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I know similar questions have been asked a couple of times but to keep the things short, currently I'm on a Managed hosting of Site5, which is quite good except it's quite expensive.

I want to know, is there an easy way, with almost no knowledge of SSH/Unix (commandline) skills to run an unmanaged server?

  • After it has been initially hardened, can it be as easy as doing apt get/update and everything is fixed?
  • What are things that would be an issue / would break easy?
  • Are there VPS providers, which do this initial setup/hardening?
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closed as too broad by masegaloeh, womble, Itai Ganot, mdpc, Jenny D May 13 '15 at 9:47

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Is this an actual production website? Is it important that it's up most of the time? If so, then no, it's not possible for you to manage a production webserver with no linux experience.

At a minimum, you need the following:

  • Backups
  • Firewall
  • Dependency software installed (MySQL/Apache/etc)
  • Application software installed (Wordpress, whatever else you are running)
  • Backups
  • Monitoring (you need to know how loaded your box is, what kind of requests/sec you are seeing)
  • Regular maintenance (Keeping up to date on security fixes, installing new software)
  • Backups (no, it's not a mistake that this is listed three times)
  • Knowledge of what to do if/when a security breach occurs

Simply put, a production web site is not the place for you to be learning your linux skills. I'd suggest you get a VPS and run some personal or development websites on it, in order for you to start learning about it. Don't attempt to go from a managed hosting environment to unmanaged unless you know exactly what to expect. Based on the type of question you asked, I wouldn't suggest you move to an unmanaged VPS yet.

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It depends, when you say almost no experience I would say that yes maybe you need to just pay someone else to manage security for you. However if you are willing to learn I would suggest running a few ubuntu images and following this checklist:

Ubuntu automatically patches security updates, and that might be a low maintenance solution for you. You still need to monitor your logs, and keep your apps secure too. It's a lot of work ... in the end your managed service just might be a good value. But if you learn a bit about the process then at least you can tell if they are doing a good job.

As far as a VPS provider that provides hardened images: I am working on a startup that does just that as well as provides other security tools. Email if you are interested in beta testing.

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