The OVH Experience

From time to time, OVHcloud provides special discounts for its online services. Like the current promotion from February 25 till March 05, 2020, you can get exclusive offers up to 40% off, e.g. VPS (Virtual Private Server) is up to 30% off. If you haven’t yet tried VPS, this could be an excellent opportunity to get your own VPS.

There are many reasons for people wanting to run their own VPS. Probably the main reason is that you get complete control of your system. You don’t have to share resources with other customers, and you can easily upgrade to get more computing power and storage.

If you say you still prefer shared web hosting, you can get what you need at the OVH UK website. Their Professional plan provides ten multi-sites, 250 GB disk space and unlimited traffic, and many other features, all for £4.69 ex. VAT/month.

Up to now, OVH has 30 data centres on four continents around the world; the one I select is in Beauharnois, Quebec. If you want to get an idea how huge it is, check out the following videos: “OVH.COM: How our servers come to be (in North America)” and “The world’s largest data centre”

Why OVH? Before I signed up, I compared several solution providers, based on features, reviews and pricing, OVH seem to be the most affordable one. The entry-level package is called VPS SSD 1, only costs $4.49 a month.

When you first register, they have pre-set several options for you to choose from, i.e. “Linux distribution only” or “Linux distribution with application”. If you are a die-hard Windows fan, you can select Windows on other packages, but those have a different price range.

If you have no idea what do choose at the beginning, pick one, and you can always switch to something more suitable at a later stage. The control panel provides unlimited reboot and reinstallation. Just a minute or two, you can get a fresh installation. I started with “Linux distribution with application”, installed each control panels and played around for a day or two on each. They have four types of control panels: cPanel, Plesk, VestaCP, and Virtualmin.

Both cPanel and Plesk require a paid subscription to get the best latest version. And VestaCP and Virtualmin are free, but in my opinion, they aren’t that user-friendly. Things are free for a reason. It’s not easy to search for help and documentation; probably they aren’t as popular as cPanel and Plesk. People don’t use and don’t talk about them much. cPanel is almost a standard on most hosting platforms. If you get bored with cPanel, like me, you can try Plesk. I happen to like it and plan to stick with it for a while. On OVH, the default Plesk configuration is Plesk Onyx on Debian 8 (64bit). It’s a bit outdated; the latest version is called Plesk Obsidian.

Depends on how you want to run your VPS, there are many add-ons in the Plesk extension catalogue. You can install various tools to improve system security and performance. If you are not familiar with Linux, a book called UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook might be able to help you, it’s available on Amazon at CDN$ 83.40. I still have a copy of 2nd edition nearby on my shelf. It’s one of the system administration bibles. Anyhow, I ended up requesting a Linux OS installation only and installed Plesk Obsidian later manually. It worked up pretty well.