In the world of gaming, there are lots of ways for players to connect and compete with one another online. A dedicated gaming server is a private server capable of hosting games for the server administrator and all remote clients who are permitted to connect to the server.
Online Server Hosting Model
For most multiplayer online games, there are only two server hosting models: client-server hosting and peer to peer hosting.
Client Server Hosting
One common method of server hosting is using a host who manages player connections and runs on servers that the administrator oversees. More often than not, the server host is the owner or publisher of the game.
Unfortunately, this model has one glaring issue: if the host’s server starts experiencing issues, the game might be unplayable for anyone with a remote connection.
Peer to Peer Hosting
Another method of hosting commonly seen in games with a multiplayer component is peer to peer hosting, in which the game selects a client who started the game (or the one with the lowest latency) to host for other players.
The issue with this method is that peer to peer servers are dependent on the host’s computer being able to run a local version of the game and having the CPU capacity to keep the game running properly for everyone on the server.
What’s the Difference in a Dedicated Gaming Server?
A dedicated gaming server is a type of client-hosted server that enables the server administrator and anyone with access to the server to play online.
As with other hosting models, a dedicated game server handles all the responsibilities associated with running the game in sync with other connections, tracking player data, and determining win conditions for the game.
A dedicated gaming server is undoubtedly the best way to run a game for the smoothest experience, lowest latency, and overall best game experience.
Dedicated servers offer more bandwidth and storage capabilities than traditional hosting methods, and have the processing capability, memory, and server resources to ensure a smooth experience.
It’s important to note that the type of server hosting does not impact GPU-dependent processes. That’s entirely down to the client-side hardware being capable of rendering images according to the instructions provided by the game.
Benefits of a Dedicated Gaming Server
First and foremost, a dedicated gaming server is the only feasible way to run large games like battle royales, since they have the RAM, bandwidth, and CPU to process all the necessary information for the game to run properly.
The owner of a dedicated gaming server can do the following with a dedicated gaming server:
- Determine player eligibility
- Kick players who don’t follow the rules
- Modify the operating system
- Change the processor and available RAM
- Adjust the bandwidth speeds
- Configure the rules of the game
As you might imagine, a dedicated gaming server is much more proficient at handling game processes than a host computer could ever be, especially in games that experience a large volume of traffic.
With capable CPUs, RAM, bandwidth, and cooling technology to handle the high workload, dedicated gaming servers are the essential solution to hosting extensive game servers.
While not impervious to crashing, these servers are designed to handle lots of remote connections, manage multiple instances of the game at once, and back up data in the event of loss.
Moreover, dedicated gaming servers are active 24/7, allowing the game to be run nonstop for players to enjoy.
In the event of a local power loss, most dedicated gaming servers are outfitted with generators to provide backup power so that the servers keep running.
Another important aspect of dedicated gaming servers is security. To protect client’s sensitive data and keep the game operating efficiently, many gaming servers are equipped with advanced firewalls, encrypted data, and perform regularly scheduled backups to avoid data loss.
In particular, dedicated gaming servers always aim to be protected against Dedicated Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. These are hostile attempts to disrupt or shut down the server by overloading it with a high volume of traffic.
Dedicated gaming servers are well-equipped to detect the bogus requests associated with DDoS attacks and prevent the network from crashing.
Virtual Private Servers
Another benefit of dedicated gaming servers is that they have the option of being ‘rented out’ in the form of a Virtual Private Server (VPS).
A VPS is a dedicated gaming server that is partitioned into sections. In other words, on a 100GB dedicated gaming server, someone may rent out 16GB worth of space on the server, which is allocated for them to use to facilitate a smooth gaming experience.
For many people, using a VPS is a great option to reap the benefits of a server designed to handle the workload needed for the game.
Is Setting up a Dedicated Gaming Server Practical?
In most cases, it’s not ideal for an individual to use a dedicated gaming server. First of all, whether purchasing the components individually or renting out a dedicated gaming server, the cost is often very high.
Pricy hardware, energy bill increases, and cybersecurity investments are just some of the costs associated with setting up a dedicated gaming server from scratch.
Of course, these expenses have merit for game developers and gaming communities who invest both the time and resources into the game to get value from setting up a dedicated gaming server.
For most, other hosting solutions like VPS servers can offer the necessary memory to run the game smoothly without needing to worry about the hassle of setting up a dedicated server.
The Bottom Line
A dedicated gaming server offers a safe, smooth gaming experience for the host and anyone else who connects to the remote private server running the game.
These servers are powerhouses of gaming ingenuity and have the necessary memory and CPU hardware to support hundreds, if not thousands, of players and can run a multitude of game instances all at the same time.