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Cheap Energy Saving CS:S Server Build

Last response: in Systems
April 7, 2009 10:38:53 PM

I recently got Fiber Optics in my home and want to take full advantage of what I'm paying for. I'm in a CS:S clan (Yes, I'm a certified geek) and we're running out of cash for our server. Instead of paying the money to a server provider, I was thinking of building my own server and letting the clan use it. I feel more comfortable with the idea of owning as opposed to renting, even if it means I get less bandwidth and more energy use in my house.

Anyways, my initial build idea was to go with the following:

AMD X2 4850e +
790gx board

Radeon 4670

no drives other than one small hard drive.
Antec Earthwatts 380W (in my closet)
Custom case I made out of a shoebox.

Total < $300 with low energy consumption

My main concern, is this enough power to run a CS:S server? I am well aware that the 4830, at $10 more, will blow the 4670 out of the water. However, I want to cut energy costs and if the 4670 is enough power to handle CS:S, I don't see any reason to go up to the 4830 as all this system's going to do is CS:S. Also, the 4850e seems a little underpowered. Does anyone have any experience running a game server? I'd really appreciate your response especially.


Okay, apparently the hard drive is the most important aspect (other than bandwidth) to running a smooth server. I'm thinking of just ditching the video card and going for a Raptor drive instead. Good idea, bad idea?
April 8, 2009 1:07:44 AM

i'm thinking a lot of ram would be a necessity for running a server. and yes, get some velociraptor drives, or even SSD's if you can afford it. I would be concerned about overheating by keeping it a shoebox though.
April 8, 2009 9:43:37 AM

How does an SSD compare with the raptor in terms of performance on a server? I've been reading up on SSD's vs HDD's and it seems like SSD's consume a lot less power and are much quicker for individual operations while HDD's are better for multi-tasking and large storage. Since CS:S is all this system will be doing, do I need to worry about multi-tasking on the storage side of things? Right now, I'm leaning 80% towards a relatively cheap 32gb SSD:
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April 8, 2009 12:07:21 PM

if you want low energy why dont you go with a passive cooled vid card? Nvidia 8400GS, etc. If it is a server only, you dont really need a high performance vid card. The mobo has onboard graphics. That is all you need. just graphics to manage the server.

The mobo seems a bit overkill for a server only.

I have run many clan servers. Home servers will greatly limit your bandwidth, especially if you play CSS in the same house. You will eat up much of the bandwidth. You may not notice but other players will notice.

game servers dont need much of anything, other than a decent cpu and hd.

you better be on a cable/T1 or better to play more than handfull of players. Google bandwidth per player needed for CSS.

if you plan on playing AI/bots, then you will need a better cpu. Bots are very cpu intensive.

24/7 servers collect a lot of dust. keep canned air around to clean it every week or so. the dust is a PC killer.

as far as SSD, it is a good idea to save energy. You shouldn't much storage. I have run a server on an old 20G. OS+Game+maps and other game stuff should be less than 32G. much less. A spare HD for other data may be wise. SSD over raptor.
April 8, 2009 1:08:50 PM

my recommendation: get sponsored :) 
April 8, 2009 6:02:50 PM

Thanks for the info guys. For some reason, I had the idea that you needed a graphics card just like if you were actually playing CS but I guess that's completely wrong :??:  . Knowing this, I'll probably ditch any discrete graphics option and opt for a 780g platform for the energy savings and headroom in case I do need some graphics power.

My upload's 2mbps so I think I'll be alright running a 16-24 person server. I rarely use upload anyways. While I'm at it, I'm thinking I can get a website or two running off the same server while CS:S is running. Is that asking for too much from the current components I have in mind?

AMD 4850e $55

ECS(I know it's crap) 780g $59 after MIB

Super Talent 32 gb SSD $109 MIB
The reason I chose this drive is that it seems to have better read/write speeds but SSD's are a new realm for me so I'm not sure and could use some advice. Storage space is not an issue as I don't plan on using more than even 10 gigs.

4 gigs corsair 800mhz $19.99 MIB

Antec Earthwatts 380W

I was exaggerating a bit when I said shoebox :)  . It's more of a brick and wood plank case a la brick and wood plank bookshelves.
March 13, 2013 4:01:33 AM

Antec earthwatts is good.if you can get those 24 pin to dc voltage stuff if you think atom is enough.amd processsors tend to use more power and make more heat afaik.