Fiber is good for you / Server building

Posted by Cpsgames on July 21, 2015, 8:52 a.m.

Ay, gurl.

Fiber is good for your body

About a week ago I came home from work to find a pamphlet about a new Fiber-based ISP coming to my area. On the speeds listed inside I could get 100/100 mbps speed for roughly $10 more than what I'm paying now for 100/5, which is about $70. I figured that may be worth it for the upload speed, so I decided to call the rep. It turns out the speeds were actually incorrect as their new pamphlets haven't been printed yet and they will be offering up to 1000/1000 mbps for $100! Gigabit speeds!

Of course, I got ahead of myself and decided to order that instead of just going with 250/250 (for $70/mo), but hey man it's gigabit speeds. I was already planning on switching at this point, but I had two more questions that were very important to me; Is there a data cap and is hosting servers on the connection okay. No data caps and he said "As long as you aren't torrenting copyrighted media, we don't care what you do with your connection. Servers are allowed." This is amazing, no data caps, I can host servers, and I will have gigabit speeds. Currently I pay $70/mo for 100/5 with a 400GB data cap so I will be happy when I get the new service.

I signed up right then and there while on the phone with the rep and will be getting my new internet on August 6th. Excited about the new service coming to town, I went to tell friends about it so that they could also switch over to a much better service. Unfortunately for them the ISP is coming to the apartments where I live because we are technically out of city limits where Suddenlink and Centurylink don't have control. I hope this new ISP can push into town because both ISPs currently here are quite awful.

Let's build a server then

With the new ISP and no risk of having my internet shut off due to running servers, I'm planning on building a home server for hosting my own media locally, development, data backup, and for a few game servers. Servers are a different beast than regular PC building so I'm at a loss as to what components to choose here. Should I go for a Core i3/i5 CPU or check out an E3 or E5 Xeon? Would 8GB be enough RAM for this or should I bump it up to 16GB? I should probably run the drives in RAID, but what kind of drives should I do?

I'm thinking that an i5 with some 3TB WD Reds, and possibly an SSD for certain programs and the OS, might be a good way to go about this, but I'm interested in all suggestions. I'm wanting to spend around $500 - $600, but I can go a bit higher if needed. I could look into getting a used blade from Ebay as well. Cost of the OS isn't a thing because I have a copy of Windows Server 2012 already and will most likely just run Debian or Arch.

TL;DR: New gigabit ISP with no data-caps coming Aug. 6th, want to build a home server for games, media, and various other things. Also Java Monsters are delicious.


flashback 8 years, 10 months ago

I'd go with actual server-grade hardware if you plan to have it running for long periods. Xeons or Opterons, ECC RAM, and server-grade HDDs (With WD that'd be the RE4s, but apparently the HGSTs are more reliable at the moment). If you want an SSD, go Intel.

Cpsgames 8 years, 10 months ago

Makes sense. If anything I'll go with just a hard drive now and add the SSD later as setting the OS up again wouldn't take long on that connection.

I'm curious if a current or last generation Xeon E3 would fit my needs or if I'd need an E5. I have no idea how much the performance varies in that line. I think 16GB of RAM would probably be plenty, though I'm sure I could get by with only 8GB as well.

flashback 8 years, 10 months ago

Depends on the game - I'd try to track down some recommendations. Are you going to be virtualizing, or running a single system?

Also, for multiple game servers as once, I'd do 32GB of RAM (ESPECIALLY if you are virtualizing).

Cpsgames 8 years, 10 months ago

I was planning on running a single system. The most "intensive" server I've ever really run was a modded Minecraft server that uses just over 2GB of RAM with around 10 people on. It's currently on a RAMNODE "Premium" VPS which is apparently an E3 @ 3.3GHz and that runs it perfectly, but I don't know how well that would scale (only has 3GB of RAM so I can't really check) with a few other less-intensive game servers running (regular KF2 server, small/medium DayZ server, etc). I would probably only run two servers at once, but I just want the extra room in case I do run more.

Perhaps an i5 or E3 with 16GB+ of RAM would fit my needs, then? Thanks for the help so far.

Alert Games 8 years, 10 months ago

It seems like you guys are getting a lot of the good stuff. Is there a reason they are putting it there? (I'm guessing kansas city area). Maybe they are testing in certain cities?

Either way, I don't know what I would do with all of that bandwidth except for running servers and downloading things. But moving files across the internet would be very fast. I would use it to bittorrent sync my OS drive images to my offsite computer without having to wait forever to do it.

I hope the increases there trickle down into my city soon.

flashback 8 years, 10 months ago

If your needs aren't crazy simultaneously running things, and you already have it running in a virtualized E3, I'd say an E3 would suit you fine. 16GB is an OK starting point for RAM; If you do end up needing more, you can always get more.

Cpsgames 8 years, 10 months ago

Quote: AG
Is there a reason they are putting it there? (I'm guessing kansas city area).
No idea, but I'm about an hour and a half north of KC in a much smaller town. Their parent company has a office location in town so that may be why they want to move in though.

Quote: AG
Maybe they are testing in certain cities?
Possibly. I hope they push into town more though. If they were allowed to Suddenlink and Centurylink could probably be driven out easily as neither one has the infrastructure to compete (cable and DSL).

Quote: AG
Either way, I don't know what I would do with all of that bandwidth except for running servers and downloading things.
Yup, gonna download all the things and run all the servers. I don't know if I can put all of it to full use, so I may drop down to the 250/250 tier later to save money. We'll see.

Quote: FB
16GB is an OK starting point for RAM; If you do end up needing more, you can always get more.
Exactly what I was thinking. I can just grab two 8GB sticks and make sure the mobo I choose has room for more. Speaking of the motherboard, I don't really need anything that special I imagine. Just something reasonably priced with good reviews, right?

flashback 8 years, 10 months ago

Supermicro has an excellent reputation.

Cpsgames 8 years, 10 months ago

I saw that. I also saw that they're fairly expensive. I'm not sure if they're worth the extra cost, especially for my needs.

eagly 8 years, 10 months ago

Oh man. I just ordered some tasty fiber for my flat that will up my download speeds from 2Mb to 80Mb which is really exciting for me. Gigabit!?!? I can only dream. :(