New and Improved: Now Self-Hosted!

As I mentioned in my first post, I wasn’t happy with the shared hosting from GoDaddy.  It was slow, and I couldn’t stand the administrative interface.  I looked at all the popular alternatives, like HostGator, BlueHost and Dreamhost, but I worried that I would run into the same issues.  I was sixty seconds away from signing up with HostGator, when I came across Rackspace Cloud Servers in my searches.

With Rackspace, you get a VPS with your choice of OS that you can manage yourself.  You pay by the hour, and can scale up or down based on need.  I had always assumed something like that was too expensive, but it’s actually very affordable.  The entry-level box has 256M of RAM and 10G of drive space for 1.5 cents per hour.  That works out to just under $11 a month.

Their flexible billing is my favorite part of the deal.  There are no flat monthly charges.  You simply pay for what you use.  If you need a test box for two days to test something, you can create a new server in minutes and delete it when you’re done.  You will only be charged $0.72.

We actually have seven sites that need hosting, with more on the way, so it makes sense to get a VPS that we can manage ourselves.  We don’t need to worry that the other sites on a shared server will slow us down, and we can configure everything exactly as we want.  If we run out of room, we can increase the specs on our current machine or spin up an entirely new one

So after a long weekend scraping the rust from my Linux command line skills, Natural Jenius is up and running on a Debian Squeeze box running Apache and PHP5.  We are also using Cloud Files(more on that later) to serve up some of the static content, so the site should be pretty fast now.  Please let me know if you experience any issue with the site now that the switch has happened.