5 More Server Tips (Part 2)

Earlier this week, we highlighted some tips that should help you with your shiny new dedicated server.  Here are 5 more to keep you going over the weekend.

1. Have a plan – It sounds very basic, but I can attest from experience that not having a clear vision can cause you big headaches in the long run.  If your long-term plan is to setup a server that will basically host one site or one collection of sites for a single client, you will handle growth and change much differently than if you are planning to start a web hosting company with multiple sites and clients.  Know what you want and plan accordingly.

2. Choose your control panel carefully – Most control panels make modifications to underlying system software like Apache, MySQL, etc.  This makes it difficult to remove them without reinstalling and possibly even reconfiguring websites.  Because of this, you should either choose a control panel that does not do this or plan on keeping the one you choose.

3. Backup, backup, and backup again – This may be one of the single most important things you do, and you should do it all the time.  Backup everything, even if you think you might not need it later.  It is worth it to invest in off-site backup so that you will always have your data, even if the site where your server is physically located explodes or gets struck by lightning.

4. Learn more – Continuing education is crucial.  You never know what you do not know until you learn it.  As server technology develops, you should develop your knowledge of it as well.

5. Monitor everything – Setup system monitors, port monitors, website monitors, and more.  Have alerts sent to your email, texted to your phone, and flashed on your computer screen.