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Total Server Solutions has immediate openings for experienced Linux administrators at our Buckhead Atlanta headquarters.  If you have no idea what Linux is, how a network works, or if you have never heard of MySQL, stop right here, this isn’t for you.  On the other hand, if you know *nix like the back of your hand, get a kick out of solving difficult problems, and want to be part of one of the best teams in the world, by all means, continue reading.

 

Total Server Solutions is looking for a highly motivated, experienced, knowledgeable Linux/UNIX systems administrator to round our tech team.  If you have years of experience managing large Internet based application clusters, heroic organizational skills, and revel in diagnosing and fixing problems, you’ll be a great fit.  As one of our Linux/UNIX system admins, you will be responsible for working out solutions to complex problems that our customers may encounter during their daily operations.  Great problem solving skills are a must.  As a growing, globally oriented company, we offer a relaxed work environment and great benefits.  We look forward to hearing from you!


Titles:

Linux Systems Administrator – Linux Engineer Permanent

Salary:

$35k-$40k / yearly

Requirements:

  • 3+ years of supporting Linux Servers in a production environment; CentOS or Redhat variants.
  • Motivation and ability to quickly learn and adapt.
  • Prior experience within a critical production environment.
  • Solid knowledge of LAMP Architectures (Perl/PHP/Python).
  • Knowledge of RedHat, CentOS, and other RPM based distributions.
  • Experience with replication, clustering, tuning, sizing, monitoring including operating systems for running the LAMP stack.
  • Experience in Shell Scripting (bash preferable).
  • Experience with Splunk, Zabbix or other system/device monitoring & logging tools.
  • Knowledge of Backup/Recovery/Upgrade procedures.
  • Experience working in 24/7 operational environments.
  • Expectation to be challenged.
  • High degree of independence and exceptional work ethic with exceptional communication skills.
  • Experience with control panel technologies including cPanel, Plesk, DirectAdmin.
  • Must be located, or willing to relocate to Atlanta, GA area.

Not Required but a huge plus:

  • Experience with management tools such as Puppet, Chef, etc.
  • Experience with automated system deployment tools and building pxe/kickstart/etc deployment scripts.
  • Bilingual. (Spanish a plus)
  • Experience with load balancing technologies.

 

What you’ll be doing:

  • Linux server maintenance, monitoring, security hardening, performance review
  • Managing MySQL database operations and all things database related.
  • Researching new platform architectures to support business requirements.
  • interact with customer and provide technical support via our helpdesk and live chat

 

What’s in it for you:

  • Competitive Salaries.
  • Medical Insurance.
  • Paid Time Off.
  • Educational Reimbursement.
  • Employee Activities.
  • Paid Parking.
  • 401k.

 

So, if you are a Linux System Engineer, Linux System Administrator or Linux Engineer with experience, please contact careers@totalserversolutions.com today!  When contacting Total Server Solutions, please state your salary and any other compensation expectations.


Total Server Solutions is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. Applicants are considered for all positions without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, ancestry, marital or veteran status.

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2014 was a big year here at Total Server Solutions.  We experienced substantial growth, acquired new talent, launched new products, and added a new facility to our datacenter lineup.  In case you missed the news of the past year, here’s a round up of what you need to know.

2014-2

 

Acquisitions & Talent

Over the past year we have acquired additional technical experts and new brands.  Early this year we took over management of HandsOnWebHosting.  HandsOn was a top-tier e-commerce hosting provider.  We shared the same ethos of putting the customer first and providing great services with a focus on E-Commerce.  The technical team we brought on board as a result of this acquisition has greatly enhanced our own technical team.  Bringing in new talent is always a challenge, but integrating the HandsOn team into our existing technical team has been a pleasure and has resulted in even faster ticket response times as well as added depth and expertise from which to draw.

 Brand Consolidation

Another thing you may have noticed in the past year is that we have consolidated all of our disparate brands under the Total Server Solutions banner.  Previously, we had numerous brands, each serving a different market segment, with their own distinct websites, backend systems, and customer bases.  In an effort to more effectively direct our technical resources we spent considerable time and energy unifying and consolidating EWDHosting, WireSix, and HandsOnWebHosting into Total Server Solutions.

 

We are however, maintaining our colocation brand, COLO@ under its own brand. This allows us great flexibility in branding our facilities and providing enterprise level datacenter services that are outside of our traditional webhosting market.

 

New Products

2014 has seen the addition of several new and unique products and services that provide real benefits to our customers.  We launched a globe-spanning Content Delivery Network to speed the transfer of the content that our customers rely on.  The Total Server Solutions CDN empowers e-commerce site owners to do more business, improve their SEO, and make more money by using the speed of the CDN and the expertise of the TSS technical team.

 

DDoS protection is something that many of our customers have asked about in the past.  Well, we listened.  We launched a Distributed Denial of Service protection service to combat the growing wave of threats that have the potential to impact both our customers as well as our own infrastructure.  We partnered with Staminus, an acknowledged leader in the IT security space to help us provide this service to our customers on an as needed basis.  DDoS protection is something that can vastly improve your content delivery, especially if you are the target of frequent threats and attacks.

 

Our New Datacenter in Atlanta

ATL03

The biggest announcement of 2014 was the addition of another datacenter facility in Atlanta.  We acquired complete control of datacenter operations at 470 East Paces Ferry Road.  This new datacenter gets the designation ATL03.  It’s a top tier facility boasting HIPAA compliance and round-the-clock security.  Its power and network infrastructure are second to none with fully UPS and generator backed power as well as a robust cooling system.

ups

While this new datacenter will provide for even more growth in our hometown of Atlanta, we are continuing to maintain and upgrade our existing datacenter at 34 Peachtree (ATL01).  Our goal is to plan for future growth so we can continually accommodate your needs.  Being proactive with acquiring new datacenter space is key to giving you the space and infrastructure in which to grow and thrive.

 

Onward to 2015

2015-tss

The entire team here at Total Server Solutions would like to thank you for your business and trust in the past year.  2014 has been a great year and 2015 will be even better.  We sincerely appreciate the trust you place in our dedicated team.  It’s our sole mission to repay that trust with the finest services available.


2015 is going to be big.  We’re glad you’re along for the ride.

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If you run an ecommerce website, one of the busiest time of the year for both you and your data is fast approaching.  The busiest shopping time of the year is fast approaching.  It’s a great opportunity for you to make a lot of sales, but is your site ready?

Most ecommerce sites are very database intensive which requires something with seriously fast storage and massive amounts of RAM on hand to keep the data flowing.  If you use a shared hosting account, VPS, or even a dedicated server, you’re missing out on the robust, high-performance, scalable infrastructure that only a proper cloud platform can provide.

Look at it from the standpoint of your customers.  If you were looking for a gift for a friend you have numerous places to get it.  Let’s say you’ve found exactly what you’re looking for but just as you’re about to place the item in the shopping cart, the site slows down tremendously.  You may wait a few seconds, but if the wait gets past about five seconds you’re probably going to abandon the cart and find the product elsewhere.

SSD

On the other hand, if you add the item to your cart, click through to a payment page, make your payment, and get confirmation quickly and easily, that changes everything.  When your site loads quickly, your customers complete transactions and you get paid.  It’s really as simple as that.

The Total Server Solutions Cloud is designed with one thing in mind–speed!  Our cloud boasts guaranteed transfer speeds (IOPS) that other providers simply can’t match.  We use only SSD based SAN storage housed in our own datacenters.  It’s fast, it’s reliable, and it’s available to you, right now.

iops

Connecting the SAN is a full contingent of Arista networking equipment.  Arista provides truly cutting edge connectivity inside our cloud with speeds up to 80 gigabits per second.  This ensures that your data flows as quickly as possible so your customers don’t wait.  Our SolidFire powered SAN gives you speeds that single drives can’t even come close to.  Even other cloud providers don’t have the power and performance of the Total Server Solutions Cloud.

plug

If you’re customers aren’t waiting, they’re buying!

Visit Total Server Solutions to learn more about our new Cloud offering and find out what makes our Cloud so fast.  Then, get in touch with the Total Server Solutions team to migrate your content on to our lightning-fast Cloud platform.

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SSL underpins the security measures in place throughout the internet.  It helps keep transactions secure, and more importantly, keeps data secure between your browser and the sites you access so that malicious individuals can’t intercept and use your data.  It’s what keeps you safe.

 

While that’s all well and good, things get tricky when there are vulnerabilities which break the security and encryption of your data connections.  It’s been a busy year in terms of security issues with the Heartbleed bug causing widespread problems, and then Shellshock.  Suffice it to say, server admins around the world have endured many sleepless nights working to keep both the servers in their care, as well as your data, safe and secure.

 

SSL uses a number of different versions.  Allowing for backward compatibility can cause numerous security problems.  Generally, the latest version is always the safest and most secure.  The POODLE vulnerability impacts SSL version 3, which is the most current version of the protocol.  This vulnerability can allow an attacker the opportunity to access information that would otherwise be secure.  The problems that can result from this are severe and could allow someone to gain control of your accounts and data.

 

With this vulnerability though, the attacker must be on the same network as their victim (i.e. same LAN, WiFi network, etc).  It allows someone with access to the stream of data passing between the victim and their destination access and can pose huge problems for security.  Thankfully, this vulnerability can be worked around by disabling  SSLv3 in your browser.  While this will help keep you safe from this particular vulnerability, it opens you up to other problems which stem from using an older, potentially outdated SSL protocol.  Some sites may not function properly and your security for some transactions may be compromised.

 

If you operate a server, website, or e-commerce site, disabling SSLv3 is indeed an option.  It will protect against this particular vulnerability.  However, there are problems with this approach.  Many modern browsers require the latest version of SSL to be used (as of this post, v3).  If you do not have SSLv3 enabled, these browsers may not even allow your site to load.  While this will result in mitigation of this vulnerability, many users will not be able to even view your content or order from your e-commerce store, resulting in substantial lost sales.


At the time of this post, there are not many good options until OpenSSL issues an update to close this vulnerability.  If you have questions though, our technical team is on hand to provide you with answers and options.  

Please get in touch with sales@totalserversolutions.com and we would be happy to discuss ways we can help keep you safe and secure.  

For more information on the POODLE vulnerability, please have a look at this PDF from the folks who produce OpenSSL:  https://www.openssl.org/~bodo/ssl-poodle.pdf

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(COLO@) Atlanta, GA, USA — Colocation facility provider, COLO@ (http://www.coloat.com) is proud to announce that Tier 1 ISP Cogent has opened a new POP at their datacenter at 470 East Paces Ferry Road in the Buckhead business district of Atlanta. Adding Cogent bolsters an already diverse bandwidth blend at this datacenter. Additionally, this adds a second Cogent POP at a second COLO@ facility in Atlanta. The COLO@ datacenter at 34 Peachtree St. also boasts a Cogent POP. This POP opens up even more bandwidth in an already highly connected facility.

This new POP is the latest in a series of events in which COLO@ is providing its customers with a rich, diverse blend of bandwidth providers. In addition to providing additional diversity, this POP boasts 10GigE port availability within the datacenter.

Gary Simat, CEO of COLO@ states “We enjoy working with Cogent. Their goal is to provide bandwidth where it’s needed and our goal is to match our customers with great bandwidth options. They trust our facilities and infrastructure and we trust them.”

Ryan DiRocco, CTO of COLO@ said “One of the goals of our second Atlanta datacenter is to provide space for future growth of our customers. Adding a new Cogent POP at 470 is yet another way that we plan for and enable our customers to grow and prosper.”

Dave Schaeffer, CEO at Cogent, said “Cogent welcomes the opportunity to work with COLO@ as we continue to extend our footprint in the Atlanta market, providing their customers with access to one of the largest and most interconnected networks in the world.”

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The Shellshock bug exploits a vulnerability found in Bash. Bash is a commonly used command shell that is found in many Linux distributions. Throughout the UNIX world, Bash is very widely used, so this bug and its resulting exploit have the capacity to compromise hundreds of millions of servers.

shellshock
When Bash initializes, a series of checks are put in place to prevent unauthorized commands and uses from occurring. On an unpatched server, Shellshock allows a hacker to execute commands prior to complete initialization of the Bash shell. Anyone using Shellshock would still have to operate within most of the security parameters utilized by the kernel within the vulnerable server. However, the bug could allow an attacker to circumvent application level security measures and allow reading and writing of files accessed by the shell.

Much has been written about the severity of this exploit. It has been compared to the recent Heartbleed exploit that caused many sleepless nights for admins and server owners everywhere. Comparing Heartbleed and Shellshock is tricky business though. Unlike Heartbleed, Shellshock is *not* a root level exploit and no system level files could be directly compromised. But, user data *could* be compromised. The ubiquity of Bash across a vast swathe of servers on the internet makes the scope of this exploit massive.

Is there a fix?
Shellshock is an application level bug and does not effect the kernel. This makes fixing it a simpler proposition as only a specific application requires a patch. The first round of patches that were published were not sufficient to fully remedy the situation. But, after the second round of patches, our admin team has successfully patched all of the servers under that we manage.

If you utilize one of our management packages your server has already been patched by our technicians. If you would like more information about our management plans, or to sign up, please contact sales@totalserversolutions.com or visit https://totalserversolutions.com/server-management.php

More information about this vulnerability can be found here:
https://access.redhat.com/articles/1200223
https://access.redhat.com/announcements/1210053

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Date: September 28 , 2014.

Time: 7:15 PM EST.

Issue: Lost power.

Location: ATL01

Affected: Racks G1-G13

Status: Email address support@coloat.com is back online.

 


 

Date: September 28 , 2014.

Time: 6:50 PM EST.

Issue: Lost power.

Location: ATL01

Affected: Racks G1-G13

Status: All racks are back online. If you need a ticket for a Colocation support please login via the portal. Email support@coloat.com is disable for the moment.

 


 

Date: September 28 , 2014.

Time: 5:30 PM EST.

Issue: Lost power.

Location: ATL01

Affected: Racks G1-G13

Status:G10 is still offline. Our support systems are up and ready to help the affected racks. If you have a server down please submit a ticket and our team will look at it shortly.

 


 

Date: September 28 , 2014.

Time: 5:14 PM EST.

Issue: Lost power.

Location: ATL01

Affected: Racks G1-G13

Status: G1-G09 and G11-G13 are coming online . Power have been restored and our tech team are working on bringing everything back online.

We are working on bringing our own helpdesk back online too. Everyone on the team will be able to help in case you have a issue on a box.

More updates in the next few minutes.

 


 

Date: September 28 , 2014.

Time: 4:44 PM EST.

Issue: Lost power.

Location: ATL01

Affected: Racks G1-G13

Status: Our electrical team is looking at the affected systems trying to narrow the cause of the issue. We are working to restore power to this racks as soon as possible. At this time i am unable to provide a ETA.

 

Be aware that https://manage.my-tss.com and https://manage.coloat.com are currently affected by this power issue. Our team is able via live chat and i will update this blog post when i have any more information.

 

Carlos Carluccio

 

 

 

 

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Spam is a big problem. If you’re running a Plesk based server using Qmail and need to find someone who is using it to send spam, this article is for you. This article was written up by Carlos Carluccio, our CIO. It details the steps you should take if you’re trying to find out who is sending spam from your server.

The first thing you should do is examine the mail queue. This will give you an idea of how many messages are in your queue as well as any that haven’t yet been processed.

# /var/qmail/bin/qmail-qstat

That command will likely output something like this:

messages in queue: 758

messages in queue but not yet preprocessed: 0

With that in mind, it’s time to start digging in to find your spammers. Spamming can happen due to a compromised e-mail account or a password that’s too simple. If you see a large number of authentications in the Qmail log, you can usually confirm someone is spamming from the account.

Use the following command to sort the results from the mail log.

grep -I "LOGIN" /usr/local/psa/var/log/maillog | awk {'print $12'} | sort | uniq -c | sort -n

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xcart-logo

(Originally published on 9/9/2014 – updated on 10/27/2014)

We’ve been churning out tutorials about how to integrate a Content Delivery Network into many CMS and e-commerce platforms. Next up is X-Cart. X-Cart is a powerful e-commerce platform that lets you sell your products and take payment quickly and easily. Like everything else, utilizing the power of a CDN can help X-Cart users to realize improved conversion rates, fewer shopping cart abandonments, and improved SEO rankings.

This is how to use a CDN (preferably our CDN) with your X-Cart installation.

Integrating a CDN with X-Cart assumes that you’ll use the default skin which is called “ideal_comfort.” Using another skin will require modification of the code to make it match the name of whatever skin you’re using.

This applies to X-Cart 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3:

Using your favorite text editor, open the X-Cart file “smarty.php.” This file is located within the root directory of your X-Cart installation.

Once there, locate these two lines:

$smarty->assign("ImagesDir",$xcart_web_dir.$smarty_skin_dir."/images");
$smarty->assign("SkinDir",$xcart_web_dir.$smarty_skin_dir);

Replace those two lines with the following:

// Total Server Solutions CDN Integration - XC-4.1.x,XC-4.2.x and XC-4.3.x
if ($_SERVER['HTTPS'] != 'on')
{
$smarty->assign("SkinDir","http://cdn.YOURDOMAIN.com/skin1");
$smarty->assign("ImagesDir","http://cdn.YOURDOMAIN.com/skin1/images");
}
else
{
$smarty->assign("SkinDir",$xcart_web_dir."/skin1");
$smarty->assign("ImagesDir",$xcart_web_dir."/skin1/images");
}
// END Total Server Solutions CDN Integration - XC-4.1.x,XC-4.2.x and XC-4.3.x

Next, open include/func/func.files.php with your text editor, then find this line:

global $config, $sql_tbl, $xcart_dir, $current_location;

Below this line, add the following:

// Total Server Solutions CDN Integration - XC-4.1.x,XC-4.2.x and XC-4.3.x
if (
$_SERVER['HTTPS'] != 'on'
) {
$current_location = 'http://cdn.YOURDOMAIN.com';
}
// END Total Server Solutions CDN Integration - XC-4.1.x,XC-4.2.x and XC-4.3.x

Substitute “cdn.yourdomain.com” with your specific CDN based URL. To verify that X-Cart is indeed using the CDN you specified, view the HTML source code of your site and look for that URL.

________________________________________


<br

This portion applies to versions 4.4, 4.5, and 4.6.

This section assumes that you have already setup your CDN service with us.  For more information, please see:

https://portal.my-tss.com/knowledgebase/434/How-to-set-up-CDN-services.html

If you’re going to use our CDN service with X-Cart, we have addon modules for you to use.  The modules were provided by our good friends over at cflsystems.com.  They make some pretty awesome plugins for X-Cart, you should check them out.  Onward to the instructions.

1.  To download these modules, you must login to your client portal at https://portal.my-tss.com, then go to the services section and select your CDN service.

2.  Click the download tab and download the module the corresponds to the version of X-Cart that you’re running.

3.  After you download the ZIP file and extract it on your computer, you will find two directories.  They’re named “_install” and “modules.”

4.  Upload the “modules” directory to the root of your X-Cart installation.

5.  The “_install” directory contains two files.  One is the sql file that you must run via phpMyAdmin (we can help you with this) or via the patch section of your cart.  The other file is named install.txt which contains instructions for the file changes you must make.

6.  Next, run the sql file from the “_install” directory into your database and make the necessary changes specified in the install.txt file.

7.  Enter the “Modules” section of your X-Cart control panel and activate the xCDN module.  Once it has been activated you
can enter the CDN hostname you created by following the instructions at:  https://portal.my-tss.com/knowledgebase/434/How-to-set-up-CDN-services.html

 

 


As before, be sure to check the HTML code on your site after you make this change to ensure that the CDN URL shows up.  Once that’s done, you’re good to go.

If you’ve got questions about this, we’d love to help.  Our team is highly experienced with X-Cart and can get you answers to virtually any question you can think of.  Please take a moment to get in touch.  While you’re at it, check out our CDN page to find the plan that best fits your needs.

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Magento is one of the most widely used e-commerce platforms around.  But, as with many things, speed can be compromised if your visitors need to access your store and it’s only present at a single location.  Once again, the CDN comes to the rescue!

What follows is a brief tutorial about how to integrate a CDN (preferably ours) into your Magento installation.  It’s fast, simple, and it gets results.

1.  Login to your Magento admin panel.

Magento Login

2.  Once you’re logged in as an admin, click on “System” then “Configuration.”  

Magento 2-System-Config

3.  You will now be in the System Configuration menu.  While you’re in there, click on “Web”, then “Unsecure.”  This will open up the configuration options that allow you to enter your CDN information.  Enter the URL that your CDN uses into the “Base Skin URL,” “Base Media URL,” and “Base JavaScript URL” fields and click “Save.”

Magento 3-enter-pull

That’s it!  You should now be ready to use the CDN with your Magento based e-commerce site.  To verify that you’ve got everything setup properly, you can simply view the HTML source code of your site.  Image links should be replaced with CDN URLs.

If you have any questions about getting CDN service with us, we’d love to help.  Either order directly from our site or get in touch with one of our knowledgeable technicians.  We’re always around and always ready to get the answers you need.