Reccomended Server Requirements

Hey Guys,

 What is your reccomend requirements for a web server for heavy traffic and Video Streaming? 

I’m basically building a “youtube” style website for financial professionals, so I will need space and speed.

What would be your minium for memory, processor, RAID, and connection (DSL vs. Cable)?

Yeah, it’s a vague question, but I would like to see what other peoples configuration are, so I know what ballpark I need to aim for.

I’m using a Windows Server configuration with .NET and MySQL. And the server is going to be hosted from my residents.

Any advise from System Administrators would be helpful. And I would like to keep it under $1,000.

Thanks for your help.

Shop around, you can probably find better deals from hosts that don’t spend big $$ on advertising.

Sounds like the bulk of your work will be in I/O, I’d strongly consider freebsd if I were you. (linux is pretty good too)… unless you’ve got a very serious need, I’d stay away from windows.

I use an ANCIENT FreeBSD box for streaming, (audio) and the system doesn’t bog down at all with 24 users. (it’s a PIII !!) the bandwidth gets saturated long before the CPU does. (and I run a lot of other things on the same machine)

FreeBSD handles server load really well, but it can be a bit of a hassle if you’re dealing with some goofy vendor that supplies binary-only software… (shoutcast cough) even in those cases, it’s not impossible to deal with.

The only thing that causes any sort of load is resampling, which, in my case is not horribly time sensitive, so I use the rtprio stuff combined with ‘batch’ to run these tasks while the machine is in the “idle task”. (it still completes well within a 5 minute time frame)

If you have to convert pre-recorded videos, you could probably do exactly the same thing, most of the machines time is spent “waiting” on network I/O anyway.

1 x 500 gig hard drive likely means you have one domestic quality sata drive. With no raid, if the drive fails you’ll go down until the host can replace the drive and reconfigure and put a backup back on. Raid can also help with i/o speed depending on configuration, although if you’re no longer hosting the videos this isn’t likely to be an issue.

For 50k hits a month this server spec however is likely to be overkill: 50k hits per month equates to a few hits a minute which even low end shared hosting let alone a dedicated server should be able to handle.

geniegate, thanks for the advice. I’ve been rapping my brain over Windows Server vs. Linux. Well, I bought Windows Server a few weeks back, but I returned it, due to SQL Server (Express not a option for my needs) costing to much, aka no Windows stack. So, I went with Linux, more importantly, CentOS. I have LAMP installed and ready to create projects on the server.

Anyways, what “Box” configurations would you reccomend? You mentioned you are using a PIII box, and said it works fine, and CPU is adaquate but the bandwith saturates. So, I have a Core Duo Quad Core, 4 gig RAM, and 1 500 gig harddrive. Whould that be good enough for 50,000+ hits per month? I figured the only thing you should focus on is connection speed and harddrive space (RAID) configuration

Yeah, as you can tell, i’m a complete noob at having an internet facing Web Server.

Oh, I decided to “host” my Videos on YouTube, and add the embedded object to the actual web page. Threfore no video coming of the box.

Thanks for the help, and anyones else ideas is also welcomed.

Good to know. Alright, looks like I have to sign up with a dedicated hosting company. I looked at Rack Space, and it seems like a credible company, and at the top of my list. If you have any insite in hosting, what hosting company(s) would you reccomend?


You really have no hope doing video streaming on a residential connection. Or with a single box.

Never used rackspace personally, and I’d be a bit leery about them since the IPO. Personally, I’m partial to an outfit out of NY called LogicWorks. Not cheap but very, very good.

I have extremely mixed feelings about Rackspace, I get the same level of support & SLA with a handful of other companies that cover everything out of my control: hardware, network, DC etc. – except Rackspace cost 5x as much.

A lot of the perception is that for the price you pay you essentially get a managed server with support, but they’re months (sometimes years… still running php 5.1.6…) behind in updates and get *****y if you make changes.

If you pay even more you can get an SLA which guarantees ticket response times that barely match what I get with another company as standard… I don’t understand it. No doubt if you just throw money at them you’ll get a better service, but when you’re already throwing money at them it feels like they’re just taking you for a ride.