Consider renting cloud servers for contests

Revision en2, by farmersrice, 2020-07-12 18:54:31

It costs 4.6 USD an hour to rent 48 cores / 96 threads on AWS. At this rate it will cost roughly 100 USD an hour to rent 1000 cores.

Assume we rent 1000 cores for 2 hours. Given that a very large contest has 20k users, this works out to 1000 * 2 * 60 / 20000 = 6 entire minutes of computation per user. 6 minutes is plenty of time to judge all a user's submissions.

If you are afraid of heavy load in the beginning and not at the end, you can of course alter distribution of cores for same cost (ex. 1200 cores in first hour, 800 cores in second hour).

CF receives 100k USD in the last donation round. This is enough to pay for the server costs of 500 rounds at 200 USD/round. Even assuming that only a tiny portion of funds is allocated to server costs, plenty of rounds can still be paid for without congestion.

It is also likely that these servers will be much more stable (I have heard a rumor that ITMO professor unplugged the power to the computers to spite some students and CF went down during that time, what if that happens in contest?)

It seems today's issues are not caused by server load but by some other bug, but of course there are plenty of times where the server gets overloaded and round is ruined.

Conclusion: 200 USD per contest for speedy speedy

EDIT: you could probably also mine monero or something while the servers are low-load to recoup some of the 200 USD.


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en2 English farmersrice 2020-07-12 18:54:31 120
en1 English farmersrice 2020-07-12 18:51:53 1429 Initial revision (published)