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I recently moved my site to a VPS hosting. It's my first time in using VPS.

I installed cPanel on it, therefore it's quite similar to the share hosting I was using before without any problem.

However, I have to manage the VPS by myself, and here is the problem:

the server crashes sometimes! (3 times in 14 days)

Probably it's not a crash, because I can still ping it. But I cannot ssh into the server, and the web pages cannot be loaded, so I basically call it a crash. And the only way I can solve it is to reboot it. (/var/log/message didn't show anything weird when the crashes happened)

My VPS was configured with 1 CPU & 2GB RAM (CentOS). My site has 2000-3000 page views per day, and I have a cron job that runs 15 mins and makes about 250 http requests (I have a one second sleep between each request) and parses/stores some data into a local database (this cron job lasts about 7 mins).

From your experience, do you think the crash is due to the memory? Or what else?

The other thing is that the memory used seems increasing slowly and constantly. I observe this by using the command "free -m". For example, it was 680M used after rebooting, however after 3 hours, it becomes 950M used and stays there. Except web hosting and the cron job, I don't run other things on this server, what would you think about this?

I know it's kind of hard to diagnose this kind of problem without further information. But to the end user point of view, I got a VPS and configured it with cPanel, I was thinking everything just worked as a share hosting. But this crash problem really makes me feel I may have made a bad choice to use VPS hosting. It's great if you can share any experience so that I know what to observe and know the direction I should be heading.

Thanks a lot in advance.

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If you have any doubt with your memory usage. Use top command to check which process is taking up the most memory (the "RES" column). Anyway I don't think memory usage is the problem because even at 950MiB it's only half-filled. –  hpsMouse Oct 14 '13 at 12:52
Yes, I am using Top to monitor. The memory usage is now at 1.3G. As I said, it increases slowly & steadily. –  Joe Huang Oct 14 '13 at 15:52
So do you have any idea which processes are using the most memory? Also keep in mind that "used" memory usually includes "buffers" and "cached". If you use free there should be a second line labeled -/+ buffers/cache, which shows real memory usage excluding buffer and cache memory. –  hpsMouse Oct 15 '13 at 4:18
mysqld uses about 1.3G memory. But when I just rebooted the server, mysqld is already showing that it uses 1.3G memory. While the used memory grows, I can't find any process that is eating up the memory, and "free -m" does show the memory available is shrinking. –  Joe Huang Oct 15 '13 at 4:47
I have removed the cron job, but the memory still increases. It's very weird. The server had a clean install with cPanel. I didn't add anything to it. It's just a regular web server. –  Joe Huang Oct 15 '13 at 5:18

1 Answer 1

After trying all possible ways I can, such as increasing physical memory & other configurations I can figure out to optimize the system, I still encounter crashes (non-responsive state).

I finally ended up using a managed VPS hosting instead. I conclude VPS is not for the newbies. Don't move to VPS unless you know how to manage it or you must have technical guys hired to set up/manage for you.

Each site has different conditions. For me, it's just too hard to get it through.

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