I opened my Electrum wallet a few days ago and discovered a new donation. I don't know where or who it came from (isn't Bitcoin wonderful) but I want to send a BIG Thank You! to whoever has made donations, small or big. Even little bits really help me keep going on this project. I have quite limited discretionary resources. In this case seeing the new donation inspired me to actually splurge and pay for a new dedicated server. I'm in the process of re-syncing again, testing new code, and moving my other web activities over to the spiffy new home.
After much scanning of WebhostingTalk, and Googling, I found something I was happy with for $30 (in btc, of course). It's been up and running for a few days doing a new sync, and shortly I'll shutdown the Vultr instance after transitioning. To meet my needs it had to be cheap, have an SSD, sufficient cpu power, and accept bitcoin; which cut down on the options. Many bitcoin hosts I found were over priced. Here's what I got for this price from Reprise Hosting in the Seattle (Westin) data center:
Dual 4-Core Xeon L5520 CPU (16 threads) (dated but capable) 16 GB DDR3 RAM (nice) 120 GB Crucial M500 SSD (sufficient) 10TB BW - 100 Mbit port (yawn) 4 usable IPs IPMI
The 100 Mbit port is the only thing I would have liked to see better for burst transfers now and then. I can live with this for now, and so far doing the sync it's been moving along nicely. I feel like I haven't been able to really utilize all those cores. Maybe they'll be nice to have later if I start to see some real traffic on the future Explorer site.
For your amusement here's a screen shot of the 16 cores barely more than idling while pumping txs.
I haven't been slacking off lately - just had to do a visa run (to Laos and back); keeping my stay here legit. I've been testing new tx threading code, split blobs for sig data and fallback code for Amazon S3 storage of the blobs (using Range header to pull small byte sequences as needed for api calls) with in-memory LRU cache.
Putting blobs up on S3 adds less then 1 second latency to calls that need that data, but cuts down greatly on server disk space. S3 cost is $0.023/GB/mo. and I expect to put about 30GB (only older blocks) offsetting the cost of a secondary hard disk for $0.69/mo.
Once again, Thank You to my kind benefactors. It's a big help.