No one would argue that the main objective of the expert advisor is maximum automation of trading. But even if the robot is set to a lucrative operation, problems and failures in the algorithm may arise from hardware or software.

Such interference may include disconnections by the broker, the outages at the ISP used by the trader, the problems with the electricity supply, the common terminal crash and even the failure of any element of a computer, such as hard disk failure, which won’t just stop the whole trading system, but may even completely destroy it, because it is not always possible to recover data.

To solve such problems, professional algotraders use a special virtual dedicated server for EA, which is probably familiar to many readers from the educating video lessons under the term “VPS-server".

What other problems the server for EA solves

The above nuances are only the visible part of the iceberg – in fact, a dedicated server allows you to avoid more serious problems, the most important of which is a potential conflict with the dealing center due to IP address. Perhaps this is not discussed often on forums and blogs, but some companies, especially those who run large-scale promotions and bonus program, are wary of dynamic IP addresses.

It happened that the accounts of some traders in DC were even blocked in cases of suspected fraud. Later, of course, the problem was solved, and the parties to the conflict settled with “even hands”, but such proceedings rob traders a lot of time, and the time is lost profits.

To solve these problems, you can buy a static IP address from your ISP – but again, in this case you cannot exclude the usual disconnections, so many professionals immediately buy a server for EA with static IP from one service, especially because some companies include static IP in the service package for free.

As a result, the security department of the dealing center sees that all trader’s operations are carried out from one computer only, and there are no intersections with other customers, while the trader saves money and withdraws the earned money without any problems.

In addition, the server for EA doesn’t wear a computer, because if you leave your PC switched on around the clock, the hardware wears out, coolers are dust clogged much faster (you will have to switch off and clean the equipment from time to time anyway), and in the case of hot weather there is a fire risk due to possible overheating.

Add small children who like to push buttons here, the need to move off to other cities for family or business issues sometimes, and automated trading using a personal computer loses all meaning.

How to configure the server for EA

PC will still be useful for the initial setup of the software on a dedicated server, but after the robot is launched in "virtual space", human intervention will not be required, and you can switch on/off your computer. Suppose that a trader has bought VPS-server, and the procedure for its installation is as follows:

1. In Windows 7, open the menu "Start → Accessories → Remote desktop connection";
2. In the window that opens, enter the IP address of a dedicated server (which has already been paid) in the "Computer" field and click "Connect". At this stage, you can configure additional parameters, a list of which opens when you click the button of the same name in the lower left corner of the dialog;

3. Enter the password in the next window, and then the server for EA will open. It should be noted that there can be any operating system on the server, depending on the company's services offered, as well as the needs and abilities of the user. Most commonly, Windows Sever 2003/2008/2012 is free, and license of Windows 7 (or another version) is provided by the user themselves (if the trader needs it).

At the final step, the action is no different from the usual operations on a standard PC: install the terminal, upload patterns, indicators, expert advisors and all other elements necessary for the correct operation of the trading robot to server disk. In fact, VPS-server functionality differs from the usual PC only by the fact that it does not have the monitor and other peripherals.

How much it costs to rent a server for EA

This issue is of interest to many traders, but no definite answer can be given to it, because today there are hundreds of rental companies and rates, which may differ from each other significantly. In this case, it is more appropriate to talk about the price range of tariffs that are suitable for different traders. If we consider the example of services of large companies, we’ll get three large groups of services.

First: Rates for newcomers from $3 to $6 per month are for 1-2 operating terminals, the RAM capacity on the server is from 512 MB to 768 MB, and the size of the hard disk is rarely below 10 GB. Actually, this service is more than enough not only for a beginner, but also for any average trader.

The second group is the professional rates for simultaneous operation of 10 terminals – respectively, the RAM capacity on a server can range from 1,024 up to 2,048 MB, and disk space – from 15 to 20 GB, while the prices of different companies vary from $10 to $15 (without taking various promotions into account), and you can find even cheaper if you pay rent for a year in advance, rather than every month. If a certain company offers to rent a similar server for EA for more than $15/month, it is obviously an inflated price.

And the last group of the rates can only fit the programming managers who create complex portfolios and use dozens of trading robots for different accounts and trading tools. In this case, the price tag starts at $23/month and further increases depending on the server configuration. Such servers will not do any good to the average trader, because the capacity will simply be idle.

Summary of findings and recommendations

In conclusion, we’d like to say that the virtual server for EA is necessary when working with trading robots, because if you use a regular computer, you will have at best to miss out on some opportunities, and at worst the algorithm may fail after the connection break, and the erroneous transactions will cause losses.

It is simple enough to customize VPS-server, even a simple guide from Microsoft can help the users of Windows operating system in this case. As for the prices and specifications, the server intended for installation of 1-2 terminals with a maximum monthly fee of $6 per month will suit the most traders.

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