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Dedicated Server Advice
Hello. I'm planning on getting a dedicated server shortly for CS:GO, and I have some questions. I've only ever rented single servers before, and this will be my first dedicated server, so any help would be greated appreciated.

1) Server hardware. I'm hoping to run 8 x 32 player 66 tick servers, 2 or 4 of which may later be replaced with 1/2 64 player servers. Planning on running Windows server.
I was looking at the Dell R210II (3.4GHz E3-1270 Quad Xeon® CPU 8GB RAM) from GD.
Would that be alright, or too much?
Eventually, there will be a surf server, a fun server (with custom models, maps, sounds, plugins), and if supported later, a 64 player zombie server.
All servers will have sourcemod installed, and various other plugins.

2) Multiple server installation. How should this be done? A seperate folder for each server, each containing its own server files? I will eventually be using
different mods, plugins and settings.

3) I've read in a few places suggesting Core 0 should be kept clean for the operating system. Is this necessary? I want my servers to run as smoothly as possible. If so, what does Core 0 refer to? On my desktop, task manager affinity will display 4 cores. I'm sure I've seen screenshots before though showing 8 cores being displayed on some servers, even though there are only 4 physical cores (0 + 1 representing physical core 1, 2 + 3 representing physical core 2, etc).

4) Rates. In the past when I've rented, I never bothered to touch this. Is the default setting sufficient, and if not, how do I set it appropriately? All servers will be 66 tick.

5) CPU headroom/utilisation. Is there a best practice for this? Should you only ever utilise a certain amount per core. I saw this in the KC forums from one of the staff when discussing BF3:

"Firstly, Windows is not a linear OS, the harder it's pushed the slower things get. Ideally we want to keep usage below 60% per core (4 cores per physical CPU). The R210 ranges also include Hyper threading but this is no substitute for an actual core."

6) CPU affinity. To be used or not? Setting 1 or 2 servers per core. If so, what's the best way to do this on Windows server?
start /affinity 1 srcds.exe in batch script perhaps?

7) Which software do most people use to keep the servers up. Firedaemon?

8) Is there any decent monitoring software to be used for servers. CPU/RAM/IO usage etc. Or just good old task manager?

9) General housekeeping. How often should servers and the OS be restarted? Any need for a virus scanner? Presumably not if I'm only installing trusted software. Anything needed to keep Windows server running smoothly?

10) Any other advice or best practices? Any good tutorials for securing and managing a Windows server?
* You will need more ram to properly accommodate 8 servers. If you truly want 8 servers I'd opt for minimum of 16gb and a recommendation of 24gb.
* Separate each server it in a master folder call it by a alias or number.
* Rates are important to for long term success. Most servers that are popular have good registration because of their hardware.
* I'd opt for Linux distro (Debian or CentOS) as windows does us a good ram and a bit cpu to run.
* Get a good control panel or use a watch dog. If you have a control panel then your most trusted users are able to start and restart the server.
* Their are many programs out their for internal as well as external monitoring.
* I generally restart a server every day during 3am-4am. I also change levels on 24/7 servers every hour or so.
* Restart your dedicated server once every week to prevent programs for hanging especially on windows 2003.
* Kimsufi is pretty cheap
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16GB..... I'm not trying to build a Death Star Toungue Source games have never been that RAM hungry.
1. get rid of middle-men. those gaming companies already rent dedi servers from other companies, and just re-sell with higher prices to you.
2. Aren't you a bit hasty? There is no CS:GO dedi server software yet.
3. Moreover I fear CS:GO will be cod-like where if you want your gameserver to be ranked you need to buy gameserver from their "approved"(contracted) providers, rendering your dedi being useless if you demand ranked features.

Concerned your CPU questions, honestly I believe affinity is somewhat to avoid unless you really need it, any OS now has some smart enough mechanics to spread the load along processors.
Best Regards,
By getting rid of the middle men, do you mean find a dedi provider, or colocation? I think Gaming Deluxe use their own equipment rather than rent from elsewhere, and they have just merged with Killer Creation who have their own network. Colo would work out cheaper in the long term, but my concern is what happens in the event of a hardware failure. If it's rented, then the company will just replace it.

CS:GO dedi servers will be coming very shortly. The beta patch released yesterday brought back the server browser, and there are some third party servers from big providers, but they are fixing some bug at the moment. So I want to be ready to go as soon as the dedi files are released to the public.

As for the ranking system, I don't think we have anything to fear there. Valve has never done that in any game, and isn't about to start with CS:GO. There is a matchmaking system in the game for small 5 vs 5 matches, but it's just like the L4D match making system, no global rankings. Valve has always left rankings to server owners using plugins.
He means finding a company that have their own servers servers/has racks in the DC, and not renting a server from another company first, then selling it to you.
I'll have a look. Anyone have any recommendations on a UK based provider?

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