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Re: Reliable Cloud host ?
From: Jared Mauch <jared () puck nether net>
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 2012 09:39:25 -0500


On Feb 26, 2012, at 5:56 PM, Randy Carpenter wrote:

We require 1 or 2 very small virtual hosts to host some remote services to serve as backup to our main datacenter. 
One of these services is a DNS server, so it is important that it is up all the time.

We have been using Rackspace Cloud Servers. We just realized that they have absolutely no redundancy or failover 
after experiencing a outage that lasted more than 6 hours yesterday. I am appalled that they would offer something 
called "cloud" without having any failover at all.

Pardon the weird question:

Is the DNS service authoritative or recursive?  If auth, you can solve this a few ways, either by giving the DNS name 
people point to multiple AAAA (and A) records pointing at a diverse set of instances.  DNS is designed to work around a 
host being down.  Same goes for MX and several other services.  While it may make the service slightly slower, it's 
certainly not the end of the world.

Taking a mesh of services from Rackspace, EC2, The Planet, or any other number of hosting providers will allow you to 
roll-your-own.

The other solution is to go to a professional DNS service provider, e.g.: Dyn, Verisign, EveryDNS or NeuStar.

While you can run your own infrastructure, the barrier for operating it properly is getting a bit higher each year in 
doing it "right".  I was recently shown an attack graph of a ~200Gb/s attack against a DNS server.  *ouch*.

Sometimes being professional is knowing when to say "I can't do this justice myself, perhaps it's better/easier/cheaper 
to pay someone to do it right".

- Jared

(Disclosure: I work for one of the above named companies, but not in a capacity related to anything in this email).

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