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As with all things in this market, it really depends on the execution.

If the remote hands are awesome, this is well worth $100 per node. If they are anything but awesome, this wouldn't be worth it for any amount of money.




While my occasional experiences with their support team have been fantastic, this is being offered by the same people who had a CF vuln exploited in their management software and, it seems, would not have bothered to share any details with their customers if the perpetrators hadn't gotten on IRC to brag.

Their documentation in the Linode Library is also really great -- as a starting point. Assuming that they're using the same guides in recommending server configuration, there are some things that could be done better by a skilled admin. e.g., their LAMP server guide for Debian 6 doesn't include suexec or any variation of FastCGI, two must-haves for a public-facing web server IMO.

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Worth noting it was a coldfusion 0day manufactured for that attack, and the story from the hackers (HTP) is that Linode was forced to announce it by the FBI despite being blackmailed with their customer credit card database.

Of course, they could have handled security internally better but I suspect other VPS providers appear more secure only because nobody has gone out of their way to target them.

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Right; according to HTP (http://straylig.ht/zines/HTP5/0x02_Linode.txt), it sounds like Linode were willing to delay notifying their customers of a serious incident in exchange for a promise from the attackers that the data would be destroyed -- the supposedly totally secure data, according to a later blog post from Linode.

The takeaway is that now, while I don't know if I can trust other VPS providers or not, I know I can't trust Linode. (Hell, to some extent, I trust HTP more than Linode now -- I haven't seen a dump of the Linode data on pastebin or a .ru forum yet.)

How a business handles disclosure of a compromise is as important to me as the fact that they were compromised. Notably, this is the second time they screwed up disclosure, after being raked over the coals for it the first time. I was willing to let the first one slide since Linode is so awesome in every other regard, and hope that they would handle the next incident more gracefully. Unfortunately, they didn't.

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I agree, I just don't expect much from VPS hosts - although their handling of this was remarkably poor.

FWIW I'll be finding a new host, I just like to play devils advocate to balance discussions.

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And so why haven't we heard anything specific from Linode about what happened ? At minimum they can talk about the technology/security improvements they have made. And what about the first time this happened ?

People need to stop excusing this sort of behaviour from companies.

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Realistically, $100 is $100, and software and dev ops are complicated. So I look at it as $100 worth of consulting. They can hire cheap people or outsource if they want, but you can only stretch that so far. So they can provide a maximum of a few hours of help per account on average or they will lose money. Which could easily be eaten up with one issue.

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