I had been using a VPS for a while now, but felt that it was likely to be too limiting. I'm building a site that will be hosting a couple of online multiplayer Flash games I'm building with a few buddies. Although traffic will most likely be low most of the time I am expecting it to spike on occasion so felt going dedicated was in fact a better option.
I had a look around and was originally going to order a Celeron based system from Sagonetworks. However, I then stumbled across LayeredTech's special offers and instead went with an Athlon XP 2400+ system, after seeing such good responses on here about them (and the network they were connected to).
I ordered the box on Saturday evening I believe, and corresponded with Todd on Sunday, sending scans of my CC and Drivers Licence. He wrote back to say all was well and would be setup once they had more processors in (Monday).
I got an email with an update on Monday, and spoke with one of their techs about the config of the Debian install (went with barebones 2.2.20 kernel). Had an email by Wednesday morning (I'm in the UK) saying that it had been setup, giving me a user login and the root password in a text file on the server.
I started downloading some software (Apache, Postfix, MySQL etc.) but noticed that from servers that ought to have masses of bandwidth were strangely slow (about 120KB/s). I contacted support and they got back extremely quick asking if they could login to try a few things.
They confirmed it was definitely odd, I mentioned the half/full-duplex issue I'd seen posted and they double checked it all. Everything checked out, so they even installed a different NIC and changed to a 100mbps port. Same problem. Jeremy mentioned trying an updated driver.
I tried building the driver source I downloaded from Intel but upon boot it didn't seem to work as expected, failing to detect a cable connection. I decided that I ought to upgrade the kernel to the more recent 2.4.26 release. After wading through the menuconfig to strip out as much rubbish (who on earth needs Amateur Radio support? ) and adding in Intel's own Pro/100 driver I built the kernel and installed it.
After booting it back up I checked the /var/log/kern.log file and success, Intel driver loaded. I then tried a few more wgets on Kernel.org and Apache.org mirrors, both came out at around 1.5MB/s. Much better.
So, in short, I've been extremely happy with the level of support. I'm a reasonably confident tinkerer, but I'm glad to see LayeredTech helpful from the start.
Great review, let us know how your doing again after a month or two
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I hate to dig up an old topic, but while working on my server the past couple days I though I should share my experience.
I decided to go with Layeredtech for my group's development server after reading some positive reviews here. What really impressed me about them was excellent pre-sales support. Todd was very helpful in his replies, and quick too. I sent one email after midnight, and got a response at within about an hour!
They were also very accomodating about installing Fedora Core 2 (we wanted the 2.6 kernel for development) for us.
So far the network (theplanet) has been great and the hardware has been reliable (I also got the Athlon 2400 Package ).
I can vouch for their support, too. I managed to crash my server 3 times due to some unforseen incompatibilities with webmin/virtualmin. Even over this past holiday weekend Jeremy quickly responded to my 3 reboot requests very promptly. He hasn't laughed at me yet either :-)
I was a little concerned at first going with a smaller company, but the support and service so far has been impressive.