'Virtual Private Servers' - Advice, recollections and recommendations requested
Thru no fault of my own, I've been given a possible budget for a server
- this is for a small decentralized non-profit that is still paper
driven, and has been for decades. Over the years, each branch has kind
of grown it's own record keeping system, and currently some are using
OpenOffice, Lotus, and early Excel (and I mean early, it was complete on
a Mac by 1997 and it's not trivial). Most still hand-fill the forms.
However, everyone wants to use broadband and eventually each center will
convert to an OpenOffice based system (Windows mostly), so I need
I've done some research, and as a first cut I'm looking at renting
cycles which give me a debian box out there somewhere that I have root
access to -- initially running a mail server with maybe 50 - 100
mailboxes, some kind of messaging server - jabber or it's ilk, and some
kind of joint file storage, probably an ftp variant. This will mimic
most of the our current usage. We'll probably leave our web site on
another host for the foreseeable future to keep the traffic down on this
So here are the first few questions. Direct answers, pointers to
relevant FM's and better questions welcome:
1. Reputable providers: Who do you use that you would recommend? UML
seems acceptable, since our load will be almost minuscule to begin with.
At least one static ip is a must.
2. How do I get a grip on potential traffic volume? I'm sure there's a
formula out there somewhere that I can plug some numbers into that will
give me an approximation. This really is a shoe-string non-profit and I
don't want to buy more than we really need, but if I find good deal I
want to be reasonably comfortable I won't run into surcharges for excess
traffic later on.
3. Instant messaging: I don't use it, have never investigated it, and
know nothing. I will investigate, but a few signposts would be welcome.
Any and all comments appreciated!