How to Manage Linux Server Timezone Settings

Setting your date and time correctly on your Linux server is very important. Your server logs and other important information will all reflect the timezone of your server. In most cases, you will want to set your server’s time to match your own local time, but if your server is remote or hosting sites for […]

How to Update Your OpenSSL Version to Fix Heartbleed Bug

Heartbleed, the highly publicized OpenSSL bug with the unfortunate name, has a lot of system administrators scurrying to fix the problem. If you have not heard about it by now, it is a security hole found in OpenSSL’s TLS heartbeat extension that a cyber criminal can use to reveal 64k of memory on a connected […]

Linux OS Reboot and Service Restart Guide

Your brand new Linux server may seem a bit intimidating at first, but with a little training and practice, you will find it to be very manageable. The following is a quick guide to restarting services and your OS itself.
Reboot – Rebooting your server is quite simple. On the console, you can press CTRL+ALT+Delete. If […]

How to Force Installation of Ubuntu Packages Kept Back

Ever so often, you might try to update your Ubuntu Server packages and find that certain ones are “kept back” during the upgrade process. These will often be kernel or other mission critical packages that do not get updated.
The reason some packages might get kept back is that some dependencies have been changed for them, […]

How to Manually Install Packages on a Debian Server

On Debian and Debian-based servers (such as Ubuntu Server), the primary method of package installation is APT. Using the apt-get command, you can download and install software from the distribution and third-party repositories with relative ease. There may come a time, however, when you need to install a deb package that is not from your […]

Do I Need A Commercial Linux Distribution?

Your shiny new server is just begging for an operating system or perhaps even two or three, if you intend to use virtualization. You might have already decided to use a Linux-based operating system, which is popular for Internet-connected servers. What you might still need to decide, however, is whether to use a community distribution […]

Is Linux the Best for Web Servers?

Linux is a free and open source kernel that powers numerous operating systems (often called “distributions”). Many system administrators have long regarded Linux as the best option for powering web-facing dedicated servers and virtual private servers. There are, however, many other options. So, what makes Linux the best, or is it even truly the best […]

3 ls* Commands You Should Know

If you have even a small amount of Linux experience, you have probably used the “ls” command to list the contents of a directory. What you may not know is that there are numerous other ls-based commands that are extremely useful for server management. The following are 3 you should know:
1. lsblk – lists block […]

Are There Benefits to Manually Installing Software?

Linux servers have a distinct advantage over most proprietary operating systems because of their extensive package management systems. Whether a server uses YUM or APT, it is much easier and faster to install and update software than using traditional manual installation methods. This raises the question: is it ever a good idea to install software […]

How to Display the Message of the Day to Shell Users

A “Message of the Day” or MOTD is a statement, usually brief, that your users see when they login to your server via the shell. You can use it for any number of reasons, such as to announce a new server feature, remind users about your policies, display important network information, or even use the […]

Getting Linux Server Community Help

Running an unmanaged server is a lot of work. In a previous post, we looked at options for paid support for Linux servers, but with a limited budget, paid support might not be an option you can even consider. There is really only one other alternative: community support.
Fortunately for you, Linux community support is […]

How to Install Local RPM or DEB Files

One of the common problems you may encounter with a Linux server is that locally-installed packages require dependencies in order to work. When you install software directly from your distribution’s package repository: yum or apt-get, for example, these programs will install any necessary dependencies automatically. Sometimes, however, you need to download a single .deb or […]

What Makes a Linux Distribution?

If you are new to server terminology, you may not fully understand what Linux is.  While it is commonly used to refer to an operating system, there is actually no operating system called Linux.
Linux is actually the kernel of an operating system.  A kernel is the core that interacts with hardware, contains drivers, and is […]

The Pros and Cons of Rolling Your Own Kernel

Some purists of the geek variety may have told you that their servers run faster than yours because they took the time to compile their own kernels from source.  They may even run a Linux distribution that encourages custom kernels.  In all likelihood, you have a dedicated server that runs an OS that uses a […]

Update vs Upgrade: What is the Difference?

If you are new to Linux servers, you may be a little confused about the terminology used for new software.  Sometimes you will hear the word “update”, and other times you will hear the word “upgrade”.  The two should not be used interchangeably, as they can have very different and sometimes serious consequences.
First, it is […]

Linux Distribution Upgrades for Dedicated Servers

Before we delve into the topic of server upgrades, it is important to define the terminology. With a Linux-based operating system, an “upgrade” refers to the latest snapshot packaged by the distribution’s developers. That usually includes a newer kernel version, newer libraries, and more recent software packages.
In addition to these upgrade snapshots, most […]

Peer-to-Peer Content Delivery Networks (CDN)

Content Delivery Networks disperse content from a website over strategic global locations, allowing users to access content more quickly, while also reducing bandwidth costs and server loads. One form of CDN uses peer-to-peer (P2P) technology to achieve this goal.
Most people are familiar with peer-to-peer as it relates to illegal file sharing. […]