I have some sites hosted on a shared-hosting/cpanel environment and need to make a move up. I have some experience running my own server, but it is very basic (a local box to do live testing/file serv). My question is how difficult is it to run a VPS, should I buy a managed VPS (with stuff already installed), or unmanaged (blank box), and lastly if I go for unmanaged what steps should I take to keep my VPS secure? Edit: Also how difficult is it to backup files and databases? Can it be automated?
Virtual servers are scalable and come with dedicated core and memory allocations. They are a great option if you are looking for compute resources, that can be added in minutes, with access to features like image templates. The hypervisor is fully managed by IBM Cloud, and you can perform configuration and management tasks by using both the IBM Cloud customer portal and the API. Virtual servers are deployed to the same VLANs as physical servers, allowing you to spread workloads across virtual servers and bare metal servers while maintaining interoperability. Virtual servers are fully customizable when you 
order them, with options to scale up as your compute needs grow.
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This is a low cost option for the hosting company and they will usually offer some kind of data protection using a RAID system where data is copied across multiple disks. This is an entry level solution but one issue is that the server itself represents a single point of failure. It could be that the power supply fails which brings the server down for example.

All the features I've detailed to this point are valuable to the web hosting experience, but none matches the critical importance of site uptime. If your site is down, clients or customers will be unable to find you or access your products or services. It doesn't matter how great the features are, or how good it looks; if your site is down, it might as well not exist.
Vrtualbox is an alternative to using VMware or when the old days you would use Virtual PC. It allows 64-bit operating systems and Irving and especially for testing 2013 and are more advanced nav features. It’s a great product because it also performs very well. So I’ve already downloaded the VirtualBox here so I would just go through the install. And it’s one of those simple ones is just like those next-next-next. It will give you a warning here that it actually will shut down the network interface for a short second. It’s not different than what virtual preceded.
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If you’re outgrowing your shared web hosting or simply want more control, a managed or fully managed Virtual Private Server (VPS) is the next logical choice for your hosting needs. It gives you more freedom with root access to Apache and PHP, plus you can install an SSL certificate, as well as any type of software – all without the responsibility of a dedicated server.
I’ve tried down-converting them to DVRMS format (the earlier Windows PVR format) then into MP4s but they then loose their Closed Caption subtitles that are essential for anyone hard of hearing. And the clever way Series Recording was done in WMC is second to none (I’ve tried several FreeView PVRs from well known manufacturers, and all had to be returned to the store).
That's also not to say that if you are an advanced, power user, you won't be able to take advantage of the unprecedented power of our Managed VPS Hosting. These plans are perfect for customers who are more comfortable managing their account with cPanel. We have plenty of very experienced customers though who prefer the ease of managing their account with cPanel and opt for our Managed VPS solution instead.
It provides you with even more options, including root access, access to Apache and PHP.ini (modification of PHP variables), and much more. You can also install an SSL certificate, and all software program types. In short, you get more freedom in terms of administering and configuring your server, without the hassle of managing any physical hardware. 
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