Monday, July 30, 2007

Free services will help you save your time and server resources

Once you get a new server, you probably install: webserver (for example, apache, lighttpd), php, MySQL, DNS (bind), email/pop3 server, traffic statistics tool (webalizer, AWStats). If you're trying to save server resources you don't really need to run DNS, e-mail and traffic stats in your server. Outsource. Use free services. That way you can also save your time - not only you won't have to spend your time installing the software, you also won't need to worry about your email server going down or spend several hours trying to figure out how to stop spam you're receiving. So here's how you can do this.

Many of domain registrars (for example, GoDaddy) provide their own DNS services for free. Simply point your nameservers to default registrar nameservers and then use their DNS service to add DNS A record with your web server's IP address. You can do it way more faster than installing your own DNS server and after that you won't have to worry about your DNS service going down.

You probably have a Gmail account. You can use your domain name for Gmail as well. Try Google Apps. I've been using it for quite a long time and I really enjoy it.
Once you sign up and add your domain to your Google Hosted account you will have to point DNS MX records to Google's e-mail servers (instruction on how to do that will be provided right after you add and verify your domain). Once you do that, you can enjoy Gmail interface to manage your e-mail.

Traffic stats
Once again, google comes to the rescue. Google Analytics will provide very detailed traffic statistics. All you need to do is to register and copy/paste the google analytics code to your website's html.

I hope this will help you to save some time and escape from some problems. If you have any questions or suggestions, don't hesitate and use comment section :-)

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