Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Finally, ESXi Part IV

Last time we discovered that inside a virtual machine, a bot utilizes 1.6 Ghz and that a faster harder drive is necessary for multiple bots where there is lots of activity.  Today we will continue looking at the reports that ESXi generates.

As the network graph shows, there is not a lot of internet traffic while using a bot.  Even using multiple bots should not significantly show down an internet connection.  Basically this means that you can play World of Warcraft while your bot chain is happily working away. 

However, do not mistake a lack of internet traffic as permission to use your internet connection to its full extent.  As many others have reported and I have seen, using a Bit Torrent client will degrade the performance of the bots.  Skype will affect bot performance.  The short answer is that ir is not so much the amount of traffic transmitted, but the number of packets that they generate has a tendency to overwhelm these home routers. 

The question we all want to know is how much memory does each bot really need.  I had allocated 1.5 Gigabytes of memory to each virtual machine.  I’ve been able to successfully run bots on 800 Megabytes of memory.  But what does ESXi say?

As the graph shows, the bot was actively utilizing 1.2 Gigabytes of memory for each bot.  This surprised me.  I’ve successfully ran bots with 800 Megabytes of RAM and I’ve heard others running them with even less. 

But then I realized how Microsoft designed Windows way back when.  Microsoft’s core customer is not the home user but businesses.  As such, businesses require that all computers run properly.  Way back in Windows 3 and even earlier, Windows has a mechanism where if a program requires more memory, Windows will swap out RAM memory and put it on the hard drive.  This will avoid the “Out of Memory” error which drove technicians crazy back in the day. 

But this also drastically slows down performance as RAM is thousands of times faster than Hard drive memory, commonly known as the Swap file.  This explains why we can successfully run a bot on minimal memory.  But the cost of this is that the customer experience is degraded, leading to lost sales.

In summary, what is required to run a bot in a virtual machine; apart from adequate disk space and Internet?

1.6 Ghz of CPU
1.5 Gigabytes of Memory.

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