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View Full Version : Costing for internet cafe


RKDus
02-27-2008, 04:39 PM
What hardware and software would I need for setting up an internet cafe and what costs would there be for the first say 2 months? The stuff I can think of now would be
- 20 PCs
- Server
- Router
- Gig Switch
- Some kind of admin software
- 2 internet connections (from different providers?)

Blues
02-27-2008, 05:28 PM
I would say for the internet line focus on one over the other get the best deal on the most bandwidth within reason. I would get maybe half the pipe for my backup line becuase its really just there so users don't know there is an issue so its use will be minimal so no need to spend as much on it. I would look into an alternate carrier for the secondary backup line as often times if the problem is on the carriers end it will effect many of the same or similar lines. Just for a rough example say you get a T3 pipe for the main line and a T1 pipe for backup. When a T3 line is down often the T1 lines in the same area from the same provider are also down.

hawks5999
02-27-2008, 08:47 PM
Operating Systems?

Anti-"everything you would need anywhere else".

Quickbooks.

POS software.

when you say admin, do you mean software to use for logging users in and tracking time online for charging purposes?

RKDus
02-27-2008, 08:57 PM
Operating Systems?

Anti-"everything you would need anywhere else".

Quickbooks.

POS software.

when you say admin, do you mean software to use for logging users in and tracking time online for charging purposes?

Yes that's what I'm talking about. What administration software do people use for cyber cafes? For OSs, Windows XP and Windows Server I should think. Should I get a VLK for that? AVG Pro for Anti-Virus and Spyware. Anything else that would be needed?
I'm thinking of just having an image of an installation on the server and then ghosting that onto each machine once a week or whatever.

Nathan H
02-27-2008, 09:11 PM
Check Out http://www.neowin.net/forum/lofiversion/index.php/t568658.html

Downlaod from here http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=D077A52D-93E9-4B02-BD95-9D770CCDB431&displaylang=en

or http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details...;displaylang=en

Steady State 2.5 Beta

It is a little prog, that deletes any changes made by users simply be restarting the PC, it is specifically designed for Internet Cafes

seedubya
02-27-2008, 09:13 PM
Why use a server? What do you need it for. This is not an environment where AD adds any real benefit. The only "server" you'll need is a PC running your management software.

As for scanners etc. none of your client PC's sessions should be allowed to persist over reboots. Have a look at Deep Freeze, a piece of software that returns each PC to a predefined state after a reboot i.e. your customers can download all the malware they like but as soon as the PC is restarted you're back to a pristine installation. http://www.faronics.com/html/deepfreeze.asp

EDIT: NathanH has beaten me to it with SteadyState. I'd not heard of it or used it. It looks good on paper. However I do know that Deepfreeze just works.

thecoldone06
02-27-2008, 09:14 PM
If all they will be using the computer for is internet I'd have it locked down to the point where IE runs full screen and they can't edit any internet options or access the OS or file system. Once you let the public start changing stuff on your computer your just asking for trouble. It seems the general feelings of internet cafe users are "if it isn't mine, I'm going to break it".

Nathan H
02-27-2008, 09:33 PM
Looking down a PC is good, but occasionally I have used and Internet Cafe to type and print Letters and other office docs., you may want to give it some thought.

I can vouch Steady State works, it does have some draw backs as discussed in the other link I posted, but i think they are for things that wont be used any way such as hibernate

RKDus
02-27-2008, 09:37 PM
Why use a server? What do you need it for. This is not an environment where AD adds any real benefit. The only "server" you'll need is a PC running your management software.

As for scanners etc. none of your client PC's sessions should be allowed to persist over reboots. Have a look at Deep Freeze, a piece of software that returns each PC to a predefined state after a reboot i.e. your customers can download all the malware they like but as soon as the PC is restarted you're back to a pristine installation. http://www.faronics.com/html/deepfreeze.asp

EDIT: NathanH has beaten me to it with SteadyState. I'd not heard of it or used it. It looks good on paper. However I do know that Deepfreeze just works.

Wouldn't I need a server for controlling access to resources, for kicking people off machines etc? Thanks for the SteadyState tip Nathan, looks good. Any other equipment that would be needed that I haven't thought of?

thecoldone06
02-27-2008, 09:55 PM
I apologize, I was thinking along the lines of a Starbucks/Panera Break type of thing where people bring their laptops and access the internet via your wireless network. Then having computers there. Internet cafe is a little different. However allowing access to a wireless network with their own computers might also be a consideration.

seedubya
02-27-2008, 10:04 PM
Your management software should allow you to do whatever you need with the PC's in terms of rights etc. If people need to type or whatever that's allowed, they just need to either save to a USB key or print out the work they just did. A good colour laser printer should be on your list which of course you will charge for the use of. You can also charge for single optical disks and you can sell USB keys onsite. I'd also look into getting a dealership for that temporary credit card thing that VISA run. Also consider setting up a wifi hotspot with couches and coffee tables for the laptop users with a slightly lower charge. Online gaming access will be another one that will be of interest. For regular customers try a loyalty scheme.

Blues
02-28-2008, 01:42 PM
We can't forget a firewall with a intercepting proxy for content filtering. You will want some level of content filtering and you will need an acceptable use policy. This will be more or less a public place and you may be allowing minors in so you don't want to be liable if they get on dirty sites and its all your fault thier parents don't ay attention.

RKDus
02-28-2008, 02:02 PM
I was thinking of using OpenDNS for the content filtering, it's effective and very straghtforward to set up (and free).

Holzster
02-28-2008, 09:40 PM
Here is a thread I created about EASY Linux Distributions & how they can help.

http://www.technibble.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1587

A few of the ones you want to read about are:

IPCop - a great Firewall (content filtering)
Smoothwall - a great Firewall (content filtering)
Untangle - a great Firewall (content filtering)
Vyatta - a killer replacement for Cisco
Webconverger - a firefox only CPU - no desktop nothing!!
ZoneCD - a FREE easy to use Hotspot (web based content filtering,)

Holzster

MDTechie
03-12-2008, 04:12 PM
Ok my dad and I used to have a gaming center kind of along the same lines as to what you are trying to do. We had 10 machines and one POS machine. There is software out there that will allow you to "sell" them time then when there alloted time is up it gives them a 5 min warning then boots them off. If theyre frequent visitors they can buy lump sum tickets and it will deduct to the minute off theyre account. Check out igames.org they strictly deal with gaming centers. Theyre forums will help alot.