Dedicated server in gaming
Dedicated servers are a great tool for many different games. This article will provide you with some background information and also explain what you can use them for when playing.
Dedicated server in the gaming Sector
A Dedicated server is a separate machine specifically built to handle the publishing, hosting, and execution of game worlds. It differs from an ordinary game server in that it gives hosts full control over the virtual world it manages rather than just providing access to the normal independent user mode (single-player).
These servers must be very powerful because they are constantly hosting many players who compete on top of the game world and may generate tons of data traffic.
The most important feature of a dedicated server is that it offers a unique experience to the client. The server creates the world, and all your feats remove all the world objects that could interfere with your view and allow you to play with other people while not worrying about their presence in the game’s core.
It is up to the host of a dedicated server to define what kind of interactions they want and how they want them, whether they are interesting or tedious situations. The host also has full control over which features will be available and what features will be disabled.
You can host multiple games on a single server, one for each game type. Other people can’t cheat on your dedicated server.
Hosting a dedicated server takes a lot of resources because the game will remain active all the time, which is true as long as you are connected to it. The great thing about dedicated servers is that you can dedicate them to a single game or several, so it works for matchmaking games like Counter-Strike and Half-Life, as well as any other game.
Since dedicated servers handle all user data, they aren’t subject to random disconnections and slowdowns due to overloaded connections. This is one of their most attractive features, but they also have a few drawbacks.
Since all servers are dedicated, people can run several of them simultaneously. This is often very useful for matchmaking games and other multiplayer features where a server has servers dedicated to the same game.
Dedicated servers can also handle soft-patching, meaning that it can be fixed immediately if a rare bug occurs.
Since dedicated servers are hosted in most cases on commercial providers, it’s hard to say precisely how many players they can host at once. The best way to estimate this is by comparing the number of players with the physical size of your hosting machine or by drawing on other methods (see last paragraph).
The download time of the game can be doubled by hosting it on a dedicated server, and it will be much faster to download than play from CD.
You may have noticed that you already use dedicated servers in many games, like Counter-Strike and Half-Life, so this also means that there are companies that provide dedicated servers. This is a very cool feature because these are exactly the kind of servers you need when you host your games and want to avoid random disconnections and slowdowns on your dedicated server. The more people who host their games on the same server, the more reliable it will have to be.
Dedicated servers are great for:
Offline games, especially when there are several players. People can host a dedicated server and play it without being connected to the Internet or having an internet connection. This is often the case for LAN parties or people who don’t want to use software-based chat or voice communications. Dedicated servers are also well suited for situations where you do not have a stable internet connection because they can save your game so that you can relaunch it from a later point as long as you have an Internet connection again.
Multiplayer games with many players, like Counter-Strike, Quake 3, and Half-Life.
Games that don’t use much memory, like the classic Command & Conquer or Starcraft. You can host a dedicated, play it offline, and relaunch it later online.
Online games that are hard to find players for, such as multiplayer strategy games.
Games where players can join or leave at will, like MMORPGs and other games where people can come and go at any time.
Dedicated servers are not suited for:
Memory-hungry games (like the Battlefield series) because most of their resources are stored in the dedicated server’s memory. You will have to allocate high amounts of RAM to your dedicated server if you want to host several versions simultaneously, for example.
Games where users can join and leave at will because this defeats the purpose of hosting a dedicated server.
Games with too many users can cause problems (like slowdowns), and you want to avoid hosting the game on a dedicated server. If there are too many users, you should buy a dedicated server instead because that is the only way to ensure that your game will always be playable.
You can’t host different games on the same machine, e.g., Counter-Strike and Battlefield 1942, on one machine. This is possible with a multiplayer gaming host PC but not with a dedicated server that needs just one device to host all online games in your company, your home office, or your private network.