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Eyeless Blond
I've looked through a few books now, but so far nothing's really given me any hints on how to go about buying/setting up my own Matrix Host. How much does something like that cost to build, maintain, upgrade, etc. The closest thing I've seen that could help is the part in M&M where hospitals have their own Green-level Matrix hosts. Anyone know where I can go for details?
hmm, i belive that there was some talk about priceing in the programing chapter in matrix but nothing realy concrete (just a sidecomment that if you wanted your own host to program on the price could go from 6000000 and up)...
Oi, that's a good question... I think you're going to have to house rule it.

Based off of my understanding of the internet, as soon as you plug any computer with sufficient processing power and the appropriate software into the net, you can set it to be a host. I'd rule that "sufficient processing power" is dependant on what all you're doing. The most basic tortoise can run a host meant for only a handful of people and a simple file system. Once you get into the hundreds, the price of the computers goes into the tens of thousands and beyond.

The complexity of the architecture I would say will be pretty nasty memory wise, but from reading everything, it sounds like its already built into the OS to a degree. I'd tend to say something like the size of the architecture is dependant on the security rating; the multiplier is 10, blue is level 2-4, green 5-8, orange 9-12, red 13-16, UV 16+ (or something along those lines). Anything below blue is too basic to have a security tally. IC takes space on top of that, I'd use the multiplier based off of the utility with the same effect in the Matrix source book. The size of new nodes is negligible, I'd assume it's just a folder or basic application put through a graphics template.

Some things to note. One, you're not going to be easy to find. IRL, sites have metatags which help a bit with googling them, or you may be able to go through subnets somehow. But otherwise, your home server is probably too small for anyone to find unless they're looking for it. Two, MS3k probably has its own, default architectures for when you're not even jacked into the matrix, and you can probably use those for your host (I do that a lot for smaller corps, deckers will see the same theme again and again). However, it'll look bad. Of course, a few deckers will make their own architecture, but it'll look worse (how many of those horrible geocities sites have you seen?) Get a real artist. This'll take some more MPs, of course, up to the GM's discretion. I'd still say it's negligible, unless you're really running out of space, however it may cost a pretty penny depending on its complexity.
i think that when you hook something up to a matrix connection it is required to id itself as to what function it have, so a phone will say "im a phone, and im set to respond to number so and so" and a cyberterminal will say "hello im a cyberterminal and my icon is this one". so a host would go "im a host, my icon is this and i want to be located in that area of local matrix space if you dont mind".

i think a host security level is independent of its rating, the rating seems to be more in the area of computing power and os (in sr they seems to be one and the same, just look at the mpcp and its functions) while the color is how paranoid its set to be. so a host can be red-1 or blue-40 alltho both will be a waste to administrate as a rating 1 host is like a home wintel webserver while a rating 40 one is like a university cray. the first one will be spending so mutch of its cpu trying to check connections for foul play that it have allmost nothing left for its other jobs while the last one is like buying a brand new ferarri and parking it unlocked downtown at night.

and how says that hosts dont have a metatag like system? sensor must have a reason you know smile.gif seriusly i think that sr needs a joe wageslave book, we are to used to looking at stuff from a criminals point of view but we have no real clue how a normal day of joe wageslave goes along. maybe one of the basic functions of sensor is to sort the metatags of all the icons and so on, finding the ones taged as important by the user at the moment. so if your looking for a matrix electronics store then you tell the sensor chip to filter all icons that dont have something to do with electronics and shop for the moment. this could allso help in sensoring the grid when it comes to the younger generation. any host supplying adult entertainment or services would have to be tagged as just that and any terminal used by your kids could have its sensor chip hardcoded to filter out any icon with said tags. and given the controled nature of how the matrix is set up (with ltgs and rtgs and so on) there could be all kinds of rules enforced by the ltgs about what kind of icons they allow in theyre corner of the matrix.

heh, it seems that the matrix info we have may be high on technical detail but low on useability detail, even given matrix and target:matrix. we dont realy have a clue as to what amount of traffic is hidden by the VR enviroment of the matrix. there could be all kinds of id tags and other metadata flying about and being filterd by the chips and software long before it hits the asist for rendering. we must not forget the at times big MP numbers when old cap deletes something or parts of something. haveing full video and audio do not preclued haveing a text version embedded in the same data, or the ability to filter out the video part and only get the audio if thats what you want (maybe acompanyed by some generic computer head reading out the audio and doing the grins and others that some "writers" embed in the files).

rember that just like now where you can have pdas and phones access the internet the sr future will allso allow for this and at a even greater degree then now. in the future you may be able to direct your phone or pda to this page and have it custom renderd for your device. hell the opera browser for pdas and phones allready can do this to a degree.
Eyeless Blond
Well hell, if it doesn't exist yet I can make it up. Let's see now...

Building a Matrix Host- Hosts in the Matrix really aren't that much different than the Icons that use them, in much the same way as computers and servers aren't that much different today. Hosts still use an MPCP encoded on an optical chip, connect to the Matrix through similar channels (although typically use more expensive, higher-capacity lines to do so), have their subsystems and programs loaded into active memory, and use storage memory for unloaded files, all in the same ways that cyberterminals and cyberdecks do. The differences lie in how that hardware is used and what programs are loaded. Instead of persona chips, a Host uses its MPCP to run its security and subsystems. Instead of utility programs, a Host uses its memory for ICs and various accessory programs (see Accessories below)

More to come, unless someone comes up with page numbers for this stuff.
there're a few previous threads related to this. here and here. haven't had time to look through them and see if they address your question specifically.
Eyeless Blond
Yeah, none of that's useful at all. I'd like actual rules for setting up Matrix hosts, not a reference from 2.0 that basically says "don't bother." Personally I don't think it should be outside the realm of possibility, really. I mean, what's wrong with making a server?

Now, getting the mainframe bonuses outlined in Mat P. 79, that might be a little more difficult...
i'll warn you now: don't try to reverse-engineer SR stuff. you'll only end up crying.
Eyeless Blond
Oh I'm not reverse-engineering anything. All of this is coming straight out of my butt. nyahnyah.gif

Host Persona Chips- It is on this level that Hosts begin to differ from Icons. Where Icons use Bod and Sensor Persona chips (and sometimes Masking and Evasion) to make up their Matrix Icon, a Host uses two specialized Persona Chips, called Host and Security (or Sec). Both are necessary for a Host to have a matrix presence, just as both Bod and Sensor for a terminal to make an Icon.

The Host Chip determines the Host's security code, the most basic quantity of any Matrix Host. The Rating of this chip is based on the desired security code: a Blue Code is Rating 6; a Green Code is Rating 8; an Orange Code is Rating 12; a Red Code is Rating 16; a UV Code is Rating 32. There is a modifier of +3 to the Design Test (an additional +8, total +11, for designing a UV Code Chip), and the programming multiplier is 8 (40 for UV Chips.) See Matrix p. 59 for details on building Persona Chips.

The Sec Chip determines the Host's security rating. The Design Test for such chips have a modifier of +2, and the programming multiplier is 4. See Matrix p. 59 for details on building Persona Chips.

Like all Persona Chips, Host and Sec Chips cannot have a higher rating than the Host's MPCP, and no MPCP can run more than three times its rating in Persona Chips. Notice that this means that a given Host will still have "room" left on their MPCP even after installing a Host and Sec chip. Most security companies use this "wasted" space either for secondary Host and Sec chips--most times these are used to create virtual machines (see Matrix p.121)--or for installing Bod and Sensor chips so a corp decker can deck the Host's machine directly, although this is very rarely done due to security considerations.

How does this look so far? I'm going on the basic idea that, in theory anyway, Blue and Green hosts should be within a runner's reach (although usually the bandwith and energy costs will be tough, but that comes later biggrin.gif), but anything Orange and up should require lots of cash to set up. Next up: Security Subsystems!
I would also imagine the cost of being a host would be greatly increased when you start adding security and IC. Plus you'd probably want a team of deckers riding shotgun to enhance security.
Eyeless Blond
Right. Manpower and, er, power, those are the things that make servers expensive. The machine itself can be practically nothing if you don't need to support millions of users at once like Google. Remember also that the server aspect of the Google host is the least important part of their farm. The thing that makes Google so special and huge is that they are quite literally cataloguing and making a *cache* of the entire Internet, practically once a day! The web server part of it is practically a footnote compared to that, I'd imagine.
Kanada Ten
Eyeless Blond
heh, didn't notice that one. Looks like I'm reinventing the wheel here then.
i knew there was a thread on this already.
We were running a very decker intensive campaign, and some of my players really wanted their own host. They asked how much it would cost to buy one, and I laughed at them. But every few runs they'd get deep enough into a facility and, when possible, carry a few server boxes away from the run. As they build their processor power up, I let their host go from blue, to green, etc, and get higher and higher subsystem ratings.
Part of the caveat was that they had to essentially low-level format the things to clear away the junk they didn't want (like hidden trace programs in the event of stolen hardware), so they had to buy or program all their own IC programs and such, but I eventually let them put together a sweet host. Much fun was had by all.
My runners keep wanting to buy one though as yet I've fended them off, so I came on here to look it up. I've read some of the posts, and have to say that from what I *have* been able to find in the various books, I've come to the conclusion that it just can't be that expensive or difficult, at least for blue and green hosts. I beleive the home datateminal can allow you to build and run a blue host. Pueblo offer a free personal host to all their citizens. Now, I know those are probably just virtual blue hosts on a massive mainframe, but if it was that expensive to do it, no-one would have them - even a mom and pop shop can have a matrix host.

Based on that idea, I figure blues must be in the low tens of thousands otherwise small businesses just couldn't afford them, and greens could be anywhere from there to a hundred thou for a top end one with lots of reasonable IC, so a decent sized business could afford one for its most secure data.

Orange hosts would be a lot more expensive and hard to get hold of, but even quite minor corps run them, or run multiples of them in different cities or grids. So again, they can't be that hard to get hold of. Crime syndicates have a lot of money, but if these things cost millions they wouldn't have them. They'd have blue hosts and employ loads of cheap rate deckers. So again, they can't be *that* hard to get hold of. Maybe half a million for a top of the line one, i reckon. Maybe more for particularly vicious IC. Hell, I've seen resteraunts in the printed adventures have medium level orange hosts.

Red hosts would admittedly probably run into the millions of nuyen for the very best ones otherwise the megas would be just bloated with them even considering how much they interfere with day to day operations. Say between half a mil for a basic one up to ten mill for a top of the line one capable of all kinds of evil system tricks.

The figures are plucked from the air, I know, and I have nothing to base it on. But that's because the topic is completely and utterly skipped in the books. There's nothing to even suggest how and what they are built from, so you can't even extrapolate from the rules. I like the idea of basing it on some kind of technical-rating linked multiplier system, but what kinds of figures would you use as a base? Based on the above:

Blue - base 5,000 x technical rating e.g. a Blue 6 costs Y30,000
Green - base 10,000 x technical rating
Orange - base 25,000 x technical rating
Red - base 150,000 x technical rating

Availability? Maybe technical rating as TN, +2 for green, +6 for orange and +10 for red? time period based on colour? Aay a week, month, three months and six months?

IC would come seperately onbviously , but I beleive there are rules for IC construction which might provide a clue to the cost (can't remember if it does or not, its never come up). Would you also maybe have to buy enough computer memory to run the IC and store the data?

Has anyone actually houseruled it?

Does anyone know why fanpro/FASA never covered it?
didn't occur to the writers, or there wasn't enough room in the appropriate books without cutting out more important stuff.
Eyeless Blond
I just came accross Twilightrun's site (and more specifically his Creating Mainframes page), so from here on out I consider the matter closed. biggrin.gif

(Edit): Well, maybe I wasn't quite clear here. *Almost* all of that is usable, except for the stuff at the bottom about mainframe programming. The page was designed around VR 2.0 rules, so the programming stuff is out-of-date, but everything else works fine.
Mr. Man
That's an excellent page but it doesn't cover availability, street index or legality.

The only time this has come up in one of my games, I had deckers basically doing research for a few months tracking down a suitable host as well as its physical address. A team was then contracted to pacify the building, and they then extracted the box which I ruled was the size of a mini-computer roughly 1mx2mx2m. The mage levitated it out and into the truck after the decker removed all the connections. All in all it took 6 months to stage the hit, a month to clean out and reprogram the host, and another 3 months of crossing our fingers that all the false data trails held up and thugs didn't come knocking on the door in search of their multi-million nuyen system.

By stealing it we bypassed the need for availability, street index, and cost.
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