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Is Cherokee Web Server (several servers behind a load balancer) suitable for delivering large files (in the range of 20 - 500 MB) to a big number of clients (several thousands) ?

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migrated from Oct 13 '10 at 12:01

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Disclaimer: The numbers I put here might not be complete fantasy, but they are probably close to useless ... anyway ...

Back of the envelope calculation: 500MB * 1000 users = 5GB.

While serving large static files, the bandwidth is probably the limiting factor.

Again, back of the envelope calculation:

5GB / 100Mb = 400 seconds ~= 7 minutes

Your clients will probably not have 100Mb, more like 5-10Mb.

Saturating a 100Mb link on a single machine is pretty easy with decent hardware. If you want to have it scale to many connections in parallel, you'll need to do some testing ...

So basically, what you need to measure is:

  • How long does it take to download 1 file at a reasonable speed (say 5Mb)?
  • How many files in parallel does it take to saturate the connection?
  • Extrapolate how long it takes for all your clients to get their files.

You should also estimate what your peak number of connections will be and check if your hardware supports it.

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It will probably work, but the underlying hardware is also extremely important. Another piece of software to look at would be nginx.

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