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Our Top 3 Takeaways from HostingCon

August 2, 2013, Written by

Last month, the LFC team attended HostingCon, the leading North American trade show and conference for the web hosting industry. It was a great time and we sure learned a lot. We promised to give you an update, so here are our top 3 takeaways and what this means for you, as an LFC customer…

1) Ceph Storage Platform

The storage needs of you, our clients, are growing, that’s for sure.  So how can we efficiently grow the amount of storage we have?  We need to look at moving away from servers with their own individual storage and shifting to a storage area network (SAN). SANs are highly scalable, reliable and great at storing data and keeping it available. They are however, very expensive. Enter Ceph, an open-source project aimed at creating SANs that offer all the benefits above while being very cost-effective. Stay tuned for developments on this front.

2) IPv6

IPv4 is fast running out and unfortunately IPv6 isn’t catching on as fast as it is needed. The biggest stumbling block is getting non-technical home users IPv6 connectivity. However, as more and more Internet users get on board with IPv6 (the shift is happening slowly but surely!), content providers need to be ready to serve them over this protocol.

All of our VPS hosting plans already come with IPv6 connectivity and as things stand right now, approximately 2% of our monthly traffic is over IPv6. Yes, 2% may seem low but it’s up from 1% at the start of 2013. Our focus in 2013 will be to make sure our shared hosting clients have access to IPv6 as well.

3) Identifying DDoS Trends and Eliminating Attacks

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks can cause huge problems for our clients and our network – there’s no denying that!  Unfortunately, they are on the rise Internet-wide as are those specifically aimed at our network.

Our current approach to tackling these attacks is to null route (or block) traffic to the website being attacked. However, this affects everyone trying to access the site, not just the person doing the attacking. As these attacks continue to grow, we need to look at filtering the attacks instead of outright blocking them. This is a super challenging problem to solve, but it’s super important that we address it. Which is why we were all over attending the HostingCon session on DDoS. This informative presentation gave us a starting point to dive in and begin filtering these attacks so that we can continue to provide service when our clients are under fire.

So all in all, attending HostingCon was a really valuable experience for us. We’ll keep you posted as we address the points above and keep on doing all we can to make our web hosting services the best they can be.

Andrew MacCorquodale