Slicehost– or why slicehost sucks.

I recently got a slice at slicehost (A so called virtual server) and moved my various services over there. Mail, web, this blog and so on. I have now tried to request a additional IP, as I need a couple of services running on port 443.

Apparantly their silly automatic processes includes rebooting *my* virtual server and nuking my changes to files inside *my* virtual server.

Any places having a virtual private server which are run by *clueful* people without stupid automated processes? I guess it is time to move before my next payment.

Angry.

Posted in english, kde
31 comments on “Slicehost– or why slicehost sucks.
  1. Tektonic. Been there for a year already. It seems to be a bit cheaper, too.

  2. Well… Ther’s always the very brilliant Kollide.net, which provides hosting to kde-related projects and people :)

  3. Alexander Dymo says:

    I’m pretty happy with my vps on rimuhosting.com right now. Good price and good service so far.

  4. xdmx says:

    i’m with a vps by http://www.a2b2.com and i’m happy with it :)

  5. bma says:

    I’ve been pretty happy with Bytemark.

  6. xdmx says:

    (oh, i forgot… i choose them because of xen and gentoo ;) )

  7. Well you could try Bytemark.co.uk. I’ve had my VPS with them for about 5 years and they have been very, very good. They also sponsor LUGRadio which can’t be a bad thing.

  8. Kevin says:

    I’ve used a UML instance at Bytemark (http://www.bytemark.co.uk) for 2+ years – they have a DD on the staff and seem very clueful :)

  9. Richard Moore says:

    I use bytemark, they’ve been clueful.

  10. matt says:

    rimuhosting.com is what i recommend to all my customers.. no complaints whatsoever. (my own stuff is on bytemark.co.uk, which is also good but a bit more expensive, not enough to convince me to undertake the hassle of moving my stuff :)

    i think both offer discounts to FOSS authors, too..

  11. gregor herrmann says:

    I’m very satisfied with http://www.korypet.de/

  12. Josh says:

    I suggest Linode. Rates are reasonable.

  13. Thijs says:

    My question is why you would need an extra IP to run things on port 443; aren’t Apache Vhosts and using a wildcard SSL certificate enough?

  14. pratfall says:

    Linode.com is the Rolls Royce of VPS services. I’ve had *maybe* fours hours of downtime outside what I’ve incurred myself in the four years I’ve had it, and all four of those were because of DDoS’es from outside attackers.

    On the other hand, check out this patch to Lighty:
    http://trac.lighttpd.net/trac/ticket/386

    It should allow you to run multiple valid secure sites over TLS with server name indication on the same IP address. TLS+SNI is supported on every reasonable SSL-capable browser, plus IE>=7.

  15. sune says:

    At least both linode and tektonic seemed surprised when I asked them wether they were accessing my files during any upgrades – and answered no.

    RimuHosting has their own RimuHosting Enterprise Linux (rhel) which made me laugh too much to really take them seriously.

    Kollide.net doesn’t look like vps hosting.

    And I am looking a bit on the rest of the suggested as well.

    Thijs: I need ssl on two different domains. Currently I am running one of them on port 444, but it is kind of ugly.

    Pratfall: SNI might be a idea one day out in the future. But the future hasn’t yet come.

  16. Linode is great: http://www.linode.com

    Hop into #linode on oftc and chat with the admins. They’re cool guys, very knowledgable, and always ready to help.

  17. sune says:

    After having talked a bit with some Xen people and some people doing hosting, my best guess on what slicehost does:
    Power down. mount vps drive. replaces /etc/network/interfaces and maybe other things with something new. umounts. does xen changes to the environment and routers. power up.

    What I think they should do:
    do xen changes to environment and routers. Send information to client. Let client adapt config files and raise interface.

  18. Jeremy says:

    Not trying to be snarky, and maybe I’m missing something here, but if your setup can’t survive a reboot, is that a problem with Slicehost. I’ve dealt with the automation before, including slice resizing and restarting, and never had it delete files. With all due respect, my first suspicion is maybe you forgot to save something?

    In my experience, Slicehost has been worlds above the others, but you are very much on your own for sysadmin stuff – it’s been a great, if at times frustrating, learning experience for me, as all learning experiences are.

  19. sune says:

    Jeremy: My setup would survive any reboot. But I don’t want anyone to touch my configuration files.

    And especially not any automated script that is made to nuke any changes I made to configuration files.

  20. Ian Monroe says:

    I use Linode, but can’t really recommend it as I’ve had it for just a few months and never had to really deal with their support team (which is the real test of any service).

    So it was good to see loads of people praising Linode in this thread, gives me some piece of mind. ;)

  21. bd_ says:

    I see other people have mentioned them too, but I’d recommend linode as well. They do have optional “configuration helpers” to make things work nicer on a shared platform, but they can be entirely disabled if you choose (currently there’s one to disable updatedb, and on the xen beta, one to update fstab and inittab to the new xen paths). New IPs, etc, leave all (re)configuration and rebooting to the user. Heck, even if you request an upgrade, or a datacenter migration, the actual shutdown, host migration, and associated downtime waits until you tell it to start.

    They’ll be setting up some more hosts over the next few days (they’re often sold out :), so now’s a good time to try them out.

  22. linode, definitely linode.

  23. mikegrb says:

    Also, a new feature… adding a new ip requires no reboot. Just bring up the new IP and you are in business.

    Mike

  24. Anonymous says:

    RimuHosting. Very clueful, and they go the extra mile. They will help you with setup as much or as little as you desire.

  25. Kevin says:

    I have been using the services of a company called Bitfolk http://www.bitfolk.com. Support is very fast and the service is great, with servers in both the UK and the US.

    Good luck finding a new provider, and let me know if you think about using Bitfolk as they run a referal system that donates to the Debian project if a member refers a new customer.

    K

  26. Burz says:

    I’d suggest 4TVirtual.com if you can live with RHEL/CentOS. They are known to have extremely high availability and are focused on VPS. I got a 300MB VPS there for $13/mo with IP. And from what conversations I’ve had with their staff they know what they are doing (no bumbling or BS).

  27. Mark Murphy says:

    “Any places having a virtual private server which are run by *clueful* people without stupid automated processes?”

    You have supplied no evidence that Slicehost staff isn’t “clueful”. If you don’t like automated processes, that’s your call, of course.

    I haven’t seen documentation on what the additional-IP process is, either here or on the Slicehost discussion of your blog post (http://forum.slicehost.com/comments.php?DiscussionID=1569).

    If the commenter above is correct, and their automated script is modifying /etc/network/interfaces in your VPS, I’d have to side with Slicehost on this one. AFAIAC, the closer you get to the virtualized hardware, the more you’re treading on the turf of the VPS provider and their tech.

    Saying you don’t like automated processes is fine, and searching for a Web host that would force you to make these sorts of changes yourself is fine. If you’d've phrased your issue that way, I wouldn’t be posting here.

    Other VPS users would prefer not to have to fuss with things that the Xen environment or VPS provider might need changed and would prefer the automation. This doesn’t mean Slicehost isn’t “clueful”, it just means they are clued into a different audience.

    In the interests of full disclosure, I used to have a Linode and have since switched to Slicehost, and I haven’t regretted the decision.

  28. Tim says:

    I would go with Slicehost.

  29. sune says:

    mark: I never said anything about not liking automated processes. Automated processes are nice. Stupid automated processes is *tada.wav* stupid.

  30. Good news, you featured in the Slicehost Podcast…

    http://podcast.slicehost.com/episode_9.mp3

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