Archive for February, 2010

Example cost: Virtual Private Cloud (updated)

Back in September, 2009, I had written a post with a quick overview of what a private cloud (or infrastructure) looks like and some basic costs and information, including why it is a great product (I am biased).

Since then, Dell has retired the PE2900III model server and items change, this is an update for the basic configuration.

Reminder graphic:


2 Servers, 1 firewall

So, originally, the physical servers were configured as:

  • Dell PE2900III (reasonably priced, very reliable, I have spares on the shelf)
  • 4 ethernet ports (2 built in, 2 port card installed, more can be added)
  • 2 73GB SAS drives mirrored together for booting VMware vSphere 4
  • 32GB RAM (48GB is max for this hardware platform)

New servers look like:

  • Dell PET610 (reasonable price, very reliable, spares to go onto the shelf)
  • 4 ethernet ports (all built in)
  • 2 80GB SATA drives mirrored together for booting VMware vSphere 4
  • 48GB RAM (192GB max available – very expensive)

The reason for the RAM change is that I am seeing a 2:1 (or higher) ratio of RAM to CPU usage in terms of percentage, and 48GB is a good place for this sized system. Also, the newer Xeon 55xx series processors uses RAM sticks in 3s instead of 2 or 4 at a time. 48GB is 12 4GB sticks of RAM. The newer 55xx series of processors also has working hyper-threading (or H/T) and I am seeing very nice performance on servers deployed using this processor family in our network.

Cost difference? The original posting listed had estimated the cost at $1,600.00 per month (see previous post), and I estimate this to be very close, inching up to approximately $1,700.00 per month, and this number should be high. (for accurate pricing, please contact ipHouse sales people, they can run up a quote based on real numbers)

Apache 1.3 – you were loved

So, across my RSS feed today, I saw a blurb…

Apache terminates ‘outated’ web server


I clicked the link and was sent off to The Register for their report on the issue.

Apache 1.3 was released in July, 1998 – 12 years ago, and still in operation today.

At ipHouse – we use 1.3 as the tried and true Apache webserver on our cluster. We’ve not had either issues or problems; and security updates are few and far between. I guess after 12 years no one cares anymore to hack such old code or something.

Goodbye Apache 1.3, we had a long relationship, but your sister is younger and better equipped for todays Internet. Don’t cry, we’ll remember you fondly.

Hello Apache 2.2 – we are look forward to a long relationship on our network behind our F5 load balancers.


Summary: Apache 1.3.42 is the final release according to the Apache Software Foundation. They recommend moving to Apache 2.2.14. Apache 2.0 will end once Apache 2.4 has been released, and finally, Apache 2.3.5 is in alpha stage.