Very good tutorial, unfortunately this tutorial doesn't address the hardest part (technical part is easy)of hosting business... how to survive! now ok everything is properly setup and fully automated, you got your nice and shinny box sitting in an air-conditioned and manned data center... but now what?
Surviving your first few months w/out enough customers.... for me this is the hell part of this business, if you're not prepared for it psychologically you will just think of throwing the towel off and quit! This business requires patience and most importantly sound BUSINESS PLAN up to the next 3-5 years of your operation.
Marketing is the key in this business, however... think about this, there are a lot more better and established hosting companies out there who are as cheap and probably have more featured rich web host offerings that you do.
Now guys... think how do you out-shine them and get your target sign-ups for the month? Trick is....think about niche-market... start offering your service to someone you know...in your local community... friend of your friends, in short focus on word of mouth advertising before thinking of spending large amount of money in advertising.
Hope this input helps, all the best to all of us who are in this business!
Sorry your wrong. You dont need a "solid background in Computer Science " What you do need is good business accumen and the ability to employ the right people at the right time for the right task. Webhosting is the same as any other business and business principles apply.
Agreed, although I am currently majoring in computer science.