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I want to start some sites with some confidential db. This might not be suitable for dedicated server hosting as well. So i am planning to establish my own server.

Can any body tell me initial cost and equipment i would need.

I already have 1 laptop, 1 Desktop, 1 wi-fi router. And i'll need 1 server, at least 4 mbps brodband connection (as per my knowledge).

Moreover i have no knowledge to run server, their maintenance etc. But i'll learn it.

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It mostly depends on what kind of requests you'll be processing not strictly "number of visits". Is the site heavy in server-side processing (doing compilcated DB operations, calculations, or image generation_) or is it mostly just fetching info from the DB and displaying static pages? –  shiftycow Dec 5 '10 at 14:47
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If you host confidential, maybe highly sensitive data, you'll need a skilled sysadmin who knows how to protect your site. This is no business for a beginner. –  SvW Dec 5 '10 at 15:00
    
To echo what SvenW says... a question that's more important than the hardware cost is: What is the cost if your confidential data is accidentally exposed to the world (or to your competitors)? What is the cost of not doing the project at all? Somewhere in between there is what you should spend to make sure it's done right. –  mattdm Dec 5 '10 at 15:03
    
What will it cost? tempted to suggest your sanity tbh. –  Chopper3 Dec 5 '10 at 21:22

2 Answers 2

I have to challenge this question; why, again, do you want to host your own? Not only is it likely that your ISP won't allow you to host this server, but when you say "4 mbps brodband connection", I'm assuming you're talking about download speeds--and not necessarily upload speeds.

In the server world, privacy isn't so much of an issue with the geological location of the server--after all, if someone can log in to your server and access your data locally, there's little reason why they wouldn't be able to do so remotely. That being said, there are also a variety of ways of encrypting data at the file system and database levels both, if you're worried about someone physically accessing your data.

Keep in mind, reputation is everything for a server provider. For example, if Rackspace were to get broken into and have hard drives physically removed, or an employee were to do so against the user's will, their brand would be over. Security is not a joke, and this should not be your primary reason for wanting to roll your own server.

All in all, I think you need to reconsider what you're trying to do. There's simply no way you're going to cover redundancy, bandwidth, support, environmental controls, and general server maintenance entirely on your own. And even though a lot of people on SF could potentially do this, the majority will not, because the cost-to-benefit ratio is awful.

Instead, what you might want to ask is, "I'm storing sensitive data in a database, how can I make sure this is secure?"

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And even though a lot of people on SF could potentially do this, the majority will not, because the cost-to-benefit ratio is awful. -- a key point right there. By the time you've properly learned how, you realise you probably shouldn't anyway. –  RobM Dec 5 '10 at 22:44

It all depends on what kind of capacity you need. If the load is likely to be very low, you could easily re-purpose a mid range desktop to act as a server. On the other extreme a high end server with multiple CPUs, tons of RAM, high speed disks (etc.) could easily run into tens of thousands of dollars.

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Would a mid range Desktop be better to host 4-5 sites. I accept 1000 visits per site per day for starting 2 months. That may increase up to 10000 visits. –  articlestack Dec 5 '10 at 14:02

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