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    I am always impressed by the enormous effort it takes to properly self-host email, dns, and other serious sysadmin services.

    Having run my own pages etc for a long time, it’s become pretty clear that the difference between “this service will stay up when I remember to wave the rubber duckie properly” and “this service will stay up.” is a profound amount of work. Backups, paging (I have not found a paging service that is aimed at a one-person player or is priced for a one person player), configuration management, etc are all deeply specialized.

    operational costs (time more than anything) are so bloody non-trivial for reasonable levels of availability that it’s not useful to make this manifesto for any hobbyists who don’t have decent amounts of time or knowledge… or money to trade to others for it.

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      This. I have a hard time not getting snarky when people get all high and mighty about my choice not to host my own blog or mail on my hobby domain or whatever.

      They seem to not grok the fact that I run big infra for a living for a company that people use as a verb meaning “crazy scale”.

      The author makes a good point though when it comes to running a business. If you choose to run a business based on delivering content, you’d either better own your platform or be DAMN sure of the terms you’re existing under and ensure that they’re iron clad and can’t change, or that if they do you have an iron clad backup plan.

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        The author makes a good point though when it comes to running a business. If you choose to run a business based on delivering content, you’d either better own your platform or be DAMN sure of the terms you’re existing under and ensure that they’re iron clad and can’t change, or that if they do you have an iron clad backup plan.

        Absolutely.

        There’s a substantial argument for having an independent content source for anybody that also has Medium, Squarespace, FB, Insta, etc. But one has to be clear-eyed about the costs - its not just an investment, it’s also a hedge.

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          Absolutely! if you’re running a business I’d think a multi-medium approach makes good sense. Communities like Medium and Facebook tend to have captive audiences, plus it can act as a backup in case your home grown self hosted infra has an issue.

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        I pay Fastmail for my email and am extremely happy to not have to think about these problems as well.

        But, I think a distinction exists between paying Fastmail or a web host to host my site and putting my content on Medium or relying on a data mining company to hold my email. The former monetized me already, so they’re essentially the plumbing of the internet - things are still on my terms.

        Is this just a little naive or hopelessly naive? ;)

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          The YunoHost project tries to democratize server administration to make personal servers a common thing easy to install and maintain with little technical knowledge ;). We think there’s no fundamental reason that server administration should be so hard, and are kinda trying to be the “Ubuntu of self-hosting” (as in “Ubuntu was pretty much the first Linux distribution trying to make Linux accessible to non-tech people”)

          It includes a simple web administration interface, a fully-working mail stack out of the box, and you can even have a free automatically configured domain if you don’t have one. Then you can install various self-hostables applications in just a few clicks. And of course many other things such that it “just works”.

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            I’ve built and been bit by a wide variety of “it just works” tools. I wish you best of luck, honestly. It’s the debug, maintenance, configuration management, backups, etc that kills productivity. The knowledge base to do that is substantially higher than one would hope. As you’ve found and are working through.

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            I keep on seeing reactions like this mentioning the enormous effort it is supposed to take to host mail and such and wonder whether I’m just the odd one out who thinks ~8 hours of work per year is not that much to maintain the mail system (Debian-Exim-Spamassasin-Dovecot-greylistd plus letsencrypt), another 8 or so for the web server (Debian-nginx-uwsgi plus letsencrypt) etc. Elsewhere in this thread someone mentions hav[ing] a hard time not getting snarky when people get all high and mighty…. What is it in hosting one’s own services which makes people react in this way, both the supposedly high and mighty proponents as well as the snarky detractors? Do what you want shall be the whole of the law, if you don’t want to run your own stuff that’s fine with me. If you want to, fine as well. I want to have my data on my hardware so I can handle everything my way so I have a stack of hardware buzzing along underneath the stairs.

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              I don’t mind if my blog is down because I forgot something; it’s not a service that needs a high SLA.

              I pay someone else to deal with mail, since I do care about that working all of the time.

              [edit] misunderstood your comment, disregard this.

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                I like uptimerobot for paging: it’s $0 for one service I look after and $5 for the other, so very reasonably priced for just me.

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                  hey, thanks - I’ll take a look. I’m a month or so out from having a angry nerd moment and writing a very awful paging service for myself - love to not do that.