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Anyone know good hosting services for a NWN PW? (EST/Central)

Hey all,

Looking to bring back my persistent world, "The Lands of Acheron" from 2004/2005. The server I used to host back then cost $150 a month. Don't know how much things have changed since then, but I want to get it hosted for as cheap as possible.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Comments

  • PhenomenPhenomen Member Posts: 33
    edited December 2017
    You can easily find VPS under $20/mo that will cover all NWN server needs:
    OS: Linux (KVM is preferable but is not deal breaker)
    CPU: 2-4 cores, 2.8-3.5Ghz
    RAM: 4Gb min
    Storage: SSD
    Bandwidth: unlimited or very high.

    Some decent ones:
    https://vpsdime.com/
    https://buyvm.net/kvm-dedicated-server-slices
    https://www.ovh.com/us/vps/vps-ssd.xml

  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43
    Thanks for this info! 2 questions: Linux is far superior to windows in your opinion for hosting? What is KVM?

    Thanks again!

  • farhorizonfarhorizon Member Posts: 4
    It sounds like nwnx is going to be focused on linux, so if you want to use that definitely go linux. Personally I have found the linux server more stable as well for PWs I have been involved with.

    I think digital ocean's $10 plan is a decent starter too & their setup makes it much easier to move servers around and use a test server (paying hourly only when it is up) versus working with a pure VPS. https://www.digitalocean.com/pricing/

    KVM is the hypervisor.

    Your old server costs sound pretty high .. if I remember right, LoA didn't have that many areas. I'm curious why it was that much?

    If you run into any issues with hosting let me know .. I used to play a gruff rogue/cleric/fighter in green armor on your server ;)

  • JimbobslimbobJimbobslimbob Member Posts: 206
    Salvanus said:

    Thanks for this info! 2 questions: Linux is far superior to windows in your opinion for hosting? What is KVM?

    Thanks again!

    I don't have much Linux experience but I will say that Windows Server 2012 R2 (that I currently host on) is perfectly fine and I have had no issues at all with it. I understand why people steer clear of Windows in general though - the price. I was lucky to get a copy for free so that's why I use it - well that and the fact that I really like it as a server OS anyway. I also run IIS and various other things on it though.

  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43

    Salvanus said:

    Thanks for this info! 2 questions: Linux is far superior to windows in your opinion for hosting? What is KVM?

    Thanks again!

    I don't have much Linux experience but I will say that Windows Server 2012 R2 (that I currently host on) is perfectly fine and I have had no issues at all with it. I understand why people steer clear of Windows in general though - the price. I was lucky to get a copy for free so that's why I use it - well that and the fact that I really like it as a server OS anyway. I also run IIS and various other things on it though.
    I really want to steer clear of Linux since I know nothing about it. I've heard that NWNX is being developed only for linux at the moment, but maybe by the time EE goes live, NWNX would be built into EE with windows support? I don't know if that is a possibility.

    Are you concerned about potentially not having NWNX for your windows server? Is NWNX basically just for SQL database and automatic server restarting in the event of a system restart? I believe that's all I used it for back in 2005 when I was running my PW off of windows 2000 server.

  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43

    It sounds like nwnx is going to be focused on linux, so if you want to use that definitely go linux. Personally I have found the linux server more stable as well for PWs I have been involved with.

    I think digital ocean's $10 plan is a decent starter too & their setup makes it much easier to move servers around and use a test server (paying hourly only when it is up) versus working with a pure VPS. https://www.digitalocean.com/pricing/

    KVM is the hypervisor.

    Your old server costs sound pretty high .. if I remember right, LoA didn't have that many areas. I'm curious why it was that much?

    If you run into any issues with hosting let me know .. I used to play a gruff rogue/cleric/fighter in green armor on your server ;)

    Good to see you in game, and thanks for the info! I didn't know the best way to go about doing it, but it seems like dedicated servers still cost $100+ a month today, and it was windows 2000 not linux, which prob made it more expensive as well.

  • JimbobslimbobJimbobslimbob Member Posts: 206
    Salvanus said:


    Are you concerned about potentially not having NWNX for your windows server? Is NWNX basically just for SQL database and automatic server restarting in the event of a system restart? I believe that's all I used it for back in 2005 when I was running my PW off of windows 2000 server.

    Not in the slightest, it will come in time. Moreover, a lot of the extender's capabilities are apparently going in the base game anyway from what the developers have told us. I honestly do not see myself running any persistent worlds anyway... I prefer smaller, more personal modules co-op with a group of friends and a willing DM. As such, it would probably mean I need it even less.

  • FreshLemonBunFreshLemonBun Member Posts: 907
    Would you really need a dedicated server?

    Also if your PW is 100mb in size and the server has 2TB disk space wouldn't that be overkill?

  • JimbobslimbobJimbobslimbob Member Posts: 206

    Would you really need a dedicated server?

    Also if your PW is 100mb in size and the server has 2TB disk space wouldn't that be overkill?

    Not sure if that question was directed at me or not, but I will answer assuming it was...

    If you plan on leaving the server up 24/7 for players or DM's to use, then a dedicated server is essential. Considering I already have a server that is used to host other games and services, it makes perfect sense to utilize it.

  • LiarethLiareth Member Posts: 74
    You probably don't need a dedicated server for a casual low population PW. A cheap VPS with one or two cores is fine, especially with the performance improvements we've made to the server in 1.74. You only really need a heavy duty dedicated server if you're hosting a large performance-critical PW spanning multiple servers.

  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43
    Liareth said:

    You probably don't need a dedicated server for a casual low population PW. A cheap VPS with one or two cores is fine, especially with the performance improvements we've made to the server in 1.74. You only really need a heavy duty dedicated server if you're hosting a large performance-critical PW spanning multiple servers.

    Hi Liareth, do you work at beamdog? I noticed the use of "we've made"! 2 random questions for you - I've seen servers with 96 or so player limits, but on my nwserver in windows10, the max I can move it to is 64- can I override that in the .ini file?

    Also, how many players do you think it would take to tax a VPS? what about for a dedicated server? What type of bandwidth would you recommend for 40 players at a time? Do you think the game will be optimized in EE to allow for over 100 players in a PW?

    Thanks in advance, been gone for over 10 years, so many questions, so little time!

  • LiarethLiareth Member Posts: 74
    @Salvanus Yes, I work on NWN: EE. :)

    I can explain how hosting works on Arelith. Most of the optimizatons to the server were ported from niv and my work on 1.69 NWNX, which used data gathered from Arelith at the 96/96 server cap. By their powers combined, these optimizations allow a capped server to run at a much more reasonable level of performance.

    At the end of the day, however, the server is still simulated on a single thread, so for ideal performance you want as fast single-core performance as possible. Arelith is hosted on a dedicated server which has a 6700k processor. Three servers are hosted on it, one per physical core, with the final physical core dedicated to DB and web operations.

    It's difficult to answer all of your specific questions because the performance characteristics of your server depend entirely on what's going on in your module. For example, if you have placeables scattered around a complex melee battle then your path finding is going to lag no matter what you do. Another example is something that niv found - on his PW a lot of server time was taken by AI sitting down on placeables. On Arelith, a lot of server time was taken sending party combat state to all of the members of the party.

    It's not really possible for me to tell you "use a VPS up to x players" because that cap is determined by how you use your module. It could be 5 players or it could be 96 players. The only way to really know is to host it yourself and observe the performance first-hand.

    NWNX comes with a built-in profiler which you can use to gather objective criteria of how your server is running. Things such as: where all the time goes each simulation tick, what the tickrate is, how much network traffic is being processed, script timings on a per-area and per-object basis, pathing timings on a per-creature and per-area basis, object counts, player counts per area, and more.

    Kenji
  • TheGmorkTheGmork Member Posts: 37
    edited December 2017
    Liareth said:

    @Salvanus Yes, I work on NWN: EE. :)

    Another example is something that niv found - on his PW a lot of server time was taken by AI sitting down on placeables.

    I know this is kind of off topic, but still a performance thing. On a server I helped run we had an awesome ambient npc system made by @ThriKreen that, amongst a host of other things, made sure to 'turn off' the npc's AI when no one was in the area. This helped save a lot on resources and still have an area feel alive.

  • FreshLemonBunFreshLemonBun Member Posts: 907
    @Jimbobslimbob No it wasn't directed at you specifically and it was more of a rhetorical question. I've heard of people hosting NWN servers at home with domestic DSL on cheap netbooks before and that makes a powerful modern day dedicated server for $100 per month sound excessive.

    I would think it would be more prudent to start out with a minimum option and see how that meets your needs before investing all in.

    Jimbobslimbob
  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43
    edited December 2017
    @Liareth Thank you for the info thus far! Some more random questions and ramblings as I struggle to get up to date on this stuff.
    1) I'm currently just running my PW randomly when I'm home using the nwserver that came with NWN:EE - is there a NWNX install that works for NWN:EE, or is that in the works? (I'm on windows10).
    2) Back in the day I used NWNX just for mySQL database stuff for the CNR system, and I also believe it started the server up again in the event of the dedicated server crashing. Will those capabilities come with NWN:EE nwserver?
    3) Is there a better tradeskill system than CNR now? CNR required the mysql db to remember people's progress anytime they exited the server, and it was a pain. I'm thinking about just gutting all the CNR stuff out of my server for now, since I'm beginning to slowly remember things and it would be way easier to remove that stuff for now.
    4) When I managed to gut the CEP1 stuff and import CEP2.62 into my module last night, almost everything aside from some invisible chairs seemed to be plug n play, which was a relief. I thought none of the CEP1 stuff was going to convert. Someone very helpful that I talked to yesterday told me to not to bother with the modified and new tilesets that come with CEP2.62, so I didn't import them into my module. He said they were pretty bloated. Would you agree, or do you think they look good enough to use?
    5) Is NWN 1.74 that you mentioned the name of NWN:EE? To my knowledge, 1.69 was the last bioware patch.

    Thank you again for your time, I really appreciate with you guys are doing!

  • SalvanusSalvanus Member Posts: 43
    @Liareth @FreshLemonBun @Jimbobslimbob @TheGmork Hey guys, do you think the Cloud XL on this site would be sufficient to get started? I know it's windows but I don't know linux and I'm hoping NWNX will be available for windows server 2016 at time point?

    https://www.1and1.com/vps-hosting

  • TheGmorkTheGmork Member Posts: 37
    More then enough for testing and getting started, yes

  • JimbobslimbobJimbobslimbob Member Posts: 206
    Yeah looks good to me. Only one way to find out though.

  • StilleVandeStilleVande Member Posts: 9
    edited December 2017
    I host NWN servers for free. I run my own little datacenter at home.



    We are pretty full (I think I host 10-12 PW's ATM, but I still need to get the last two dedicated hosts operational, then we can host 6 more), but I think I may have one or two openings atm.

    https://www.stillevande.com

    Post edited by StilleVande on
    BelleSorciereKenji
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