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Server Expectations [hardware/bandwidth]
this is box that im almost done building:

intel pentium 4 prescott 540 3.2Ghz 800Mhz 1Mb L2
abit aa8-duramaxx i925x [not an issue, but stable]
corsair value select ddr2-533 [512x4]
ati radeon x700pro pci-x [this is my extra card] :\
wd 160gb ide 7200rpm

onboard sound
onboard gigabit lan

i may be upgrading to 2 wd 37gb raptor sata raid-0
i also will prob get a nv 6200 or x300 cuz i dont need a 200$ card for a server

i plan on running linux but might right win2003as

i have 3 options as far as my internet:

sbc dsl @ 3.0down / 512up - my place
verizon fios @ 10.0down / 3.0up - friends place co-location [100$/mo tho..]


i was wondering what version of linux would be the best to run a dedicated server first off. i have a lot of computer knowledge, just havent messed with linux.

second, i was wondering what kind of setups i could run on this with the different connections.
im hoping to run 4 20-man css servers, maybe more...

i was also hoping it was possible to run 1.6 servers on the same box? if so, probably just 2 12-16man servers.

any insight on ANY of these questions is very much appreciated

antec p160w - pcp&c 510 express - koolance exos-al
intel 560 3.6 - abit fatal1ty - 2gb corsair xms2 ddr2-675
bfg 6800 ultra oc pci-x - 4 seagate 200gb sata raid 1-0
Liquid c4 - #lc4 - -
The problem with home connections is the latency (ping).
Your best bet if your friend with verizon fios isn't charging you, is to go with him since its the cheapest. And since you mentioned you don't know much about linux, if something goes wrong you can walk to your friends house and fix it. But with a colocating a server, usually you can't. Not to mention if someone compromises your server you will be obligated to take the fault in terms of legal & financial disputes.
I am sure you can probably squeeze 2*20 players on it.
However I don't know how great verizon fios latency is. Not to mention if your friend is using the line himself to upload/download.
Also, you never specified what size your box is, but it sounds like you built it in a ATX case, which is a problem. Expect to pay more if you colocate that compared to a 1U server.

Regarding linux, this is for server use so don't pick one bulked up with GUI (Mandrake). The rest is based on choice... since they are all essentially linux.
But just to get you looking, try (slackware, fedora, gentoo). Suse, debian/ubuntu are popular distros too but I've never used them.
If your feeling wild, try FreeBSD. Smile

BTW, if you don't know anything about linux, your going to have a problem.
Sure you can follow some tutorial with step by step commands and get your CS:S server up & running. But theres more to it than that. For instance, you have setup a firewall rules, lockdown SSH, turn off all unwanted services, setup internal security measurements, update the system. Should even recompile the kernel to optimized memory usage.
Where I am at, verizon is the absolute worst broadband for gaming you can get, but you're probably not in Hawai'i, so idk how verizon is where you are at. Anyways, if your friends place has dedicated bandwidth, I'd suggest use that one. Otherwise, go with the co-lo. Running the server at your place will not provide you with bandwidth anything close to what you would need.

In my opinion, if you plan on running that many servers on one box, you'd be better off with linux. I like using Redhat, it's all I've ever used, so idk if other distros would be better, and I am currently using RHEL 4. If you are worried that you won't know enough in linux, try installing webmin. It's a web interface for adminestering your server, making some more complex tasks a lot easier, especially if you are new to linux.

and yeah, you can run 1.6 and source servers on the same box. just use different directories.
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I would have to say go with Gentoo. Sure its a pain and takes a bit to setup. But it can also teach someone that doesn't know linux IF they follow the docs correctly. Because you setup Gentoo manually, you kinda get a feel for most linux commands. and if you feel adventurous, you can optimize your system for better performance in just about anything. (be wary some optimizations can break your system). Gentoo also has easy access to different kernel sources like ck-sources for more perfomance.

But as said. Its all about prefrences.
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starting 9/24/2006 if your problem has been solved please edit your first post and add [solved] to the begining of the title. Thanks.
i agree with cryotek 100%. gentoo is one of the best linux distros out there, turnd me from a noob to a competent user during my week long install spree. and dont worry about having to have physical access to your server to fix it. one of the beauties of linux is remote administration. In fact, the gentoo box i use now i installed completly without a monitor, keyboard, or mouse plugged into it. just a network cable and poewr cord. with SSH, VNC, you can do anything to it and be fine.

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