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I want to love you linux, but why must you make it so damn hard!

After reading a blog entry about another CF guy moving over to Linode, I got to asking myself "what the heck is a linode"? Well, it's a XEN based VPS that's really, really freakin' cheap! I signed up for their 1080 plan (which is way more traffic then I'll likely see), and decided it was time to move from shared hosting to my own VPS. The reasons abound, one of which being I'm going to be fielding all of the hosting/billing for future projects for Meteorsite, LLC. I'd also planned on moving to Railo/Resin to do this hosting, and it seemed like a great fit. Oh, and I was also planning on using GroundWorks with Nagios to monitor all our various and sundry hosting solutions (to also get that crap off my own home network ;) ).

Things went great at first. I got GroundWorks installed, but then I realized that GroundWorks wants to gloom onto and possess MySQL and Apache. Well, that's a pain in the ass and had to go. I only really wanted Nagios anyway. I'll generate the nagios configs on my local machine and just migrate them over. Fine, and done. Next step, configure a mail server with some sort of web front end. My old host used Plesk and that seemed to also include Horde. Great! I can deal with Horde. I usually pull everything into google mail for online viewing anyway, but I like having that option. So... I found 1, 2, a ton of tutorials on installing Horde on Ubuntu. The only problem is, not a damn one worked. Postfix would install correctly, but in the end I could never get IMAP (dovecot or courrier) to talk nice-nice to Postfix.

Three tutorials, and several hours later, I decided to start looking for a one touch install type system. Since I'll be hosting sites later it made sense to find a Plesk/CPanel/Helm type open source solution. And behold, I started my quest towards making ISPconfig work. There is at least 10 hours of my life I'm never getting back. Good lord... after about 50 steps, I just could not get ISPconfig to authenticate against IMP. And as soon as I changed the authentication method, I couldn't get back into the system. No matter what I tried, I could not get it to work. In between all of this, it's likely that I blew away my VPS about 20 times.

And then, I found Citadel and Easy Host Control Panel. I tried Citadel first, and currently have EHCP running on a test machine. Citadel (and EHCP) just worked. One installer, and that's it. Yes, you have to answer questions, but they're of the variety of "what's your system DNS" and "what's your mysql root passwor". Each have domain management for mail. Citadel really does far more than I require, and I think for hosting other sites, EHCP makes more sense, but at least I have something up and running! Yay. I do, however, still want my weekend back.

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