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Benchmarking a time4vps storage VPS

- Posted in VPS by with comments

Time4vps have been providing high storage VPS for a while now, and they're one of the popular providers for storage.

Here's an offer from them in their datacenter in Lithuania, Europe.

  • 1x1.7ghz processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 1TB HDD (RAID, 200IOPS limit)
  • 10TB bandwidth
  • 100mbit network
  • OpenVZ
  • Hosted in Lithuania, Europe.
  • 5.99 EUR/month

This looks like a good storage deal for the price, there's plenty of bandwidth too. The 200 IO/s is an interesting limit, meaning 200 I/O operations per second. Let's see what it looks like with a benchmark script:

CPU model:  Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2603 v4 @ 1.70GHz
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  1698.052 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 1024 MB
Total amount of swap: 512 MB
I/O speed:  66.4 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 6.85s
Download 100MB file: 11.4MB/s

That's not too bad, the CPU seems to be fairly available and the 100mbit connection capped out.

Here's more..

CPU model:  Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2603 v4 @ 1.70GHz
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  1698.052 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 1024 MB
Total amount of swap: 512 MB    
I/O speed:  57.3 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 6.81s
Download 100MB file: 11.4MB/s
CPU model:  Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2603 v4 @ 1.70GHz
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  1698.052 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 1024 MB
Total amount of swap: 512 MB
I/O speed:  65.9 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 6.75s
Download 100MB file: 11.4MB/s

I think the IOPS cap is coming into play here, being a storage server it's probably a good thing to avoid noisy neighbours from making the disk unstably slow.

It runs nextCloud fine, although a little slow when loading pages, it's not as snappy as some other providers. The fact that it's openVZ really, in my opinion, disqualifies it from being useful to me (I love KVM and encrypted LVM volumes for my private data)

If you need cheap storage, consider this offer from time4vps.

Automating rsync with sshpass

- Posted in Quick Tip by with comments

I have made a script that every 5 minutes downloads a still shot of the weather radar in my area and saves it into a folder on my server. This is done using a bash script and crontab.

On my computer, I've made a bash script to sync them, but it requires me to enter my password all the time for rsync.

I found a solution to that called sshpass.

First, we need to install it:

apt install sshpass

Now, we can use it. In my case, I'm using a bash script and a cron job to sync them every hour. Here's what my bash script looks like, using sshpass:

echo "Setting up.."
export SSHPASS=supersecretpassword
echo "Syncing..."
sshpass -e rsync -Aax --progress user@server:/remotefolder /localfolder
echo "Cleaning up.."
echo "Done!"

The main thing is that you set the password variable, and keep the -e tag in sshpass (tells it to use an environment variable)

Hopefully that helps someone!

Cheapest domains

- Posted in Quick Tip by with comments

I have recently been looking at domains, and it's a tough choice with so many different providers offering them.

I have searched high and low, and I can't find one cheaper than namesilo.com

They have .com for $8.99 every year, no funny renewal price hikes or tricks. These guys are awesome value. They have the free email forwarding and an excellent DNS control panel.

If you use the coupon halloween1dollaroff you will get $1 off which brings the .com down to $7.99.. see if you can find a cheaper one :)

I came across this cheap NAT KVM Storage offer from wishosting recently and I thought I would do some benchmarks on it to see how it performs. Here's the deal:

  • 1 vCPU core i7-3770
  • Unlimited CPU core 3.7GHz Turbo
  • 1GB RAM
  • 1TB HDD RAID-5
  • Linux/Windows OS
  • Bandwidth 250Mbps
  • Traffic 2TB
  • 1 IPv4 NAT
  • DDoS protection
  • Location - Germany
  • Setup time up to 24 hours
  • $4.99/month (paid quarterly)
  • $5.00 one off for a dedicated IPv4

I decided to make my life a little easier and got the IPv4 upgrade. The KVM is in Germany, and the IPv4 is in France, it does some crazy proxy trickery but it works perfectly! A couple of hours later, Michael from wishosting had my account set up and even helped with some questions I had. I must say, he's very professional in his ticket etiquette!

Here's some benchmarks:

CPU model:  Intel Xeon E312xx (Sandy Bridge)
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  3399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 988 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB
I/O speed:  447 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 5.16s
Download 100MB file: 89.5MB/s
CPU model:  Intel Xeon E312xx (Sandy Bridge)
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  3399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 988 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB    
I/O speed:  478 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 5.15s
Download 100MB file: 87.3MB/s
CPU model:  Intel Xeon E312xx (Sandy Bridge)
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  3399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 988 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB  
I/O speed:  459 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 4.84s
Download 100MB file: 91.2MB/s
CPU model:  Intel Xeon E312xx (Sandy Bridge)
Number of cores: 1
CPU frequency:  3399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 988 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB    
I/O speed:  527 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 4.12s
Download 100MB file: 91.0MB/s

This is a very speedy KVM service! It feels very snappy, sometimes servers feel a little slow but this feels like I'm the only user on the node which is amazing! I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a great value KVM with 1TB of storage!

Here is a table of various locations around the world, and a note on the ping and download speed from each location.

This is from the perspective of Brisbane, Australia. Speed is shown in megabytes per second. Speed is taken by using wget to a 100mb.bin file in each location, the final speed reported by wget is the speed shown below. Ping is taken by pinging the server. Quality is the amount of packets that made it. 100% is no packet loss, 0% is full packet loss.

Location Ping Speed Quality
Atlanta, GA, USA 240 1.83MB/sec 100%
Dallas, TX, USA 201 5.66MB/sec 100%
Tokyo, JP 189 5.76MB/sec 100%
Rotterdam, NL 317 3.69MB/sec 100%
London, UK 318 3.29MB/sec 100%
Haarlem, NL 172 5.38MB/sec 100%
Singapore, Singapore 117 3.33MB/sec 100%
Seattle, WA, USA 185 3.59MB/sec 100%
San Jose, CA, USA 174 4.38MB/sec 100%
Washington, DC, USA 230 4.09MB/sec 100%
Paris, France 319 3.97MB/sec 100%
Nuernberg, Germany 420 0.46MB/sec 95%
Perth, WA, Australia 70 7.52MB/sec 100%
Sydney, NSW, Australia 25 10.12MB/sec 100%
Manassas, VA, USA 236 4.09MB/sec 100%
Bucharest, Romania 374 3.36MB/sec 100%
Milan, Italy 326 3.35MB/sec 100%
Quebec, Canada 235 6.59MB/sec 100%

Last updated: 31/10/2017 @ 13:32

This is more of a note to self, but I hope it helps someone else because I tried googling and couldn't find anything similar.

I just noticed that crontab emails to root@localhost every single time it runs a job, and I have hundreds of thousands of emails (unread) thanks to crontab. This is annoying and here's how to stop it.

sudo nano /etc/crontab

Add a line that just says:

MAILTO=""

Alternatively, if you want to change the email that the notifications get sent to, you can change the value here.

Looking at a 400GB KVM from LETbox

- Posted in VPS by with comments

I found this great little KVM from LETbox on the lowendtalk forums and thought i'd do some benchmarking on it.

  • 2048MB Dedicated RAM
  • 2x vCPU @ 3.20+ GHz
  • 400 GB Dedicated HDD space (Raid10 SAS)
  • 10GB x SnapShot Backup
  • 3TB/Month @ 1 Gbps burstable
  • 1x IPv4 Free 5 Minutes Server Monitoring + Blacklist (Email and SMS alert)
  • Free SMS Unpaid invoice Alert
  • IPV4 rdns Management
  • 20Gbps DDoS-Shield Mitigation
  • KVM/Proxmox
  • $5.95/month / $65 /Yearly
CPU model:  Common KVM processor
Number of cores: 2
CPU frequency:  3300.022 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 1996 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB
System uptime:   2 days, 20:46,       
I/O speed:  92.0 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 4.94s
Download 100MB file: 87.0MB/s

The server is on Proxmox, has a lot of different ISOs to choose from and is quite fast. Support are fairly helpful, and downtime is minimal but it has happened before. They reimbursed my account for a small downtime without even asking, so this is pretty good.

This is perfect for a < 400GB nextCloud or Plex setup. Mine recently exceeded this amount, so I've moved onto a different option from another provider, but my time with LETbox has been great!

Installing Webmin on Ubuntu Server

- Posted in Quick Tip by with comments

Here's how to install Webmin on your Ubuntu Server.

First, download the latest version:

wget http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/webadmin/webmin_1.860_all.deb

Then install it with dpkg:

sudo dpkg -i webmin_1.860_all.deb

Oh noes, an error!1!eleven1!!

Unpacking webmin (1.860) ... dpkg: dependency problems prevent configuration of webmin: webmin depends on libnet-ssleay-perl; however: Package libnet-ssleay-perl is not installed. webmin depends on libauthen-pam-perl; however: Package libauthen-pam-perl is not installed. webmin depends on libio-pty-perl; however: Package libio-pty-perl is not installed. webmin depends on apt-show-versions; however: Package apt-show-versions is not installed. dpkg: error processing package webmin (--install): dependency problems - leaving unconfigured Processing triggers for systemd (229-4ubuntu7) ... Errors were encountered while processing: webmin

Yikes! Good thing there's a simple trick to fix dependency issues:

sudo apt -f install

And now it's installed and ready to use!

List of Storage VPS (100GB+)

- Posted in VPS by with comments

If you've ever wondered which storage VPS to get, then you will love this list I've made!

I will do my best efforts to keep it updated, but if you have any to add, please let me know!

The list can be found here or at the top right corner of the site in it's own page.

After falling in love with the other V-Dedi from WISHOSTING, I decide to test out another one. This time it's an Intel Avoton C2750-based box.

Here's the features:

8 CPU cores Avoton C2750
Dedicated CPU cores 2.4GHZ
7GB RAM
800GB HDD
Linux/Windows OS
Unmetered traffic
Best effort 1 Gbps bandwidth
1 IPv4
Location - France
Setup time up to 24 hours
[$14.99/month][2]

The differences between this package and the other one is this is $5 per month cheaper, has gigabit instead of 100mbit, but we trade off with an 800GB HDD instead of 1.8TB HDD and 7GB RAM instead of 15GB RAM. The big thing that I noticed is the 4 extra cores - 8 in total. I just had to benchmark this and see how it performs.

And here's some benchmarks which I will add to later:

CPU model:  Westmere E56xx/L56xx/X56xx (Nehalem-C)
Number of cores: 8
CPU frequency:  2399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 6971 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB
System uptime:   7 min,       
I/O speed:  252 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 12.49s
Download 100MB file: 96.1MB/s
CPU model:  Westmere E56xx/L56xx/X56xx (Nehalem-C)
Number of cores: 8
CPU frequency:  2399.998 MHz
Total amount of RAM: 6971 MB
Total amount of swap:  MB
System uptime:   5 days, 19:32,       
I/O speed:  43.7 MB/s
Bzip 25MB: 13.57s
Download 100MB file: 87.8MB/s

The Bzip time is almost 4 times higher, meaning it look 4 times longer than the i5 based system - expected behaviour for an Atom processor. The I/O is great and the network is gigabit, which we can see from the results.

It's a great deal, but the other package I have looks better for the extra storage and RAM. I will set this up for a month with nextCloud and Plex and see how well it handles those tasks. At this stage, I can't see it replacing the other V-Dedi from WISHOSTING.

Stay tuned, I'll update this as I go along.

UPDATE: So I've had this for close to a week now and I've been testing it, and it's a very capable dedi for the price. It's nice seeing the 8 cores in htop. I admit, I am struggling to find something else to love about this. Compared to the i5 server they have on offer, which is much noticeably faster than this atom server, coupled with the 1TB loss in storage, I feel like this server wouldn't suit my needs. Also, the extra 100ms in latency did give me some issues streaming plex during peak times, but that's what happens when it's 300+ms from France to Sydney.