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I'm preparing to buy a server for use as a proxy server, without caching.

A lot of the users will be streaming television programs and films etc through the server. My question is, how will streaming affect the server without caching. I understand the streamed content will be stored in memory until it is sent to the end user.

But how this disposed? Am I going to need a ton of memory? Or better CPUs?

PS. Were talking 80-100 concurrent users here. The server will have a 1Gb/s connection.

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I do realise that this is the kind of thing you just need to just try, monitor and adjust accordingly. But it would be good to get it bang-on straight away, or even close to what it will require. –  Grant Unwin Feb 18 '12 at 13:18

2 Answers 2

Squid is pretty efficient so can run well even on low-end hardware.

If you're not caching then you won't need much memory. Squid only really needs lots of memory if you're going to take advantage of in-memory caching.

As an example, I've got a couple of Compaq ProLiant DL360 G1 servers with 512MB memory and 1.2GHz PIII Xeon processors running Squid as proxy-only and they're more than capable. These servers upstream to a caching Squid inside the DMZ.

The thing you should really look at is your NICs - some cheaper NICs don't have a TCP offload engine so require more system CPU usage to process network traffic, but server-class NICs usually have a TOE and so process traffic themselves, and therefore use fewer system resources.

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One of my machines has an X3430 and it can saturate four 1Gbps links. Enough with the facts, I haven't used Squid as you've posted.

I think you'll always have caching with Squid, if:

  1. the content still resides in memory, and if
  2. the caching headers sent along allow Squid to serve the content to another user right away

As for the buffers, swap is probably your cheapest friend here.

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