How to start your first server

This quick start guide will help you get your first server started with your choice of operating system.

Management Console basics

The Servers and Drives page displays a list of your servers and drives:

Servers

Are either running or powered off. When a server is running, the cloud provides VNC access. When a server is powered off, you can configure the CPU, memory, drives and IP addresses which it uses.

Drives

Are just like physical hard disks or CDs. They store your operating system, applications and data, and are persistent across server reboots.

Note: some other clouds have a more basic interface in which a ‘server’ is linked to a single drive. Our approach is more powerful and allows advanced configurations such as attaching several drives to a server or building alternative configurations which boot from the same drive.

Starting your first server

Pre-installed operating systems

The cloud offers a range of pre-installed operating systems. To use these:

  1. Add a server, selecting the pre-installed system from the pop-up menu.
  2. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC.
  3. The images start with a fully working base system with a single user. As usual, you add additional users and install additional software, just as you would on a physical machine.

Self-install operating systems

The cloud offers a range of install CDs. To install from one of these:

  1. Add a server, selecting the install CD from the pop-up menu.
  2. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC.
  3. Connect using VNC, and work through the operating system installer, as you would with a physical machine.
  4. Once your operating system is installed and you need to reboot off the physical hard disk, then shut down the server.
  5. Reconfigure the server to remove the install CD from ide:0:1 and set the disk on ide:0:0 to boot.
  6. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC or any method which your operating system itself provides, such as SSH.

Other operating systems

The cloud supports any PC operating system on 32-bit or 64-bit x86 architectures, including all versions of Windows back to Windows 2000. If there is no pre-installed image or install CD for your chosen operating system, then you will need to upload your own install CD/DVD. To do this:

  1. Add the target drive onto which you will install, selecting ‘blank’ from the pop-up menu.
  2. On your local computer, make an ISO image from your install CD/DVD.
  3. Upload this ISO image into your account in the cloud, using the drive upload tool or any of several other options. You can read more about these in the notes if you click ‘edit’ on the drive that you just created – but remember to upload the CD as a new drive in itself.
  4. Add a server. Configure the server so that your target drive is connected on ide:0:0 as a disk, and the install CD is connected on ide:0:1 as a cdrom, set to boot.
  5. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC.
  6. Connect using VNC, and work through the operating system installer, as you would with a physical machine.
  7. Once your operating system is installed and you need to reboot off the physical hard disk, then shut down the server.
  8. Reconfigure the server to remove the install CD from ide:0:1 and set the disk on ide:0:0 to boot.
  9. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC or any method which your operating system itself provides, such as SSH or Windows Remote Desktop.

Migration of existing servers

Since the cloud supports any PC operating system on 32-bit or 64-bit x86 architectures, you can upload and run raw hard drive images from your existing physical or virtual servers. To do this:

  1. Add the target drive onto which you will upload your existing image, selecting ‘blank’ from the pop-up menu.
  2. Upload your raw hard drive image into your account in the cloud, using the drive upload tool. You can read more about this in the notes if you click ‘edit’ on the drive that you just created.
  3. Add a server, selecting the drive from the pop-up menu.
  4. Start the server. You now have a running server, which you can access using VNC or any method which your operating system itself provides, such as SSH or Windows Remote Desktop.
 
23 queries. 0.163 seconds.