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VPS Needed?

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I've never owned a VPS nor do I really know how to use one but i was wondering is a VPS needed for me?

Forum is about a year old now

700 members
200K posts
About 20 active users but usually around 10-15

Is it necessary for me to go VPS yet?

Also is 512 MB enough?

I don't think you need one.

I am on shared hosting and these are my stats.

25k Total Posts

5.6k Total Members

Normaly about 30 - 45 users on my site at once (never really goes below 25)

Site load doesn't really change, page load times are no different to when 5 users are online.

I would say only upgrade when your site starts to feel slow

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From your stats, it sounds feasible to run in a shared hosting environment. But as a personal taste, I would switch to VPS. And here's why.


1. VPSes at low points like 512MB are so cheap, it's similar in price range to shared hosting.
2. You are more likely to get better performance from a vps out of the box.
3. You are open to tons of optimization options to make your site run faster.
4. You can choose what kind of hardware runs your forum. (*cough* ssd vps are awesome *cough*)
5. You have more freedom to use the box for other purposes.
6. It creates a good learning experience.


1. You have to learn. lol
2. You could have a worst host on your hand (*cough* nearly never exists with ssd vps hosts *cough*)


Without any control panel like cpanel/plesk/etc, yes, 512 would be plenty for your forum.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

We have about 120 users online fairly often, today we peaked at 850 online at once, creating around 600posts per day, eating through around 120gb a month bandwidth. 1,022,556 total posts, 14,926 total members.

And as of last week when our hosts upgraded there software to better manage (aka, throttle) usage we where running trouble free on a shared hosting package costing £7.50/month. The price of a suitable VPS has been a bit of a shock!


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If you are not a server admin, save yourself the trouble, either get a good shared host.. (IPS HOSTING :) ) or get a managed VPS, there are too many people using vps's that have no clue what they are doing and hence why we have so many infected sites and servers on the web these days.

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If you don't need it don't get it... Simple math really

If you are looking to learn then setup a server on a local machine and practice inside your own network first.

There are plenty of guides to get you going without the headaches of spammers or hackers.

Here is one I wrote a while back. http://community.invisionpower.com/blog/1784/entry-7129-how-to-setup-your-own-web-server/.

I ran this server for over two years... The only thing I could not protect if from was a sudden lightning storm.

I repaired the motherboard but sorry to say I can't really trust it under load.

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My view is don't underestimate the effect a slow server has on membership. I lost members through not upgrading my server quick enough as they got tired of waiting for pages to load or images to upload. It is not only IP board to consider, what other IP add ons are you using Ip Gallery or IP blog, how many hooks etc ?? All impact on performance.

I have 500,000 post and about 8500 members and I have to run on a dedicated server. Overkill some might say, but the reality is if you want to keep your forum alive in a competitive market then you need to ensure the basics such as a quick loading forum is essential, especially as broadband speeds get faster. I switched to two different managed VPS servers and neither could cope with the demand of my board. I would consider an upgrade sooner rather than later.

As mentioned if you are not that adept with managing a server, then a managed VPS is absolutely essential. That slightly extra monthly cost is worth its weight in gold and will make your life a lot more trouble free !

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