Should I switch to Digital Ocean?


  • Hi,
    I wanted to ask the community this question.
    I host about 6-8 websites now through Hostgator.
    I have been reading up on the cost of a cloud server like Digital Ocean, but I'm curious if it will be enough to host my websites?
    I'm using about 5GB of storage with all sites and I'm not sure about the traffic.

    Thanks for the input.


  • @erich

    It's not the storage you have to worry about, that's cheap. The starter server on Digital Ocean gives you 20 GB of SSD storage, more than enough to host you content.

    What you really have to worry about is RAM and time spent setting up and maintaining the server. There are tutorials to help you every step of the way, but you still have to do everything yourself. I'm not trying to discourage you, just to let you know what to look forward to.

    Btw, I run three separate DO servers.

    For your 6 websites, you may have to use a server with 2 GB of RAM, which will cost $20 USD. But that, of course, depends on the traffic that the sites are pulling in. If they are not very active, you can make do with a $10 USD cloud server.

    In the event that you oopt to register with DO, fill free to register with my ref link.

  • Anime Lovers

    @erich said:

    Hi,
    I wanted to ask the community this question.
    I host about 6-8 websites now through Hostgator.
    I have been reading up on the cost of a cloud server like Digital Ocean, but I'm curious if it will be enough to host my websites?
    I'm using about 5GB of storage with all sites and I'm not sure about the traffic.

    Thanks for the input.

    I plan on taking the jump to DO after my current VPS contract is up. I've come to love having the power all to myself and not taking the easy route. And to make some of the more difficult things easier there are plenty of free control panels out there now that can do the job. My favorite I just recently found is call ajenti. Their Ajenti V plugin that is in Beta now completes everything you need to setup websites easy.

  • Admin

    The NodeBB team are big fans of Digital Ocean, so you can take that as a recommendation from us 😉


  • @HolyPhoenix

    You don't actually need to install any control panel to manage your server. That just eats up your resources. After a server is up and running, maintenance is quite easy and you don't need a control panel for that.

    Creating a DB is just 3 easy steps. You don't need a control panel for that.

  • GNU/Linux Admin

    Yep, another +1 to Digital Ocean from me. I've heard decent things about RAMnode as well, especially if you're really hurting for cash (since their cheapest shared VPS is like, $2/mo).

    For $5 a month, I'm willing to wait a bit for their support team to get back to me if and when their servers go down 🙂


  • Kimsufi used to be a nice cheap dedicated server provider. I'm not sure on their prices at the moment though.


  • @julian said:

    I've heard decent things about RAMnode as well, especially if you're really hurting for cash (since their cheapest shared VPS is like, $2/mo).

    Be careful with RAMnode. That $2/mo only gives you an OpenVZ-based server with 128 MB of RAM. When you push it to 1 GB of RAM, you'll be paying $15/month.


  • The performance on Digital Ocean is.. alright. I do believe you get what you pay for in that you're not getting ripped off. I use DO for lots of small projects and non-critical things. I've lost DO droplets in the past and the backups I had weren't recoverable - but they've since switched the way they do backups so hopefully that's a thing of the past.

    I'm somewhat of a webhosting junkie in that I am always watching and using everything else that's out there as I offer hosting and VPS' myself. I have about 8 active digital ocean droplets, I have a couple of rackspace VPS', and I even have a ramnode pure-ssd plan. Out of all of the servers, ramnode actually performs the best. For SSD storage, DO's io is actually very very low so they're probably overselling the storage but because it's ssd it usually still comes up ahead of typical platter based storage.

    For the price, it's pretty hard to go wrong with DO. I've had more network outages (very short lived when it does happen) with DO than any other provider I've ever had in the past, but again for what you're paying you definitely get your moneys worth.

  • GNU/Linux Admin

    @Chris said:

    I've had more network outages (very short lived when it does happen) with DO than any other provider I've ever had in the past, but again for what you're paying you definitely get your moneys worth.

    Can definitely relate to this. DO does go down from time to time, but for the money we're paying, I honestly can't complain.


  • @julian

    My DOs are on the NY2 center and I've never had my server go down.

  • GNU/Linux Admin

    The only "long" (being 30+ mins) outage I had was for SF-1: https://community.nodebb.org/topic/495/-14-01-2014-outage-in-sf-1-server


  • I use DO for all my websites. Never had an issue with them, no downtime or anything that I've noticed. It was a hurdle learning how to set up and manage a VPS, but I got it done and I like my setup a lot better now than what I had before (HostGator, then Hawkhost). I've got 6 websites on my 512MB droplet, 3 forums and 3 WordPress sites, and my webstack is composed of Debian 7 x64, nginx, php-fpm, and Maria DB for SQL.

    If you do decide to make the jump and learn how to set things up and migrate, I recommend you learn how to use the scp command which will save you a lot of time downloading your old data and uploading it to your VPS. Also, use Mailgun or Mandrill as an SMTP server for your sites that need to send email, because using sendmail doesn't work very well and setting up your own mail server can be a major pain.

    Feel free to send me a chat on here if you have any questions or need help during your move if you decide to move.


  • @lukelarris said:

    Also, use Mailgun or Mandrill as an SMTP server for your sites that need to send email, because using sendmail doesn't work very well and setting up your own mail server can be a major pain.

    Actually, if it's just for scripts to send email, all you need to do is install Postfix (and mailx). You don't need to set up an email server or use a 3rd party email provider. You certainly don't need to install Sendmail.


  • @planner haven't tried those, but thanks. Will save that info for next time.


  • Thanks for all the useful information. I decided to play around with the droplets and it's interesting!


  • I have multiple droplets on DO and I'm very, very happy with them until now!


  • Clients of my client, lawyers, refused Digital Ocean's user agreement, but accepted that of Linode.

  • GNU/Linux Admin

    @waugh That's an interesting perspective, I wonder what it was in DO's user agreement that they disagreed with?


  • @julian They judge that DO claims rights to do things with user content, like publishing it, beyond reason, and it's too much to the potential disadvantage to the user.

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