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Help to configure a new server ;)


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Can you please help me to configure a server? My data:

  • latest Invision Community
  • about 1000 concurrent users online
  • database size: 55 GB
  • file size: 46 GB
  • traffic: slightly unter 5 TB a month
  • outgoing mails: very very many through GMail Enterprise at the moment and I do not have proper bounce solution, so the stats are irrelevant. I consider to switch to Amazon to be able to manage bounce and to reduce outgoing mail traffic significantly.

I am going to use:

  • debian+Plesk*
  • Wasabi + Cloudflare
  • Amazon SES/SNS for mails
  • Elastic (own installation on the same server or service? I am not sure) 

What I have to configure:

  • CPU (I am totally unsure what all this Hexa-Core, Octa-Core Skylake, Hyper-Threading-Technology means and I not willing to understand it, any suggestion from professional? :blush:
  • RAM size, how much is really needed to have a smooth run and having an option for some growth?
  • Do I need SATA SSD or HDD? 
  • Do I need RAID controller?
  • Storage Box: how many backup space do I need?

I need only suggestions for the configuration. Please do NOT offer any hosting provider per PM to me! I am very very very happy with my hosting. I just would like to configure a new server and move my project to the next level. I will NOT change my hosting provider. 

Thanks!

 *I cannot live without Plesk as I am not compatible with Linux console. I have tried to manage server several times via console and have corrupted it every time totally, so that only rescue team could help :biggrin: 

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Any reputable hosting company should be able to readily answer your questions so you can choose the best hardware/software configuration to meet your present and future needs.  

You have reached a level of complexity where the phrase, "I don't know what I don't know" comes into play.  "If" you stick to the notion that you are unwilling to understand key details or search out answers for yourself you will not be able to fill in all of your missing knowedge gaps.  

You have passed the point where you can get by on "free" advice.  You need someone to help you properly setup a server and manage it if you want to continue growing your site and have a proper disaster recovery scheme in place.

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Christopher Anderson said:

You have passed the point where you can get by on "free" advice.

Thank you for your estimation. From this point of view I probably have to see if I still give free advices here on the community and to whom (probably only to those, who have not passed the point :biggrin:

I have not said I do not need an admin, I have said I will not change my hosting provider. Do you feel a difference? Do you offer any services? Are you an experienced admin? How much do you want for "non-free" advice for the server configuration? 😉 

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What's your budget for the server? That will help us to do a better proposal...

Without checking the server the recommendation may not be 100% accurate (also it depends how fast your forums grow) but maybe something like:

Quote

CPU (I am totally unsure what all this Hexa-Core, Octa-Core Skylake, Hyper-Threading-Technology means and I not willing to understand it, any suggestion from professional? 

Cpu with total core/threads around: 16

Quote

RAM size, how much is really needed to have a smooth run and having an option for some growth?

I would like to have there 96GB.

Quote

Do I need SATA SSD or HDD? 

Best option is Nvme then Ssd ...

Quote

Do I need RAID controller?

Hardware raid is better than soft raid.

Quote

Storage Box: how many backup space do I need?

It depends how you backup your data and if you compress them or not but it is easy to calculate it.

Just check one of your existing backups and see the size of it and then calculate that size with how many backups you want to store and you will see how much space you will need.

If for example the total size is 50GB and you need to keep 7 backups you will need a total space of 350GB.

It will be good also to consider a remote backup solution for safety first and for less usage space for the main server.

For example you can keep 1-2 backups only on the main server (so around 50 - 100GB storage will be needed) for fast recovery if needed and then push the rest to a remote storage server.

There are many very cheap storage services on the net.

Happy new year  🙂

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4 hours ago, ASTRAPI said:

What's your budget for the server? That will help us to do a better proposal...

I have to calculate, sorry. My server structure is "a bit" chaotical here, sharing same resources for many projects. This server should be dedicated to own project only. So I need some time to separate the costs.

4 hours ago, ASTRAPI said:

If for example the total size is 50GB and you need to keep 7 backups you will need a total space of 350GB.

It's also a bit chaotical :blush: I am making incremental backups every day and a full backup every 7 days. They are all stored on the server AND remote. I do not know if it is overkill. I also create a full backup before every upgrade or changes on live server. I never tried to restore something from incremental backup, I am even not sure it world work. :rolleyes: 

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8 hours ago, Sonya* said:
  • CPU (I am totally unsure what all this Hexa-Core, Octa-Core Skylake, Hyper-Threading-Technology means and I not willing to understand it, any suggestion from professional? :blush:
  • RAM size, how much is really needed to have a smooth run and having an option for some growth?
  • Do I need SATA SSD or HDD? 
  • Do I need RAID controller?
  • Storage Box: how many backup space do I need?

I recommend:

  • CPU: Intel Xeon D-2141i (8 cores/16 threads – 2.2/3 GHz)
  • RAM: 64 or 96 GB (DDR4)
  • Drive: SSD NVMe
  • RAID: Hardware is best but expensive than Soft RAID
  • Storage: 2x1TB SSD NVMe Soft RAID, or as desired
  • Public Network: 1 Gbps unmetered traffic (desirable)
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Thank you all! I now have my new configuration:

  • 16 Core
  • 128 GB RAM
  • 2 x 960 GB NVMe SSD
  • 4-Port Hardware RAID-Controller
  • Wasabi up to 5 TB + Cloudflare
  • Elasticsearch Service Standard
  • Amazon SES
  • Backup space 2 TB
  • Plesk Obisidian

Do I miss something? 

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Quote

Do I miss something? 

It depends from what you like to have and what you like to do 🙂

For example for me i prefer to not use a control panel but you prefer to use Plesk. So if it's what you want then yes you are fine 🙂

Your server hardware is very good and you should be able to handle your traffic easily ...

You will need of course to optimize the software that you will install. Like Nginx, Mysql, php, network e.t.c

 

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Nginx, phpfpm, MariaDB or Mysql , Redis cache and Elastic search will help a lot.

But once again just installing them will not give you the maximum performance as you must know how to configure/optimize them 🙂

Also convert all database tables to Innodb.

 

 

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31 minutes ago, ASTRAPI said:

But once again just installing them will not give you the maximum performance as you must know how to configure/optimize them 🙂

I know. Unfortunately I am not a server administrator and I am not going to become one 😃 A friend of mine helps me a bit, but I also consider to engage admin in the future.  😉 I have to sort out the costs first and see what is feasible. 

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I run a community your size.  My two cents.

Consider Acronis off-site/cloud-based backup for daily snap shots so that you have a full off-site, filesystem level back ups available to restore any/everything in a snap. Restore times for the full server of multiple 100's of GB are less than 30 minutes depending on your hosts backside setup.

You can ask your hosting provider if they offer something else similar if that doesn't work for you.  Basically don't rely on Cpanels backup only (use both).  For cpanel do backups every day or other day for 5-7 days.   Then once a month for the last 2 months.  Also, use the cloud backup option so your cpanel backups are sent to something like Google drive.  

Def install Redis and config IPB to use it.  It drops the MySQL query load by a ton and is worth it.  It takes 3 mins to install on Linux. 30 secs to enable on IPB.

Make sure you config my.cnf (MySQL config) to leverage your new servers RAM. If not it will not be optimized or likely go to waist.  Same for Apache, etc..

Config an external monitoring software to look for your website being up. It can save your booty if there is a SW issue and the forums goes offline or is corrupted.  You won't know until people email you if not. I've have 3-4 hours down time for the forums because if this in the past -- easy to over come.

Also consider using datadog.com's free off-site server monitoring plan to watch both real time and long term trends on your server's performance. Server load, MySQL performance, Apache performance, heck you can even set it up to track online members so you can correlate server performance to users on the site.  You can configure alerts and alarms to message you under whatever conditions you like.

 

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1 hour ago, Sonya* said:

It looks like it is not possible to have both: Hardware RAID-Controller and NVMe SSD. I am not sure why, server restriction or incompatibility. Now I have to decide: NVMe OR Hardware RAID with SSD. :huh:

NVME has super fast Data Transfer Speeds and quick access times, I would go with this if it's not much more expensive than SSD RAID.

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