As I type this I am "VNC'd" into the soon-to-be CZ server (in another window) waiting for the HLDS and CZ Dedicated Server install programs to download and complete. This takes time unfortunately; the combined download size of the two is 557MB, roughly... and even on the fastest connections you gotta wait for those to complete.
I had to spend the better part of the evening cleaning out the server box. The guy who donated it had his kid use it before I got it, so of course it was chock full of spyware, loads of games and other crap. I haven't virus scanned it yet but will be doing that later, I just needed to get the server setup done first.
I've been debating whether go to CS or CZ, because I could do either. I believe I will go CZ unless it poses a problem (which it shouldn't). Even though CS has many more players (just look at this), I still like CZ better. Better graphics, better gameplay (in my opinion) and it's got the option to put "bots" in the server out-of-the-box. CS Bots are really, really tough to get working right. CZ bots on the other hand are really easy.
The P4 box the server is being installed to should be able to handle 14 slots, with should being the operative word there.... I simply don't know just yet if it's up to the job or not. If it isn't I will remove the bots because that takes up server resources. If that doesn't work, I will "demote" the server to 12 or 10-slot. I'm almost positive the box will do at least 10 easily.
I've tried in my best effort to make this XP box as barebones as possible to allocate as much memory as possible to the game. I'm using everything I know to make this work effectively. Obviously this is no Recon Gamer setup. It's just a home-grown type of thing on a local business-DSL. I'm sure there will be a few obstacles along the way - but then again that's half the fun. :-)
Change of plans: The box to have the HLDS/CZ server installed on will be a P4 instead of a PIII. It's got more RAM and it's faster so I should be able to run somewhere between a 12 to 16 slot server on this box.
The 384k up/down DSL is located just a few towns over from where I live so I will be able to get SUPER awesome server response since it's so close. In addition, the guy volunteering the box is less than a mile away from the nearest DSL switch which is even better (to those who don't know, the closer you are to a switch, the better your DSL connectivity is).
I should have the CZ server up tonight if all goes well. I will be posting the server IP if it should get finished on time. (grin)
A guy at work has a 384k up/down pipe DSL to his house, and said he has a PIII box that I could put a CS (or CZ) server on. Hmm....
It may be possible that I could run one of these servers for free if the computer (and the connection) can handle it. It's a possibility, we're gonna give it a shot. Woohoo :-)
Last nite I downloaded HLDS (Half-Life Dedicated Server) and toyed around with it a bit. I found it easy to run since I've been doing the rental-server thing for a while now. I believe it's easy enough where I could just burn a disc of the setup I want (after configuring it,) and then sending it to the guy who's going to volunteer the box and connection.
Anyway, like I sez we're gonna give it a try. I hope a PIII is enough. :-)