10 Aug

Major Pros of Hosting Data Backup

Data Backup

How important is it to backup your data regularly?

“How important is your data?” This is the first question I ask customers if they are not sure of whether to invest in having data backup enabled for their particular hosting account. If you cannot afford to lose your data or in case it is highly critical for your business operations, there is no doubt that you should be considering having data backup in place for your account.

There are various automated backup products available on the market that will help you in automating the process along with reporting you about successful / failed backups and appropriate system in place for easy restoration of data in case it is ever required. We use R1Soft backup service for all of our managed servers which takes backup of the entire server in a schedule that is setup by you – this can be as frequent as every few minutes to once a day or week or month. We typically backup every night with the retention period of 6 days (last 6 days of data is retained for restoration).

Data backup comes very handy in various cases:

  • Accidental delete of files / folders. In case you/your developer accidentally delete a file / folder, you can easily jump to your backup console and restore it without the requirement to rebuild it.
  • Compromised files – in case your server is infected by virus / malware which has modified or scrambled your files, you will need to restore these files to the original version in addition to removing virus / malware from your server.
  • Bad OS Update. In case your server is hit by a bad OS update which breaks things, you will need to restore it back to a state where it was running smoothly. Backups turn out to be very handy in this case, so that you can revert to a restore point whereby your system was in the appropriate working state.
  • Hardware issue with server – in case your server hardware or storage devices (HDD, SSD, RAID controller, etc.) fail for some reason, you will be looking at complete data failure with immediate requirement to restore your data to a working state. Appropriate data backups in place help immensely in this scenario, so that you can move your system to a state before hardware crash.

No one can really predict on when will they need data from their backup copy, but it is highly important for above reasons to ensure that you have backups in place which are monitored regularly. You should carefully understand your use case and select backup software which is appropriate for your requirements. R1Soft works fairly well in most of the use cases as it all supports backing up of nearly all operating system servers. Few other products like Veeam, Acronis have also evolved and in use by many enterprises. The key to any backup software is to ensure that you are able to backup and restore your data in a timely manner and data integrity stays intact. Having an efficient backup system in place helps in business continuity to ensure that you do not spend time restoring your important files / folders in case of accidental delete (human or non-human) as you will already having an efficient backup system in place. It has been a myth that having RAID protected storage is a replacement of backups, but this is completely incorrect – there are several cases whereby RAID can fail completely with no ability to regain the data that existed in your storage array. Hence, you should always have an off-server and preferably off-site backups for your infrastructure.

We at Softsys Hosting backup all of our Shared / Reseller servers on a daily basis along with backing up customer virtual machines or dedicated servers with managed services on our network backup servers. We have reporting enabled which will update our 24/7 technical support team in case backup fails for some reason so that we can fix this immediately.

09 Jun

Main Hosting Trends of 2015: Ultimate Speed and Performance

When it comes to hosting for your website or for infrastructure services in your company the latest trend for 2015 resides in ultimate speed and performance. While security and mobile support have been other past focuses for hosting, many are looking towards the future and utilizing cloud as well as dedicated servers to improve access speed around the world.

Studies have shown that as little as a few milliseconds of lag when accessing web format files or a website can be enough to discourage a user from returning back to the website. Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) has taken on a whole new focus in this industry and as a result many are opting for Windows-based virtual private servers, dedicated servers, cloud servers and more.

A virtual private server as well as a dedicated server can deliver the ultimate speed for any of your web applications or for a website. This means that you can enjoy an ultimate uptime as well as the quickest possible access to all of your web elements. This will cut milliseconds off of the time it takes for your web page to load which can actually improve search engine results, maximize the amount of return visitors that you might get and minimize any issues that might occur from accessing your web content.

Another big focus to increase performance and speeds is DDoS protection. These types of attacks can quickly shut down a website or any web elements for hours. Recognizing one of these attacks as it occurs and having means to prevent this denial of service attack is absolutely crucial. With the proper protection in place, a website will remain up even if it’s experiencing some type of attack guaranteeing that competitors and hackers cannot affect your hosting. Having this level of protection up and running will secure your online business from costly downtimes.

08 May

Cloud Servers or Standard VPS for Ecommerce Web Projects

Standard VPS Hosting vs. Cloud Solutions for Ecommerce Projects

There are various web hosting plans available on the Internet to host your website or your ecommerce online store. Some of available hosting choices offer discount coupons too and can save hosting budgets dramatically. For a developer or seasonal web hosting customer, selecting the best web hosting plan is rather easy. But for any newbie, it is confusing to understand these web hosting features & choose the most suitable one at an affordable rate.

Common web hosting choices based on Linux and Windows platforms:

1) Shared Hosting.

2) VPS Hosting.

3) Cloud Hosting.

4) Dedicated Servers.

Burning question is how to determine the best web hosting option out of these?

1) Shared hosting is enough to host any small scale business website.

2) If you own a mid-sized website, go for either standard VPS Hosting or cloud hosting.

3) And if a website boasts huge images / videos and uses extensive server resources, dedicated hosting is your only option. No doubt, fully redundant cloud hosting can also be a viable choice.

So, now let’s talk about the best web hosting plan to host any ecommerce website. How to determine the best option for ecommerce project?

Standard VPS

VPS hosting is ideal for small business websites as it is one of the best value for money. It allows you to configure a server with the much needed features and is easy to manage. VPS hosting comes with customization facilities and complete control features.

Now let’s talk about how vps hosting will fit ecommerce hosting needs. Going for vps hosting with managed level services & SSL certificates is recommended for any start-up or established projects. Going for a web hosting company with the managed service level will solve all the problems related to your server. Additionally, an SSL certificate helps in secured transaction, preventing the hackers from entering your website.

Cloud Hosting

Instead of being a traditional single unit server, cloud hosting operates from many servers simultaneously. Each individual server includes its own OS and can be easily customized. Cloud VPS plans are scalable on-the-fly. Any number of resources such as CPU, RAM, and storage space, etc. can be added at any given time frame and here there is no need of migrating your server.


With cloud VPS you pay for the resources used only, while with standard VPS hosting, you have to pay some fix amount each month. If a website is getting heavy traffic, cloud vps is the best option, while traditional VPS won’t meet all you requirements. Choose from cloud servers or standard VPS the one that will better suit your current and future goals.

05 Apr

Major benefits of VPS hosting over traditional shared hosting solutions

Are you on Shared hosting services with restrictions?

Are you looking for more power and flexibility with your web hosting service?

Are you not allowed to do custom configurations or installation of specific software or service?

If answer to any of the above questions is a “Yes”, you should consider VPS hosting services that comes with administrator or root access to the server for detailed configuration along with more scalability feature.

VPS hosting solution is an ideal alternative of dedicated servers. The resources on a virtual private server hosting platform are distributed amongst a set of users in unique way that provides dedicated resources at low cost compared to dedicated servers – this allows you to gain best performance of your server at cheaper rates (like dedicated server).

The VPS Hosting plans are best for all medium-sized enterprises or for large e-commerce websites.

You should consider VPS Hosting if you need any of the below features:

•             Low website loading speed (fast website access).

•             Requirement of root access or administrator rdp access of web server.

•             Running a website with medium web traffic.

•             Requirement of more power for your web server or database server.

•             Requirement of uninterrupted accessibility of website and not have your website affected by other websites on same server.

•             Requirement of a flexible and scalable server (increase or decrease resources whenever required).

•             Requirement of having an isolated environment which is not shared with any other customer.

Moving to VPS Hosting from shared hosting

The low rates and potentiality of VPS inspires various businesses to consider VPS servers. This saves the man-power, time and cost of the firm. As with several restrictive nature of shared hosting, there is no much need of server observation and management with VPS. License installation or software upgrading task is easily handled by VPS as it comes with complete root access. You can enjoy all the benefits of ultimate web performance, scalability, powerful control panel and more with VPS.

VPS is a ver cost-effective web hosting service available in current market. Adopting VPS as the hosting solutions is helping the growth of the capital for companies. Every penny spending is giving fruitful results for the business. More and more businesses are moving the web application to VPS so that they can capture all benefits of VPS hosting and its functionality.

We at Softsys Hosting offers premium VPS hosting plans for you to switch over from shared hosting. Whether they are based on Linux or Windows or Cloud. We feel proud to announce our VPS Hosting plans from Softsys Hosting, your one stop hosting solution provider.

Softsys Window VPS: Affordable Windows VPS with Hyper-V Technology, available with managed or self-managed service level

Softsys Linux VPS: SSD Linux VPS Hosting Plans Powered by KVM virtualization infrastructure, available with or without cPanel.

Softsys Cloud VPS: Build Your Own Cloud VPS as per your resource requirements. Completely scalable and redundant!

26 Sep

Security Advisory – Critical Bash Shell Vulnerability – Fix Available

A vulnerability has recently been disclosed in Bash (the GNU Bourne Again shell) which affects all systems running Linux. This vulnerability allows programs that allow users to provide values for variables to execute arbitrary commands with the privileges of the service. This issue does not permit direct privilege escalation. It has been assigned the ID CVE-2014-6271 [1] in the Common Vunerabilities and Exposures database. It has been given the nickname “Shellshock.”

CentOS and Debian patched this vulnerability partially on September 24, 2014 and issued further fixes on September 25, 2014 under new ID
CVE-2014-7169 [2]. To apply the fixes, you need only update the version of your installed Bash program. If you have created any services that run entirely as a Bash shell script, you should restart those services after updating. Bash-based services are not common.

Windows and FreeBSD servers do not use Bash by default and are not generally affected. If you have installed Bash on your server manually, you should make sure it is up to date using the process by which you originally installed it.

Please review the sections below to determine how to update Bash on your server.


To check which version of Bash is installed, run the following

rpm -q bash

The version number should be greater than or equal than one of the

* CentOS 5: bash-3.2-33.el5_10.4
* CentOS 6: bash-4.1.2-15.el6_5.2
* CentOS 7: bash-4.2.45-5.el7_0.4

The important portion of the version number is the part beginning with “.elX_” where X is 5, 6, or 7. If you read the part after the “_” as a decimal number, it must be greater than or equal than the version listed. For example, for “.el6_” the number should be “5.2” or any higher number.

If your version does not match, please run the following command and ensure an update to the bash package is included:

yum -y update bash

If no update is available, please try the following commands, then repeat the command above:

yum clean metadata

Red Hat published the following advisories regarding this

* https://access.redhat.com/security/cve/CVE-2014-6271
* https://access.redhat.com/security/cve/CVE-2014-7169
* https://rhn.redhat.com/errata/RHSA-2014-1293.html
* https://rhn.redhat.com/errata/RHSA-2014-1306.html
* https://access.redhat.com/articles/1200223


To check which version of Bash is installed, run the following

dpkg -s bash | grep Version

The version number should be greater than or equal to 4.2+dfsg-0.1+deb7u3.

The notable part to look for is the “+deb7u3” at the end. If the last number is not 3 or higher, or the part after “+” is missing, you will need to upgrade. If your version does not match, please run the following command and ensure an update to the bash package is

apt-get update
apt-get install -y bash

Debian published the following advisory regarding this vulnerability:

* https://www.debian.org/security/2014/dsa-3032
* https://www.debian.org/security/2014/dsa-3035

02 Jul

What is Cloud Computing? IaaS Cloud Services – Benefits and Advantages


The basic definition of cloud computing in simple words is – The use of computing resources, (hardware and/or software) that are deployed on a remote machine/system and delivered to the end user as a service over a network (private / public).

Although the evolution of cloud computing had quite a good amount of resistance, the technology has evolved and is considered to be a future of how IT will shape up. The main advantage of cloud computing has been to help businesses to focusses on their core without the need to worry about IT issues. As data and reports suggests, this has worked very well for many industries and hence it is considered to be future of IT.

Cloud Computing Categories

Cloud computing comprises of four key models:

  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS)
  • Software as a Service (SaaS)
  • Network as a Service (Naas)

Let’s discuss the above in more detail:

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): This is the basic cloud service model whereby user is provided with virtual infrastructure (servers / storage or data space). Virtualization is the key in this mode as it allows IaaS-cloud providers to allocate resources as required by end users (on-demand) from their large pools of physical infrastructure of data centers.

Platform as a Service (PaaS): In this this cloud service model, the PaaS-cloud providers deliver a platform or environment for development services to end users (individuals / organizations) where the user can develop and run their proprietary / in house applications. The services optionally can include operating system, a programming language execution environment, databases and web servers.

Software as a Service (SaaS): In this cloud computing model, the user is provided with an access to already developed applications that are running in the cloud (managed by SaaS-cloud provider). The cloud clients and the cloud users do not manage the environment / infrastructure where the application resides which eliminate the need to install and run the application on their own computers.

Network as a Service (Naas): This is not a very common model except in case of bandwidth providers. In this model, the user is provided with network connectivity services, such as VPN and bandwidth on demand.

Advantages & Benefits of IaaS Cloud Computing

1) Cost Savings – It helps in reducing capital expenditure on hardware and human resources which in turn reduces ROI risks.

2) Low Entry Barriers – You can simply get your cloud server to be spun up and you’re ready to go live. Various pricing options allows you to only pay for what you use / need.

3) Dynamic Scaling & Elasticity – You can easily scale your resources of your cloud server at any time which is used from the pool of resources managed by cloud provider. This enables you to purchase only required resources to get started and add more whenever you need. This is particularly helpful during seasonal sales events, etc when you can bump up your resources and scale down later.

4) Avoid management of underlying hardware / data center and backups – All of these components are taken care by your IaaS cloud provider.

5) Security – This is handled by your IaaS provider in a professional way which offloads you of securing your infrastructure.

6) Failover – This helps in keeping your service active even in case of failure of hardware components / power / network takes place since this is completely redundant in nature / setup.

7) Allows businesses to focus on core competence – Your IT requirements / setup is handled by experts which enables you to focus on key areas specific to your business and bringing innovations in it. Imagine a manufacturing firm spending resources / time on assembling / maintaining their IT infrastructure!

SoftSys Hosting
provides IaaS cloud services whereby the cloud users are provided with virtual infrastructure in form of cloud virtual machines with resources (RAM / Storage Space / CPU Power / Bandwidth / etc) as per their requirement. This is completely scalable service whereby users can add / remove resources at any time – almost on the fly.

29 Jun

Web Hosting Resources with Customized Plan

As we all know, web hosting allows individuals and organizations to make their website accessible via the WWW.

What is a Web Hosting plan?

Web hosting plan is term used for set of the resources with specified capacity / resources for your website.

Every web hosting company does their own market research and prepare suitable web hosting plans targeted to needs of specific audience and their business. As per the website/application and its traffic, web hosting resources are selected. Main factors that comprise of these resources are CPU power, Storage space, RAM and bandwidth. It is very tough for any web hosting company to devise a perfect web hosting plans as per the needs of website.

Various Web Hosting Options

  • Windows VPS Hosting (Self-Managed or fully managed)
  • SSD Windows VPS
  • Windows Shared Hosting / Reseller Hosting
  • Linux VPS Hosting
  • Cloud VPS Hosting
  • Dedicated Servers (Self-Managed or fully managed)
  • SSD Dedicated Servers
  • Unmetered Dedicated Servers

Are you thinking to go for your web hosting? But do not know much about various resources and how to customize your plan. Let’s have a look around for the list of resources and in what capacity are available in web hosting market.

Let’s take example of Dedicated Servers Configuration

Available Subscription time

How much time you want your website hosted with web hosting company, whether: 1 Month / 6 Month / 12 Month

Processor and RAM

Prices vary as per the processor, as you can observe below, they are of Intel processor with model number, speed and number of cores available.

Depending on resource usage, you can also select variety of RAM options which can typically start from 4GB to 8GB and go up to 128 or 256GB per server

  • Intel Atom D525 Dual-Core, 1.8 GHz (4 HT Cores) with 4GB DDR3-1333 RAM
  • Intel Xeon E3-1230v2/v3, 3.3 GHz (8 HT Cores) with a range of 8GB-32GB DDR3 ECC RAM
  • 2 * Intel Xeon E5-2620 6-Core, 2 GHz (24 HT Cores) with 32GB-128GB DDR3 ECC RAM

Hard Drive / Storage space

Web hosting companies use to provide some basic storage space. If there is a requirement for more storage space, it can be upgraded from below options:

  • 500GB / 1TB / 2TB / 4TB SATA III or 120GB / 240GB / 480GB / 1TB SSD

IPv4 Address

With your configured plan, one dedicated IPv4 is included. In case you need more, you can contact your web hosting company who can allocate more IP’s after providing justification for usage.


As the term suggests, customer is required to perform day to day management tasks along with troubleshooting / fixing the issues in Dedicated Servers or VPS plans including regular monitoring, Security and maintenance.

Dedicated server providers will charge for any of the task, updates needed once server is with Customers.

An alternate for this is a fully managed service level whereby server experts handle day to day management tasks, security audits, automated 24×7 monitoring and daily backups.

IPMI KVM w/ Remote Reboot

This particular addon helps in accessing the server over console (as if you are physically sitting in front of server) in case you lose public connectivity to the server for any reason. It also has features to remotely load an operating system in server and perform hard / soft reboot of server.

Multiple Operating System Choices

Web Hosting companies offer to install your own Operating System or Linux or Windows based in your dedicated server

  • Linux (CentOS, Debian, Ubuntu Server) or
  • Microsoft OS (Windows Server 2008 R2 / 2012 R2 64-bit, Windows 2003 32-bit / 64-bit)
  • Install your own

SQL Server

SQL Server is one of the licensed products from Microsoft for any of the database applications. This one is paid.  Prices will vary in below options:

  • SQL Server 2008 R2 / 2012 Express Edition
  • SQL Server 2008 R2 / 2012 Web Edition
  • SQL Server 2008 R2 / 2012 Standard Edition


Having a robust backup plan is inevitable for all important / critical data since server can fail (and they do fail) any time. Using enterprise components along with having redundancy at storage level (through RAID / etc) helps in minimizing this risk to huge extent. However, it is always recommended to have some sort of off server backups in place.

Self-Managed Dedicated Servers does not include any backup services. Most Dedicated server and VPS providers have these options available and typically start with 40GB backup space up to several TB’s.

Network Port Speed

Each server comes with 100Mb/sec, by default. Optional 1000 Mbps (1Gbps) option is available for servers which require high data throughput.


It is the rate of data transfer measured multiples of “Bytes” – typically GB’s. Most web hosting companies offer a variety of bandwidth options ranging from 5,000 GB / 10,000 GB / 15,000 GB / 20,000 GB. For high requirements, there are options for unmetered bandwidth as well.

Customized your plans as accordingly! Start it today for Windows VPS, Linux VPS, Cloud Servers and other web hosting services.

24 Nov

Cloud VPS Hosting – How We Do it!

For an end user, it is always very baffling to choose a right “Cloud” server with so many small hosts popping up who love to market their services as Cloud Enabled. I’ll walk through some important points explaining how we implement VM’s in cloud compared to traditional standalone virtual servers.


We have a completely separate physical space that we use to isolate our cloud infrastructure. The hardware involved with cloud setup includes:

1) Servers – Control server, HyperVisors, Backup Servers – all of these are enterprise class SuperMicro Branded servers.
2) SAN Arrays – We use multiple with 10K SAS drives in RAID 10 array. These have replication enabled and each array in itself is 100% redundant with multiple PSU’s, RAID controllers, RAID 10 disks, etc. All of these units are Dell Equallogic PS series.
3) Switches – Used for public connectivity, storage SAN connectivity, backup network. All of these are different brands of Juniper Switches.

From software perspective, we use OnApp cloud enabling software which manages the logic and intelligence for some amazing cloud features. Our cloud setup has enterprise-class resilience, with multi-layered security, a self-healing architecture, automatic hypervisor failover and disaster recovery supported automated backups.

How it works – Automatic Failover & Hot Migration

We have setup our cloud environment in a way that it is 100% redundant end-to-end. Hence, we can lose half of our entire setup equipment and your service will still continue to operate. There are multiple HyperVisors which host the VM’s and all of these are connected to redundant SAN arrays through fibre channel and 10Ge connectivity. In case one of the HyperVisor (HV) goes down for any reason, VM’s will automatically failover to alternate HV and it continues to work without any connectivity loss. 99% of the Operating systems (except legacy Windows 2003, etc) support hot migration – this means that VM will continue to operate with without reboot in same state even after migrating over to alternate HV (all open programs / services will remain open and operational). In case operating system does not support hot migration, it will be shut down, migrate to another HV and thereafter restarted back. This ensures that VM remains up and working at all times – ensuring 100% uptime guarantee even if HV goes down.

Load Balancing

Cloud hosting environment also supports automatic load balancing of selected VM’s. It is just a matter of few clicks to specify VM’s that will participate in load balancing cluster. With such a setup, all incoming traffic is intelligently distributed evenly amongst VM’s in cluster.

Auto Scaling

Cloud server hosting also supports, easy-to-configure autoscaling for virtual machines. VMs can be configured up and down (adding/removing RAM, CPU and disk resources), and scale VMs out (by cloning the VM) according to configurable thresholds.

For example, you can set up a rule that will add 1,000MB of memory to a VM if RAM usage has been above 90% for the last 10 minutes – but add no more than 5,000MB in 24 hours. Billing is automatically adjusted for autoscaled resources.

Automated backup

Virtual machine backups are also automated with cloud hosting in addition to availability of manual backup and restore functions. The Cloud enables automated/scheduled backups and ad-hoc backups of VM data. These backups in terms of VM snapshots are stored outside of SANs on separate cluster of backup servers, allowing true disaster recovery in case of SAN failure.

Operating Systems

We provide pre-built OS templates to build your VM with. There are 25+ supported operating system templates which include various flavours of CentOS, Debian, Ubuntu, OpenSuse, ClearOS along with Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008 R2 and the latest Windows Server 2012.

We’re having hundreds of customers hosted on our enterprise class Cloud VPS plans and it has been nothing but a stellar hosting experience with 100% positive customer feedback!