It was a blessing in disguise. The week of November 11th, 2013, started out being a complete disaster.
I launched MemberPlayer.com and emailed my entire list. Other large affiliates got on board. Major traffic and sales being made.
All of a sudden, in one broad swooping stroke, everything crashed. The Hostgator shared server where 95% of my websites were hosted basically blew up before my eyes, and I could not do a thing about it. What made matters worse was Hostgator’s lack of response for about a week.
Side Note: If you are with Hostgator – run. Hostgator has had so many issues. Even their Facebook page was full of anxiety stricken customers. They have had change of ownership, database problems with their shared accounts, major Data Centers in Utah going down, and customer service problems that basically puts you on a 30 minute waiting list, only to find out there is no one on the other end when you have waited 30 minutes.
I had to take action…
Quickly, I looked at my options. I already owned a VPS (Virtual Private Server) but at the end of the day, I decided to buy my own Dedicated Server and use my own private linux administrator to set it up and monitor.
In my mind, there are some huge advantages of a dedicated server over VPS or Shared hosting:
- My websites are now faster. A lot faster.
- Stability – because you are not sharing your server with anyone else, a dedicated server is much more reliable and stable, and all the resources of that server are for your websites, and no one else.
- Privacy and Protection – a dedicated server is much more secure. You will not get a virus from some else, as you may do with a shared hosting account, etc…. Also, you are in complete control of its privacy.
- Customization and Enhancements – because you are in control of the server, you can add and delete any modules you want to customize, protect, and enhance. With a shared or VPS, you are limited by the hosting company of what you can do.
- Awesome Support – with a shared or vps, support can be slow and minimal. With a dedicated server, I have support via skype and is within a minute.
There are a number of things to consider when configuring and monitoring your dedicated server.
Say goodbye to your shared hoster and never again be at their mercy.
Here is my exact steps:
A. Buy a Dedicated Server at SINGLEHOP
New CPUS. More RAM. Bigger Drives.
See Dedicated Servers >>
They have the best secure and value from my research. I tried OVH but my hard disks kept failing. Singlehop dedicated servers are top notch and my sites are never down. If some of the packages are sold out, keep checking back..as this constantly changes. I even called them with lots of questions. I purchased the Server Model: Xeon 5520 4×2.26GHz HT TB 8MB Cache. When you click on Order Now…pick the Chicago server location as best. Scroll down to the bottom and choose RAID 10 for an extra $55. This is worth it. If one hard disk fails, you are protected by the others. Your sites will not be down.
So, what do you do next?
There are three steps:
- Migration – you need to backup all of your domains at the host you are leaving, and then set up and configure at your dedicated server to import, with all of your scripts and databases intact.
- Configuration of your Dedicated Server and Cpanel – It is important that you know what you are doing here (I don’t so I hired someone). You will want to update your server with the best anti virus softwares, security modules, etc…
- Monitoring – there are a number of free monitoring services to choose from. But once again, how do you monitor and how to you do a little fix or tweak?
Let us look at these more closely….
During this process you want to create a full site backup on your hoster server and then transfer to your new server. Once you transfer, you extract he files with proper configuration. Next, you want to configure.
Before you configure your new server, you want to check the current server configutarion and install all necessary modules so that your new server and sites will work fine.
I recommend doing the following:
- install control panel on the server
- install all necessary modules on your server (PHP, Zend Guard, ionCube PHP Loader, mbstring, xml, json and etc)
- install Mod Security to protect your site from hackers
- install CSF firewall cPHulk protection top secure your server.
- install MySQL Percona instead of a similar MySQL server because MySQL Percona works 5 times faster
- optimize MySQL Percona for your server
- install Nginx Web Server as fronted on the server to increase the site speed load
- optimize Nginx for your server
- increase and secure /tmp partition so that your scripts can work without issues and hackers cannot upload any suspiciouse files
- increase HDD performance
- install Maldet antivirus
- configure Mail server, install DKIM and SPF
Next, you want to Monitor.
You need to monitor your server. The Nagios monitoring system is awesome. It is allow you in 1 minute to see the issue on the server and fix it as soon as it is possible.
Using this monitor system we are checking the following services:
- Apache and Nginx web servers
- MySQL server
- Current Server Load
- Server response (Ping)
- SSH service
- Disk size (HDD, SWAP and TMP partitions)
- How much users are on the server
- RAID (if it is installed)
If you are looking for a qualified linux administrator to help you set up with a Dedicated Server, do the migration for you, configuring and monitoring, feel free to contact me with subject line: Dedicated Server.
Rates are reasonable and negotiable.
If you have any questions, please feel free to write a comment below. I read them all. Thanks, Mark