Server Management for Startups

What is important about Server Management for Startups?  As your Startup moves toward working with a large site, lots of people and pages maintaining it, you will come across various workflows to get from a web design paper prototype to the actual pages live on the internet. The workflow for a complex site can include many separate web servers and server locations. It is important be aware of the best options you will need each stage of your startup. Each of these servers has a different purpose. In her article, Webservers and Workflow, Jennifer Kyrnin describes some of the more common servers in a complex website and how they are use including:  Production, Testing, Development, Content, and Staging Servers.  By understanding the purpose of the various servers you might come across, you can do your design and development work more effectively. The program that handles your Web pages on the back end is called a Web server. The one your site is using can impact and affect your Web pages. Security, speed and scalability are all impacted by the Web server. These links and articles will help you manage your Web server. Apache SecuritySun Java ServerSSIHTAccessHTTPContent ManagementWeb AdministrationCaching Web Servers and Workflow Web servers often play a critical role in the workflow of building a website. While most small and medium sized websites have only one web server (the production server), larger companies may have many more than that for building and maintaining their website. Learn what different types of servers might appear in a web design workflow. Server management is the maintenance of web servers. When you have a fully managed server, your web host is responsible for some or all server maintenance. If your server is not fully managed, you are responsible for maintaining it or for hiring someone to maintain it for you. There is no commonly accepted definition of exactly what is included when a server is fully managed. When discussing server management services, it’s a good idea to cover specifics to come to an agreement on what services will be done. This page lists common services that server management companies offer. How do you best decide about your Server Management for your Startup?  David Cummings of Entrepreneur, Operations, Tech suggests the following Server Management for Startups. Cloud- the servers are virtualized such that a physical machine is often shared by one or more customers.  Shared hosting and VPS setups fall under:

  • Good for starting out when server needs are unknown and it’s easy to scale up and down quickly
  • Best for environments that have differing scale needs on a regular basis (e.g. imagine you normally need 20 servers, but for a few hours each night you need 100 servers to crunch data)
  • Great for an on-demand infrastructure backup (e.g. replicate the database data, but don’t turn on all the other necessary servers unless another facility goes down)
  • Higher latency on average
Managed- has physical machines dedicated to the customer and provides rented hardware and maintenance provided for a monthly fee.
  • Best for the core infrastructure in a 3 – 25 server environment where a relatively constant amount of horsepower is needed (most startups operate this way) and capital is not as plentiful (renting a server is more capital efficient than buying it when getting started)
  • Cheaper than the cloud on a per-server basis, but more expensive than colocation assuming a low cost of capital
“Managed dedicated servers are not just ideal for established companies – they may make the difference between a startup’s success and failure,” advises Chris Thompson of ZEROLAG(Hosting Evolved)  “Managed dedicated servers immediately provide startups with robust infrastructure and a virtual IT staff that’s qualified to care for it, relieving the need for entrepreneurs to create adequate hosting resources themselves, or suffering the consequences of making do with less than what they truly need.  Procuring managed dedicated servers through a hosting provider eliminates significant capital expenditures and results in lower, more predictable operating costs.” Colocation- has physical machines dedicated to the customer and is a bring-your-own-hardware approach.
  • Best for maturing startups that can afford acquiring servers and personnel to manage them
  • Requires more effort and management compared to cloud and managed
  • Maximum flexibility regarding the hardware used (e.g. fancy servers and storage configurations)
In general, I recommend startups start with the cloud using an environment like Amazon Web Services and then move on to managed hosting followed by colocation as the business progresses. Ideas for Server Management for Startups  DevOps-infinity-loop,png DevOps—It’s not just the latest buzzword from the IT sphere. It’s a paradigm shift in the way technology companies look at the marriage between software development and the infrastructure that powers it.  DevOps is a union of Developers and IT Operations (aka Systems Engineers) and a collection of best practices, a set of tooling and a philosophy that emphasizes automation and collaboration. In the article, Web Server Management, they provide many helpful links and articles that will help you manage your Web server, because the program that handles your Web pages on the back end is called a Web server. The one your site is using can impact and affect your Web pages: security, speed and scalability are all impacted by the Web server. Public cloud provider Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched AWS Activate, a set of resources to help startup customers get onto the cloud. enables you to manage your data across several cloud systems, no matter who is your host  Increasing numbers of businesses have gone multi-cloud today – there are several providers, each one with their own characteristics, and businesses prefer to combine them for optimal robustness, reliability and performance cost. For example, Amazon EC2 is better for your budget, but when it comes to performance, other hosting systems are more reliable. So you could host some systems critical to performance with another provider and keep the rest on EC2 and save money Online Resources for Server Management for Startups Webservers and Workflow Web Server Management Web Server Management from wikipedia has a list of 25 plus categories addressed Comparison of Web Hosting Control Panels  An excellent chart of the many Web Hosting groups Startup Small Business Clears the Fog around Multi-Cloud Server Management with Their Integrated Cross Platform Solution  Cloud vs Colocation vs Managed Hosting for Startups Amazon Web Services Launches Free Set of Resources To Help Startups Get on Cloud User Management for Startups How to Start Off Right Three Reasons Your Startup Needs Develops or Else Penny Pinchers of the Cloud How to Get Your Startups Technology Up and Running