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  1. #1

    Does Your VPS Need A Dedicated IP Address? No!

    I believed dedicated server / VPS (Virtual Private Server) always requires dedicated IP adress. Until today.

    I found (thanks, LowEndBox) interesting option where you can build your VPS totally custom parameters including shared IP address.How can it work? With shared IP? Youre joking! – you may ask. It works.

    TOCICI offers “Nginx Accelerated Shared IP” wchich mean:

    • Your VPS will be hidden behind NAT like typical workstation
    • External Ngnix HTTP server will redirect HTTP traffic to your box based on URL domain
    • You can define custom ports to be forwarded to your box (SSH incoming traffic)

    Pros:

    • Very cheap option (no cost of dedicated IP required, you can start VPS below 1 USD!
    • Security (by default no ports visible to external world)

    Cons:

    • Standard ports except 80 (HTTP) unavailable: no DNS services
    • No HTTPS available (requires separate IP)
    • SSH login requires custom port (your local network may block high ports to prevent P2P)
    • Sending e-mails may require "smarthost" with public IP

    The service fills gap between shared hosting and classic VPS. I hope to prepare a review soon.

    The only problem from my point of view is the distance between Europe and Portland, Oregon in the USA. 220 ms from Warsaw. Are there any similar (highly customisable) services in Europe?
    Last edited by cieslakd; 01-31-2010 at 08:53 AM.
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  2. #2
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    so if you use that option above. It's like shared hosting.
    What's the point of having a vps with that kind of setup?

  3. #3
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    *

    Not suprising or interesting.

    Even though not everyone would requires a public IP address, having 1 IP shared among with a few people would not be a good idea. One guy spams can get the IP blacklisted. Having services running on a non-standard ports sounds strange in a production environment. You also might have to do/fix something to have your app running behind NAT.

    If you use their web to build yourself a VPS with their "shared IP", example, 10G drive, 10G bandwidth, 128MB RAM, the cost come down to about $6 USD. You probably can find a VPS with a static IP at that price in the offers forum (no idea how the services is though).
    Last edited by YUPAPA; 01-31-2010 at 10:03 AM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by flyah View Post
    so if you use that option above. It's like shared hosting.
    What's the point of having a vps with that kind of setup?
    Data separation. Customisation of any part of the system (excluding kernel that is shared in OpenVZ). This cannot be achieved on shared hosting.
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  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by YUPAPA View Post
    Even though not everyone would requires a public IP address, having 1 IP shared among with a few people would not be a good idea. One guy spams can get the IP blacklisted.
    Indeed. It's a shared IP risk.

    Having services running on a non-standard ports sounds strange in a production environment. You also might have to do/fix something to have your app running behind NAT.
    Most software will work as usual (maybe except REMOTE_HOST variable that may be "unusual").
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by cieslakd View Post
    Data separation. Customisation of any part of the system (excluding kernel that is shared in OpenVZ). This cannot be achieved on shared hosting.
    Okay. still, you get a "shared" IP. so what's the point of having such vps? you cant even set ports on it ryt?

  7. #7
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    Maybe my VPS does not need a dedicated IP, but I prefer to have a dedicated IP for my VPS.

    I am no security expert, but I think VPS with dedicated IP should be more secure.

  8. #8
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    I built this...

    500GByte/month 512MB Burst RAM 40GB disk space CentOS 5 64bit Shared IP No monitoring/management no server redundancy

    And it gave me a price of $55. I get the same thing with a dedicated IP through Ramhost for $12.

    Pass.

  9. #9
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    Nothing new, has been around for a long time and used to be pulled off by budget windows VPS providers whose users only need RDP.

    As already mentioned above, blacklisted, lack of a HTTP/DNS port, unable to offer services on standard ports, etc. are all major setbacks that makes it not very attractive except to a very niche audience.

    The rest of us will be willing to pay that extra buck for that IP for much less trouble.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesGT View Post
    I built this...

    500GByte/month 512MB Burst RAM 40GB disk space CentOS 5 64bit Shared IP No monitoring/management no server redundancy

    And it gave me a price of $55.
    Wow that is high - that price is in fully managed vps territory - for non-managed on a shared IP it's insane IMO.

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesGT View Post
    I get the same thing with a dedicated IP through Ramhost for $12.


    =====

    It is an interesting idea - might be a good way to offer shell accounts with root access

    With IPv4 addresses due to run out in a couple years I suspect we'll be seeing more providers offering shared IP services like that.
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  11. #11
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    well, this is nothing new, typical NAT setup which existed for years.
    whether its viable solution for servers, purely depends on what you are trying to accomplish.

  12. #12
    This isn't a new concept, I believe Virtuozzo has supported Name Based Hosting for a very long time now.

  13. #13
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    While yes, you could class this as interesting... I would rather pay the extra $1 for a private IP and be able to use the VPS normally
    A shared IP would be a quick way to get yourself into all kinds of problems - though if you were trying to run a cheap personal website, then it would likely work for that.
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  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by flyah View Post
    Okay. still, you get a "shared" IP. so what's the point of having such vps? you cant even set ports on it ryt?
    You can only set high (>1024) ports (they will be redirected to your box). No well known services on low ports (22, 25 etc.) of course.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by cieslakd View Post
    The service fills gap between shared hosting and classic VPS. I hope to prepare a review soon
    Even if you ignore all the limitations and issues with doing this how exactly does this bridge the gap between shared and a VPS (classic or not)? There already are products out there that are heavy duty shared accounts (fewer accounts per server more resources then your typical shared) that bridge that gap very nicely at much much better prices.

    I don't see the use for this product if it was cheap and at those prices forget about it. Right I can see the selling point:

    Do less and Pay More.

  16. #16
    Another option for cheapasses who want root, ability to change w/e they want on filesystem, but don't want to pay $1/mo for IP (?)

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nnyan View Post
    Even if you ignore all the limitations and issues with doing this how exactly does this bridge the gap between shared and a VPS (classic or not)? There already are products out there that are heavy duty shared accounts (fewer accounts per server more resources then your typical shared) that bridge that gap very nicely at much much better prices.

    I don't see the use for this product if it was cheap and at those prices forget about it. Right I can see the selling point:

    Do less and Pay More.
    If your not using it for hosting it would be a fine alternative. You get root access, that is a big difference from shared hosting.

    If your just using the VPS for developing software it would be a fine idea. I don't understand the reasoning for using NGINX to forward the ports as you could do it with IPTables but whatever works for them.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by fireshark View Post
    Another option for cheapasses who want root, ability to change w/e they want on filesystem, but don't want to pay $1/mo for IP (?)
    You've got me wrong, TOICCI it's the option to scale a webhosting/VPS service flexible in both directions: up and down. Most VPS providers aren't flexible and give you fixed set of plans to select from. Here is the difference.
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  19. #19
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    Also, there is no additional security by having a dedicated IP address. If anything, using a shared IP through IPTables would be more secure as you as the VPS customer wouldn't have to worry about other open ports. I'm not exactly sure how their system works but an ideal system with a shared ip would be better for security.

  20. #20
    It says that they use nginx to reverse proxy the http connections but where does it say they use it to forward user requested ports?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by devonblzx View Post
    I don't understand the reasoning for using NGINX to forward the ports as you could do it with IPTables but whatever works for them.
    Name based virtual hosting - iptables can't check the Host: HTTP header
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by devonblzx View Post
    Also, there is no additional security by having a dedicated IP address. If anything, using a shared IP through IPTables would be more secure as you as the VPS customer wouldn't have to worry about other open ports. I'm not exactly sure how their system works but an ideal system with a shared ip would be better for security.
    Someone noticed that shared IP may be blacklisted due to neighbour irresponsibility (spam) - that's the hidden risk in this option.
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  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by fireshark View Post
    It says that they use nginx to reverse proxy the http connections but where does it say they use it to forward user requested ports?
    Here (non-HTTP ports are not NGNIX work, rather router/firewall configuration):
    If you'd like to enable something to connect directly from the internet to the NATed VPS, and its not something we can pass through the HTTP Nginx accelerator, then each VPS includes the option to port-forward up to 100 distinct non-standard service ports from the shared IP to your VPSes.
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  24. #24
    ...yes, that was in reply to the person who was wondering why they were using nginx to port forward

  25. #25
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    Hmm...
    Zero IPs/16 MB RAM/500 MB disk/1 Mbit Burstable = $31.50/month

    Haha.

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