I'm interested to hear from those with VPS accounts who where not experienced with server administration before getting one.
How steep did you find the learning curve? What was the most difficult part of the process to get up and running? Any advice you would give someone new to administering a VPS?
From other threads here and elsewhere, I understand the hardening recommendations and I see where providers such as Servint and PowerVPS will help with support where they can. But I'd like to hear more from those 'newbies' that have been through the process.
I'm not looking to become a hosting business, but rather host several of my own web projects. I'm tech competent but "server admin" is not another hat I wish to wear on a regular basis.
If I go VPS it'll be with Servint, or possibly PowerVPS. I've read the many reviews and they seem to be the ones that fit my needs the best. Plus, Servint has been great with all my pre-sales questions (haven't contacted PowerVPS yet).
If you are experienced with Cpanel/WHM you will not find any considerable difficulties, some minor SSH intervention can be (if necessary) done by your hosting provider especially if you decide to go with some generous serviable professional support like powervps!
I learnt from scratch using a VPS (only prior experience was a reseller account) and the thing I found quite useful which isn't often mentioned is the capability of getting your VPS rebuilt if you really get things in a mess. Most VPS companies can do this but some are happier to do it than others and some even have it built into your control panel so you can initiate it without having to raise a support call!
Especially if you are not housing any customer sites on your VPS it's a good way to learn. For example, the first time I installed Mailscanner and ClamAV I really messed up and the utilisation went through the roof! After a rebuild I managed to install it properly after having learnt some hard lessons.