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  1. #1

    Looking for "casual colo"

    I'm looking for cheap, non-critical-but-generally-reliable colo, and hope I can get some good recommendations here.

    I'm looking to colo a single personal machine that does personal web hosting for a handful of friends vanity domains
    as well as email, shell access, some low-volume DB stuff associated with the web hosting, and some hobby coding and
    such. I'm also entertaining the idea of shared hosting ala dreamhost.com or something similar, but we're geeks and
    prefer to be able to experiment with our own machine.

    Max monthly BW usage in the last year has been ~14 Gigs/month, averaging about 8 gig/month. Traffic tends to be bursty
    -- ie someone uploading a big picture album or people viewing a large new album or something, so I'm thinking metered
    burstable service on a fat pipe will be better than a thin, constant rate pipe.

    I'm in the Chicago burbs, so something nearby is better, but I have users in Cleveland and the SF Bay area, and would
    also consider just shipping a box somewhere with decent remote hands if necessary (though the current box had almost a
    2 year uptime before a recent power outage).

    One option I've seen is waveform.net, who offer 1000GB/mo for a mid-tower for $50 -- but their web site is short
    on details and I haven't heard back from them yet with a response to some questions. Something comparable local to
    Chicago would be ideal.

    I've read very good things about Steadfast on this board, but since the machine won't be making money, their pricing
    is a little out of reach for a hobby toy.

    Thanks for any suggestions,

    Greg

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Greg,

    Have you tried contacting other companies with custom quotes? I would recommend so as you can probably get better prices from the sales rep directly.

    Thanks
    - James

  3. #3
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    I noticed you mentioned that the box was a mid-tower (or at least you mentioned that the colo service you looked at was for a mid-tower.) I would recommend putting your server in a 1U case to save monthly on colo fees. Most colo companies will charge more for a mid-tower, and it usually becomes not worth it after a while.

    If you don't want to put your personal server into a 1U case, a low-end dedicated server or VPS may be the right choice.

    Good luck!
    Erica Douglass, Founder, Simpli Hosting, Inc.
    I founded Simpli Hosting, and sold it in 2007 to Silicon Valley Web Hosting after over 6 years in the business.
    Now I'm blogging at erica.biz!

  4. #4
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    Originally posted by Simpli-Erica
    I noticed you mentioned that the box was a mid-tower (or at least you mentioned that the colo service you looked at was for a mid-tower.) I would recommend putting your server in a 1U case to save monthly on colo fees. Most colo companies will charge more for a mid-tower, and it usually becomes not worth it after a while.

    If you don't want to put your personal server into a 1U case, a low-end dedicated server or VPS may be the right choice.

    Good luck!
    I agree completely, especially when this change will only cost roughly $150 and could possibly save you $30 a month or more as well as giving you many more options.
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
    karl @ steadfast.net - Sales/Support: 312-602-2689
    Cloud Hosting, Managed Dedicated Servers, Chicago Colocation, and New Jersey Colocation
    Now Open in New Jersey! - Contact us for New Jersey colocation or dedicated servers

  5. #5
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    Originally posted by KarlZimmer
    I agree completely, especially when this change will only cost roughly $150 and could possibly save you $30 a month or more as well as giving you many more options.
    That is only partially true, you also have to take into account most system boards will not simply fit into a 1u case. There are a lot of things to look into if you put it into a 1u case.
    John W, CISSP, C|EH
    MS Information Security and Assurance
    ITEagleEye.com - Server Administration and Security
    Yawig.com - Managed VPS and Dedicated Servers with VIP Service

  6. #6
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    Originally posted by eth00
    That is only partially true, you also have to take into account most system boards will not simply fit into a 1u case. There are a lot of things to look into if you put it into a 1u case.
    Yeah, I forgot we were in the era of the perpendicular audio ports, that is really the only issue, and just pop those off and you're fine. Not like you need audio on a server anyway... Other than that, there is no reason a standard board shouldn't fit in a 1u chassis. Note: The $150 was to cover the chassis and heatsink/fan for the CPU, so those two changes are already covered.

    It is an extremely simple conversion which I have done many times and have never had an issue with. If you asked me, it is a minimal investment with a much larger potential return. Even if where you go now doesn't have a price difference, etc. wouldn't you want the option to leave there and simply be able to worry about quality and value instead of narrowing that list down to simply those that accept towers.
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
    karl @ steadfast.net - Sales/Support: 312-602-2689
    Cloud Hosting, Managed Dedicated Servers, Chicago Colocation, and New Jersey Colocation
    Now Open in New Jersey! - Contact us for New Jersey colocation or dedicated servers

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    Originally posted by KarlZimmer
    Yeah, I forgot we were in the era of the perpendicular audio ports, that is really the only issue......

    PCI slots are also getting to be tricky for desktop boards.
    PCI Express x16 and PCI Express x1 be in the place where you need your PCI raiser to go.

    As well as AGP video slots coses problems in 1U's because most times the heat sinks on AGP video cards are too fat to fit well in a 1U.

    There are a only a hand full of boards that have onboard video and a PCI slot that is right place.
    Ray Womack @ atOmicVPS LTD
    Linux & Windows Cloud Hosting Solutions Powered by OnApp
    Fully Managed [Shared][Reseller][Cloud VPS] [Dedicated]
    Featuring the atOmicSTACK ● Speed ● Performance ● Reliability

  8. #8
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    Jan 2003
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    Originally posted by PSFServers
    PCI slots are also getting to be tricky for desktop boards.
    PCI Express x16 and PCI Express x1 be in the place where you need your PCI raiser to go.

    As well as AGP video slots coses problems in 1U's because most times the heat sinks on AGP video cards are too fat to fit well in a 1U.

    There are a only a hand full of boards that have onboard video and a PCI slot that is right place.
    What do you need a PCI card for, everything has the NIC onboard, etc.? All you need is onboard video, and even if you don't have that, get a PCI or PCI Express riser and put in the video card, not that hard.

    Now the requirement is simply a motherboard that has onboard video, a PCI slot, or PCI Express slot, now that isn't too hard to find...
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
    karl @ steadfast.net - Sales/Support: 312-602-2689
    Cloud Hosting, Managed Dedicated Servers, Chicago Colocation, and New Jersey Colocation
    Now Open in New Jersey! - Contact us for New Jersey colocation or dedicated servers

  9. #9
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    Originally posted by KarlZimmer


    Now the requirement is simply a motherboard that has onboard video, a PCI slot, or PCI Express slot, now that isn't too hard to find...
    Trust me, we have had lots of difficulty.

    First of all, you only have one place to "rise" from on a riser card. It used to be that all boards had about 6 PCI slots. Then they started making the 1st slot AGP, PCI Express, or some other wierdness.

    AGP is not bad in this slot because you can put a video card. Again, the problem is you have to use an AGP video card which is unsuited for a server becaue you don't need 16 mb or 32, or 64 MB video cards. On top of that, they all have really large heat sinks that don't make them lay down correctly.

    PCI express video cards are really, realy UNSUITED for a server, and besides they run $50/each and sometimes cost as much as the motherboard.

    Anyway, modern desktop boards are hit and miss to get a useable raiser position. Nearly none of them have 6 'ole fashioned PCI slots so you can put a secondary NIC if you so choose.

    Smaller form factor boards are not bad, and are really the only alternative.

    The other alternative is to buy a raiser that fits a AGP slot but has a ribbon that plugs into the neighboring PCI if you needed a RAID card or a secondary NIC. They however, are about $40+
    Ray Womack @ atOmicVPS LTD
    Linux & Windows Cloud Hosting Solutions Powered by OnApp
    Fully Managed [Shared][Reseller][Cloud VPS] [Dedicated]
    Featuring the atOmicSTACK ● Speed ● Performance ● Reliability

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