Site News: Changing Providers

Sorry about the lack of an update last night, but my site (as a couple of you apparently noticed) was down for several hours. You couldn’t get to it, I couldn’t get to it. This was the last straw… I like my provider, I really do, but the specific hosting plan I have with them is pretty bad for any site that wants to actually be up all the time, and the ones that are better-suited are also four to ten times more expensive.

So I finally ordered myself a refurbished Mac mini this morning at 8 AM, and will be sending it off to one of the surprisingly many Mac mini colocation companies once it gets here. Yes, I’ll be back to running my own server, but minis are quite reliable and at any rate it could go down for two hours a week and I’d still be doing better than I am now by a long shot. If I ever need even better uptime, I’ll get a second mini, put it in a different colo, configure some failover, and then I get to blame myself entirely if anything goes wrong.

Seriously, the mini is a really sweet little server, especially the 2012 four-core i7 version. (The latest ones only come in two-core versions, probably because they would have had to have an entirely redesigned motherboard for a four-core version of the latest i7, which is really annoying of Intel to do. I suspect the next version to come out will be two and four, or even four and eight.)  Stick 16 gigs of RAM in there, a 1 TB SSD and a 2 TB hard disk for backups and maybe a few high-speed USB3 flash drives RAIDed together as a secondary working drive, and put Mac OS X Server and Virtual Box on there (or even VMware ESXi!), and you have the equivalent of $100 to $200 a month in AWS servers, even if you include only modest use of the unlimited bandwidth that some of the hosting companies offer, for $30 to $50 a month. Plus it’s yours, so if it goes down, it’s your fault. And the hosting companies have licensed Apple techs on site so they can fix it for you, too… under warrantee, even.

Pretty neat. I’ll let you all know when I am set up on there, and we’ll see how it works together.

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