In front of the proxy servers there are multiple load balancers to share out incoming connections to the various servers in the proxy layer.
The proxy servers are the externally facing segment of the EVE cluster. Behind the load balancers, the proxy servers handle tasks such as connection negotiation, routing and data integrity checks. They route traffic to and from the Sol layer, which handles the actual game mechanics. They use a 4Gb/s fiber channel backbone to communicate with the Sol servers.
The Sol servers are the workhorses of Tranquility. If you are fighting, running missions or mining, all the processing for these activities is computed within these servers and shared out via various proxy servers to other clients.
A node is a single EVE server process. This is the lowest level of granularity within the cluster. Each of EVE's 5000+ star systems is loaded to such a node. Many low-load solar systems can be operated by a single node. The server process uses approximately 30 megabytes of RAM without any loading. Each blade contains 4 Gb of RAM (as of 2007).
This is the persistence layer of EVE Online. There is only one database server running Microsoft SQL Server 2008. This is backed up using online backups to the 'old' TQ DB hardware, a fiber channel RAID array. The current database resides entirely on solid state disk drives, two RAMSAN400 and 2 RAMSAN500 units from Texas Memory Systems. They are not SSD RAID disks, but rather single disk drives capable of high data throughput but crucially fully random requests. On traditional hard drives this incurs a lag due to disk seek operations while read heads are placed in the correct position on the platter and the data is read out.
At peak hours as of 2007 the database handles around 2-2.5k transactions per second, which generate roughly 40,000 input/output operations per second on the disks.
The server used is an IBM x3850 M2 server with 128 GB RAM and two 2.6 GHz six core Xeons (Dunnington) running Windows server 2008 x64 Enterprise Edition and Microsoft SQL Server 2008.
Internally, the network for Tranquility consists of internal fiber channel 4Gb/s backbones, with internal database communication on a separate 10Gb/s backbone.
Externally, CCP peers with multiple external transit providers and essentially acts as a tier-3 ISP, with only one customer- Tranquility.
Current capability 01-13-2011 from CCP Yokai
Current Proxy limits: 81,000 to 99,000 PCU Current Sol limits: 323,600 PCU
Ideal Proxy limits: 192,000 PCU Ideal Sol limits: 1,585,800 PCU
27 proxies give us about 81,000 PCU on today's startup 6 spare proxies could be enabled on any startup taking us to 99,000 PCU
Solarsystem Limitations (assuming no proxy cap)
1600 players in a Jita type playstyle (docked and spinning ships) 200 (normal) sol nodes running (minus any service nodes) so that would put us at a max of 320,000 + 2 super nodes that can handle an additional 2000 each in Jita or more...
making the max on current hardware 324,000
Assuming we take proxies to 64 nodes (max math we have done to date... not to say it's impossible to do more... just what I think we can do.) We could easily get to 192,000 PCU
If you just want to look at max solarsystem numbers...
Each sol could handle 2000+ players There are 7929 sol's (including Polaris, Jove, wormholes, and other spaces not accessable today to normal players)
1,585,800 max players... (before Incarna, it changes things a bit more)
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