Server Hardware Requirements
Here is the recommended server hardware for diskless boot with CCBoot.
Intel or AMD Processor 4 Core or more.
Server motherboard that supports 8GB or more RAM, 6 or more SATA Ports.
No. Of Clients
10 - 30
70 - 100
For 100+ client PCs, We recommend to use 2 or more Servers with load balance.
Before we go in details about the hard disk need for server, let’s know the different hard disk types in CCBoot.
Image disk: the hard disk that stores the client OS boot data. We call it as "image".
Game disk: the hard disks that store the game data.
Writeback disk: the hard disks that store the client write data. In diskless booting, all data are read and written to/from the server. So we need writeback disk to save the client's write data. Other products are also named it as "write cache".
SSD Disk: the hard disk that is used to cache game disk data. Caching game disk data in SSD Disk give client quicker access to game files as SSD is much faster than traditional HDD.
Required Hard Disks:
1) One SATA HDD is used for server OS (C:\) and image disk(D:\), some users put image file into SSD disk. It's not necessary. We have RAM cache for image. All image data will be loaded from RAM cache at last. So putting the image file into SSD disk is not necessary.
2) Two SATA HDD are set up on RAID0 for Game Disk.
We recommend to use Windows 2008 disk manager to setup RAID0 instead of hardware RAID in BIOS. We recommend to set SATA mode as AHCI in BIOS. Because AHCI is better for writeback disks' write performance. For more information, please refer to AHCI on wiki. In the BIOS, SATA mode can only be one of AHCI and RAID. If we set it as AHCI, the RAID function of the motherboard will be invalid. So we use Windows 2008 disk manager to setup RAID0. The performance is same as hardware RAID0.
Note: If you skip RAID0, the read speed of the game may become slow. But if the clients are less than 50 with SSD cache, it is OK to skip RAID0.
3) Two SATA/SAS/SSD/HDD is used for client write-back disk.
Note: For 10 - 20 users, 1 Writeback disk is enough, for 20+ users, user 2 Writeback disk. (SSD is recommended in both situation)
We do NOT recommend to use RAID for write-back disks. If one disk is broken, we can use the other one. If using RAID for writeback disk, one disk broken will cause all clients stop. On the other hand, CCBoot can do balance for writeback disk. Two disks write performance is better than one RAID disk. Using SSD as writeback disk is better than SATA. SSD has good IOPS. The street said the writing activities are harmful for the lifetime of SSD. In our experience, one SSD for writeback disk can be used for three years at least. It's enough and worth.
4) One SSD disk for SSD cache (120G+).
Note: Do not use cheap SSD for writeback and SSD disk as they are unreliable and may cause clients to hang when the SSD gets corrupt. Choose a SSD with high read/write speed. Faster SSD for writeback results in better performance for clients.
Note: Format all Hard disk with 32K allocation unit except windows partition/disk , as it gives you the most performance. - Donot skip this
Conclusion: You need to prepare 6 HDDs for the server normally. They are 5 SATA HDDs and 1 SSD HDD. 1 SATA for system OS, 2 SATA for game disks, 2 SATA for writeback disks and 1 SSD for cache.
1000Mb Ethernet or 2 * 1000 Mb Ethernet team network. We recommend Intel and Realtek 1000M Series.