I have plenty in this to keep anyone thinking creatively:
I am looking to put together a commercial gaming network of 25 machine to put some food on the table for my family and need some advice.
1- What would be the ultimate system (AMD or P4) ?
2- Which O/S would you recommend 98SE or 2000 or wait for XP?
3- Should I go branded or build my own machines?
4- If i had a fast connection leased out what would you reccomend for the networking side ie. Peer to peer or server based networking and if any which hardware?
1. AMD 1.4GHz chip or faster, 512MB of PC2100, and a GeForce 3
2. Windows 2000 or XP. Do NOT go 98! 2000 and XP have MUCH better security and you'll be able to lock it down better. For instance, since this is a game set up, your customers ONLY need access to the games and that is it. You don't need some kids looking around on your hard drive and jacking things up.
3. Build your own. You'll have MUCH better gaming machines for MUCH cheaper.
4. With the networking set up I'd DEFINITELY go server based with a 100Mb connection. Peer-to-peer should only be used for 10 machines or less anyway. You don't need to lease lines unless you plan on people going to the internet to play games. If you want to do that I'd recommend a T3 or greater. I think you can get an OC3 line for $2000/month though.
[This message has been edited by LaoChe (edited 09-29-2001).]
thanks for the replies, tech friends, your suggestions and some research ended up in good homework. As for the networking and the OS I still am in doubt about win00, I know that win98 is a good gaming platform but dunno bout the Win00, I have used it to run only 1 game on my laptop but have doubts about other games in the coming future.
1- Would you still reccomend win 00 on all 25 machines or just 98 SE.
2- My Network setup is for using a two 3 COM 16port switches and 26 NICs for the server and clients any better suggestions?
If you really want to make the place look the biz, use the cash you saved by building your own machines and build them in Coolermaster aluminium cases, the ATCS-101 is the a stunner. I suppose it depends what overall image you're going for though. Have fun Mr. Kuwait United Arab Emirates!
If you've got your money for nothing, who cares if the chicks are free!
hmmmm, kwtuae, you must be new here. I own a gaming cafe, which just open last year in November. We are doing well now, but definitely no where near where I could give up my other corporation. Our business mainly brings in additional income, and its fun, but a lot of work. I mean A LOT!! Between both businesses, I work an average of 100 hours a week! If you want to contact me direct, my emails up above, but here are some questions I have and suggestions. Unfortunately, the people who posted replies here have no idea of what exactly is involved. I do.
1.) Where do you plan on locating? Is there a large customer base, in the group you will cater to, ie. males, age 13-35?? you must make sure that you are locating somewhere that is easy to get to, by car or bus or bike, near a middle income neighborhood of diverse people, near a college campus (mines near OSU, go Bucks!! ) and near junior and senior high schools with a lot of cross traffic being generated from other stores I'm across the parking lot from a large grocery chain store, a Burlington Coat Factory, a Drug Emporium, the busiest in Columbus, I have a Radio Shack two doors down, and a Computer repair shop 6 doors down, all of which send people my way, and I do the same for them.
2.) Are there other stores like the one you are planning on opening? What is your competition, and how well do they do? Go in and look around, see what they do, ask them questions, and find out if they really are glad they got into this. Talk to the owner, like me, he will be glad to tell you about his baby!
3.) Do you have a primary income to cover you and your family during the startup and first two year periods (atleast)? Most businesses fail after the first 3 years, and most do not even show a profit in the first or second years. We are fortunate that we will, but part of that reason is we started with fewer systems, 12, and did all the work, from painting and wall building, to installing the floor tiles and network, as well as me building all the systems, which I recommend, which kept our startup costs down. But I have a successful corporation that I am president of, that allows me to pay the bills, mortgage, car payments, and feed the family. In fact, I work at the store 3 days a week, but my wife has to cover the rest of the time with one additional employee (who has to be paid, of course!), as I must run the other business as well. Keep all of this in mind.
3.) Amd, Geforce 2s, 3 if you want to splurge, 17 or 19 inch monitors, we have both, 256 megs of ram, at least 40gig harddrives, and go with 98se or even ME (sorry, but for me, ME works great, and I have had no probs with it). XP will be fine, but remember this: for most software, you have to purchase a seat license for EVERY SYSTEM YOU HAVE! Granted, not all companies require this, for example EA does not for its NFS series, as they have spawn installs that are allowed, nor does Sierra for Half Life, though they know as well as I that to play online (ie. CS or Dod) you have to have your cd key authorized by the WON servers, which only allows a cd key to be in use, at the same time, twice! So this is a big expense!! Go with nice cases that are not too wild, and try to keep the costs down as you can also sell the system which I do. Also, go with a program like I have that is a timing program for internet cafes. It allows a customer to get a password and username, and then they can log on to any of the systems. It shuts down the system when there time is up, they can use their time anyway they want, and it locks or hides the hard drives, start button, and other items. Great program. But most are expensive as well, with seat license. I was fortunate here, because my wife's cousin works for company in England that makes such a prog, and I got a great deal on it.
There is a lot more involved, depending on where you locate, from insurance to liablilties, from switches (NOT ROUTERS!) to high speed internet connections, but if you want to correspond, let me know.