Welcome to ptbdb

Virtual Hosting @CS

Our virtual servers try to mimic the resources you typically find at a commercial hosting company. However, many of our users are far more advanced than your typical web hosting client, so we allow them almost full control over the machines.

By now, you should have been provided a username and password for administering this machine. Using this login, you can access the Webmin management interface. This interface provides a GUI adminstration console, providing the ability to administer most aspects of the machine and software configurations. Should you prefer to admin your machine in the traditional way, you can use your admin credentials to ssh into the machine. By default, the admin account has almost full sudo permissions.

Tstaff provides an initial machine install and will perform a nightly security update of packages installed through the apt package management system. The virtual machine admin is responsible for ensuring the security of any software or packages installed outside the package management system. Every virtual machine must have a qualified admin associated with it. Should this admin change, please email problem with updated contact information. Tstaff will make a best faith effort to answer questions emailed to problem. However, we can not provide the same level of support on virtual machines as we do for standard desktop and departmental servers.

Default Configuration

File Systems

Each virtual machine is hosted by one of our blade servers. The actual virtual machine disk images are stored on local disks, running raid level 1. The virtual machine mounts an NFS share on /vol and anything placed in this NFS share is backed up weekly. It is recommended that any user data, web pages, etc. are stored on this NFS share. If you feel you are serving important data from your virtual machine and would like the data directory backed up more frequently, please contact problem so we can discuss other arrangements.


Backups: Your virtual machine is configured to perform a nightly backup of its local disk image to /vol/backup/ptbdb.tgz. You can use webmin to manage your backup preferences and perform restores

Email: Your virtual machine can send email to @cs.brown.edu addresses. Should you require the ability to send to outside email addresses or receive incoming email, please contact problem.

Database: Your virtual machine is running a mysql database. You can configure the database using webmin The actual database resides in the directory /vol/mysql.

Web: Your virtual machine has apache2 configured to serve static and php generated webpages from /vol/web/html, execute cgi-bin scripts from /vol/web/cgi-bin, and log traffic and errors to /vol/web/logs. You can use webmin to manage your apache server