[Update: Read the postscript at the end of this post.] I hate hardware. More and more that has become my mindset. I had flaky disks, incompatible controllers, and buggy drivers. And I hate ‘em all. The final straw came tonight. I slurped in my email and, an hour later, went to send some email. Nothing. My server decided it didn’t want to live on the ‘net any more and had taken a vacation. This is the last straw. I love having my own server. I love having root. I love the fact that if I want to play around with a new web toy, I can install it and see it live in a few minutes. But, I hate colocation. I hate backups. I hate hardware that fails in the night. So I’m chucking it in. First thing tomorrow morning, I’m going to go to the colo in New York City and boot my box one last time (it better boot…). I’m going to be moving everything to Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). Luckily, I have a fairly recent backup of this box. Its on a little USB disk that I’m backing up the Amazon’s S3 as I type. I’m using Brackup by Brad Fitzpatrick (of Livejournal fame). The storage fees are absurdly low and I have more confidence in Amazon’s disks than I do in my own. (My own disks have worked wonderfully for 5 years straight.) If you use this server, what does it mean for you? Hopefully, it will mean more stability. It will also mean a dynamic IP address, but DNS should hide that from you. It will mean that we’re going to rely on Amazon’s resources instead of mine for bandwidh and processing power. It will mean that, if you want, I can set you up with your very own server. You can have root if you want it. You can set up your own EC2 server and we’ll copy your data over. Or you can continue to rely on me to host your services. Either way, I’m done managing sometimes flakey hardware in a remote location.
Postscript: When I arrived at the colo, I found that someone had accidentally knocked the power cord out of my server. So all was not lost. I’m going to be trying out EC2 over the next month or so. At the very least, I want to have it available for providing a backup for my server when someone knocks the power cord out, or a disk fails. Which is to say, I’m not switching to EC2 yet, or maybe at all.