Datatables a bit complicated for me at the first glance.
it has many way to load data to datatables. i was losted at first.
for server-side processing, i just realised that it 's sorting is done on server side script. when ever you want to sorting or change any table parameter. client side with contact server dor new data via ajax.
[ "Trident", "Internet Explorer 4.0", "Win 95+", 4, "X" ],
you try to do sorting and pagination , all these work done on client side. unlike ajax based serverside processing (it will connect to server again and again).
i do had a sucessful partially test on the way of server side processing .
because my scenario is limited on one query on server then do a bit more of work on client side ( sorting , filtering , counting.......)