January 2010


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Zachary Johnson <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
UofMN CSS Web Development <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 22 Jan 2010 14:32:19 -0600
text/plain (91 lines)
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. =)


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.

Zachary Johnson * Web Manager
Student Unions & Activities
(612) 624 - 7270