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Going forward


DZComposer

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First off, I would like to take a moment to apologize for the epic freakout I had a couple of weeks ago. In the end it was not so bad that I had to let SF-O go, but changes are still coming. It will probably take a little longer than I initially estimated, so if any of you can help cover next month's costs, it would be greatly appreciated.

I am currently evaluating three options:

Option 1: Stay with Dreamhost, downgrade to a VPS. This is the simplest option. Costs would go down, but there would be little-to-no setup from my end as it would all be handled by Dreamhost's management software. This option would also have the lest potential downtime and have the fastest implementation. Disadvantage: Shared resources could effect site performance.

Option 2: Migrate to Amazon AWS. This could be the cheapest option. Maybe. With AWS you only pay for what you use. However, I would have to manually configure the servers. This option would have the most potential downtime. Disadvantage: I would be responsible for every single thing.

Option 3: Self-Host. This is the most flexible option. I looked into this in the past, but I haven't recently. It would require my to change my internet access to business class with a static IP. That may or may not be cheaper than the current solution. It would also require me to build a webserver and put a proper enterprise gateway and firewall on my home network to keep the ne'er-do-wells out of my network. A major advantage, however, is I would be able to bring-back the game server! Disadvantage: I would be responsible for everything, including hardware. No network or power redundancy as the server would live in my apartment which is not equipped with such things. That means if my internet or power goes out, SF-O goes down. High initial costs - I most definitely would NOT be running this on my PC so I would need to build a server. I would also need a proper firewall/gateway box. Community donations would probably be needed to procure hardware.

Option 1 is the safest option. I know it will reduce costs, and I know it will have little effect on downtime, at least in theory.

Option 2 could be the cheapest, but since costs are tied to usage monthy costs would be variable. AWS's pricing structure is convoluted, though, so it is tough to gauge costs at the moment,

Option 3 is only viable if I can get business class internet service with a static IP and decent speed for significantly less than my current cable bill + SF-O bill.

My personal preference is Option 3. It gives me the most flexiblity. I can run the latest PHP and MySQL versions, and the possibility of game nights is back, but the cost is the potential issue. I would have to build the machine and make sure my network is properly protected. Hardware to build a decent server would cost ~$400-$500. A firewall would set me back ~$300, but that doesn't have to be immediate.

Please feel free to make suggestions. Also, if you are aware of any other reasonably-priced VPS hosts, please let me know.

Edited by DZComposer
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Well, Option 1 is relatively cheap, and doesn't have as many "if" scenarios as the other options. Also, there's a smaller chance of having downtimes.

I think 1 is best.

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Any of these would be good if we juxtapose it to not having a site anymore.

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No need to apologize for making us aware of the situation at hand.  I think we can handle a lack of sugar coating now and then. :P

Option one seems to be the most favorable for the time being.  It is guaranteed to bring costs down, will be unobtrusive in terms of extended downtime, is evidently easy to implement, and won't alter much around here save for site speed.

That doesn't necessarily rule out option three, but I'd personally prefer to see that saved for a time of stability somewhere down the line. 

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Unless site performance takes such a huge hit that using the site becomes irritating, I don't believe there are any real downsides to the first option.

Down the line however, I think option 3 would offer the most advantages, so in that regard, I think One Under is correct in stating that option 3 could be implemented in the future if you feel that the website would realistically gain tremendous advantages, which also assumes you can actually find time to make the changes with your busy schedule.

For now I think option 1 is the way to go. Would there be any potential downgrades with this solution when compared to the current setup?

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As a wise poet once said ... "Get money, 'nd get turnt."

I agree with the majority and say that option three looks like the long term best option, but in the short term to save money, downgrading to a VPS isn't full blown apocalypse.

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"Goring forward"

I honestly don't know which option would work best considering I am just an autistic 13 year-old ding-dong... :|

I am fine with whatever option as long as the site doesn't end up in the SF Fansite Graveyard with a whole lot of other dead SF fansites. :(

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Option 3 looks more like an eventual goal to build towards, not an immediate solution. Go with 1 for now, it's safe, cheap and easy.

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I think option 1 would be my bet if I were in your shoes, DZ. Expect I'm not, so I'm not really in a position to make suggestions. Do what you need to do.

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I would go for option 1 right now, but in the long run 3 is probably the better option.

Edited by Pgpaw3
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If you are getting the thingy for the server, check out Government Liquidation. They had one of those machines (there is a proper name for it I know, I just can't remember it) for sale.

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  • Owner/Technical Admin

First - I am going to assume you meant Going and not goring in the title.

 

This is an idea, but it may not be suitable for your needs.


I rent a dedicated server through Kimsufi for $27 a month. It has an i5 processor, 16GB memory and 1TB HDD.

 

It features DDOS protection, a triple powersupply (OVH has two sets of backup generators.)

Mine is mainly used to host minecraft servers, although I do plan on adding some more games later on.

 

They come with many different OS choices (mostly linux), and you have to install everything yourself.

 

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Option 1 is likely the best in the short and even long run. Option 3 would be my second choice, but that's dependent on you being able to purchase business class internet for home use, which is usually ludicrously expensive. Also a decent performing server would likely be much more than 600 depending on what our current usage scenario is.

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  • 1 month later...

Holy cow, don't do option 3! That's a complete site failure waiting to happen. If you want complete server control, you can already do that with a dedicated (redundant) cloud machine, which is basically what you have right now, as I understand it.

I only just upgraded to VPS last month, mostly just to make things snappier and to experiment with Node-based server stuff. I've been running the Krystal Archive (and a half-dozen other sites) for a long time on standard Dreamhost shared hosting. Even starfox-online.net itself was on shared hosting for the longest time. What does SFO (the site itself) need that can't be accomplished with generic, shared, dirt-cheap hosting? Can those more active services connected with the site (chat, gaming servers, whatever) be implemented with third party services that manage just that one task?

Go with option 1. You're technically sharing resources, but with like 10 people, not hundreds.

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Hey, nice to see you back again!

Option 3 is not happening. The reason I can't use a shared hosting is that IPB is too resource-intensive for it. I'll be moving it to a VPS sometime later this month.

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  • 1 month later...

OK, so after reviewing options, I think I will be moving SF-O to Amazon AWS. I could possibly do this with minimal downtime. It also brings the cost down to the point where I would have no problem affording it. It would save me just about $100/mo.

I feel this is best because I can configure the server with the latest PHP and MySQL versions. The ones Dreamhost uses are old.

I am planning on doing the migration within the next two weeks, depending on my holiday plans.

Also, this month is going to be a little tight for me, so any donations would be appreciated.

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  • Owner/Technical Admin

If my dedicated server can handle running my FTB server alongside a steam server such as TF2, I would be willing to make a seperate user account and allowing the server to be installed and ran.

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