As already described in the introduction to MetaTrader 4 running MetaTrader 4 on a server and not on the own PC may have its advantages. However, the operation of a private server or the rental of a dedicated server will pay off only for professional traders, if at all. Virtual Private Servers are an attractive option for all the others - and most probably cheaper as well.
Windows VPS will be suitable for most users, though technically it is possible to run MetaTrader 4 on a Linux server through a Windows emulation.
Apart from meeting general criteria like performance class of the server and the price, several basic conditions should also be fulfilled at any rate, which will disqualify automatically a number of the low price VPS providers. These basic conditions are:
Usually a quite small server will be sufficient unless the virtual private server is used for other purposes like the operation of websites, forums, or as a game server. Most providers also offer the option to switch to a more powerful server at short notice, however, this may require a new set up of the system. For this reason it is recommendable to analyse the requirements in advance. VPS should meet following requirements to comfortably accommodate a simultaneous use of two to three MetaTrader 4 installations:
Although often discounts are offered for yearly contracts, initially monthly contracts are recommended, some providers also offer test periods of up to 30 days. If this - let's hope so - confirms the technical performance as well as the service quality and support, contracts can be switched to an annual basis.
Some professional FX traders emphasize the connection between the VPS data center and the servers of the FX brokers, they recommend to choose a Virtual Private Server location nearby (e.g. UK server locations for Alpari UK) and to check the latency regularly.
Commercial Network Services has been offering network services since 1995 and also supplies virtual desktops and trader's desktops in addition to its mainstream Virtual Private Servers. These types of desktops are primarily targeted for the permanent use of desktop applications and have left out programs which are used for Web Servers and databases in favour of a performance increase. The trader's desktops are also equipped with a 2nd firewall, the maintenance times are outside the FX dealing hours. CNS Autoboot is already pre-installed which will start up applications in the required sequence in the console session (Session 0) upon a restart. The Value Edition - with 1 GB RAM, 30 GB storage space and 5 GB data transfer (which can be raised up to 1,000 GB if the trading activity requires) accommodates comfortably at least three MetaTrader 4 installations, the price is USD 35.00 per month independently of the server location. The working memory can be extended up to 2 GB, each additional 215 MB will cost USD 6.00. The Trader's Desktop can be moved to another data center, e.g. in case of a broker switch. The contract is valid for one month and will automatically renew for another month at the last day of the month, only 10 months are charged when prepaying. Commercial Network offers a money-back-guarantee if the customer cancels the contract within 30 days of signing.
Windows Server 2003 | Windows Server 2008 | Windows Server 2012
London | New York | San Diego
A latency overview from the CNS Data Centers to the major Forex Brokers can be found here.
W2 Cloud is a US company that has been providing virtualisation and cloud services for years and is now offering customised VPS for Forex trading. The servers are provided using a cloud approach - where in a first step all available resources are pooled together and then shared and assigned to each user. The starter package with 2,048 MB Ram, two CPU cores and 20 GB storage space offers enough capacity for at least six MetaTrader 4 installations for a monthly subscription fee of USD 18.50 (NY) and USD 21.00 (UK). Additional CPU cores can be added for USD 12.50 each.
Windows Server 2008
London | New York
BeeksFX is a UK provider offering exclusively VPS for automatic FX trading. Despite being in the market only since mid 2011, BeeksFX has become a high-quality provider for VPS solutions. The starter package with 1,152 MB Ram and 20 GB storage space offers enough capacity for up to eight MetaTrader 4 installations, it costs GBP 25 net on a monthly basis. It should be noted, that all offered VPS plans include only 2 CPU cores which - when Windows Server 2012 is chosen as operating system - significantly limits the processing power that remains for the MT4 installations.
Windows Server 2003 | Windows Server 2012
London | New York
Host Europe has been providing internet services since 1997, among them webhosting and dedicated and virtual private servers Offerings dedicated for FX trading are not available, the maintenance periods - sometimes lasting for several hours - are unfortunately scheduled during the Asian session. Host Europe provides free basic support, extended support is available against a fee. The starter package with 2 GB Ram, 50 GB storage space and a traffic flat rate offers enough capacity for at least eight MetaTrader 4 installations, it costs EUR 12.99 on a monthly basis. The set up fee of EUR 19.99 is waived for contracts with a minimum duration of one year. A 30-days satisfaction guarantee is only available for one year-contracts.
Windows Server 2008
Unfortunately the extremely low price impacts the quality provided by Host Europe, resulting in a heavily fluctuating performance and limited availability of the server. However, the provider is still suitable for demo accounts and initial tests on smaller amounts.
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