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Ask HN: What server would you recommend for a first MVP website?
11 points by Mister_Y on Jan 11, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 20 comments
I'm not looking for anything super fancy, but I want it to be reliable and I'm completely lost on this, if you could help me I'd be forever granted :)

Edit: We used css and html

The thing is that I'm not sure about the amount of people that will land on the page will depend on the success of the marketing/crowdfunding campaign.

Also, the type of application is an easy concept for booking (via online form) vacation experiences, so it has terms and conditions, explanations of our service, cities in which we're offering it and not much more

I'm using Azure, with the bonus if that if you want you can apply to BizSpark and get 3 years of free software and servers. Uploading an MVP should be easy.

It's an amazing service for startups, and it's gotten more Linux and OSS-friendly.


Some resources:



Edit: that said, for basic HTML it's probably overkill, I haven't tried Gitlab or similar but it should do.

For a proof of concept, maybe a landing page generator like Unbounce? http://unbounce.com/

If you are just doing an html5 site, then just throw your project in AWS's s3. Its easy, and not much to think about. If you are connected to a DB and have users I would say get an EC2 up and configure it with your needs.

I'm a huge fan (and user) of AWS, but I would not recommend it if all you want to do is host an MVP website. There's quite a learning curve before you have something reliable up and running and it will cost you a lot of time before you have figured everything out... If you have the time to learn about using AWS it's totally worth it, but if all you need is to host your website somewhere I'd look for something like the smallest Linode plan and scale it up when necessary.

I agree with dirktheman here if we're talking about hosting a non-static website. Getting setup with EC2 is a huge pain if you don't know what you are doing. I really like Heroku for simple apps, but something like Linode makes a lot of sense if you wanna have more control over the server.

But I also agree with the parent comment about AWS S3 for static website. If you are setting up a static website with just HTML and CSS, S3 is the way to go. I do this for my homepage and it was very easy to setup and costs me about $0.52/month.

Added benefits are that you can use Cloudfront for CDN which also offers HTTPS. Some guides:

Example: Setting Up a Static Website Using a Custom Domain http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AmazonS3/latest/dev/website-hosti...

Using CloudFront with Amazon S3 http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AmazonCloudFront/latest/Developer...

Using HTTPS with CloudFront http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AmazonCloudFront/latest/Developer...

To the OP, I'm not sure what your experience level is, but if you consider yourself a beginner and you don't know what any of these terms mean, feel free to ping me if you have any questions!

Yeah, I run my blog on S3 with Jekyll. That's what got me into the other AWS offerings. Consider it a gateway drug :)

Github Pages is free and extremely easy for a static site, especially for someone with no skills. (I've used it with non-technical students to host their first simple web pages.) You don't even have to use Git -- there's a drag-and-drop interface to "Upload Files".

So to recap:

* You're building a landing-page, with HTML + CSS. * But you also need to run PHP. * I think you already have a server running MySQL.

If you trust the company providing you with the MySQL-server then use them to add a second machine if you're worried. If you're not sure how much load to expect, but are pessimistic, then just use the server you already have.

Really you can't guess how much traffic you'll get, but chances are high it will be slow to scale up. So the important thing is that you monitor resources and can re-deploy on a bigger host in a hurry if you need to - moving your code, your database(s), and updating DNS promptly.

GitHub Pages. The only real downside I can think of is it doesn't provide SSL encryption for your own second-level domain. Other than that it's perfect for that use case.

You have to provider at least some information (what kind of application, expected traffic, design, what level of HA is required, what's the probable bottleneck, etc.)

You're completely right, the thing is that I'm not sure about that as the amount of people that will land on the page will depend on the success of the marketing/crowdfunding campaign.

Also, the type of application is an easy concept for booking (via online form) vacation experiences, so it has terms and conditions, explanations of our service, cities in which we're offering it and not much more

Is this a static website? When you fill out and submit the form, what code do you have that receives and processes said form? You indicated that you built this with CSS and HTML, but those aren't server languages. Is there something else that you are using to process the submitted form? Do you use some third party service to do that? What would be helpful is a technical explanation of what you are trying to do.

Yes I am using php on the server side to update a database when the user send a form

OK. You should update the original question you asked to include the fact that the server side code is using PHP and you'll probably get more targeted responses. Also, which database are you using and where is that being hosted?

Thanks, I'm planning on using MySql allocated in the own server as I'm using now in a free hosting server

I would use AWS, EC2 + RDS for now. A t2.micro should get you started. Make sure you automate the installation using Ansible (it's slow but you don't care, most importantly it's easy to pick-up and it's relatively agentless).

At this point, that's it IMHO. I wouldn't even use an ELB or auto-scaling at this point.

If you need help, drop a mail, I have spare time I can help you with the specifics (free of charge ofc).

ps. AWS has a learning curve and is not cheap but saves you a great deal of sysadmin management and most importantly, saves you from probable fire-fighting at this stage, plus there is the free tier will get you nearly a year without charges.

Netlify. You can drag and drop your files to set the site up or use a command-line utility to upload a folder. Miles easier than GitHub Pages or S3.

if its just css and html use gitlab

What "server"? Meaning what? What back-end framework (if any)? What host? What?

S3 + Angularjs + Cloudfront + Lambda + API gateway - Free tier, baby!

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