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Thread: CentOS vs. Ubuntu as a Web Server

  1. #21
    nux
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    You can technically install it on there. The difference between any linux distribution is the package management system and init scripts, and a few other misc things.

    Generally it's a good idea to stick with what packages are provided by the official sources in the package management system. But technically you can put anything you want on there.

    There is nothing stopping you from downloading and building PHP yourself. You could even bundle it up in a nice little RPM if you like. Problem is, if you ever want/need to upgrade, you'll have to build it again. Quite the pain. not as simple as yum upgrade anymore.
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by nux View Post
    One thing I find that helps with ram usage is to actually tweak your MaxClients and other apache settings so apache stops serving requests right before you run out of memory and start swapping.
    Oh yes, this is definitely a highly tuned Apache setup.

    Quote Originally Posted by nux View Post
    This has saved me many trips to the datacenter.
    Luckily, we're running HP DL-380 G5's with ILO2. When the operating system crashes, we just connect to the web server running on the servers hardware and reboot.

    Quote Originally Posted by nux View Post
    And in this debate, I would vote Debian. Ubuntu's mature and stable older brother
    What? Not Slackware?!?!?!?!?!?
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  3. #23
    Keldorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    Luckily, we're running HP DL-380 G5's with ILO2.
    Quote from the page: [...]SSH and SSL support, and flexible access via a decicated or shared network port.[...]

    Right there I was sold.


    Problem is, if you ever want/need to upgrade, you'll have to build it again. Quite the pain. not as simple as yum upgrade anymore.
    \n\n

    Oh yeah I think I know what you mean. One time while I was creating a video upload website, I had to install mencoder and some different packages and codecs. It was really really hard to figure out, least to say, I took me about 2 days to figure it out. I need to encode the videos with AAC (nero), with H264 video.
    The hardest part is there no GUI's so all commands in linux shell. Half your time is wasted on spelling mistakes.
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  4. #24
    Ogle is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    I thought you ran FreeBSD, but it would seem not. Have you considered it?

    Also on the "issue" of RAM usage (design flaw of apache!) have you considered lighttpd, nginx or litespeed as replacements for apache?

  5. #25
    Will.Spencer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    I thought you ran FreeBSD, but it would seem not. Have you considered it?
    I did, for many years. Unfortunately, bugs in FreeBSD's TCP stack forced us to switch to Linux.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    Also on the "issue" of RAM usage (design flaw of apache!) have you considered lighttpd, nginx or litespeed as replacements for apache?
    I keep thinking about lighttpd, but we have so many different web sites with so many different requirements that I worry about compatibility issues.

    Also... and this is somewhat painful to state... it looks like I was wrong about Ubuntu's memory usage. The odd memory usage we saw early on magically disappeared. I have no explanation for this.
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  6. #26
    Ogle is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    I did, for many years. Unfortunately, bugs in FreeBSD's TCP stack forced us to switch to Linux.
    I would be interested in knowing more about this? It is a bad day when a long term users moves away to Ubuntu of all things

    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    I keep thinking about lighttpd, but we have so many different web sites with so many different requirements that I worry about compatibility issues.
    Throw up a test install and give it a we test! If nothing else, you could rule it out! The only compatibility issues I am aware of are those caused by the lack of htaccess and differences in url rewriting rules. All of which can be worked around. The lighttpd IRC channel on Freenode is fantastic, alot of people will bend over backwords to help with any issues you may face.

    The main advantage if you are not aware, Lighttpd does not fork a new process for every X connections. Instead it uses threads and as a result your memory usage should come down an awful lot. I think I may have read you also had issues with log files, this design should fix that as the file is being accessed by far fewer processes.

    I am using Nginx a tiny bit also, seems very stable.

    The sooner apache dies the better Lighttpd keep messing up with their google summer of code applications or I think they would be given alot more notice.

    Litespeed is meant to be a fully drop in replacement for apache - your current config files are meant to work. At a cost


    I am interested in any testing results you can produce with an operation of your size.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    I would be interested in knowing more about this? It is a bad day when a long term users moves away to Ubuntu of all things
    Jah... I was a "BSD rulez; SysV sucks!" guy for a long time.

    But... FreeBSD's network stack kept failing. Connections would not close properly and eventually we were not able to make new connections until we rebooted the servers. We fought the issue for months and it didn't go away until we finally switched to CentOS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    Throw up a test install and give it a we test! If nothing else, you could rule it out! The only compatibility issues I am aware of are those caused by the lack of htaccess and differences in url rewriting rules. All of which can be worked around. The lighttpd IRC channel on Freenode is fantastic, alot of people will bend over backwords to help with any issues you may face.
    The issue with a test install is that we have a lot of different web sites running a lot of different scripts, all of which should be tested. It would take a good man-month to do basic testing of all our sites under lighttpd. It would take a real rocket scientist to find issues in the little-used features of many of our scripts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    The main advantage if you are not aware, Lighttpd does not fork a new process for every X connections. Instead it uses threads and as a result your memory usage should come down an awful lot.
    Apache also has several threaded MPM's. The most mature of which is the Worker MPM.

    We're currently running the Prefork MPM, because it's more tested than the Worker MPM.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    I think I may have read you also had issues with log files, this design should fix that as the file is being accessed by far fewer processes.
    CentOS has an undocumented "behavior" that limits the number of available file handles. We ran out. I have yet to turn logging back on, now that we're running Ubuntu. I need a good stretch of time when I'm going to be staring at the console, watching for issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ogle View Post
    I am interested in any testing results you can produce with an operation of your size.
    It's not the raw size that worries me, it's all the undocumented and seldom-used features in the mass of unmanaged and unmanageable PHP code that worries me. We could easily have something break and not notice it for years.
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  8. #28
    Halfnium is offline Unknown Net Builder
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    Noob Coming from Win XP

    Folks,

    As I do more Web-related stuff, I'm increasingly annoyed with the WAMP stack. So I'm moving to a Linux distro.

    Since my Web hosting service runs CentOS, I wonder if I would benefit by using CentOS locally myself. Or would Ubuntu's reputed noob-friendly features make it my better choice?

    Longer term, I would like to self-host (if I can sneak that by my ISP). In the self-hosting scenario, are there security, performance or ease-of-maintenance arguments for one distro over the other?

    Thanks in advance for sage advice!

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfnium View Post
    As I do more Web-related stuff, I'm increasingly annoyed with the WAMP stack. So I'm moving to a Linux distro.
    Welcome to the party!

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfnium View Post
    Since my Web hosting service runs CentOS, I wonder if I would benefit by using CentOS locally myself. Or would Ubuntu's reputed noob-friendly features make it my better choice?
    I'm using Ubuntu on my servers and Ubuntu locally and that's really convenient, but I don't think it's necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfnium View Post
    In the self-hosting scenario, are there security, performance or ease-of-maintenance arguments for one distro over the other
    RedHat/Fedora and Ubuntu are really close on those issues. It's almost a matter of taste at this point.
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  11. #30
    Halfnium is offline Unknown Net Builder
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    Matula Singapura!

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