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  1. #1

    Home Hobby Data Center

    hi all this is my first time posting here.


    So im a bit of a noob when it comes to web servers and data centers but have always been fascinated by them so i decided to build one to learn more about how everything works and how to run everything and for the fun of it.

    i have 3 tower servers installed with centos 6.4
    i want to use 1 for dns 1 for email and the other for the main part of the hosting. as this is a hobby the software needs to be free or extremely cheap.

    the main server i have installed zpanel but for the dns and email server i have no idea what software i should be using and how to connect it all together so it all works.


    i guess my first question is what free software do i need for the dns and email servers?

    second question. how to make it all work as one? <--- i could be asking the wrong question here.

    thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    If you are working to spread these systems over multiple servers, you may consider looking into some more High Availability virtualization options, this would be more up to par with todays technology.

    Webmin (free) or cPanel (~$30/month) can control apache, dns, and email.
    █ Brian Kearney, Stealthy Hosting Inc. Seattle, WA [AS54931] Skype: StealthyHosting
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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by StealthyHosting View Post
    If you are working to spread these systems over multiple servers, you may consider looking into some more High Availability virtualization options, this would be more up to par with todays technology.

    Webmin (free) or cPanel (~$30/month) can control apache, dns, and email.
    thanks for your reply
    do you mean make each of my 3 servers a virtual environment? i have messed around with vbox and openvz.

    i do want to spread the work load over multiple servers.

    Im looking into webmin now. would i run webmin on each server to use its DNS and email functions on the servers i want for those jobs?

  4. #4
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    You could really split it up however you like, but given today's climate and mindset, I'd experiment with building a high-availability platform. There are some free systems out there that can do this. Off the top of my head I think XenApp, HyperVM, and Proxmox all support HA behavior. Been a while since I looked, so don't quote me on that.

    By going virtual, you can still easily segregate your dns, email, and hosting. But the advantage is that you'll have more efficient use of your space, and you'll gain experience with VM management. See what happens when you overcommit OpenVZ, see how your given failover solution responds to a sudden loss of power (be prepared to rebuild the node, though), etc.

    EDIT: Regarding Webmin, it really is an entirely different ballgame from cPanel. Webmin is more of a system management panel, where cPanel is a hosting panel. Since you're learning your way around, Webmin is an excellent suggestion. It sometimes makes you do things the hard way, and that's good. It gives you more exposure to the guts of the system. Don't forget to put in some quality command line time, too.
    Fresh Roasted Hosting :: High-performance Harrisburg web hosting since 2012!
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  5. #5
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    XenServer recently went opensource. So all of the High availability features are usable for free, as well as xen motion etc. It's also fairly easy to configure through XenCenter.

    http://xenserver.org

    Setup 2x servers (must have identical processors for hot migrations). Create an NFS server (for a home lab a small computer running free nas would work).

    All of your storage will be on the free nas server, and you can experiment with failovers. I.e pull the plug on one of the xen servers and watch the virtual machine spin up on the other system.
    -Ryan K
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  6. #6
    thanks for the replays guys some good info there.

    i dont no what high availability means yet but im looking it up.

    also just today i brought a dell poweredge blade enclosure with 3x Dell PowerEdge Quad 2.6GHz, 4GB RAM 1955 Blades VT-x capable for $600 NZD ex lease. so probably will not be using the towers for the project now. i can also purchase more blades for $125 each up to 10 will fit in the enclosure so im thinking this is a good system to start off with.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bassdude View Post
    thanks for the replays guys some good info there.

    i dont no what high availability means yet but im looking it up.

    also just today i brought a dell poweredge blade enclosure with 3x Dell PowerEdge Quad 2.6GHz, 4GB RAM 1955 Blades VT-x capable for $600 NZD ex lease. so probably will not be using the towers for the project now. i can also purchase more blades for $125 each up to 10 will fit in the enclosure so im thinking this is a good system to start off with.
    Was going to make a post about most blades using 208 power, but I believe New Zealand uses that standard, so you should be good
    █ Brian Kearney, Stealthy Hosting Inc. Seattle, WA [AS54931] Skype: StealthyHosting
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  8. #8
    so witch one is better xenserver or hypervm for controlling multiple servers and splitting the work load on the linux servers?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bassdude View Post
    so witch one is better xenserver or hypervm for controlling multiple servers and splitting the work load on the linux servers?
    Six of one, half a dozen of the other. Try one, then start over with the other! Seriously, that's some good experience. In the end I'd probably lean towards XenServer, since that's actually an open source version of a widely-used commercial product, and you're gaining some real world experience by playing around with it. Also HyperVM is kinda ugly.
    Fresh Roasted Hosting :: High-performance Harrisburg web hosting since 2012!
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  10. #10
    ok so ive been looking at xenserver and im a little confused is it an operating system or does it install onto linux?

    there one place that says this will be the only operating system on the machine and then another place saying other things.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bassdude View Post
    ok so ive been looking at xenserver and im a little confused is it an operating system or does it install onto linux?

    there one place that says this will be the only operating system on the machine and then another place saying other things.
    Citrix Xenserver is a bare metal OS, do note there is a difference between "Xitrix Xenserver" and "Xen"
    █ Brian Kearney, Stealthy Hosting Inc. Seattle, WA [AS54931] Skype: StealthyHosting
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  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by StealthyHosting View Post
    Citrix Xenserver is a bare metal OS, do note there is a difference between "Xitrix Xenserver" and "Xen"
    oh so citrix xenserver is not the same as xenserver?

    this is the site i got it from http://xenserver.org/

  13. #13
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    Citrix XenServer was a paid very expensive competitor to VMWare. They both look about the same, and have similar features (minus the vCloud director).

    However VMWare still had bigger market share, so citirx cut their losses and made XenServer open source, and now charge for paid support.

    So Xenserver.org has the same citrix XenServer only its open source now, and is getting updates. It is its own OS and is very easy to use.

    Simply boot your server off the install disc, follow the prompts. Once complete point your web browser at the IP of that newly install XenServer and click the download xencenter button.

    Then put in the IP user/pass and bingo your connect to your XenServer through XenCenter. It sounds a bit confusing but it's fairly easy once setup.

    You can then group your two XenServer into a pool, and configure high availability and the like.
    -Ryan K
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  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by ryguy222 View Post
    Citrix XenServer was a paid very expensive competitor to VMWare. They both look about the same, and have similar features (minus the vCloud director).

    However VMWare still had bigger market share, so citirx cut their losses and made XenServer open source, and now charge for paid support.

    So Xenserver.org has the same citrix XenServer only its open source now, and is getting updates. It is its own OS and is very easy to use.

    Simply boot your server off the install disc, follow the prompts. Once complete point your web browser at the IP of that newly install XenServer and click the download xencenter button.

    Then put in the IP user/pass and bingo your connect to your XenServer through XenCenter. It sounds a bit confusing but it's fairly easy once setup.

    You can then group your two XenServer into a pool, and configure high availability and the like.
    do i have to install anything to do with xenserver on the other servers aswell?

  15. #15
    ok so i have been reading up and watching video's on xencenter and this is my understanding sofar

    install xenserver on all servers except the control computer?
    install xencenter on the control computer?
    then use vm's to run everything i want on the cluster pool?

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by bassdude View Post
    so witch one is better xenserver or hypervm for controlling multiple servers and splitting the work load on the linux servers?
    I'd give a look at Proxmox as well. It's a pretty simple install and you can use OpenVZ and KVM virtualization. It does clustering and live migrating.

  17. #17
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    Its better to have a end goal in mind of what you are trying to achieve. There are more than infinite options available and each have their advantage. There is no single right solution.

    To add to the confusion I would also recommend Oracle VM Its free till you need support. Another one for trial is Parallels Cloud server, and yet another framework is OpenStack, CloudStack and Ecualyptus.

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