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  Recommended Server Hosting? (Dedicated or VPS)  (Read 11550 times)
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Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Posted 2012-02-27 19:33:35 »

This is a business and technical question, and not about Java at all, but since there are a lot of experienced game developers here...

What experience have folks had with VPS/Dedicated server hosts? This would be for hosting a game server (not a Web server). Here are some I've researched so far:

http://dreamhost.com/ (VPS & Dedicated options, reasonable prices)
http://www.linode.com/ (VPS with many tiers, reasonable prices)
http://www.rackspace.com/ (Everything under the sun, expensive)
http://mediatemple.net/ (A unique Dedicated-Virtual platform, reasonable prices)
http://order.1and1.com/Server (Lots of options, prices seem average)
http://www.alchemy.net/ (Standard hosting fare, just-a-little-cheaper pricing)

Without getting into all the technical points of interest (unless you'd like to), Linux hosting with shell access is a must. Does anyone have general experience with any of these (or others)?

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Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
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Island Forge


« Reply #1 - Posted 2012-02-27 19:54:35 »

I'll start with my experience with DreamHost, who I've used for many years for shared and VPS hosting. They give full shell access, even for shared Web hosting (but not root except for VPS/Dedicated) and run Debian. Their tech support is the finest I've ever dealt with... unfortunately I've had to contact them on a number of occasions due to technical issues (but I'm not sure more than other hosts). They're very open about any technical issues, and don't try to brush anything under the rug. So, I recommend them in general as a hosting company, but I still find myself interested in other options.

I'll probably never get rid of my DreamHost account entirely, but many folks mention mediatemple and linode as more stable/reliable services. Any thoughts?

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Offline RylandAlmanza

Junior Member


Medals: 3



« Reply #2 - Posted 2012-02-27 19:58:20 »

I've had amazing experiences with both Linode and Slicehost. I would definitely recommend one of those. I've run game servers on both of them (Large minecraft servers.) Slicehost is a little pricier, but it's also a little bit faster. If I were to choose one right now, however, I'd probably go with Linode, because the speed difference was not very noticable, so I don't think it's worth the extra price of Slicehost.
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Offline Riven
« League of Dukes »

JGO Overlord


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« Reply #3 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:03:00 »

JGO runs on Linode. Their control panel is simply the best in the world. You can even login to the linux native terminal, without SSH. I never really hear complaints about Linode, except that they dont provide cheap additional diskspace.

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Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #4 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:22:30 »

Thanks for the input on Linode, RylandAlmanza and Riven. SSH access is a must, and Linode appears to fully support that. I'm a little wary of their proprietary Lish shell. I do a fair bit of bash scripting, and will have to make sure Lish is fully compatible. Any experience with this?

Here's another technical concern. I've found that companies that focus on Web hosting don't understand the need for uninterrupted uptime. It's not a critical failure if a web server goes away for a 30 second reboot now and then, but even momentary downtime is a major failure when hundreds of players lose their sockets. Any comments on Linode uptime?

(PS. I was literally just clicking around the Help looking for details on the Appreciate/Medals feature, when you posted, giving me the answer in your signature, Riven.)

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Offline Riven
« League of Dukes »

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Medals: 799
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #5 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:29:45 »

You only use Lish when you want to. I never do.

I only have to reboot my VPS when I screwed something up, like misconfiguring Apache, allowing a zillion child processes, causing the server to swap itself into oblivion.

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Offline RylandAlmanza

Junior Member


Medals: 3



« Reply #6 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:31:01 »

I never used Lish either. I can vouch for their uptime, though. They have amazing uptime, and I can't remember a single time that my servers went down unexpectedly (I only had my server for a few months, so you might want to get someone else's experience as well.)
Online princec

JGO Kernel


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« Reply #7 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:33:24 »

We use Slicehost (now part of Rackspace). Very good, except lacking a little in options for configurability (we would ideally specify a different combination of CPU power, memory, and disk space).

Cas Smiley

Offline teletubo
« League of Dukes »

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Medals: 48
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« Reply #8 - Posted 2012-02-27 20:35:01 »

I use VPSLink (plan Link-2) to run my game Reign of Rebels.

It's cheap and does the work. The Control panel is okay and you have root ssh access.

Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #9 - Posted 2012-02-27 21:00:46 »

Thanks for the input, princec. Slicehost was on my list, but I lumped them in with Rackspace when I saw they were now associated. Similarly, I think DreamHost is to Alchemy as Rackspace is to Slicehost, but not sure if that's entirely accurate. Is there a reason to favor Slicehost over Rackspace, or just based on options/price of either?

Thanks for pointing me to VPSLink, teletubo. I had not found them before. (By the way, is Reign of Rebels still down for maintenance - it looks keen, but there's no link in your post, and I know exactly how you feel about peaking at 3 concurrent users online at once...)

The most important component for my server is RAM (and uptime and low latency). Sadly, I've been able to run my server comfortably with -Xmx128m for some time now.

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Offline sproingie

JGO Kernel


Medals: 202



« Reply #10 - Posted 2012-02-27 21:04:48 »

I run an AWS micro-instance, which is no-frills and bulletproof.  It's very pay-as-you-go, but the light usage I put it through results in a bill that's about half what I used to pay for Slicehost/Rackspace.

Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #11 - Posted 2012-02-27 21:17:46 »

I run an AWS micro-instance, which is no-frills and bulletproof.  It's very pay-as-you-go, but the light usage I put it through results in a bill that's about half what I used to pay for Slicehost/Rackspace.

That's really interesting. I would never have considered a "cloud" hosting platform. I just figured it for web and other intermittent/transaction-based services, rather than persistent server instances. I'll have to do some research.

No-frills is a-ok with me. All I want is CPU/RAM on the Internet.

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Offline teletubo
« League of Dukes »

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Medals: 48
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Exp: 8 years



« Reply #12 - Posted 2012-02-28 00:53:13 »

Thanks for the input, princec. Slicehost was on my list, but I lumped them in with Rackspace when I saw they were now associated. Similarly, I think DreamHost is to Alchemy as Rackspace is to Slicehost, but not sure if that's entirely accurate. Is there a reason to favor Slicehost over Rackspace, or just based on options/price of either?

Thanks for pointing me to VPSLink, teletubo. I had not found them before. (By the way, is Reign of Rebels still down for maintenance - it looks keen, but there's no link in your post, and I know exactly how you feel about peaking at 3 concurrent users online at once...)

The most important component for my server is RAM (and uptime and low latency). Sadly, I've been able to run my server comfortably with -Xmx128m for some time now.

If you're interested in low latency, these are some Ping time samples from some different countries I've gathered the past few days:

http://pastebin.java-gaming.org/40465052e

The VPS is located in Seatle.

(PS, just updated my game Smiley )

Offline mast3rpyr0

Senior Newbie


Medals: 1



« Reply #13 - Posted 2012-02-29 18:41:10 »

I wouldn't suggest anyone else but Linode for a VPS. I have been with them for about 2 years on and off now as my wallet allows and I love everything about their services.
Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #14 - Posted 2012-02-29 18:52:41 »

I wouldn't suggest anyone else but Linode for a VPS. I have been with them for about 2 years on and off now as my wallet allows and I love everything about their services.

I appreciate all the responses. It sounds like Linode is the general preference. They've been at/near the top of my list for some time. Seeing how DreamHost just randomly rebooted my VPS again last night (where I run the Island Forge beta game server), I'm eager to try something new.

Since DreamHost isn't here to defend themselves, I will note that they have a 100% uptime policy, which they stand behind. They calculated that my server was down for 3 hours, so credited my account for $0.50 (yes, 50 cents).

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Offline Riven
« League of Dukes »

JGO Overlord


Medals: 799
Projects: 4
Exp: 16 years


Hand over your head.


« Reply #15 - Posted 2012-02-29 19:11:06 »

Since DreamHost isn't here to defend themselves, I will note that they have a 100% uptime policy, which they stand behind. They calculated that my server was down for 3 hours, so credited my account for $0.50 (yes, 50 cents).
I don't really care for my money back when shit happens. I prefer to pay more, for the shit not to happen Smiley

Hi, appreciate more people! Σ ♥ = ¾
Learn how to award medals... and work your way up the social rankings
Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #16 - Posted 2012-02-29 19:18:31 »

Since DreamHost isn't here to defend themselves, I will note that they have a 100% uptime policy, which they stand behind. They calculated that my server was down for 3 hours, so credited my account for $0.50 (yes, 50 cents).
I don't really care for my money back when shit happens. I prefer to pay more, for the shit not to happen Smiley

Well put! My motivation exactly.

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Offline SwampChicken
« Reply #17 - Posted 2012-03-02 08:59:53 »

Was with hostrocket for years until they got hacked into oblivion. Then jumped ship to DreamHost for a year or two but never got round to uploading anything. My account lapsed... The next place has to be somewhere that will let me run java stuff so I can crash test some of my gaming projects.
Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #18 - Posted 2012-03-02 11:22:49 »

DreamHost shared Web hosting is certainly not the place to run anything Java (they don't even offer/allow Tomcat for servlets, if you're into that sort of thing). You need their VPS (or Dedicated) service to run your own server code, etc.

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Offline Grunnt

JGO Wizard


Medals: 68
Projects: 8
Exp: 5 years


Complex != complicated


« Reply #19 - Posted 2012-07-19 12:47:50 »

Ah, excellent, just the kind of advice I was looking for. And I didn't even have to ask  Grin

Offline jonjava
« Reply #20 - Posted 2012-07-19 12:58:00 »

If you're just starting out to play around with servers and don't have the budget to pay 20€/month then I'd suggest you try http://123systems.net/ it's just 3$/month and you get your own VPS (virtual computer).

Offline impaler

Senior Newbie





« Reply #21 - Posted 2012-07-19 13:09:58 »

I have used quite a few before I stumbled upon linode and never looked back. I used rimuhosting and slicehost before.

I need the shell access as a root and I can say I never had my server rebooted in the las 2.5 years with linode. I rebooted it myself whenever I needed to but they never did. Support is just amazing and the total control you have...oh love it.

As for uptime and money back, I couldn't care less. I need uptime and access to it as ideally the server generates more money than 50 cents an hour.

I was also made aware of a new hosting company for Java apps. http://jelastic.com/.
They claim to run any Java app.
I have only signed up with them but never had the time to properly play with it. Someone mentioned needing Java support for testing, this might be the place to go for free. I think the free account doesn't allow top level domains, but for testing one can get away with a subdomain.
Offline loom_weaver

JGO Coder


Medals: 17



« Reply #22 - Posted 2012-07-19 14:32:33 »

I've been using http://kattare.com for years.  Very impressed with their uptime, support, and Java knowledge.

It seems that VPS is now the rage though (kattare is managed hosting).

Apart from the obvious (e.g. it won't stop you from doing an rm -rf / as root) are there any other drawbacks to VPS?
Offline jonjava
« Reply #23 - Posted 2012-07-19 20:36:54 »

VPS just gives basically a computer on the internet where you can run your java application in (or any other application). If you only want to host a website then VPS probably isn't the best way since you'd have to do a lot of configuration etc from scratch and install apache manually or some such and basically spend all of your time hosting your website instead of creating your website. But you could still beautifully use the VPS to host a website + your programs if you so desire.

Offline Nyhm

Senior Member


Medals: 3
Projects: 1


Island Forge


« Reply #24 - Posted 2012-07-19 21:59:23 »

I'm currently still using DreamHost VPS. They're very Web-site oriented, so it actually took some steps to make the server unmanaged and turn off apache, which is installed and running by default. Once I had that worked out, it's a basic VPS and reasonably priced. They have a slider control in their panel for configuring the RAM on the fly, with extra cost per MB (computed per minute I think). You could also adjust RAM programatically via their API, if you wanted to get real fancy. So far, I'm operating on the lowest rung (300MB).

Just having a VPS is great. It's very liberating to be able to run server software on a machine other than the one under my desk.

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Offline CyanPrime
« Reply #25 - Posted 2012-07-22 09:04:33 »

if you live in the UK I'd recommend JVMhost.com. They're really friendly, and inexpensive too! But if you're in the US like I am their servers might be a little laggy (Note: or it could just be my bad programming). Anyway they're like < $10 so give them a shot if you ever need a VPS :>
Offline TimB

Junior Member


Medals: 1
Projects: 1



« Reply #26 - Posted 2012-07-22 13:54:53 »

I can agree with the generally positive comments about Linode. Had a server with them for well over a year now and it's only been rebooted once - and that was to take advantage of some extra disk space they were giving me as a free upgrade Cheesy
Offline keldon85

Senior Member


Medals: 1



« Reply #27 - Posted 2012-07-31 07:38:03 »

If you're just starting out to play around with servers and don't have the budget to pay 20€/month then I'd suggest you try http://123systems.net/ it's just 3$/month and you get your own VPS (virtual computer).

Wow! Bookmarked.

Offline Phased
« Reply #28 - Posted 2012-07-31 07:43:01 »

is 123systems good for testing? and hold a website with hardly any traffic?
Offline jezek2
« Reply #29 - Posted 2012-07-31 08:07:34 »

For european folks I can recommend Xencon, it's based on Xen (so you get dedicated memory and disk resources) and thus more appropriate for serious usage than cheap virtualization solutions that overaggregates these resources. They have good support and the prices are nice too. Been using them for more than 2 years and have 829 days uptime on the VPS Smiley
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