It was about 13 months ago when I decided to consolidate all of my accounts and place them on a dedicated server .. and it’s been a good ride! We started with 1GIG RAM but due to growing pains, had to expand to 2GIG RAM back in November 2007 and then up to 4GIG RAM last February 2008.
The existing server was unable to expand further, and because there were a few hiccups in the past few weeks (server running slow due to extreme CPU resource usage) .. I decided to upgrade to newer and better servers! I kind of felt it would be time for an upgrade before 2008 was out, and wouldn’t want to have to do this during XMAS time.
Our New Server Configuration
We’ve upgraded our dedicated server – hosted with Singlehop.com – to the following configuration:
* Intel Xeon5110 Dual Core Low Voltage 1.6 GHz Processor with 4MB Cache
* 8GB of RAM (expandable to 12GB)
* 250 GB SATA Hard Drive
* 5TB of Bandwidth per month
* 100 Mbps Uplink
* 5 IP Addresses included
* CentOS 5.2
I’ve maintained a general management package and the quick response/reaction monitoring service .. just like I had before, so if there were future issues popping up – it would be fixed as soon as practical and have little downtime as possible.
What Happened Last Week
Converting the server should not have taken as long as it did. But, I do want to diarize why our servers were offline between Wednesday midnight and Friday midnight.
First of all, the plan was to have as little downtime as possible. The old server would be copied to the new server and then flick a switch and then nobody would notice. But, this wasn’t just replacing a hard drive, where you can backup the data and pop in a new drive and restore the data. A new dedicated server was the destination .. and this resulted in different IP addresses as the old server. Fortunately, when there is a change in an IP Address .. it’s quite an easy change, because all my domains link to our dedicated “Nameservers” which were ns1.hart-empire-network.com and ns2.hart-empire-network.com, and all we had to do was change the IP address that these nameserver addresses link to, and all domains will instantly redirect to the new server! I say, “instantly” but really, it was expected to be a 3-4 hour time period before new site would kick in.
But, when I first consolidated all my account 13 months ago … I opted for the “lifetime” free domain that I got when I signed up with Midphase, well .. actually their Autica division, who was hosting a VPS or virtual private server. I quickly outgrew the VPS and needed a dedicated server and went with their Singlehop division. Eventually, before 2007 was out .. Singlehop left Midphase to go on their own, and concentrate on the dedicated server end of hosting.
If you are obtaining a new host and provider and there is a free domain creation or lifetime renewal .. I recommend that you PASS and register the domain yourself
When it came time on Thursday morning to change the IP of the nameservers, it was soon discovered that not only did I *NOT* have control of the the domain which has the name servers on.. neither did Singlehop! The domains were still being held by Midphase and never transfered! This wasted a few hours, but it was eventually resolved. Instead of our sites being ready on Thursday morning, it now would take until mid-afternoon before the IP’s and nameservers would take effect.
All’s Well That Ends Well
However, it didn’t stop there. Like with any major computer upgrade .. stuff happens that may be unexpected, and there were issues during the migration and restoration stages. It took until Friday midnight to finally complete the process and be comfortable that everything was working perfectly.
I hope everybody finds the new server to be more reliable, faster .. and able to match our needs as the HART-Empire Network grows over the yearas to come.