[pmwiki-users] Fwd: Hosting Qs: reseller, wikifarm

Tegan Dowling tmdowling at gmail.com
Wed Feb 11 16:16:13 CST 2009

On Tue, Feb 10, 2009 at 12:04 PM, Patrick R. Michaud <pmichaud at pobox.com> wrote:
> I have and use reseller accounts on my VPS (provided through
> powervps.com) to set up multiple domains and wikis.  Maintaining
> a wiki farm in such an environment is fairly easy to do, and the
> individual accounts are able to manage their own mail settings,
> mailing lists, and other items through the cpanel interface.
> It works very well.
> That said, I've never actually done any invoicing or bookkeeping
> for these accounts, as I host them as a donation/courtesy to
> various organizations I'm involved with or feel like supporting.
> In 2006 I also wrote a longish message on this subject on
> another list [1], and what I wrote there continues to be
> true today -- it's important to find a service provider where
> their "typical client" fits your profile, because their support
> systems are then tuned to meeting your needs most effectively.
> For many years I would be at providers where the issues I had
> were not the common ones for the provider, and I had many
> frustrations and delays as a result.
> [1] http://www.ntlug.org/pipermail/discuss/Week-of-Mon-20060828/026653.html
> To answer some of the specifics of your message:
>> Do reseller accounts typically include Virtual Private Server service,
>> or not?  If not, that is something I should also look for, right?
> VPS and reseller accounts can be either separate or combined --
> i.e., one can have a VPS-only, reseller only, or VPS+reseller.
> I have the latter.  I decided to go with VPS because I wanted
> better ability to troubleshoot and tune things myself without
> having to go through support (and would probably choose this
> even if I didn't already know how to do that because I can always
> learn).
>> In
>> either case, I would need the host to provide support for hardware and
>> LAMP system stuff, as I would have no clue how to administer my own
>> environment.  How do I ask for this - what's the correct terminology?
> This is normally provided for you as part of any VPS or reseller
> package -- the provider takes care of the basic operating system
> and software updates, you're responsible only for any customizations
> you perform.
>> AND I'd ideally like to be able to manage the client sites as fields
>> in a wiki farm, so somehow I'd like to be able to have the PmWiki
>> engine installed on a parent account that the client fields would take
>> orders from.  Is this possible, in a reseller environment?
> It's certainly possible, but in this case you probably want to be
> sure to get a virtual private server.  With a reseller-only account
> you might not have sufficient access to be able to easily make
> the wikifarm installation available to your clients -- having a VPS
> means you almost certainly can do it.
> Another reason to favor having a VPS is that with reseller-only
> accounts there may be other resellers' clients sharing the
> server (virtual or otherwise) with your clients.  This can make
> things a bit more complicated if you ever want to upgrade
> your service level with a provider, or migrate to another
> provider.  Also, having your own VPS means you don't have to
> worry about other resellers' clients being able to
> (accidentally or maliciously) access your clients' data.
> If you decide to go with a VPS+reseller combination similar
> to what I have with pmwiki.org, I highly recommend PowerVPS.com .
> I've had very good experience with them, both in terms of
> long-term stability and in the responsiveness/quality of their
> support teams.  Unlike many providers, they _only_ offer VPS
> and dedicated hosting packages, and not individual site accounts.
> The advantage of this (and the primary advantage I was looking for)
> is that my support questions aren't buried in a flood of
> "How do I change my password?"  and  "What is a domain?"  types
> of questions that come from the people buying smaller packages
> available from other providers.  The potential disadvantage
> is that I don't know how much "hand-holding" they're able
> to provide for those types of questions if you're likely to
> have them.  However, it appears to me that the web interfaces
> they provide are such that even someone with limited LAMP
> experience would be able to function well in their vps.
> Hope this helps; if I can provide any more details or answer
> other questions I'll be glad to do so.
> Pm

Wow, that's great, and makes all kinds of sense.  I'm looking at and
impressed with PowerVPS, and right away see that I would need to
choose between cpanel and plesk.  I have the impression that cpanel is
a little "friendlier" to a less-knowledgeable user.  Is that correct,
do you think? If so, do you know if I would Iose functionality I need
for a wikifarm if I chose that?

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