[PRE-ORDERS OPEN NOW] Privex Amsterdam πŸ‡³πŸ‡± is Almost Ready

in #hosting β€’ last year

Photo of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Privex Amsterdam is Almost Ready

We first got our Amsterdam NL rack around May 2021, and over the past 2 months, we've been mostly stuck waiting for packages to arrive from the UK, NL, and USA. Finally, our Dell R620's, ASRock Ryzen's, and our Cisco Nexus 2000 series switch arrived over the past few days, so we were finally ready to setup our rack, and start testing our hardware and network.

Yesterday (27th of July 2021), we finally had all of our servers for phase 1 of our Amsterdam NL expansion, and had them installed + cabled into our rack.

We'll likely be opening the region for our pre-order customers to beta test their pre-ordered server within the next week, and opening the region to the public most likely by the end of August.

If you haven't yet placed a pre-order for Privex NL, you can do so using this form: https://forms.gle/u8w3N1MYC5PrasyZA

To keep up to date on our expansion, as well as other Privex updates in real-time, please join our Discord ( https://discord.privex.io ) or our Matrix ( https://riot.privex.io ).

Why the Netherlands / Amsterdam?

Amsterdam is a major connectivity hub for Europe, both for transport (Amsterdam Schipol Airport is the 2nd largest hub airport in the world), and is home to the 2nd biggest Internet Exchange (IXP) in Europe: AMS-IX (which is also the 3rd biggest in the world).

This allows us peering access to almost 1,000 networks via AMS-IX, including massive companies - here's some of the biggest names we've seen are connected to AMS-IX:

Apple, Amazon (inc. AWS), Adobe, Akamai, Automattic (Wordpress), British Telecom (BT), 
Choopa (Vultr), Contabo, CreeperHost, DailyMotion, Deutsche Telekom, DigitalOcean, 
Dropbox, Fastly, Gandi, Github, Google, GoDaddy, Leaseweb, Level3, Microsoft, Netnod, 
NTT, Opera, Oracle, Orange, OVH, RIPE NCC, Telegram Messenger, T-Mobile, Twitter, 
VeriSign, Verizon, Wikimedia Foundation, Yandex, Yahoo, 
Zoom (yes the video call company), and many more!

It also allows us much cheaper transit connectivity compared to Sweden, especially thanks to the fact that our NL datacenter is an open carrier datacenter (anyone may offer/sell transit across their AMS datacenters, resulting in heavy competition) - so unmetered bandwidth is going to be much cheaper for customers with NL servers than it will be for SE.

How do the NL pre-orders work?

If you haven't yet pre-ordered a Privex NL πŸ‡³πŸ‡± server, please do so ASAP to help us gauge interest and pricing - as well as to secure a spot for an NL dedicated server (we're only going to have 7 available for customers to rent for the first 6-12mo)

VPS pre-orders will mostly just be used to gauge demand for specific packages, and the best pricing we should sell each package for. However, if there are many pre-orders for our large VPS packages, such as our Hive Node-in-a-box VPS's, we may go by the highest "bid", followed by first-come-first-serve, just like we will be doing for dedicated servers.

Which dedicated servers are available?

These are the two dedicated server models / configurations we're going to have available:

  • Dell PowerEdge R620 64GB

    • CPU: 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2667 2.90Ghz (3.5ghz turbo) 6-Core/12-Thread CPU's (total 12 cores / 24 threads)
    • RAM: 64GB RAM (4x16Gb) DDR3 (capacity of up to 768GB - possibly even 1.5TB)
    • Disk: Likely will come with 2x 1TB or 2x 2TB SATA SSD. The server itself has 8x 2.5" SATA/SAS Drive Bays.
    • Network: Most likely will come with 1gbps Effectively Unmetered (EUM) or 10gbps Effectively Unmetered. Hardware-wise it has: 2x 10gbps SFP+ and 2x 1gbps RJ45 (1000Base-T/1GBase-T Ethernet) networking ports
    • Total stock for customers: 3 servers
    • Estimated Starting Price (USD): $120/mo + $50 setup fee
  • ASRock Ryzen 5800X Server (8-core/16-thread @ 3.8ghz + 4.7ghz turbo)

    • CPU: 1x AMD Ryzen 7 5800X 3.8GHz (turbo 4.7ghz) 8-Cores/16-Threads (4MB L2 Cache + 32MB L3 Cache + Supports ECC RAM)
    • RAM: 128GB (4x 32GB) or 64GB DDR4 ECC @ 3200MHz (2x 32GB)
    • Disk: Likely will come with 2x 1TB PCI-e NVMe or 2x 2TB PCI-e NVMe
    • Network: Most likely will come with 1gbps Effectively Unmetered (EUM) or 10gbps Effectively Unmetered. Hardware-wise it has: 2x 10gbps SFP+ and 2x 10gbps RJ45 (10GBase-T Ethernet) networking ports
    • Total stock for customers: 4 servers
    • ESTIMATED STARTING PRICE (USD): $150/mo + $200 setup fee

Increase your bid for a better chance!

Our NL dedicated server pre-orders are similar to an auction - you can either:

  • Bid the minimum - which is the estimated listing monthly/setup price on our pre-order information article
  • Or, you can bid a HIGHER monthly/setup than our listing price, which will prioritise your bid for the server compared to lower bidders.

You DO NOT have to pay anything to place a pre-order!

  1. When Privex NL πŸ‡³πŸ‡± is ready, we'll invite customers who've pre-ordered a server, and "won" - to test out the server that they pre-ordered FOR FREE in a closed beta program. The closed beta could last anywhere from 1-2 weeks, to 6-8 weeks, depending on the amount of work which needs to be done to make the region fast and stable for customers.

  2. Customers may choose to pay for the server at any time during the closed beta, if the server meets their expectations, and they're financially able to do so.

  3. During the last week / few days of the closed beta, we'll begin contacting** and invoicing all pre-order "winners"** for the server(s) they've selected. The pre-order customers will then have to make one of two choices within a 72 hr grace period:

    3.1. If the customer is financially capable - they can simply pay their invoice in full, within the 72 hr grace period, which will finalise their pre-order and add the new service to their account, for monthly billing (can be changed to 3mo/6mo/12mo/24mo at a later point, after finalising their pre-order with the payment)

    3.2. If the customer is unable to pay the invoice within 72 hrs - or intends to cancel their pre-order, they will be required to fill and sign a PDF contract form, to confirm whether or not they intend to pay for their pre-order within the following 10 days, and if they do intend to pay it, the date when they plan to pay for it. here's the first draft of that PDF (WIP - haven't yet added the form fields) https://privex.dev/index.php/s/2BLr9wAiWgbNAqj

    3.3. If a pre-order customer cancels their pre-order, their server will be offered to the next highest bidder, or an equal bid which was placed later than the customer whom cancelled.

More information about our available pre-order servers: https://www.privex.io/articles/privex-ams9-expansion-preorder/

Place your pre-orders using this form: https://forms.gle/u8w3N1MYC5PrasyZA

Our Amsterdam Rack Journey

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Front Photo of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands - 28 May 2021

28 / MAY / 2021

Front Photo of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands - 28 May 2021

On the 28th of May 2021, our first device was installed into our rack - our Cisco N9K series switch / core router.

We setup our N9K, including our transit via fibre (notice the yellow wire coming out of the switch - that's a fibre cable).

13 / JULY 2021

Front Photo of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands - 13 July 2021

On the 13th of July 2021, our first server arrived from our 3 order batches (spread between vendors, one UK vendor, one NL vendor, one US vendor).

We had the server installed into the rack, to avoid paying storage fees while waiting on the rest of our orders - but it wasn't connected to the network yet, as we were awaiting an order containing various network cables, as well as an order containing our 48-port 10GBase-T RJ45 switch for us to connect the IPMI into.

27 / JULY / 2021

Front Photo of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands - 27 July 2021

Back Photo of part of Privex's server rack in Amsterdam, Netherlands - 27 July 2021

At this point, both our Dell R620's + Cisco N2K Fabric Extender (switch) from the UK, and our ASRock Ryzen servers from the US had arrived within the past week or so, so it was finally time to finish installing our phase 1 servers + switches in our rack.

On the 27th of July 2021, our Cisco N2K (not visible in photo, was installed after photo was taken), 5x Dell PowerEdge R620's, and 4x ASRock Ryzen servers were installed into our Amsterdam rack, and they were all connected between our Cisco N9K + N2K.

More information about our available pre-order servers: https://www.privex.io/articles/privex-ams9-expansion-preorder/

Place your pre-orders using this form: https://forms.gle/u8w3N1MYC5PrasyZA

Thank you!

We would be grateful if you would vote for our CEO @someguy123 as a witness, go to https://wallet.hive.blog/~witnesses and click the arrow near @someguy123's name.

Don't forget to join our Discord!

You can join our Discord here: https://discord.privex.io

Don't like Discord? We have a Matrix too: https://riot.privex.io (those with existing Matrix accounts, just join #privex:privex.io and #announcements:privex.io as well as the community +privex:privex.io)

If you'd like to grab a server, just go to our website: https://www.privex.io - we accept HIVE, HBD, EOS, LTC, DOGE, XMR, BCH and BTC as payment. We offer both Virtual and Dedicated servers. Our offers range from as small as 256MB RAM, all the way up to 768GB of RAM!

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Nice work... well organized.... and Dell is cool and cheap... not the super stuff on support, but enough for the kind of deal.

Dell Servers are great 😍

Though I can't agree that they're "cheap" πŸ€” - they're more expensive than HP's with equivalent specs, and there's also generics (Foxconn, Chenbro, Quanta) that can be 1/4 the price of a Dell for the same specs.

But we've learned the hard way... 😑 Generic servers (at least Foxconn) are awful in the long run. They start to randomly fail in different ways after 1 year of buying them, whether the PXE stops working, or the IPMI controller is constantly misbehaving, or the IPMI controller just decides to stop working permanently, or sometimes the whole motherboard will just fail randomly (especially during reboots). Our Foxconns were great when we first got them, but now 3 years down the line we've had about 8/36 (~22%) become defective/fail in different ways, around 4 with broken PXE and/or IPMI, and 4 which seemingly had their whole motherboard fail.

As for HP... They require you to buy a license and renew it every year for each HP server you have - just to manage your server via ILO πŸ€‘ (their equivalent of iDRAC / IPMI) - and they love to make their servers have needlessly proprietary things, such as SAS ports which are shaped/sized oddly to force you to buy expensive HP SmartArray cables.

Dell has lifetime iDRAC (IPMI) licenses, and usually we don't even have to pay for a license ourselves, as a lot of vendors are happy to include an iDRAC Enterprise license pre-loaded on the server when you buy it. 😍

We've yet to have any hardware problems with the R630's we have in Sweden, and the R620's we've got in NL have been working great so far. The only two small complaints I have about Dell servers, is that:

  1. iDRAC 8 (for R630 and other 13th gen servers) can be pretty buggy at times, especially with remote media. I was surprised to find that iDRAC 7 on R620's feels so much faster and loaded remote media without any weirdness.
  2. Dell servers always seem to take a good 2 minutes just to boot past the BIOS/EFI initialisation sequence. Though this also seems to be the case with HP and certain other "enterprise" server brands.

We paid around $3k (plus ~$600 import tax) for 4x Refurb 8-bay Dell R620's with 64GB DDR3 (4x16GB) + SFP+ Quad NIC (2x 10G SFP+ & 2x 1G RJ45) with iDRAC Enterprise License, plus $900 + $180 tax for a 128GB R620. This was a really great deal we got from the vendor though, given most 64GB R620's on eBay cost >$1k each, and often don't even come with iDRAC Enterprise.

Meanwhile Dell R630's are usually $1.5k+ with 64GB DDR4 pre-installed. We were originally planning on buying a half-dozen R630's, but we found that for the same amount of money it'd cost to buy 3x 64GB R630's with dual 4-core/8-thread 1.9ghz CPU, we could buy 5x 64GB R620's with 6-core/12-thread 2.9ghz + 3.5ghz turbo and have money leftover 🀣

~~ @someguy123 - CEO @ Privex

Yeah... I am used to even higher grade than that... of course, way more pricier... but pays on the long run, but needs bigger contracts. HP is not bad, but I can't comment on that right now, since I represent my company that has HPC equipment and also that's totally different from normal business gear.

IBM was OKish... but supper expensive.

I once tried the rogue way with things like ASUS and direct to Supermicro, but I was kind of divided between features and price.

AMD gear is turning out to be a very great thing to go for either way. Especially on the bandwidth arena, both to memory or PCIe.

Server side things... like you mentioned, I think the best if for you guys to go kubernetes or OpenStack in general and live with the consequences of needing a bootstrapping machine to control the provisioned environment. Just like we do on HPC.

Either way, would have a long discussion with a !BEER =)

Hey @privex, here is a little bit of BEER from @forykw for you. Enjoy it!

Learn how to earn FREE BEER each day by staking your BEER.

Welp. I bid tree fiddy ($3.50) for all of them, incase some mad lads don't snap up these awesome deals.

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Check out the last post from @hivebuzz:

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it's awesome
Nice post btw love it !

Hey @privex @someguy123 privex is down. Could I please get an ETA on the downtime?