Sunday, April 18, 2010

Looking for some Hosting?

If you've been following some of the discussions on Reddit, you'd know that I've got some new servers in the Pegasus Datacenter, which is on Wharf St, in the middle of Brisbane.

Unfortunately, the customer that had previously agreed to take (edit: To clarify, I mean 'rent access to') most of those servers has just decided that he DOESN'T want to, after all. So I'm now in a bit of a pickle... Well, a lot of a pickle.

As a bit of Background of who I am, I'm pretty much a hardcore geek. I'm one the founders of the Sydney Linux Users Group. I'm an Open Source developer. I'm a Cisco geek (although I'm NOT the Rob Thomas from, which caused some amusing errors when I was working for Cisco), and a VoIP geek, and a Linux geek, and well.. You get the idea. Just generically geeky.

So because of all of this geek stuff that's happening, when someone goes 'Yeah, that's a good idea, lets do that', I just go and do it, rather than getting signed contracts. This normally works, I'm a reasonably trusting guy, and I normally know everyone personally that I work with.

So I went and bought all these servers (Which, in total, are 2 Quad Xeons, and 4 Dual-Quad Opterons, along with 6TB of storage, and a tape changer), and started to commission them, when the customer that I thought was all raring to go has now decided to pull the plug. I've outlayed about $50k (AUD) on all of this hardware over the last couple of months, and I'm now really, really worried.

So, I'm hoping that there's enough geeky redditors, who need fast hosting in Australia, who can take advantage of this huge amount of horsepower sitting idle in the Datacenter. I've got it set up as a 2008 Terminal Server (hosted applications + Office), Storage Server, Exchange 2010 server, and a 'master' server which ties them all together, as well as a Linux based Web server.

Here's some of stuff that I can do for you - which is what the original customer wanted, and is how these machines have been set up:
  • Windows DFS file replication.
    This replicates, in a fashion similar to rsync, files between 'head office' and the datacenter. This is stupidly handy for people who work remotely from head office. They use RDP to come into the data center, update files there, and it transparently (and almost instantly) replicates the files back to head office. And vice versa. It's perfect for telecommuting, but also insanely handy for offsite backups.
  • Hosted Exchange 2010 (or 2007)
    Yeah. It's Exchange, it works well, it's expensive. I make sure it's running happily, you just get your email.
  • Active Directory offsite Backups
    Keeps a copy of your AD tree offsite. If you tie that in with Hosted Exchange, you can keep email flowing and things happening even if your main office is hit by a bus.
  • Application Hosting
    If you don't want to keep upgrading Workstations, you can offload applications to run on the Servers in the Data Center. Under Vista and 7, it's pretty much transparent to the end user. This ties in nicely with DFS replication
  • Colocation
    I have 15RU spare in the data center. If you're looking to host your OWN servers, then I can do that too. You also get 24 hour Access to the site, so you can do changes whenever you want, rather than having to have an outage during the day.
There's also a machine sitting there idle (Quad Opteron), which is there for future expansion, which I'm quite happy to rent, with your choice of OS (Linux or Microsoft).

If you just want Cheap hosting, I've also got a machine in the US that'll happily run pretty much any website you want, but, it's in the US, and if you care deeply about latency and RTT's and such, you won't want that.

I haven't decided how much I have to charge yet. Obviously, the more people/companies that sign up, the less I have to charge, so I'm hoping to get a pile of 'yes, we're interested!'

Feel free to reply on Reddit, or comment here, or even give me a call - 0402-077-155 - and I'll see if I can help


Caligula said...

sell shells.

-by the sea shore.

Jimbo said...

Hi Rob,

To get critical mass, would the bidding model work for you?

Basically the more people who bid the cheaper it gets per head, but is only binding on you after a preset number of people commit (a number you specify).

I'm not advocating *using* scoopon, just using their "Dutch auction" style of getting multiple people to bid.


Curtis said...

Hey Rob,

I see you're in Stage 1! I used to have gear in that room until we built our own datacentre.

Are the boxes HP? We may be interested in leasing the hardware (we have our own co-lo in the HACS room at the end).


Curtis said...

Wait, no! You're in stage 2 :) I have friends with gear in there though. My bad!