The State of the Geek – IT

It’s been an interesting change for me the past few months, as far as my personal IT stuff is concerned.

It’s really no big secret that the services for my domains were hosted on my own personal servers, and that the servers were located at my house. I was able to run everything locally because I had a business-class internet connection at the house, and as such had the ability to pay for static IP addresses. It admittedly wasn’t the cheapest solution, but I went with it because I could deal with issues locally and I had been running things that way for something like fifteen years.

Of course, the fact that I was facing unemployment meant that I couldn’t really afford to run things that way anymore. So, I had to look for a solution, even if it was only a temporary one. I ended up moving all of my services to a cloud-hosted VPS, and we migrated the home connection to a residential-based one.

In retrospect, while I had originally considered this a temporary move, I kind of wish I had done it sooner.

The VPS isn’t quite as powerful, RAM and storage wise, as the virtual machines running on my virtual host server at home, but it’s compensated by the fact that it uses SSD storage and is on a much faster pipe. In addition, running the server off-site meant that my servers aren’t affected when there’s a power outage at the house (the local Comcast node doesn’t have redundant power, so even though the local servers were on battery backups they lost internet connectivity), and our personal web browsing and streaming aren’t affected when the servers are uploading backups to my backup provider.

Moreover, even with paying for the lowest tier of internet service and a monthly fee for the VPS, our total bill is less than half what we were paying before, and we have faster internet speeds to boot. This doesn’t even account for the fact that I don’t pay for a cable modem rental anymore, as I’m using a cable modem I purchased from Amazon instead of a forced rental from Comcast Business. We also have power savings because the servers are now shut down.

At this point, it’s unlikely I’ll be powering the local servers back on unless there’s a demand for them, and I don’t see that happening in the immediate future. As much as I enjoyed running stuff locally the past fifteen years, this arrangement is more cost-effective and practical. We’ll see how things go, but right now, I’m happy. :-)