Wed, 27 Apr 2011

I don't wanna sysadmin no more

For several years now I've had this domain running on a small VPS from RimuHosting. They've been fantastic and I will readily recommend them to anyone looking for hosting. But there's just one problem: I don't wanna sysadmin no more.

Right now every `apt-get upgrade` on my VPS tells me that it is "unable to migrate to dependency-based boot system". Then it issues a bunch of warnings about parsing the file /var/lib/dpkg/status. I could probably fix this with a little googling and a few precious hours of my time. But I just can't bring myself to keep shaving that particular yak.

As the folks on those new ads keep telling me: to the cloud!

There's really not that much on my VPS these days. A basic Python/WSGI website. A mail server. A few private git repos. I figure it should be simple to farm out this hosting work for less than the $30 I pay to RimuHosting each month.

Here's the current plan. Any advice, alternatives or suggestions appreciated.

FastMail for email and DNS

I already use FastMail for a backup email address in case my domain goes down. Their "enhanced" personal plan works out to $3.33 per month and comes with full support for custom domains, secure IMAP and SMTP, and a simple DNS manager. Sounds like a good deal to me.

GitHub for personal repos

I already use GitHub for all my open-source projects, but I've also got some semi-private repos (e.g. my doctoral thesis, some harebrained startup ideas) served from the VPS. For $7 a month I can just plunk them all into private repos on github and forget about it.

S3 for backups and archives

Storage these days is cheap. Budgeting a modest $5 per month I can keep all my old wedding photos, email, undergrad projects and other precious memories safely archived in the cloud. There are plenty of more user-friendly options but there's also a certain appeal to the cheap-and-nasty solution of raw S3 storage.

DotCloud or for Web

Here I haven't made up my mind. This website is a very basic Django project, and I could probably find some super-cheap shared hosting to run it just fine. But dammit, I've got $15/month left in my budget and I want to try out something new and cool. Both DotCloud and look like excellent platforms for hosting a Python webapp, but unfortunately both are still in limited beta. Here's hoping I can get on board and try them out in the near future.


Any other suggestions or alternatives for hosting a personal domain in the cloud? I considered Google Apps but took an irrational dislike. Anything I seem to have forgotten?

I'll post about my experiences, good or bad, as the migration proceeds.