LaaS (Linux as a Service): What to expect when you build a Linux server in the cloud

Linux servers in the cloud -- cheaper and better than ever

penguins cloud brian gratwicke
Brian Gratwicke (CC BY 2.0)

If you haven't already launched a Linux server in the cloud, this might be the perfect time. Why?

  • because you can set one up in a matter of minutes
  • because you have lots of choices on what distribution you elect to use
  • because you just might find that a Linux servers in the cloud provide you with a very convenient way to work with commands and apps that you might not have time or opportunity to try out at work
  • because you can get a lot of value of out a cloud-based Unix system at a surprisingly reasonable cost, especially if you're new to the scene (cloud providers seem to love the newbies).
  • and because experience in setting up and managing Linux servers in the cloud is likely to put a very colorful feather in your IT cap

Just considering Amazon's "free tier" deal for new cloud customers, you're likely to be amazed at what you can set up and use. In your first 12 months with EC2, you get:

  • 750 hours of EC2 running a Linux, RHEL, or SLES t2.micro instance
  • 750 hours of EC2 running a Microsoft Windows Server t2.micro instance
  • 750 hours of Elastic Load Balancing plus 15 GB data processing
  • 30 GB of Amazon Elastic Block Storage in any combination of General Purpose (SSD) or Magnetic, plus 2 million I/Os (with Magnetic) and 1 GB of snapshot storage
  • 15 GB of bandwidth aggregated across all AWS services
  • 1 GB of Regional Data Transfer

Many other cloud providers also provide special deals for new customers. As examples, you can get:

  • a free virtual server for one month at Softlayer
  • a free 30 day trial at CloudLinux
  • free micro instances for a year at Turnkey
  • a free seven day trial even without supplying your credit card number at CloudSigma

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