How to calculate PAM Session Recording files average size and other needed resources?
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How to calculate PAM Session Recording files average size and other needed resources?


Article ID: 143620


Updated On:


CA Privileged Access Manager (PAM)


When implementing a PAM installation, we may need to calculate the amount of resources that we will need to hold simultaneous session recordings.

This document provides some related hints that may help with this task.


Version: 4.0.X / 4.1.x


It is always difficult to anticipate the size of a recorded session.

The ones based on text, like SSH, use to be quite small because they basically contain the text itself, so their size is not expected to become huge.

When we talk about graphical recordings, like Web Portals or RDP sessions, apart from the duration, there are some parameters that may impact in the recording quality, performance and resulting file size.
You can find these parameters in the 'Settings / Applet Customization' pane.

RDP Keyframes Duration: The keyframe duration determines how RDP is compressed. A small keyframe duration is equivalent to more frequent full frames of video data. The increased frequency results in a large file, but allows more a rapid seek in the RDP viewer. For sessions using RDP 6.1, file size can be reduced significantly by increasing the keyframe duration. Reductions to about half the size have been observed.

Small (Fast Seek/Large File): Default
X Large (Slow Seek / Small File)

Web Recording Quality: Specify the color depth and frame rate to use when recording a web portal session:

High: 24 BPP / 7 FPS (default)
Medium: 16 BPP / 5 FPS
Low: 8 bits per pixel / 3 frames per second

As you can see, the recording may impact in several areas (disk, performance, etc.) so, our recommendation is playing with the mentioned settings in your installation and check the resulting sizes, etc. to choose the set of settings best meeting your requirements.

Additional Information

See the attached spreadsheet that will help calculate the sizes needed for PAM SSH, RDP and Web Portal session recordings.



CA PAM Session Recording Sizing Calculator_v8.xlsx get_app