January 2010


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"Aaron J. Zirbes" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
UofMN CSS Web Development <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 22 Jan 2010 15:25:16 -0600
text/plain (4 kB) , ajz.vcf (4 kB)
I'll second Zach's request for root as some of the web systems we run 
internally are backed by system-level scripts, odd perl modules, or 
other things that need to be installed by hand.  I'd gladly sacrifice 
certain levels of support for root access.

I'll also say that as we are an Ubuntu/Debian shop that just finished 
migrating away from RedHat (which we had been running since 1999), I 
would not like to go back.  RedHat makes system administration more 
painful than it needs to be.  It also doesn't require a $200/year/server 
license (which I would gladly pay again if it was actually worth it).

In fact, if root access wasn't allowed, I would put my request for 
Debian or Ubuntu over my request for root access.


Zachary Johnson wrote:
> I'd like to see one of the virtual hosting packages from OIT include 
> unrestricted sudo access or actual root access.  I want to be able to 
> install operating system packages, compile custom modules, modify 
> apache SSL settings, setup arbitrary logging, etc etc.
> Companies offering this service now such as SliceHost get around the 
> support issue by ... not offering support.  On SliceHost you can get 
> direct console access or reboot a machine via a web interface.  You 
> can also make snapshots of your install.  This way, if you mess 
> anything up, you just restore a working snapshot or fix it via the web 
> console.  It's your problem to deal with.  Slicehost just makes sure 
> hardware, network, power, etc are all transparent so I never have to 
> set foot in a room full of racks.
> They also price based on how much cpu/disk/bandwidth you need, and you 
> can scale your virtual server up or down without any sort of 
> re-install or migration craziness.
> I'm gonna go ahead and also say please-oh-please can OIT do Debian or 
> Ubuntu instead of Red Hat.  PLEASE.  Sugar on top. =)
> Zach
> Kristofer Layon wrote:
>> I think we can be assured that OIT will be very price competitive --- 
>> because they have to.  They suggested this during the meeting. 
>> We can host University sites on off-campus servers, so it's in OIT's 
>> best interest to compete with the 3rd party vendors that are being 
>> alluded to in this thread (and are already being used, in some 
>> cases).  There are highly regarded hosting companies in town, just a 
>> phone call away, so the local service is reliable and the price is 
>> right.  But on-campus hosting would still be preferable, in my opinion.
>> Kris
>> Kristofer D. Layon
>> Director of Web Design & Online Collaboration
>> 612.624.4545  :  [log in to unmask]  :  
>> http://blog.lib.umn.edu/layo0002/work/
>> - - - - - - Office of the Senior Vice President for System Academic 
>> Administration
>> University of Minnesota Twin Cities
>> http://www.academic.umn.edu/system/
>> On Jan 22, 2010, at 8:06 AM, Tony Thomas wrote:
>>> On Jan 22, 2010, at 7:29 AM, Samir Nassar wrote:
>>>> On 1/22/10 7:06 AM, Tony Thomas wrote:
>>>>> A Linux server with PHP & MySQL running would suit my needs pretty 
>>>>> nicely. The bigger problem I've had in the past with central 
>>>>> hosting is the level of access I was granted. It's essential for 
>>>>> me to be able to log in via ssh and do a few things from the 
>>>>> command line. I think I could get by without root access if I 
>>>>> could "sudo" some commands.
>>>>> Another issue for me has been cost. Currently there only seem to 
>>>>> be two options:
>>>>> 1. Cheap hosting with limited access that inhibits development and 
>>>>> configuration.
>>>>> 2. Virtual Server that is $300 per month (when I got a quote two 
>>>>> years ago)
>>>> Virtual Private Servers have come down dramatically in costs. For 
>>>> the quote you got two years can and do get hosting for close to a 
>>>> year that gives me all the benefits of having smart people manage 
>>>> the things I don't want to worry about (hardware, data centers, 
>>>> cooling) and let me worry about the things I like to worry about 
>>>> (Apache, MySQL, Postfix, PHP, and Content Management Systems.)
>>>> There are several really good virtual server providers out there, 
>>>> but my experience has come from using only one and I am quite happy.
>>> Do you have a virtual private server on campus? The $300/month price 
>>> was from OIT here. I've seen virtual servers as low as ~$20/month 
>>> elsewhere. If we could get something on campus in the neighborhood 
>>> of $50-60 per month, I would be very interested in that.