Friday, September 08, 2006

New source of DNSBL and ClamAV unofficial DBs

http://www.msrbl.com/

Looks promising.

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Unofficial phishing + scam ClamAV database

I'm starting to test this out today: http://www.sanesecurity.com/clamav/index.htm

I hope there won't be too many false positives...

Anyone using them already?

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Saturday, September 02, 2006

Virtual Private Servers Pitfalls

It didn't take much time until I found pitfalls with VPSs. Today, I got bit by memory problem. My VPS had 128 MB RAM max. Before installing my usual packages, the memory usage was around 20 MB. Nothing! :). But then I installed my packages, forgot to tweak apache to minimize memory requirement. Installed mysql for cacti, configured cacti...

Then, this morning, I realize that many processes were missing on my VPS. Why? I had enabled the yum daily cronjob.... mistake! Do you have an idea of how much memory yum uses? Too much.

Tektonic told me that they stopped selling UM0 packages because of that: too many clients having memory problems. I upgraded my plans to UM1. I'm wondering though... how does Vpslink do with the smallest plan, only 64 MB RAM!

I can't end this post without adding again how much helpful the folks at Tektonic have been up to now.

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Friday, September 01, 2006

Virtual Private Servers

Hi,

Time for another knowledge-sharing post.

I recently discovered a very good alternative to shared, reseller, or dedicated hosting: A virtual private server (VPS).

In fact, a VPS is a virtual machine running, with many other virtual machines (VM). There are many packages, but the cheapest are:

Tektonic (Based on Virtuozzo. I own 3 VPS from them. Very, very nice and responsive people. They've been very supportive for me in my beginnings with VPSs.
OpenHosting (Based on linux Vserver, fedora core 4 only for now, interesting utility billing system)
Vpslink (Based on OpenVZ, the open-source version of Virtuozzo, never tried yet)

Tektonic puts limit on outbound bandwidth that can be sometimes harsh. (Unmetered 1 mbps max for the smallest plan (15$/month)). That is more interesting for applications that don't need much outbound traffic (like remote backup, you have an unmetered 100mbps!) or e-mail, which don't really need an instant transfer, but can be problematic for web hosting. Vpslink, on the other hand, use total monthly transfer and offert gigabit connexions on all their packages. Their restriction is more on RAM (64 MB only on the smallest plan). Can it even run yum or up2date???

Both Tektinic and Vpslink offer control panels, but Vpslink might be better because all the plans are using the monthly traffic method to restrict bandwidth. The most expensive unmanaged plan at Tektonic (100$month) only allows 4 mbps outbound.

Vpslink offer for unmanaged virtual private server for web hosting is the one that makes the most sense, IMHO. However, there may be some features lacking compared to Tektonic, since they use OpenVZ. For example, is there an iptables firewall available? In Virtuozzo, it is configurable via the control panel. In OpenVZ?

  • 40$/month
  • 20 GB HDD spac
  • 500GB monthly traffic
  • 3 IP addresses
  • 512 MB RAM
  • 5$/month for the ServerCP control panel
  • 10$/month for DirectAdmin control panel
To learn linux, or for test servers, Tektonic is really the best solution...

Tektonic offers managed VPS, if you need more features. Vpslink does that through its parent company, Spy. User Mode Linux is another technology, used by BlackNightSolutions. Nice Irish folks...

If you need to host 3-4 domains or more and would like to have a control panel, I recommend looking at a Tektonic and Vpslink. Openhosting doesn't offer a control panel. Only webmin is available, and virtualmin is not "officially" supported. Openhosting is also more expensive, but a lot less restricted in hardware resource.

The choice is yours!

As usual, comments welcome!

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Sendmail milters from SnertSoft

This is just a quick post to encourage people to try SnertSoft's excellent anti-spam milters. If you're running a spam-filtering gateway, you may want to try milter-ahead. It checks at the backend mail server if the user exists before accepting the message.

Milter-sender is also very interesting, it checks for the existence of the sender's e-mail before accepting the message.

Milter-link checks for URL in message bodies againsts URI blacklists. And this one is free! (most are).

All the milters' descriptions are here.

Anthony, the author, is very kind and offers good support. Have a look at his website. There are many other milters that may help you reduce the load on your spam-filtering system and reduce the number of spams that make it to your user's mailbox!

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