, 10K RPM would do fine.
10MBPS Unmetered, or higher? Again, depends on how much you use.
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I serve static files off a SM unmetered server...few months ago I had about 3 weeks where I was pushing 100Mbps on the 2.4Celly package. Held up fine with little or no delay on getting the downloads...Speeds were good as well.
How many files are actually active?
How large are the files?
What levels of traffic do you see at peak?
How much room do you need to grow?
We've worked with other download sites and typically find that most of the accesses are to just a few files. For these sites (pumping out TB's per month), we use lighttpd with per-connection rate throttling on 100Mbit pipes. We deploy celerons or other low end systems with 1-2 GB of RAM and low end drives. Typically banwdith pricing drives the server decision. Depending on how your applications are setup, you can possibly deploy multiple download servers in different geographic regions. Other solutions involve various "private rack" type solutions where you can pool the bandwidth of multiple servers into a pool so you don't have to worry about a single server's bandwidth.
Also consider costs ....
10mbit unmetered is 3.2TB/month max. You will be luckly if you realize 80% of this transit or 2.5TB/month.
Consider that you could get one 10Mbit server for $200 or possible 2 servers with 1000-1500/gb each for about the same price. With the 2 servers you get load balancing.
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