Linux System Administration

ASK Technologies Inc. is a recognized leader in VPS and Dedicated server management specializing in remote Linux Server and System Administration, Network Administration and Security, Data collection & Forensics, High Availability & Clustering, Real-time Distributed Messaging, Distributed Load Balancing, Data Backup and Recovery.

Our experienced System Administrators know the ins and outs of the Linux OS in its various distribution formats (Fedora, CentOS, Debian and Ubuntu), and it is our pleasure to provide affordable system administration and support to companies and individuals with Virtual Private Servers (VPS), dedicated, and co-located servers. We can also offer remote-hands services in several countries (contact us for details).


Initial Service Activities

When our System Administrator gains initial access into your system, he will usually perform the following actions, and notify you if some of those activities were hindered or deferred:

  • Make sure there are no root kits or any other hacks
  • Make sure the system is optimized for performance
  • Make sure the system is running the most up-to-date components and Linux Kernel
  • Make sure the data is properly backed up (Data + Files), and if not, set this up
  • Make sure services are configured properly based on expected loads
  • Make sure the software & hardware fit the customer’s stated goals
  • Install any extra components for log rotation & log management, performance monitoring, remote backup & system security
  • Uninstall components that may hinder system performance, or present a security risk
  • Make sure a firewall is present, and limit remote access to the machine
  • Make sure all remote access to the machine is encrypted
  • Make sure strong encryption keys are used, and enforce strong passwords for all services

Ongoing Activities

Once the system is setup properly, our system administrators will perform the following tasks on a monthly basis:

  • Make sure there are no root kits or any other hacks (Security Checks)
  • Make sure the OS is optimized for performance, and that enough disk space & RAM are available
  • Make sure the system is running the most up-to-date components and Linux Kernel
  • Make sure the data backups are fresh
  • Make sure services are still configured properly based on expected loads
  • Monitoring Server Load & I/O Usage + Tweaking of LAMP Stack for Performance
  • Performing Tasks for the Customer (adding new users, new services, changing passwords, etc).

Extra Activities (As needed)

In some specific cases, our System Administrators may see the need to initiate some special activities on the server. Those activities may or may not fall under the scope of the service, depending on the amount of time the activities take. If they fall under the 1 hour service limit, they will be included in the monthly service. If they may take longer, the customer will be notified and given the option to either purchase an extra block of time, or defer the activity to the following month.
A sample list of activities:
  • Installing Pound for handling large SSL traffic
  • Installing Fail2Ban in order to block brute force attacks
  • Installing Performance Improvement Software:
    • Varnish Cache
    • Memcached / Redis
    • Percona MySQL / MariaDB
    • Xcache / PHP-APC / IonCube / Zend
  • Placing the system under strict monitoring (SNMP or Specific Agents)
  • Upgrade your database servers & fix old PHP code / SQL Queries (to a certain extent)
  • Perform serious performance monitoring & tuning on MySQL

Special Service Notes:

  1. All activities are logged within our CRM, for the purpose of logging & tracking and explaining to the customer what actions were taken, and why they were taken.
  2. You are entitled to 1 hour per month of Linux support. More time may be purchased separately at a rate of $70/hr in 30 minute chunks ($35 per 30 minutes).
  3. It is the customer’s responsibility to alert our Sysadmins via SMS, if a service is no longer functioning and is blocking internet users from accessing the application. Our SysAdmins promise to respond to SMS messages within 60 minutes, and resolve the issue within no more than 4 hours (In most cases, much less).