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VPS - please explain

Posted on 2011-10-23
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
I currently have three work stations connected to a PC, that is acting like a File Server for my SQL Database for ACT2012 (by Sage) and my Quickbooks Accounting.

What I am finding, from my staff, is that it is very slow at time when accessing the files on ACT or clearing an activity and so for.  I also at times have to access the database and files remotely.  I am currently using LogMeIn Pro.

I am trying to find the best cost effective solution.  I was told that if I purchase a VPS it would be liking having my own Server write in the heart of the office.  I then would also be able to access the applications remotely and have faster response times.

I have searched all over the internet and I can't seem to understand what VPS is, apart from the fact it is a huge server partitioned into separate servers.  It appears from the information on the web, VPS is only good for web hosting where a great deal of browers access the site.

I don't just want VPS to host my websites.  I am very happy with my current web-hosting companies that are currently hosting 4 of my business websites.  

I am just unsure as to whether a VPS purchase will cure my problem.  If I was to purchase a VPS, would this be like a real Server, in the sense that I could load the databases of the ACT and Quickbooks, have my staff access the databases, do their emailing, have permission based folders, that allow staff to access the folder based on permissions allowed etc, etc.

If this is what VPS does, then great, but my concern would be, that wouldn't the speed of the accessing be determined to the internet connection of the office building or the USB Wireless device on a laptop that is connected to the internet.

Oh dear me, someone please help me understand what a VPS is meant to be used for, how it is used or what is the best option for me at work?
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Question by:Worldsplayground
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by:setasoujiro
setasoujiro earned 500 total points
ID: 37014170
A VPS is indeed a "virtual private server" which means it's on shared infrastructure with other virtual servers. If you would want your own server, you would get a Dedicated server. Which costs a ton of money. IMO the VPS solution is not at all a good solution there are too many factors to take in account:
1 Your depend on the internet, no inet, no database
2 speeds
3 Your company info is floating somewhere in a cloud...
4 etc...

You would be much better off just buying a small server to host your apps/database/files
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by:
kevinhsieh earned 1000 total points
ID: 37014243
A VPS isn't going to perform any better for you. You probably have a slow hard drive in your "server" because it is using a single 5400 or 7200 RPM SATA drive. You can improve performance by moving to a SSD or a hybrid drive. Adding the SSD will generally be more expensive or laborious, depending on whether or not you SSD is large enough to hold the entire existing hard drive, or if you have to move just certain files (like the databases) over to the SSD.

Seagate makes the Momentus XT, a hybrid drive which is 7200 RPM with 4 GB SSD, so it is much cheaper than SSD, and faster than regular HD. 500 GB for $100.

http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/products/laptops/laptop-hdd/
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by:maeltar
maeltar earned 500 total points
ID: 37014692
Regarding the speed of your server/PC, I'd be tempted to make sure that power saving modes are not to extreme, in that your hard drives are spinning down too often, quickly, this would cause serious speed issues, before you start looking at a VPS.

Looking at your question I have quoted below, I personally think you will be opening a can of worms as managing the security of this kind of setup would be a nightmare.

A possible suggestion would be to get your server running better, and use a VPN into your office, most routers will support this, and it's not rocket science and you improve security with accessing your act db.

If you are connecting over ADSL to access files, you will always have speed issues, as your upstream speed will be tiny compared to the downstream. (256k upstream / 8mb downstream as an indication).


I am just unsure as to whether a VPS purchase will cure my problem.  If I was to purchase a VPS, would this be like a real Server, in the sense that I could load the databases of the ACT and Quickbooks, have my staff access the databases, do their emailing, have permission based folders, that allow staff to access the folder based on permissions allowed etc, etc.
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LVL 42

Assisted Solution

by:kevinhsieh
kevinhsieh earned 1000 total points
ID: 37015697
A VPN is probably going to provide WORSE remote access than LogMeIn because of latency issues. A VPS would have the same latency problems, and really isn't setup for that type of traffic.
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Author Comment

by:Worldsplayground
ID: 37016700
Thanks guys for your help.  You have saved me a great deal of money.  I spoke to a few VPS hosting companies and they all were encouraging me to sign up for VPS saying that this would cure my problems.

Your answers simply verified my concerns about latency and internet speeds (uploads VS downloads).

Thank you guys immensely.
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