The online gaming industry generated $152 billion in 2019 and expectations are for revenues to hit nearly $200 billion by 2022.
Online gaming is a huge business but you don’t have to be a huge player to get in the door. Anyone can set up their own game server where gamers can play together.
Let’s look at what dedicated gaming servers are and how to choose the right one for your needs.
Dedicated servers are exactly what the name says – a server dedicated to your use. Nobody else shares the resources and you have complete control over the server.
There are 3 common types of servers you can choose from to host a gaming platform or website.
Shared hosting is the cheapest type of server but also the least desirable, especially for gaming. With shared hosting, you share the server resources with other users, sometimes several hundred with some hosting companies. The performance suffers, there are many more security risks, and your gaming experience won’t be very good.
Virtual Private Servers, or VPS, are still shared but each user on the server gets a fixed share of the resources. Your security and performance aren’t affected by other users on the server.
A VPS is a better option than shared but it’s still not ideal for gaming or for high-traffic websites since you’re only working with a share of the server’s potential.
Dedicated servers are exactly that – dedicated to your use. You have access to all the resources such as processing speed and storage. And you can configure the server exactly the way you want.
Hosting a game server or website on a dedicated server gives you the best possible performance. You don’t need to worry about other users chewing up processing time or memory and you especially don’t need to worry about one of those users doing something that poses a security threat to players or visitors on your site.
You can also configure the server exactly the way you want. Choose your operating system, install any custom scripts or other tools, and optimize the configuration for the game you’re hosting or website platform you’re using.
You can even run more than one website or game on your server using virtualization technology to “share” it with yourself.
Choosing a dedicated server is similar to buying a new PC for yourself in many ways. A lot of the details are similar, such as CPU and RAM, but there are a couple of big differences that you need to consider.
The number of concurrent players on a gaming server or visitors on a website has a bearing on how much power you need in your server. More people accessing the server at the same time means more processing power, memory, and bandwidth are necessary to support them at full performance.
Note that this is concurrent users. If you have 1,000 players on your server but there are never more than 100 playing at the same time, the needs are much lower than if all 1,000 are playing at once.
Security is an extremely important component of running an online gaming server or website. Especially if you collect personal information or payment details from your users.
You and your users need to be confident that the information on your server is safe from hackers. Keeping on top of the latest security threats is a full-time job so you need to make sure you choose a hosting company that makes security a top priority, such as NETdepot with our Security as a Service product.
A Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack is another type of security threat but it’s worth mentioning separately.
A DDoS attack is a coordinated effort by hackers to send so many concurrent requests to a server that it overwhelms it and brings it to a halt. These types of attacks can be random or they could be targeted, such as by a player who got banned from a game server for breaking the rules.
NETdepot’s dedicated servers include strong firewalls and DDoS protection so you don’t have to worry about your server getting targeted.
Service and support are also important factors when choosing a dedicated server. If you’re not a system admin and don’t want to learn how to become one, you’ll need to rely on your hosting company for certain things.
And since the server is physically located in the host’s datacenter, they’ll be responsible for any hardware problems or other physical repairs or upgrades that are necessary.
With our Epic 24×7 Support, NETdepot has staff on-site in the datacenter 24 hours a day and we provide support around the clock as well. Submit a ticket through our Advanced Trouble Ticket System and we’ll get your issues sorted out ASAP.
And if it’s something that needs to be escalated, our Advanced Escalation Procedures have you covered.
There are several specifications you’ll have to consider when choosing a dedicated gaming server:
The CPU determines how fast the server can process information and how much it can process at once. You can choose from various speeds of processor, usually from Intel’s Xeon series, and the number of processors in the server (single- or dual-CPU).
RAM dictates how much data the server can process at once, which has a bearing on how many players can be online at the same time and what games you can run. Our servers start at 8GB RAM and go up from there.
Storage determines how much information you can store on the server. The types of files you store has a big impact on this. For example, video files take up a lot more space than images or text.
Bandwidth is the amount of data you can transfer through your server’s internet connection every month. Again, more players or more visitors means higher bandwidth requirements, as does hosting video or other large files.
If you’re looking for the best dedicated gaming servers, NETdepot can help you get set up. We offer a range of dedicated servers that will meet your needs whether you’re setting up a server for a few friends or you want to build a massive multiplayer gaming empire.
Get in touch with us today and we’ll help you figure out what server configuration best meets your needs.