Why I Move To The Cloud

This blog already (and several other ones hosted on my servers will) move to the cloud. More specifically to Amazon. But why did I move a low-maintenance, self-hosted solution to the cloud?

My “infrastructure” is/was fairly small and easy. Two servers as DNS and WWW hosts. One “server” is a Raspberry Pi in my living room, the other one is a VPS on DigitalOcean. These were set up by me when I had much more free time. I didn’t want to be dependent on any service or provider. This was 4 years ago. Since then a lot has changed, I needed to shift my focus from my own infrastructure to other main parts of my life, like my family or work. This does not mean I gave up interest on these. I achieved my goals, I set up an infrastructure that I considered stable and decent. Since then, this infrastructure went through a lot of change. Most significantly, I moved flats which caused a few days of outage on my blog as – despite otherwise communicated – my public IP address has changed. Then I moved to different hosts inside DigitalOcean, decided I wanted to host DNS myself and then did it. I even have other (more useful) services hosted on my systems that are dependent on my time and dedication.

Moving to the cloud essentially means to me that I will have more time focusing on the content I produce. There are no more broken Jekyll updates, interesting new h2o features that I have to use right away, causing the site to be unavailable, sometimes even for days.

##The cons Moving to the cloud means I gave up some freedom. Until now, I was in charge of my own infrastructure, which meant I maintained the operating system, DNS, the web server and Jekyll. If something went wrong, I knew exactly what went wrong, where to look. Moving to the cloud means that I am no longer in charge of the DNS, web server, etc. If something goes wrong, the most I can do is to open a support ticket and hope that the provider will fix the issue.

Amazon can decide any time that my blog is not important to it anymore and just shut it down or do anything with it. The URL can be redirected to whatever content without my knowledge. Although it is unlikely, it is technically possible.

##The Pros The solution I chose allows me the focus more on the content and worry less about how the website will work. I will have more time to focus on new articles; from now on, I only need to commit to GitHub and the new content will automatically appear on my blog. It is still Jekyll-based which I really like, the build and the server process however is automated.

I have the choice to move back to my own infrastructure. I’m very glad I started on my own, I learned a lot and gained a ton of experience which helped me in my professional career tremendously.