What is a Journaling File system

As we discussed in a previous post, Linux servers offer many different types of file systems, and every other server operating system also offers a choice of file systems. One type of file system you might encounter is called a journaling file system. What is it and how does it differ from a standard Linux […]

How to Manage Linux Kernel Modules

Linux is the kernel for a variety of operating systems that power many of the world’s servers. Although the operating systems themselves are often commonly called Linux, the actual term refers specifically to this kernel and all of its parts. In addition to the components that are compiled into the kernel, Linux also supports modules […]

Why Use Linux for Dedicated Servers?

A recent report indicates that 97 percent of the world’s top 500 supercomputers run Linux. That statistic seems unfathomable, as if no other operating system even exists or is even worth mentioning. Most of the remaining 3 percent are some other Unix variant, and Windows barely registers at all. The question one […]

Is an In-Box OS Upgrade Worth the Risk?

Many Linux operating systems offer the ability to upgrade to a new version of the OS without wiping the hard drive and reinstalling. On a dedicated server, you might call this an in-box upgrade. Generally, a new version of your Linux distribution will include a newer kernel version and newer software. Is such an upgrade […]

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 […]

Using VMware Player for Server Testing: Part 2

In an earlier post, we learned how to setup a new virtual machine in VMware Player for the purposes of testing a server implementation. In this post, we will look at some ways you can manipulate VMware Player to emulate your server environment.
Hardware
One of the first things you will want to do is […]

What to Expect from a VPS Provider

Most web hosting companies offer some form of VPS service, so it can be difficult to decide which one is right for you. A virtual private server can be almost anything that uses virtualization, so it is important to know what you are getting and if the services offered fit your needs. These are some […]

Dedicated Server Maintenance Checklist

Your dedicated server needs regular maintenance. It will not take care of itself. The following checklist will help you keep your server in top shape.
1. Check your backups – Just because you make backups does not mean they actually work. You need to test them to make sure your server is performing backups correctly. […]

The Disadvantages of Old Proprietary UNIX

At one time, most of the world’s dedicated servers used a form of UNIX. Big mainframes were known to have big expensive UNIX installations with hefty, costly licenses. Many of those servers have gradually been phased out or have been switched to more modern operating systems like Linux or BSD. Still, some persist, and those […]

3 Linux Server Performance Tips

If this is your first time using a Linux server, you may soon find out that Linux offers many performance advantages over other operating systems. Still, there are plenty of things you can do to make Linux perform even better.
1. Use the Security Tools – You must use the securities tools at your disposal. If […]

Server OS Profile: Debian GNU/Linux

Although it is not specifically designed for servers, Debian GNU/Linux is a popular choice for system administrators because of its stability, security, and long stable release cycle. Debian has also been around for a very long time (19 years) and is regarded as one of the most reliable operating systems in terms of staying true […]

The Benefits of 64-bit Operating Systems

Most servers come with 64-bit processor architecture. For example, Intel’s Xeon line of processors as well as AMD’s Opteron processors are both capable of 64-bit instructions. Most modern desktop processors are also 64-bit. Nevertheless, there are still some users who might opt for 32-bit operating systems. Is there really a substantial difference and what are […]

How to Setup a Test Server in VirtualBox: Part 2

Now that you have a virtual machine created, it needs an operating system. Just follow these simple steps:

With your virtual machine selected from the side panel, click the “Settings” button
Click the “storage” option
Click the “add attachment button” and then choose CD/DVD device”
You can then select an ISO to create a virtual drive. Alternatively, you […]

Back to the Basics #8: Application Security

When covering application security, there are three basic application types you should consider:

Standard applications that you install directly on your server’s operating system and run only when you need them
Applications that are run as daemons or services, starting at boot time and continuing to run as long as the server is on
Web applications […]

Back to the Basics #7: OS Security

The security of your operating system can be very complex. It is a large collection of software that has direct access to your hardware. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain an ongoing security policy for protecting your server’s OS.
The following items should be at the top of your server OS security list:

Kernel updates – The […]

Back to the Basics #4: Web Server Software

As we continue our overview of the very basics of dedicated server hosting, it is appropriate at this time to look at web servers. Dedicated servers have a wide variety of uses, from application hosting to gaming, but web hosting is one of the most prominent. As the entertainment and business worlds become more integrated […]

Back to the Basics #3: Server Operating Systems

In the third part of our “Back to the Basics” series, we will look at the operating systems that power today’s servers. Just as there is a diverse amount of hardware available on the server market, so too are there a great number of operating systems. They are not all equal in all aspects of […]

Which Linux Distribution Is Best for Servers?

Recent reports have indicated that Linux continues to gain a larger share of the server market, while Microsoft Windows and variations of Unix continue to lose significant market shares. Linux has become the dominant server OS type of choice, and for web servers in particular, Linux is almost the default.
Nevertheless, to call Linux a single […]

7 Reasons to Get a Dedicated Server in 2012

2011 came and went, and you still do not have a dedicated server. There are plenty of reasons why you might not be ready for one, and we have covered some of those reasons in previous posts. But inevitably, there are some of you out there who are ready to get a dedicated server, but […]

Should You Defragment Your Server’s Hard Drive?

One of the most unappealing yet necessary tasks that PC users often perform is defragmenting of their hard drives. In the old days of small, slow hard drives, defragmenting was the only way to speed up performance and use every last byte you had available.
Times have changed considerably since then. Most modern hard disk drives […]

Moving from One OS to Another

In most situations, an individual or company will keep the same operating system for the entire time they use a server.  While there may be occasional upgrades, these usually do not involve switching to another OS completely.  At the end of the server’s life, however, you may decide to go with a different OS.  If […]

3 Open Source VPS Options

A VPS (virtual private server) gives you the ability to host several instances of your operating system within a single dedicated server.  Each virtual machine or container within your server behaves independently as though it were a server by itself.  This gives users all of the benefits and administrative access of a full dedicated server […]

Dedicated Server Terminology Part 2

The following is a continuation of yesterday’s server terminology. These should help you become more familiar with your dedicated server and will also serve as a quick reference guide in the future.
6. Operating system – An operating system is the primary software on a server that interacts with the hardware, network, and […]

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 […]

Home Server vs Hosted Server

So, you have to decided to get your own dedicated server. You certainly have a plethora of options to consider: hardware, operating system, development platform, applications, and more. One of the crucial early decisions you must make is to decide where you want your server to be housed.
If you are running a business, […]

6 Considerations When Starting a New Server

Making the decision to start your own dedicated server can be both exciting and overwhelming. There are numerous aspects of the server you must consider, from security to total cost of ownership. It is not easy, but it can be very rewarding for your business, organization, club, or personal use. The following are six considerations […]

Which Web Server Software Should I Use?

When picking web server software, you should use the same considerations you used when choosing an operating system.  You will also have to consider compatibility with your operating system and the best overall efficiency for the type of site or sites you want to run.
The following are some of the factors […]

What is the Best Server Operating System?

Proponents of each operating system will always give you different answers to this question, but it is important for you to decide which one is best for your circumstances.  Choices include the many variations of GNU/Linux, the numerous descendants of BSD, several versions of Windows Server, Solaris, Mac OS X Server, and several proprietary iterations […]

Working with APT on a Debian Server

Debian GNU/Linux and other OSes based on the free and open source operating system, such as Ubuntu, use a package management system called APT to install, update, and remove software.  APT is very powerful and easy to use.  You can access it from the command line via SSH, giving you full control over the software […]

Choosing the Right Server Operating System

There has been much debate on the server level about Windows vs Unix, Unix vs Linux, BSD vs Linux, Windows vs Solaris, and just about any other matchup you can imagine.  Choosing the right one is not as easy the supporters of each OS make it seem.  You have to consider many factors when choosing […]