Windows VPS from $2.50/month with Vultr

About

Recently I wrote an article about installing Windows 7 on a VPS as a custom ISO

Well, now Vultr has introduced 512MB VPSes (locations in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia) starting from $2.50 so let’s see how these perform as a Windows VPS!

You can sign up to Vultr here

VPS Specs

First of all let’s see if Windows installs. I am installing Windows 7 as a custom ISO with integrated VirtIO drivers (see my guide above for instructions)

The $2.50 VPS has 1 CPU, 512MB RAM, 20GB HDD and 500GB bandwidth.

Installing Windows

Windows 7 installed perfectly fine, and took about 20 minutes including downloading the custom ISO to the node and booting it.

Performance

After installing Windows 7, I left the paging file size at the Windows managed default (1GB) and disabled visual styles. Performance is great. The fast SSDs make it feel extremely snappy, even though it just has 512MB RAM.

To load speedtest.net I needed to install Adobe Flash. This took less than 30 seconds to download and install.

I then downloaded and installed Adobe Photoshop CS2 (as the free trial is available to download from Adobe without registering). It took about 10 seconds to extract the files and folders from the ~400MB zip file, and the Photoshop installation took about a minute. Photoshop opened almost instantly and was very much usaable, even with 512MB RAM.

I could even keep Photoshop open in the background and browse the ineternet, on Internet Explorer, over remote desktop!

Network Speeds

Here is a speedtest I did. When I created the VPS I selected London, UK as the location but for some reason the IP geo-locates to NJ where Vultr is based.

So here is a speedtest from the UK to the UK.

Overall thoughts

After playing with this VPS for a while, it’s certainly usable for a remote desktop! As it’s in multiple locations across 4 continents, you should have no trouble with latency. And how can we forget it’s only $2.50?

Sign up now and test it out for yourself here

How to set up a Linux VPS to be used as a seedbox

What is a seedbox?

A seedbox is a private server used for uploading and downloading digital files. Since VPSes are cheap and usually connected with speeds of 100mpbs and above they make great budget seedboxes.

What software and configuration is required?

The software installed with this guide will be rTorrent (a command-line torrent client), ruTorrent (a web interface for rTorrent), lighttpd (a webserver used to access ruTorrent), PHP (required by ruTorrent) and Screen (required for running rTorrent in the background)

Removing default apps and upgrading

Since we’re going to be using this VPS for torrents and will install lighttpd, we can remove the pre-installed webserver, mailserver, etc.

To do this, enter the following command and press enter

apt-get update && apt-get remove --purge -y apache2* bind9* sendmail* samba* && apt-get -y autoremove && apt-get -y upgrade

Sometimes, sendmail doesn’t get fully removed, so once that has finished, press the up arrow on your keyboard (which repeats the previous command, without submitting it) and then press enter and let it run again.

Installing and setting up the required apps

To install the apps we need, enter the following command and press enter

apt-get install -y screen rtorrent lighttpd php5-cgi php5-cli curl ffmpeg mediainfo unrar nano && lighty-enable-mod fastcgi-php auth

Setting up the folders

We need a folder for current torrents (session), a folder for ruTorrent to watch (watch) for new torrents, a folder for ruTorrent (/var/www/t) and a folder for the downloads (/var/www/d) so run the following command to create these folders

cd ~ && mkdir rtorrent && mkdir rtorrent/watch rtorrent/session /var/www/t /var/www/d

Installing ruTorrent

Run the following command to install ruTorrent into the /var/www/t folder

cd /var/www && wget https://github.com/Novik/ruTorrent/archive/master.zip && unzip master.zip && rm master.zip && mv ruTorrent-master/ t && chmod 0777 t/share/settings t/share/torrents

Starting rTorrent

We need to run rTorrent in a screen session so it will continue to run when the connection to the VPS is closed. Run the following command

cd ~ && screen -S rt

Then, you’ll have be in a screen session so type the following

rtorrent

Then, hold Ctrl + A and press D which will disconnect the screen session and leave it running in the background

Securing your webserver

Of course, we don’t want everyone accessing ruTorrent and our downloads, so we need to password protect the folders

Run the following command

cd /etc/lighttpd/conf-enabled && rm 05-auth.conf && wget ehwtf.com/seedbox/05-auth.conf && nano /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.user && /etc/init.d/lighttpd restart

It will then bring up a blank white window

Head to this site and generate a htpasswd file (delete everything in the left hand box and type in admin (space) yourPasswordHere then click Generate htpasswd content)

Copy everything from the box on the right hand side (example: admin:$apr1$sgwrguwr$egrrrhr) and then go back to PuTTY, press Ctrl + X then type Y and then press enter

Now we just need to make sure we can see a list of files when we access the torrents folder. Enter the following command

echo ‘dir-listing.activate = “enable”‘ >> /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf && /etc/init.d/lighttpd restart

Finished

To test it, access your webserver like this

http://YOURSERVERIP/t

It should ask you for a username and password. Use admin and the password you chose earlier. You should then be able to use ruTorrent. To see downloads, just go to the following address

http://YOURSERVERIP/d

If you find any problems, or it doesn’t ask for a username/password, please leave a comment and I will try to help.

Ramnode coupon code (10% off) – March 2017

About Ramnode

Ramnode is an extremely high quality host which offers both OpenVZ and KVM VPSes. Their plans start at just $15/year for a 128MB VPS with either 12GB storage space (SSD) or 80GB (SSD cached)

They have 4 locations in the US (New York City, Atlanta, Seattle, Los Angeles) and an EU location (Netherlands) as well.

I have two VPSes with them myself, one is just a development box (SSD) and the other is a backup box (SSD-cached) which as of right now has 206 days uptime.

Before signing up, I have written a review of Ramnode (including speedtests and benchmarks) which you can read here

Coupon

Right now, Ramnode a coupon code which can be used on any VPS (both OpenVZ and KVM)

The codes even work for existing customers!

Click here to visit Ramnode and use the coupon code SSD10 for 10% off any new VPS!

Vultr Coupon Codes ($20 free credit) – March 2017

About Vultr

Vultr is a quality host which provides cheap KVM VPSes with pure SSD drives for great performance across 14 locations world wide. One huge advantage Vultr has over Digital Ocean and other competitors is that it allows custom ISOs.

Since Vultr offers a 768MB RAM package for as little as $5/mo this means it’s a great for running a Windows VPS. For instructions on how to do this, you can read my tutorial here.

I have written a review (with speedtests and benchmarks) which you can read here

Coupons

What’s even better than a high quality VPS for only $5/mo? Coupons which make it even cheaper of course! Below are some current coupons you can use with Vultr

Click here to visit Vultr and get $20 free credit!

Update: the above offer has now expired.