Of course one of the most important aspects of running a proxy server is speed. However you’re never going to know if your server will be fast enough unless you do some basic load estimating beforehand. No one will want to use your super secure proxy if it runs like a three legged donkey.
So how do you estimate the expected load on your server? Well there are several questions you need to ask yourself of which the most important is simply – how many users?
The important concept here as regarding speed is how many concurrent users. That is how many users will be connected at any one time, this has by far the biggest impact on performance.
Other load impact will be what type of use, what type of content will be downloaded and how many accesses per second, hour or day will be involved. Imagine the impact on a server of a few hundred users browsing text based resources and downloading the odd graphic file. Then contrast this with the same few hundred users streaming or downloading HD quality videos and films. The difference will be phenomenal, the reality is that your users are much likely to be in the second category. People use secure proxies not only for keeping themself safe online but also to bypass geotargeting blocks to watch things like the BBC and US TV channels from other countries. There is an example of such high security services which run against a network of international proxies. This software acts as a front end – for switching between proxies automatically – this video.
Only by asking yourself these sort of questions can you hope to estimate the total load on your proxy and the hardware required to cope with it. The server administrators which rely on simple statistics like the number of users will definitely underestimate the resources required and will end up with a slow and unusable server.
Source: Jim Greenhoff – IT Videos