Here at cmoullas.net, the hosting setup is a little more interesting than “we pay $5.95/mo and get hosting in return”. The page is hosted entirely on a server in a closet at my home. The hardware consists of desktop components which I assembled myself. Check it out:
- AsRock P45XE-WifiN
- Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 (3GHz)
- 8GB of RAM
- 2x750GB HDDs in RAID 1
- 1x500GB HDD
- 1x160GB HDD
- Enermax Pro82+ 525W PSU
I use the same physical machine for active directory, all my file storage and other remote access services but roles are split up onto different virtual machines using VMWare Server. The web server is running Windows Server 2008/IIS 7 and its only role is to serve up web pages for you guys.
In terms of networking equipment, the router/firewall is another virtual machine running a FreeBSD (Linux) distro known as pfSense. The network switch linking everything together is a full gigabit Dell PowerConnect 2716. My ISP is TekSavvy Solutions on a standard residential DSL plan and, infrastructure which provides a mere 85KB/s of upload bandwidth. The result is that this site operates within those bandwidth constraints.
The page is hosted in Montreal, Quebec, Canada so the server runs on 98% clean, renewable hydroelectric power provided by Hydro Quebec. What’s more, cmoullas.net uses only 82 watts of power 24×7, or a total of 720 kWh of energy yearly. That equates to just 14 kWh of non-renewable energy used per annum leading to a very small carbon footprint.
The power supply used in the server was one of the first 80 Plus Silver certified units on the market with a minimum efficiency of 82%. The processor for the server was chosen specifically for environmental reasons as well: when purchased, it was considered against similarly priced quad-core processors but was found to use less power both when loaded and under idle conditions. Four threads of SuperPI 32M were run and total power consumed was estimated based on the TDP of the chips.
So as you can see, there is way more to this site than your typical 5.95/mo hosting plan and CMS implementation. I’ve spent a lot of time finding the best ways of doing things in-house, literally. All things considered, I’m pretty proud of the setup even though it certainly is quaint in comparison to many other large datacenters.