Reg

Generation 8 Servers Introduced

FOR GENERAL RELEASE. February 1, 2012 eSecureData.com Inc.

eSecureData.com is pleased to announce a complete lineup of Generation 8 Servers for 2012. Generation 8 includes a full line of premium servers and value servers, all of which have full dedicated KVM/IP units and full power management including remote reboot, power off, power on and reset, all accessible from any web browser. This is our first generation of Value Servers to have these features included. As usual for eSecureData, we’ve been able to introduce these servers at the lowest price points in the industry for Intel KVM/IP Dedicated Servers, starting at $149/mo.

With the latest generation Intel processors (Xeon 3470s for the G8s, and i7-2600s for the V8s), super fast 120GB SSDs, no cost 3tb HD upgrades and unmetered bandwidth, these are by far  the fastest dedicated servers we’ve ever offered.  In addition to this, by using the same top-flight Intel motherboards across each range, we’ve made upgrading and downgrading as easy as it can get.  As always, our unique monitoring systems also ensure that your server is always up, 24/7/365, at no additional cost to the client.

By hosting your website or Internet business with eSecureData.com, you present yourself to the world on infrastructure equal to that of Fortune 500 companies, at price points suitable for the smallest of businesses.  We’d invite you to take a look at our website for more information.   There really isn’t a better value in the industry.

www.esecuredata.com

eSecureData.com is a leading provider of dedicated servers, managed servers, virtual servers, cloud servers and hosted infrastructure.   The company was founded in 2004 and is based in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, just outside Vancouver.  It maintains employees and points of presence in Surrey, Vancouver and Toronto, Canada.

eSecureData.com’s Downtown Surrey Data Center is unique in the industry, with innovations in the areas of cooling, power systems and server housing. Our custom server racks permit unparalleled airflow while giving technicians ease of access to all replaceable components, allowing us to recover from individual hardware component failure faster than competitive services.   Our redundant fiber optic backbone feeds ensure maximum uptime for all servers hosted with us.

You may contact the company at any time via email at info@esecuredata.com or by telephone at +1 (800) 620-1985 or +1 (604) 800-0016.

G7 Junior Servers Introduced at $149/mo

FOR GENERAL RELEASE. August 16, 2011 eSecureData.com Inc.

eSecureData.com is pleased to announce the introduction of G7 Junior servers to complete the G7 lineup. As with all Premium G7 Dedicated Servers, the Juniors will come with permanent KVM/IP and Remote Power On/Off/Reboot.  As usual for eSecureData, we’ve been able to introduce these servers at the lowest price points in the industry for Intel Xeon KVM/IP Dedicated Servers, starting at $149/mo.

With no-cost SSD upgrades, built-in permanent KVM/IP units, and unmetered bandwidth, these are by far the fastest dedicated servers we’ve ever offered.  In addition to this, by using the same top-flight Intel motherboards across the entire G7 range, we’ve made upgrading and downgrading as easy as it can get.  As always, our unique monitoring systems also ensure that your server is always up, 24/7/365, at no additional cost to the client.

By hosting your website or Internet business with eSecureData.com, you present yourself to the world on infrastructure equal to that of Fortune 500 companies, at price points suitable for the smallest of businesses.  We’d invite you to take a look at our website for more information.   There really isn’t a better value in the industry.

http://www.esecuredata.com/pricing/premium-dedicated-servers-with-kvm-ip/

eSecureData.com is a leading provider of dedicated servers, managed servers, virtual servers, cloud servers and hosted infrastructure.   The company was founded in 2004 and is based in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, just outside Vancouver.  It maintains employees and points of presence in Surrey, Vancouver and Toronto, Canada.

eSecureData.com’s Downtown Surrey Data Center is unique in the industry, with innovations in the areas of cooling, power systems and server housing. Our custom server racks permit unparalleled airflow while giving technicians ease of access to all replaceable components, allowing us to recover from individual hardware component failure faster than competitive services.   Our redundant fiber optic backbone feeds ensure maximum uptime for all servers hosted with us.

You may contact the company at any time via email at info@esecuredata.com or by telephone at +1 (800) 620-1985 or +1 (604) 800-0016.

Going VOIP

I switched our office telephone system to SIP-based VOIP a few weeks ago and I doubt we’ll ever look back. The office and data center are now connected with one touch dialing, and I just put a Cisco phone in my home on the same system. It’s all seamless. We could have data centers around the world (and I hope we do one day) all on this system.

At the office and data center, I went with Polycom 670s. Polycom touts its HD Voice technology and rightly so. They’re easily the best-sounding phones I’ve ever heard.

At home, just to try something different, I got a Cisco SPA525G. It has a nicer display than the Polycoms, but the voice quality isn’t quite as good. It’s still totally usable, though. It’s also nice how well the Polycoms and Ciscos both work together on the same SIP Virtual PBX.

I even configured one line on the customer service phone to answer our Skype calls using their new SIP feature, although I may not bother leaving that up as very few people call us on Skype and our Skype phone works just fine for that.

The great thing about a system like this for a distributed company like ours is that it makes everyone feel a bit closer to each other. I just touch one button to talk to the office or the data center, and they do the same to talk to me or each other.

Improved, easier and higher quality communications can’t help but improve any organization.

G7 Premium KVM/IP Server Price Drop

FOR GENERAL RELEASE. August 16, 2011 eSecureData.com Inc.

eSecureData.com is delighted to announce that our new volume purchasing arrangements with Intel have resulted in new, lower pricing for our Premium G7 Dedicated Servers with permanent KVM/IP.   We’ve been able to drop these prices by $100/month right across the board, to the lowest price points in the industry for Intel Xeon KVM/IP Dedicated Servers.

With no-cost SSD upgrades, built-in permanent KVM/IP units, and unmetered bandwidth, these are by far the fastest dedicated servers we’ve ever offered.  In addition to this, by using the same top-flight Intel motherboards across the entire G7 range, we’ve made upgrading and downgrading as easy as it can get.  As always, our unique monitoring systems also ensure that your server is always up, 24/7/365, at no additional cost to the client.

By hosting your website or Internet business with eSecureData.com, you present yourself to the world on infrastructure equal to that of Fortune 500 companies, at price points suitable for the smallest of businesses.  We’d invite you to take a look at our website for more information.   There really isn’t a better value in the industry.

http://www.esecuredata.com/pricing/premium-dedicated-servers-with-kvm-ip/

eSecureData.com is a leading provider of dedicated servers, managed servers, virtual servers, cloud servers and hosted infrastructure.   The company was founded in 2004 and is based in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, just outside Vancouver.  It maintains employees and points of presence in Surrey, Vancouver and Toronto, Canada.

eSecureData.com’s Downtown Surrey Data Center is unique in the industry, with innovations in the areas of cooling, power systems and server housing. Our custom server racks permit unparalleled airflow while giving technicians ease of access to all replaceable components, allowing us to recover from individual hardware component failure faster than competitive services.   Our redundant fiber optic backbone feeds ensure maximum uptime for all servers hosted with us.

You may contact the company at any time via email at info@esecuredata.com or by telephone at +1 (800) 620-1985 or +1 (604) 800-0016.

Automatically Checking Free Disk Space on a Linux Server

I’ve just written a little script I should have written years ago. I think we’ve all forgotten a server or two in our lives and ended up running out of disk space. I know I have more than once. This little script can be thrown into a cron job and will automatically alert you by email if your server(s) ever come close to running out.


<?php

//------------------------------------------------------------------------------
// Disk Space Checker
// 2011-07-31
// This script was written by Reg Natarajan and is hereby released into the
// public domain with no warranties of any kind.
//------------------------------------------------------------------------------

//------------------------------------------------------------------------------
// Setup. Change these values to suit your needs.
//------------------------------------------------------------------------------
$ComputerName = "your.server.com";
$PartitionToCheck = "/";
$ReportWhenLessThanThisManyGigsFree=10; //in gigabytes, obviously
$EmailAddressesToAlert="email1@yourdomain.com,email2@yourdomain.com";
$AlwaysAlertByEmail=false; //Report by email even if you're within limits
$From="support@yourdomain.com";

//------------------------------------------------------------------------------
// Primary script. Do not change below this line.
//------------------------------------------------------------------------------

//Get the number of bytes free
$FreeBytes = disk_free_space($PartitionToCheck);
$Results = number_format($FreeBytes/(1024 * 1024 * 1024)) .
" GB free on $PartitionToCheck on $ComputerName. \n
Warning threshold set to $ReportWhenLessThanThisManyGigsFree GB.";

//Convert the number of Gigs to bytes
$BytesFreeLimit = $ReportWhenLessThanThisManyGigsFree * 1024 * 1024 * 1024;

//If the limit has been reached
if ($FreeBytes<=$BytesFreeLimit)
{
$Subject = "URGENT WARNING: FREE SPACE BELOW
$ReportWhenLessThanThisManyGigsFree GB ON $ComputerName.";
$ReportByEmail=true;
}
else //Limit not reached
{
$Subject = "Disk space ok. Free Space is above
$ReportWhenLessThanThisManyGigsFree GB on $ComputerName.";
$ReportByEmail=$AlwaysAlertByEmail; //If it's set to false, don't report
}

//If an email report is required
if ($ReportByEmail)
{
$Results = wordwrap($Results, 70);
$Headers = "From: $From\r\n" .
"Reply-To: $From";
mail ($EmailAddressesToAlert, $Subject , $Results, $Headers);
}

//Echo the results
echo $Subject . " " . $Results;

?>

If you throw it into a cron job to run daily, you’ll get an email whenever your server falls below the limit you’ve set (default is 10gb).

44 4 * * * /usr/bin/php /backup/diskfreespace.php

Mounting/Mapping a drive from Linux to Windows

If you’ve got a share on a Windows server and want to use it from a Linux server, here’s how to do it.

mount -t cifs //ip-of-the-windows-server/share-name-of-the-windows-server -o username=user,password=password /mountpoint

Example:

mount -t cifs //192.168.1.2/c$ -o username=administrator,password=adminpassword /media/windowsserver/

Where We Began, the history of a Dedicated Server company.

Some of you might enjoy learning how eSecureData.com started.   As one of the leaders in the Dedicated Server industry, it’s hard now to imagine how tiny we once were, but that’s exactly how it was.  It’s a bit of an unlikely story, but I’ll be happy to relate it, anyway.

In 2005, I was in medical software when the company I worked for experienced some financial problems. I was working long hours there and was mentally exhausted. The end was almost a relief. Still, I’ve never been rich and I had to make sure Reggie stayed fed, so I spent some time considering my options. I had a couple of choices: I could try to rebuild my consulting/software-contracting business with new clients, or I could do something totally new.

The truth is, I despised software contracting. I was the product and I could only sell myself so thin. When you’re the product, you can sell your days, your evenings, your weekends and your nights, but eventually, you run out of time to sell and early in the cycle, you learn that you will never have a life.

At the same time, I had rented dedicated servers for years for my own use. I was one of the earliest customers of Yahoo Servers when they were trying that, and I’ve rented from a half dozen other companies around the world since. I even rented one of those ugly purple Cobalt Dedicated Servers from Sun back in the day. None of them were worth anything, and they all charged ridiculous prices for support I didn’t need.

I decided to try my hand at dedicated servers.

First, we hosted at another data center. I rented a cage and deployed some dedicated servers and waited for the world to beat a path to our door. Nobody knocked. I tweaked the offerings, refined things, offered new services, but nothing mattered. No takers. Then, I decided, I’m going to find the price at which people are willing to buy. Doesn’t matter what that price is. If it’s $10/mo, I want to know that. I cut prices by $10/mo until people started to buy, and I still remember like yesterday, that mark was $79/mo at that point in our history. It seemed that, at $79 for a P4 2.4 with a 100gb HD and 512mb of RAM (these were great specs for the day), people were willing to overlook that we were new and were willing to hit the buy button.

Things moved fast. My sister got involved, making it a bit of a family business, although she’s in Toronto so her involvement is remote. We quickly outgrew the cage we were renting, and moved to a bigger cage at another data center, but the next real breakthrough came when I was driving through Surrey one day. I saw this huge, beautiful and largely empty skyscraper, Central City. I wondered why such a building would be empty, and I called the number. It seems the building had been built for ICBC, our insurance company, and the newly elected government of the day had refused to let them occupy it. “Too lavish,” was the complaint, although I’ve been assured there were a lot of politics in play to nobody’s surprise. I don’t know or care.

By the time I actually got through to someone who could talk to me, the building had been leased fully to lawyers, accountants and other such companies. Simon Fraser University had purchased the first seven floors and were operating their technical college there. It was a vibrant, exciting place to be, full of bright young students and youthful energy. Still, they had no use at all for the many millions of dollars of data center equipment that were there, including huge diesel generators, a giant battery room, and multiple cross connects right on the Internet backbone.

The short version is, I told them that I couldn’t pay them millions, but I might be able to make them some pennies back on the dollars they invested. We moved in in November of 2006 and have never looked back.

We were tiny then, with just a few racks and about a hundred dedicated servers in total. Now the data center, huge though it is, is nearly full of dedicated servers in useful production and we’re looking for more space elsewhere. I’m hopeful we will have something operational by mid 2012.

Along the way, we’ve led in so many ways, including our my.esecuredata.com dedicated server management system and our unique DDOS protection systems. This year should bring us some real movement in the area of KVM/IP dedicated servers. I’m hopeful we’ll reach the point soon where all servers we deploy have full-time KVM/IP units. In addition, our cloud systems are evolving and improving, and we’re looking to have a world-beating offering there within the year.

It’s been an amazing ride, but the journey has just begun.

Adding Bandwidth Graphs To Your Website

Here’s a PHP script I wrote that lets you put our bandwidth graphs on your own website.   To make it work, just get your GraphID by right-clicking the graphs in my.esecuredata.com.   You can then change the top values in this script, save it as somefile.php on your web server, and it should give you a nice page that refreshes every five minutes. I haven’t included <html> or <body> tags as I’m assuming you’ll want to edit as needed to make it fit nicely into your site.  
<?php
//First, set up the script.  Change these values.
$ServerName  = "some server";
$GraphID          = "1109";
//Set the graph server.  This shouldn’t change.
$GraphServer = "cacticlients.esecuredata.com";
//Start with a table
echo "<table align=\"center\" width=\"90%\" style=\"border-collapse: collapse; border: 1px solid #C0C0C0; font-size: 8pt; font-family: verdana;\"
cellspacing=0 cellpadding=3 bgcolor=\"#DDDDDD\">";
//Blue header row
echo "<tr><td style=\"color: #FFFFFF; background-color: #000080;\">";
echo "Bandwidth Report for $ServerName";
echo "</td></tr>";
//A message row
echo "<tr><td style=\"color: #FFFFFF; background-color: #565656;\">";
echo "Inbound (green) is traffic sent from this server to the Internet.<br>";
echo "Outbound (blue) is traffic received by this server from the Internet.";
echo "</td></tr>";
//Now the graphs
$Gr1="https://$GraphServer/cacti/graph_image.php?action=view&local_graph_id=$GraphID&rra_id=1";
$Gr2="https://$GraphServer/cacti/graph_image.php?action=view&local_graph_id=$GraphID&rra_id=2";
$Gr3="https://$GraphServer/cacti/graph_image.php?action=view&local_graph_id=$GraphID&rra_id=3";
$Gr4="https://$GraphServer/cacti/graph_image.php?action=view&local_graph_id=$GraphID&rra_id=4";
echo "<tr><td align=\"center\"><br>$ServerName – Daily (5 Minute Average)";
echo "<br><img name=\"image1\" src=\"$Gr1\"></td></tr>";
echo "<tr><td align=\"center\"><br>$ServerName – Weekly (30 Minute Average)";
echo "<br><img name=\"image2\" src=\"$Gr2\"></td></tr>";
echo "<tr><td align=\"center\"><br>$ServerName – Monthly (2 Hour Average)";
echo "<br><img name=\"image3\" src=\"$Gr3\"></td></tr>";
echo "<tr><td align=\"center\"><br>$ServerName – Yearly (1 Day Average)";
echo "<br><img name=\"image4\" src=\"$Gr4\"></td></tr>";
//Close the table
echo "</table>";
//Now a script to refresh.  Don’t refresh more than once every five minutes.
//It’s pointless to as the images only refresh that often.
$SC  = "\n\n<script LANGUAGE=\"JavaScript\">\n";
$SC .= "setInterval(\"";
$SC .= "var now = new Date();";
$SC .= "document.images.image1.src=’$Gr1&tsi=’ + now.getTime();";
$SC .= "document.images.image2.src=’$Gr2&tsi=’ + now.getTime();";
$SC .= "document.images.image3.src=’$Gr3&tsi=’ + now.getTime();";
$SC .= "document.images.image4.src=’$Gr4&tsi=’ + now.getTime();";
$SC .= "\", 30000);\n";
$SC .= "</script>\n\n";
echo $SC;
?>

Installing LAMP on Linux

LAMP = Linux, Apache, PHP, MySQL

Using Yum:

yum -y install httpd php mysql-server mysql

service httpd start

service mysqld start

Using Aptitude (apt-get):

apt-get install apache2 php5-mysql libapache2-mod-php5 mysql-server

The Amazon EC2 Cloud

Well, I’ve just spent a couple of days working with the Amazon EC2 Cloud. I have a project going on that requires multiple data centers and so I thought I’d give Amazon a try. Overall, I really didn’t have a good experience.

First, you have to choose from a confusing array of options and pricing. Most of their options prefer their own Amazon Linux which is based on Centos but is different enough that nothing worked easily for me. Even simple things like installing Webmin were troublesome (it installed ok, but none of the modules worked out of the box — every single one I used needed tweaking). You can get Centos if you want to pay for one of their more expensive packages. That would have likely gone better for me.

Second, you don’t get an IP, which is a bit ridiculous. All you get is a private IP (10.x) and you are expected to connect via a FQDN that Amazon gives you (they obviously have some host-name-based NAT going on). This works, but is a giant pain to use. You can’t even register name servers for a domain with this method. You can add IPs (up to 5 per server), but they cost $7/mo.

Thirdly, for their micro instances, you get all of 8 gb of HD space. No typo. We just switched from 500gb HDs to 2000gb HDs, and they’re giving clients 8. lol.

Finally, and this surprised the heck out of me, it was SLOW. My sites came up sluggishly and simple things jerked the screen around. Things just didn’t render quickly. I was really expecting that, with Amazon’s infrastructure, things would be quicker, but I guess they’ve sectioned things off pretty frugally.

I’m not against our competitors.  A lot of them offer excellent services, and we cooperate with many of them.  I understand that we’re not the only company in the business, and I get the appeal of the Elastic Cloud in theory. It’s a cool idea. The simple fact, though, is that it sure didn’t work for me in the real world. Our cheapest server is far faster and better, and costs less to boot.