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Dreamhost VPS vs Amazon EC2 for hosting node.js based game?


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#1 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 11:08 AM

I am writing a browser based game that is similar to PHP web based RPGs like "Urban Dead", or PHP web based kingdom management games like "Utopia". However, I am using node.js to "push" updates from the server to the browser. Currently, I am using Dreamhost Virtual Private Server (VPS) for hosting, which has some shortcomings:

1. Cannot bind to port 80.

Apache is listening to port 80 and we cannot unbind it. The alternative is to put node.js behind Apache, leave the port number in the URL, or try and replace Apache with something like Nginx.

2. Waiting time due to lack of control.

For example: Dreamhost do not allow us to install MongoDB ourselves, we have to contact support to set it up for us. This is fine. However, when I had problem running MongoDB, I had to email Dreamhost support and wait for them to reset my MongoDB installation.

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I have heard good things about Amazon EC2 and is considering switching. What do you guys think?

Sponsor:

#2 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 01:31 PM

The biggest downside to Ec2 is trying to calculate their pricing. Its literally rocket science.

I instead went with Softlayer cloud computing and I love it.

#3 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:42 AM

Thanks for the heads up, I'll check out Softlayer. How good is their customer service btw?

#4 nox_pp   Members   -  Reputation: 490

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:07 AM

Linode is the best host I've ever used, VPS or otherwise, hands down. Their customer service is top-notch and fast. I'm currently running a Node.js websocket server, an RTMP server, and NGINX, across multiple nodes, and have never had any issues with resource contention. Their service is very straightforward and self-directed...you're simply given a shell with 1-click access to a variety of Linux distributions. You can do basically whatever you please, as long as its legal.

I've been with them for 4 years now, and have never seen anything better.

Between Scylla and Charybdis: First Look <-- The game I'm working on

 

Object-Oriented Programming Sucks <-- The kind of thing I say


#5 Serapth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5263

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:41 AM

Thanks for the heads up, I'll check out Softlayer. How good is their customer service btw?


Their customer service is simply put, staggeringly good. There aren't many products I recommend whole heartily, but Softlayer is one. I've had about 6 occasions to call tech support over the 4 years I have used them, 3 of those occasions completely my fault. Every time I called I got a person on the phone within seconds, 4 out of 6 times that person that answered the call resolved the problem without need for escalation. A few of these support calls where at 2 or 3 in the morning too! The other 2 occasions that required escalation were resolved within 3 hours. In one case the second level tech spent over an hour on the phone with me to troubleshoot the issue.

They have never charged me a cent for support either, even when it was my ( actually Microsoft's ) fault!



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Edited by Serapth, 30 August 2012 - 07:43 AM.


#6 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 03:19 AM

Linode is the best host I've ever used, VPS or otherwise, hands down. Their customer service is top-notch and fast. I'm currently running a Node.js websocket server, an RTMP server, and NGINX, across multiple nodes, and have never had any issues with resource contention. Their service is very straightforward and self-directed...you're simply given a shell with 1-click access to a variety of Linux distributions. You can do basically whatever you please, as long as its legal.

I've been with them for 4 years now, and have never seen anything better.


Thanks. Linode sounds great.

Their customer service is simply put, staggeringly good. There aren't many products I recommend whole heartily, but Softlayer is one. I've had about 6 occasions to call tech support over the 4 years I have used them, 3 of those occasions completely my fault. Every time I called I got a person on the phone within seconds, 4 out of 6 times that person that answered the call resolved the problem without need for escalation. A few of these support calls where at 2 or 3 in the morning too! The other 2 occasions that required escalation were resolved within 3 hours. In one case the second level tech spent over an hour on the phone with me to troubleshoot the issue.
They have never charged me a cent for support either, even when it was my ( actually Microsoft's ) fault!


Wow that is amazing.

I tried googling around but there aren't much serious discussions of web hosting for game developers. There are lots of shallow "top 10" or "best" lists and self promoting/spamming on forums. I am so glad you guys chip in.

#7 be-the-hero.net   Members   -  Reputation: 152

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 07:49 AM

I also used rackspace several times:
http://www.rackspace.com/

It's the simplified version of EC2, which I found quite complex.
It's "could computing", which means you rent a machine with desired resources (CPU/ram) on a pay per hour basis.
You can run it for half a day, for testing things, then shut it down again for the rest of the week.
If you are in your testing phase, it can be quite handy and cheaper.
You have root access, can install whatever you want, configure how you want it, etc. In the end, you can also save an image of your system which can be used to start a cloned server or restore the one after shutting it down.

As for VPS, I also found tilaa.nl which made a very good impression on me, although I didn't tried them out yet:
http://www.tilaa.nl
If I wanted long-term running machines, I would probably pick them. They look like very solid to me. Unlike Rackspace, it's a classic pay per month basis.

Good luck,
Arnaud

Edited by be-the-hero.net, 16 September 2012 - 07:51 AM.





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