Is it too soon for a VPS?

Namerie

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I am currently using shared hosting for a couple of Wordpress blogs and it suits my needs fine but I am thinking about stepping up to a VPS for a couple of reasons. I am taking web design and development classes at college and later in the semester we are going to learn server setup.

I was thinking about getting a jump on things and getting a VPS to start trying things and to see what I can learn to be ahead of things for my classes. I don't know really anything about VPS setup, running or anything really so do you think that it would be too early to get a VPS to start to learn things?

Later I would move my Wordpress blogs to the VPS after I know what I am doing. Does this sound like a good or bad idea?
 

eva2000

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Maybe too soon for a live site's move to a VPS server, but nothing should stop you in getting a cheap test VPS for test site or clone of live site to practice and learn on and slowly build up the confidence and knowledge to finally do a migration for your live site :)

baby steps.. no need to jump into deep end with live migration :)
 

Gecko

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Personally I think that if you were not going to use the VPS for a live site right away then why not go for it? I would just go for something that isn't to pricey and has the ability to scale up if you need more resources for live sites later.
 

RDO Servers

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You have a good plan.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to learn more. Getting a VPS and learning by doing is the best way. Just keep your site's where they are until your comfortable with your VPS managing/securing/troubleshooting skills!
 

LJSHost

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Hi Namerie,

It's never to early to learn new things :D I would recommend you start to study Linux which can be a scary thing for someone with only a windows or mac background.

Setting up a server is very simple these days and Linux has never been easier to install, I remember booting the kernel of a Floppy disk when installing :D
If you are going to use a control panel such as cPanel, Plesk or Webmin they will provide you with a hosting environment all ready to go, but if you are not using a panel you will need to learn everything about the following to start with.

1. LAMP/LEMP stacks
2. Webservers - Apache/Nginx
3. Mail servers
4. General Linux System Administration
5. Trouble shooting problems

It won't be easy and you will have a huge a amount of knowledge to learn but I would say go for it and move one of your sites over to the VPS. I've always believed you learn more by doing and being thrown in the deep end so you either sink or swim.

Best of luck to you.
 

energizedit

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I agree this plan sounds good as long as you are just getting the vps to learn currently and will keep your blogs on shared hosting, until after your class.

It is always good to learn new things, but it is easy enough to get a managed vps where you won't need to set things up. It is good to know how things work and be able to do level 1 troubleshooting yourself though.
 

eva2000

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I personally actually jumped into deep end first when I started back in 2000 - never used hosting or had a web site (forum) and started a vBuleltin v1.x forum in 2000 and jumped straight onto a dedicated server without any linux or system admin experience and back then php 4 and mysql 3.x didn't scale well so it was a nightmare of learning as I go. But was with rackspace managed hosting so that helped but was still forced to learn and optimise once i moved away from rackspace in 2001 and started using dedicated until around 2008 when i got my first VPS and now have majority of VPS servers and a few dedicated.

If i had to do it again, i would of gone vps first and learn on test site. The reason why is as a noob you will ultimately be scared of messing up your live site so that limits you with your learning as what I found is that you learn the most through your own mistakes. So with test vps/site, you are less afraid to make mistakes, so your learning progresses much better :)

Also learning to backup/clone your site is a must have skill and setting up test vps/site and destroying it/recreating that test vps/site helps you reinforce that skill with practice. Afterall, we all eventually move web hosts so need that skill :)

If you use a vps host who has snapshot backups like digitalocean or linode, then you also have a fall back. So setup vps, enable snapshot backups, then setup site, add a manual snapshot once you have all setup and working. Then start learning, and when you try something new, make a new snapshot backup first and try the new thing. If you stuff up, revert to the prior made good snapshot. Rinse and repeat :)

Also setup a local pc virtualbox or vmware instance, so you can setup guest OS servers for more practise using their respective snapshot features.

That's what i do now, test or learn something via local virtualbox server instance, then when comfortable move to test vps instance. Then finally to live vps instance :)
 

Namerie

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Thanks for all the replies guys. I think that I will go ahead and do it soon since I am wanting to get a jump on things to be ahead of the pack when we get to server setup and functions in class. I won't have live websites on it until I am sure they will be ok there and I am planning on taking my time to be safe.

I usually pick things up quickly so I don't think that I will take long to know the basics. If not then I can ask all of you right? ;)
 

RDO Servers

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RDO Servers
Of course! That's what we're here for!
 

HostYourNet-DR

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Personally,
Since you got shared hosting already sorted i would keep the sites there until your happy that the new environment is stable and works how you want it to.
I would use the VPS for now to play around with get used to the OS you want to install, modifly files, install control panels etc.
Only when you got what you want to do fully sorted/comfortable with it i would then do that.

In the past i've jumped on to a new host transferred all the files only to find there just as bad if not worse than the last host i was with.

All that i say is make sure you make the jump as you dont want to loss live customers!!!
 

Namerie

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Personally,
Since you got shared hosting already sorted i would keep the sites there until your happy that the new environment is stable and works how you want it to.
I would use the VPS for now to play around with get used to the OS you want to install, modifly files, install control panels etc.
Only when you got what you want to do fully sorted/comfortable with it i would then do that.

In the past i've jumped on to a new host transferred all the files only to find there just as bad if not worse than the last host i was with.

All that i say is make sure you make the jump as you dont want to loss live customers!!!
That was my plan basically. I know that I will need some time to learn things and get everything as it should be before moving any live websites to it.

I was actually even thinking about getting both a managed VPS and an unmanaged VPS just to learn from both angles and then just move my websites to the managed VPS when I get it sorted out. Then I can use the unmanaged VPS to learn all aspects of server setup, maintenance and the needed tasks. I sometimes try to do too much but I like learning all aspects of things that I am interested in.


Of course! That's what we're here for!
I'm really glad that I found this forum. The other places I had been on were not so friendly to people that are new to things and especially when a questions gets asked that is common knowledge for most. I have a lot to learn but at least I have this forum to ask my questions or search for information.

Sometimes being a noob to things will be harder on forums and especially when they see a female and think that they can treat you like you aren't a member of "The Group". I'm glad that this place is different.

Thanks for your help and understanding.
 

vpsrus

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vpsrus
That is the best recommendation, you have a managed server as you can have lots of instruction from your provider and you can test yourself on the unmanaged one.

Regarding the forum being myself a noob too, I can not agree more with you, I am also glad to find this place where you can interact with other members and you are treated as human been
 

HostYourNet-DR

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If you ever need any help or just want some hint/best practice just let us all know :).
 

Namerie

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That is the best recommendation, you have a managed server as you can have lots of instruction from your provider and you can test yourself on the unmanaged one.

Regarding the forum being myself a noob too, I can not agree more with you, I am also glad to find this place where you can interact with other members and you are treated as human been
Thank you. I always appreciate the input from other people who know about things that I don't know about myself. :D

If you ever need any help or just want some hint/best practice just let us all know :).
Thank you I will be doing that often most likely. :D
 

VictorVictories

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I appreciate people who are curious to know things, and once they know it if the thing is progressive, then they want to implement it that's great. Moving on to VPS would add features that are restricted in shared hosting, and it would give the webmaster more control over the website. Thus upgrading to VPS seem to be a wise move.
 

BuzzNoc

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I say if you know ssh and others then sure why not? if you aren't going live anytime soon then it would be perfect to work on projects and etc. just understand they don't come with a control panel unless requested.
 

HostBastic

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Its never too early for a VPS :), nowadays the prices of VPS services are comperable to quality shared hosting, however we are talking about an unmanaged service price wise. There are quite a few quality and secure web hosting panels which are free, a good example is CentOS web Panel anyone that used cPanel should be be faimilar with this panel. The other option is also VestaCP which everyone is raving about, its great overall but in my opinion CentOS Web Panel came a long way.
 

HostaPolis

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There are usually 2 reasons to move to a VPS...
1: You need to, shared hosting just can't accomodate you any more
2: You want to. More control and custom software is great but comes at a cost, especially if managed.

It is a great learning process, I started with an unmanaged VPS many years ago and just learned how things work.
 

rankmyhub

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All the best with Test VPS learning and test website, practice everything and once you feel good to migrate live sites, then go ahead with transfers. Learning is fun, if we feel interested in a subject. Keep that interesting part for life. You will learn so many things...
 

David Beroff

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David Beroff
I am quite agree with you, learning web hosting by starting with a real & small VPS always is helpful for newbies
AND i used to use this way to test my websites before moving it latest features of hosting.
 

kunal95

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If you want to be prepared for the future already by paying a bang for the buck then go for it :)
 

StackArcVPS

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Just realise your needs, if you really need that much of resources then go for it. But its better to prepare for the future as migrating might be a task so its better if you do it in your pre growth period.
 

BlueLeaf

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It's always better to start learning new technologies early. One of the first and most important things to learning new technologies is trying them and going the hard way about using them and understanding them. Shortly after that, you start understanding them, and you become good at them.

So, definitely go after learning how to configure a VPS for hosting purposes. I would recommend configuring the VPS first and pointing some sub-domains to the VPS, and moving the sites to those sub-domains. Make sure your DEV / Staging versions of those websites open from the sub-domains hosted on the VPS. This is always wiser than to move live sites to a VPS, which means you may have downtime. Also, if you realize that your live sites don't open from the VPS because of some VPS misconfiguration, or because you forgot to install some libraries on the server, then your live sites will be down for all that period of time while you are fixing your VPS. If you are doing it for the first time, this downtime may last hours or days, and you don't want your websites down for such a long period of time.

That is why, it is best to have some identical test websites open from the VPS. When you see that they work perfect, you can move the live sites to the VPS too, and finally switch the DNS records for the live domain names so that the live sites start opening from the VPS.
 
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