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Linux, Unix, and *nix like Operating Systems Forum

Making the transition from virtual to dedicated server
How hard can it be?

 10:04 am on Aug 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

I think the time has come when I've outgrown my virtual hosts and need to upgrade to a dedicated server so I can have complete control over my production environment.

I hope this isn't a too ambiguous post, but I'm wondering what are the major issues I should be aware of when changing from virtual to dedicated server hosting? - with respect to Linux based hosting



 10:23 am on Aug 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

Is it one domain, or are you hosting a few?


 10:58 am on Aug 9, 2002 (gmt 0)

A few. In case its relevant, they need Apache+Tomcat.


 9:23 am on Aug 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

We started off with shared hosting and when it got to about 80 domains we switched to a dedicated server.

We should have done it sooner.

As we are not that techie, we needed a decent control panel - we use Plesk, on top of apache - it works well, with no real problems so far.

The most important issue for us was good technical support. We lease the server from a local company and they handle all the connectivity, security and technical side of the server.

We have been lucky, and the company we use have given excellent support, without which we would have gone through hell.

So, number one on my list of 'major issues' is 'check out the support available'.

Our server is with the same company we had the shared hosting with, so we had a history to go on.


 9:42 am on Aug 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Good technical support is essential.

If you are staying with the same webhosters you'd think it would be easy but my experience with one of the UK's largest was a nightmare.

You can expect things such as site dissapearing for a few days whilst DNS updating - this is beyond yours or the hosters control.

But it was a total cockup on the webhosters part. The lost things, put me on the wrong box etc. Said they'd copy the files over but they didnt. When I complained they said its upto the user to do so meaning I had to upload 50Mb of data (using a 56K modem then).

I don't want to put you off. It has to be done. Just make sure you know exactly what is entailed.

Surprisingly, when I changed from one host to another that was easier.


 5:12 pm on Aug 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the replies everybody...but how about costs? More specifically, how much (in the UK) could I expect to pay for a host to manage the security of a dedicated server?

The cost of managed security and more importantly, the hosts doing a good job of managing the security are my two main concerns when deciding whether to go the dedicated server route.

If they do manage the security what will they do anyway? Just download the latest patches and install them for me? - if thats the case then I'm not sure I'd pay extra for that service. Ideally I'd want them to check over my config files and made sure they're weren't any security "faux-pas" in them - would this be a realistic request of a host?


 11:13 pm on Aug 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

depends on how much you know already and how much maintainance you want to do yourself.

I can't comment on Micro$haft products - suffice to say it'll cost ya time and money.

I moved from dedicated RedHat which was 'as-is'. The webhosters wouldnt patch it, they wouldnt even allow root access. Now I got a Debian with a support service that lets me get on with it and assist now and again if I make a cock up.

How easy to secure? EASY!

Big buzz last month about upgrading apache to 1.3.26. I though how the heck am I supposed to do that?

just type

apt-get install apache

That upgrades whatever you had to the latest. Next I had to do PHP

apt-get install php4

simple eh!

Also using Webmin which is a dream. You just say get updates, upgrade whatever. None of this Micro$haft debacle of patching, rebooting, repatching the patches, rollback of patches waving yer lucky charms at the box.

I love this Linux stuff. Man its so simple.

Oh yes, has snort and stuff on it if you need that. And if you need to lock down Apache there is plenty of support here.

I guess you're going to say you'll be using NT and this text is irrelevant right <s>


 11:16 pm on Aug 14, 2002 (gmt 0)

I see your running Zeus 3.4 on Linux at the moment. Server hasn't been up for long.


you doing any good deals on that SMS stuff?

I'm looking for a cheap solution for smsing 200+ people twice a day.

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