I'm located in Europe, and I'm looking for a flexible solution to host my Ubuntu server. I'd like to have a unique and scalable server using Virtualmin, where I could add/remove as much CPU, memory, and HDD capacity that I need.

I have been looking into OVH and Gandi which seem to have good services, but OVH is not really scalable on the HDD (you pick a plan 10/50/100 Gb and can't change it), and Gandi also puts a limit at 200Gb, using a share system which includes memory, cpu and HDD, but where you can't pick only HDD or only memory for example.

Elastichosts.com seems to have the most flexible system, but they are a bit expensive and I had never heard about them (and I need a it of trust for that kind of thing!).

Finally, Amazon Web Services seems great... but I didn't understand anything! You have the choice to create a mini or large instance, but what about if you want a system with 500 Gb? I really don't get their offer, there are way too many things.

closed as not constructive by Sven, Shane Madden, Chopper3 May 5 '11 at 15:50

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  • Honnestly guys, I don't get the reason for closing this. "Subjective and representative"? Maybe I shouldn't have put the company's names except for AWS, but the question about choosing the right "kind" of cloud hosting should have remained. I think a comment or an edit from you would have been smarter. That's pretty disapointing. – Nabab May 5 '11 at 16:15

I can address the AWS offerings; I'm not familiar with the other vendors.

For AWS, there are several different virtual hardware configurations; each configuration, which is priced according to what you get, has fixed RAM and CPU specs. It also has fixed ephemeral-storage specs -- that's the storage that you get "for free" with the instance, but which disappears when the instance is terminated. For persistent storage, most people provision EBS volumes, which have their own pricing model, and attach them to instances. EBS storage is limited only by your platform + filesystem + EBS volume size you initially provisioned.

My impression is that some cloud vendors do make their offerings somewhat simpler and easy to grasp than the AWS offerings, which are quite large and always expanding.

  • Thanks! So I can extend the 1.7Gb of my mini instance to whatever space I purchase from EBS? – Nabab May 5 '11 at 13:58
  • No. the 1.7GB is the RAM of a small instance. You can not add more RAM or change any of the specs of an instance. You can add more storage. See my answer. – Stephen May 5 '11 at 17:22

To address your AWS hard drive question. You can provision any amount of storage you want as "Elastic Block Storage devices". These are drives of any size can be hotplugged like usb drives. Pricing information can be found here. You pay for both storage and number of I/O requests.

Amazon does not give as much freedom with any of the other specs. You need to choose from the list of instance types here. The "instance storage" listed on that page is the storage that is attached to the instance. It is faster and it is "free" but dies as soon as the server is shutdown. Anything that requires persistance needs to be on EBS drives.

The thing about amazon is that everything costs money. They nickel and dime you. However, they allow for excellent scaling and can cost very little to get started.

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