Specifying VMS Server Size

Author: Ethan Ace, Published on Nov 19, 2012

Specifying the right sized PC/server for VMS software is one of the most important yet difficult decisions in IP video surveillance. In the old days, when recorders were all appliances (i.e., DVRs), this was not a concern. The manufacturer designed and certified that the 'box' would support a specific number of cameras (e.g., 4, 8, 16, etc.). Of course, the increased simplicity came with reduced flexibility for expansion. See our software only VMS vs NVR appliance guide for a comparison of the options.

Now with VMS software being widely deployed on 'regular' PCs/servers, integrators need to properly specify the right ones. If your machine is not powerful enough for your cameras, you can face all sorts of painful issues and difficult to troubleshoot problems. As such, getting this right is important.

The good news is that doing so is fairly straight forward if you follow fundamental guidelines.

Inside, we explain them including:

  • Key hardware drivers (CPU and RAM)
  • Server cost differentials
  • Throughput calculation and factoring
  • Manufacturer Specifications
  • Detailed Integrator Feedback and Real World Use

********** *** ***** ***** **/****** *** *** ******** ** *** of *** **** ********* *** ********* ********* ** ** ***** surveillance. ** *** *** ****, **** ********* **** *** ********** (i.e., ****), **** *** *** * *******. *** ************ ******** and ********* **** *** '***' ***** ******* * ******** ****** of ******* (*.*., *, *, **, ***.). ** ******, *** increased ********** **** **** ******* *********** *** *********. *** *********** **** *** ** *** ********* ******** * ********** ** *** *******.

*** **** *** ************* ****** ********** '*******' ***/*******, *********** **** ** ******** ******* *** ***** ones. ** **** ******* ** *** ******** ****** *** **** cameras, *** *** **** *** ***** ** ******* ****** *** difficult ** ************ ********. ** ****, ******* **** ***** ** important.

*** **** **** ** **** ***** ** ** ****** ******** forward ** *** ****** *********** **********.

******, ** ******* **** *********:

  • *** ******** ******* (*** *** ***)
  • ****** **** *************
  • ********** *********** *** *********
  • ************ **************
  • ******** ********** ******** *** **** ***** ***

[***************]

*** **** ******* ** ****, ***: *** ****** **** ************ ******

Key ******** *******

*** ****** *********** ** **** ********* ** *** *** ***, directly ********* *** **** ***** *** ** ********. ***** ************ vary ********* ** *** ******** *** ****, *** **** ******* trends *** ** ***** ** ******* ** ************ *****:

  • ***** *******, ~*-** *******: ****** ** **** **** *********, **** as *****'* **** ** **** **, *-* ** ***.
  • ***-**** *******, ~**-** *******: **** **** ** **** **** *********, e.g., **** ** *** **, *-* ** ***.
  • ***** *******, ~**+ *******: **** **** ********* ** ******, **** as ****, *-** ** ***.

**** ********* *** *** ************* ******* *** ** ********** ** form ****** ** ***-***** ******* **** ** **** ** **. For ********, **** *** ** ********** *** ********* **** ***** in ******* ***, ***** ***** *** ** ***** ** ****-*** workstations *** *******.

Server *****

********* ********, ***** ******* *** ** *** ** *****-******* *** lower **** ******* ** *********** ********, ** *** ***** ** ~$800-1,200 ***. ***-***** ******* ******** **** **** ****** ************ ** small **** *******, ~$*,***-*,***. ***** ******* *** **** ******** ***** this *****, ********* ** ************* *** ******* ****. $*,***-**,*** ** more ** ****** *** **** ****** ******, *** ** *** increase ** ***, *** *****, *** ******** ** ****** ****** of **** ***** ****, ********* ***** ********, *** ******** **** often ******** ** **** *****.

********** ********* ***** ** *** ** *** ****** ***** ******** in ****** ******. ********** ***** **** *** ** *** **** generally **** ***** $*** *** ** *** **** ** * server. **** **** *********, *******, ** *** ***** ****** ** processor ***** *** ******** ***** *** *******, ** *** **** from * *** **** *.** *** ********* ** ***** **** 2.20 *** *** ** $***-***. ********* ********** **** **** *** not ********, *******.

**********

**** ********** *******, ***** ********** ******** ** *** **** ********* metric. ********** ** *** ***** ****** ** ********* ****** **** and *** *** ******* (*.*., ** **/*, ****/*, ***.)

***** *** *** ******* ***** *** ****** ****:

  • ********** ** ********* *******: *** ******** *** ******* ** ******* ********* ** ******** the ******* ********* ** ***** **********. **** *** ** ** simple ** *********** *** ****** ** ******* ** *** ****** size, *.*., ****** **** ******* **** * ****** **** ** 4mbps **** = ** **/* *****. *******, **** ***** ******** bitrate, ***** **** **** **** ******* **** ******'****** ************* ***********, *** *******. ** ******* ***** ***** *-* **/* at *****, **** ***** *********, **** *** ****** ******** ** underspecified ******.
  • ****** ** ********** *******: *** ****** ****** ***** **** ******* ** ********** ************ is ********** *******. **** ** *********** *** ******** *********** ** perform, ***** ****** ******* ***** *** ***** ********, ** *** given **** ******** ***** *** ******* ** *** ****** *** view ******* ******* ** *******. ** ****, ** ****** ******, throughput ****** ** ********** *** ***** ****, **** *** ******* number ** ******* ********* ******* *** ******* **************. ********** *** be ******** ** ******* ****, **** *** ******** ***** *** the *** ******, ** **'* *********, ** **** ** **** example ** * *** ******:client throughput

*** ******'* ***** ********** ** *** *** ** ***** *** figures. ** * ****** **** (**) **** ******* **** * Mb/s *******, *** *** ******* ******* *** ******* (** **/* total) ****** ** ********* ** ****** *** **/*. ***** ************ are ******** ** *** ************. **** **** ******* *** ****** PC ******** ** *** ****** ******, ******* ******* *** ****** through *** ******, ****** ******* ** ********** ************. ****** **** secondary ******* **** ******* ** **** ** ******* **** *** camera ** *** ****-******, *.*., ** * *****-****** ****. ***** should ******* *** ***** ******* ****** ********** **** ***** *** provider.

Bits *** *****

** ******* ***** ********* **** *** *****. **** ******* ****** their ********** ***** **** *** **** *** ******* ******* ***** server **** ***** *****. * **** = * ****, ** if * ************ ********** ****/* ***********, **** ** ***** ** 320 **/* ** ****** *******. *** ***** *** ***********, *** our ***** *****:

Manufacturer *****

**** ********** ** *****, *** ****** **** ********* ****** ** manufacturer ***************. ***** ********** ******* ***** ** *** **** *** minimum ************ *** ***** ***** ********** *** **** ********** **** seeking **** ******* ** ****** *****. ** ** ********** ** willing ** ****** *** ********* **** ** ***** ** "************" (according ** **************) ****** *** *** ************** ***** ** ***** project ******* *** **********, **** *** ** **** ** **** some **** **** * ***** *******. *** ***** ******* ** play ** ****, ******** ******** ** ************ *************** ** * minimum ** ***********.

*** *** ***** *************** *** ************ ****** ******* *************. **** that ***** **** ** ***** *** ********* ** ********** ****, others *** **** ******* ** * ****** ** ******* *** server. **** ****** ** ************, *** ***** ****** ****** ***** these *******:

  • ********: ******** ***** *** ************** ** *********** ************ *******, **** * ******-**** (***** ****** ******* *******) ************* ******** 32 **/* (*** **/*), *** * ******/*********** **** ***** ******* handling ** ** ** **/** ** *** ******.
  • *****: ***** ***** ****** (*** ******) *************** ** *** ***************** ***** *** ***** ****** ******** ********. ***** ****** *** ****** ** and **-** **/*. *************** *** ***** *** ******* *** ********* configurations.
  • *******: ****** ************ *** ***** *** ***, ******, *** **** performance ************** *********'* *************. ****** ** ****** ****** ** **** ********, ******** ******** defined ********** ****** ** *-**, **-***, *** ***-*** **/* *** these **************.
  • *********: ********* ******** ***** *** ***** ** **** *** *** ****** ** ********* support*** ******** ***************. ** ****** *************** *** *****.
  • *****: ***** **** **** *** **** *********** ******* *** ***** server ************, *********** *************** ***** *** **** ******* ** ********. * **** **************** *** ******* *************** ****** ***** ** ***** *** ******** *** **** ** camera, **********, *** ******* ** ********* ************ ** *********.

******* ***** *********************** *** * ***** *************, **** **** ******** *** ********* issues ** *********, ************ ******** *********** *** ** ************* ********. Further, ***** ** ****** ****** ** ****-****** ******** *************** ** each *** ***** *******, ** ******* ** ******* *************** *** varying ********** ******. ***** ****** **** ******* ******* ***** *************** are **-**-****, ** **** **** ******* *** ***-***** **********, ** like *** ******* ***********, ***** ***** *** ****** ******** ** any ****, ******* ******.

Server **** ****** *********

********* **** ********* **** ****** ********* ** *** ** *** server, ******* ** *** ******. *************, ***** *** ** **** guidelines *** *** **** ** ** ******** **** ************* ********, as ** ****** ********* ** **********, ****** ** *******, *** VMS ********. ***** ****** ******* ************ **** ******* ** ****** detection **** *** ** ********* ****** **** ** ********* *** much ******** ****** ** *******.

General **** *********

****** ************ *************** *** **** ******, ***** *** **** ******* recommendations ***** ****** ** ******** **** ********** *******:

  • ******* ********:******** **** *** *********** ** *** *** *** **** ******** of *******. *****, *** ** **** ** ******* ** *** camera ***, **** *** ***** **** ** ******* ** *** corporate *** *** ******* *******. **** ***** *******-***** *******, **** more ***** *** ** ********, **** **** ********* *** ******* NIC. **** **** *** ** ******** ** ********* ***** *** desired.
  • ********:** **** *****, ** ** *** *********** **** *** ****** be **** *** ******* *****. ************ ************** **** ***** ****** separate ******* ******* **** ** ****. ** **** ***** *******, however, *-* ******* *** ***** ******** *** ****** ** *** same *******, ********* * ******* ** *********** **** ******, *** a **** ***** ******.
  • **** ******:***** ** ** **** *** **** **** *** **** ***** selection. **** ************* (**** ** *********/*****) *** ******* "****" ******, such ** ***, ***** ****** ******* **** **** *,*** ** 10,000 *** **** ******. ***** ****** ***** **** *********** **** the ************.

Real ***** ********

* ****** ** *********** ****** ***** **** ********* *** ******** selections. ***** *** * ********* ** ***** ********* ********* **** methods **** *** ** ******* ****** ********:

  • "** ******* *** *** *** ****** ** ******* *** ******* required ****** ****** *****."
  • "** ********** **** *** ******* ******** ************ ********* ** *** company *** ****** ** ******* (****** ****) *** ******."
  • "* **** ************* ******** *** ********** ******** ** *** *** manufacturer. * **** **** **** ** *** ****** ************ *** let **** *** ***** *** ************ *** ** **** **** we *** ****** ** *********."
  • "** *** ******* ** *** **** *** ******* *****. ******* 7 **** ** ** ** ** ********* *** *** ** RAM ** ******* * ****** *** *** *** ******. ******* is *** ** ****, ***** **** *** **** ********* ****** they *** **** ****** ********* ****. **** **** ********** *********** so * ***'* **** * **** *** ****** *** **** installs. ******** ****** ** ******* ******* **** ******"
  • "*** ********** ** ***** ******** *** *** ****** *********, ** avg. ** ****** *** ****** *** ** *******, ** ** camera ******** ** **** ******* ****** *** ****** ***** *******. As ****** *********** ** ******* ****** ************* *************** ** **** stop ******* *** ****'* **** ** *************** ** ****** *** workstations *** *** ** *** ***** ***************."
  • "***** *** * ****** ** ******* *********** **** ** ***, most ***** *** ************* **** **** ********** ***** *** ****. Sales ********* **** *** *** *** ******* ******** *** ***** used ** **** *** *** ******/******* ************. ** **** ** guess ** ****** **** ***** *******, **** *** ****** ** Compression, *** **** ****** ** ******** ** *** ****** *****, Frame ****. ********* ********. **** ***** ** *** ********* *** bandwidth, *** **** * ******* ********. * *** **** ** a ****** ***** ** *** *** ************'* **********. ******* ** Milestone *** *** **** ****** *** **** ** ***."
  • "** ********* **** ****** *** *** **** ***** ** ******* Security ****** ** ** **** ***** ** ********** **** ** comes ** ****** *******. ********* ***** ** **** ** *** very *** ** *** ********* **** *** *.*** ** *** server **** ******** *** ****** ** * *** **** ******, it ****** **** ** ****** *** *******, *** ** **** running *** ******* *** ***** ****** **** ****** ********* **** its * **** ********* ******."
  • "*** ***** *********, ******* *** ********. *** *** ********** *******, which *** **** ** *********** **** ********, ** ******** ***** on **** *** ******* **** ****, ***** *** **** ** CPU's *** *** *** (****** ** ****** ******* ** *** RAM). **** ********** ******** * *** ** *******, *** * prefere *** ** **** *** ****** **** **** **** ** cameras *** ********* ********** *** ****** ***** ** ******* *******. If ********* *** ********, ********* *** * ********** *********** **** will ******** **** ********** ***** ** ** ********* ** ******* computer."
  • "******* ** *** **** ******, *** **** ** *******, **, MegaPixel, ********* (********* ** ********), ***/*** ********* *** ****** *****. Will *********** ** ****** ** ****** ****** ********* *****. **** companies *** ****** ***** *** **** ******* ** *** ***. Our ****** ** **** *************, ******, *********, *** ***... **** you **** ********* *** *** **** ** ********* ****** *** the ****. ********* ******* *** *********, ********* ********* *********, **** customer **** *****, ***** ************* ***... *** **** **** ********* than ****** ******."

***** **** ** ********* ** * ****** ******, ***** ******** with * ******* ** *********: 

  • "*-* **** *** ***** *** *** *-** *******."
  • "*.* ***. **** ***. , **-** / **** , **** multiple ******* ******* ********"
  • "***** *** ** *** *** ** ********* *** *** ** 8GB ** ***, *** *** *** *****. * **** * system ***** *** **** *** **** ** *******, *) *** Arecont ****** **) *** ***** ******* *** *) *** *** degree ******. ** *** *********** *** ** ******** ** *** server, ****** *********** *** *********** ** *** ***** *** ** streamed ******** **** **** *** ********. ******* ** *** ****** aroun **% *** *****, *** ******* *** ********** ** ****, the **** ** *** ******* *** ********* ******* * *** 7 ***."
  • "** **** **** ******* *. *~*** ** ***. ** ******* is *** *** * **** ** *** ** * ****** server. * **** **** ** * **** ***** ****** ** before * ***** *** ******, * **** ** **** **** the ****** ***** ***** ** * **** ***** **** ** be ** *** **** **** ** ** ***'* **** **** the ******"
  • "*.* ~ * *** (****-*** ***), **** *-** *** ** avg *** *** ****** *** *** *** *** ** *** selection **** *** **** ** ******* *** **** ******** *** getting ***********, ** **** **** ***-*** *** ******* *** ******* 24-TB *** ******* ** ******* *** ******."
  • "** *** ********* ************** ********* ** *** ******* ****, *** a ****** **** ********* ****** ********* *** * ****** ***** Xeon **** ** **-**** (** ********* *** **** *********) **** 8 ** *** *** * **** **** *** ****** ******* higher ********** ** *** ******* *** ** ****** **** ****** detection ** ***** *** * * **** **-**** *** ** GB ** ***."
  • "******** **** ** *** **** * ** * "****" ***** and *** ***, ** ** ***** ** ******* ** ****. Personally * **** ***'* **** ******* **** **** **** *** 1 ****** ** ****** *** ********."
  • "** ******** ******* **** **** ******** **** *** ** ***. The ****** ********** *** ********* ******** ** *** ********* *****. If ** *** *.*** *** ** ******* ** ** ***** 40 ******* *** ******. **** ******* ***** ** *** ********** we *** ** ****** ******."

**** ***** **** ****** **** **** *** **** **** ***** configurations, *********** *** *** ********* ** ***:

  • "********* ************* "*******" ************** *** * ******** ***** ** **** and ********** *** *** ***** *** ***********."
  • "** **** ****** **** ******* ** ***** *** ** ******* per ****** **** ** *** ********* *** *** **********."
  • "******* *** ********** ** *** *** *** ** *** *** the **** ***** **********. ********** ***** ******** **** *********."
  • "**** ***** *** ********** ** ******* ********** *** *** ***/***/******* Cards. ***** ** ** ***** ****** * ****** **** ** stream *** ******* ** ** **** ***** *** **** ** disk ******* ******."
  • "**** *** **** ****** *** ******** ** ***."
  • "** **** *** *** * ******* **** ********* ****** ***."
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