Author: Ariel Beltre

How to Install Plesk on Windows Server 2012

Ariel Beltre July 16, 2016 by under Cloud Hosting 0 Comments
Verified and Tested 7/16/2016

Introduction

Plesk is a commercial web hosting platform released under Plesk Inc. Plesk is a cross-platform control panel compatible with both Windows and Linux operating systems. In this article, we will be going over how to install Plesk on your Windows 2012 server.

Prerequisites

A Server with Windows Server 2012. If you do not have a server already, why not spin up a Windows cloud server from Atlantic.Net in under 30 seconds.

A Plesk license. For more information on purchasing a Plesk license please visit http://www.odin.com/products/plesk-automation/how-to-buy/

Alternatively, you can complete this article with the 14 day trial license.

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Atlantic.Net Cloud – Do You Offer Data Backup For My Cloud Server

Verified and Tested 04/20/2015

Introduction

Daily server backups are available and can be enabled via the Atlantic.net cloud control panel during the initial provisioning of a cloud server. The cost for this service is an additional 20% of the server’s hourly price. Go server backups are $1 per month. Snapshot backups of the server will be taken on a daily basis, and retained in our systems for 30 days. Backup restores can be initiated from within the cloud control panel.  In this brief article we will explain how to enable backups for your cloud server.

Enabling Backups

You can enable backups during the initial provisioning of a server. To do so, first log in to your account via cloud.atlantic.net. Once done, on the upper left corner click on “Add Server”. This will take you to the “Add a Server” window. Here you can edit the server name, choose the location, select your operating system, choose a plan, and lastly enable backups. After you have finished editing these fields click on the box next to “Enable Backups”, and then click on the “Create Server” button, as shown below.

Does Atlantic.net Offer Data Backup for my cloud server-1

Example of the “Enable Backups” option via the cloud control panel

You can also enable backups after you’ve created a server, if you forgot to or decided to add this feature after the fact.  Select “Servers” from the left, select your server, and click on either the “Backups” button (Server Backups) or the hyperlink that says “Disabled” under backups.

Does-Atlantic.net-offer-data-backups-for-my-server-2

Example of the “Enable Backups” option via the cloud control panel

It will bring up this message, regardless of which option you choose.  Select “Enable Backups” and your server will be backed up within the next 24 hours, and will continue to back up each day.

Does-Atlantic.net-offer-data-backups-for-my-server-3

Example of the “Server Backups” window via the cloud control panel

Please note that if you decide you no longer want the backup feature enabled, you can disable it and it will stop adding the extra 20% to your monthly bill.

Atlantic.Net has a industry leading selection of hosting options, one-click applications, and managed cloud hosting choices for your consideration. Learn more about Atlantic.Net’s hosting solutions, including HIPAA compliant disaster recovery services.


How to: Joining A Windows Server 2012 To A Domain

Ariel Beltre June 24, 2015 by under Cloud Hosting 0 Comments
Verified and Tested 03/24/2015

Introduction

In this article, we will be going over the process of joining a Windows Server 2012 to an Active Directory Domain. Before you can complete, this process keep in mind that the server must first be able to communicate with the domain. This means that the server’s IP address configuration must reference the domains DNS server. Here we will demonstrate how to complete this process.

Prerequisites

– A Server with Windows Server 2012. If you do not have a server already, you can visit our Windows Cloud Hosting page and spin up a server in under 30 seconds.

Joining A Windows Server 2012 To A Domain

To join the server to a domain, move your mouse to the lower left corner of the screen and then right-click on the Start tile. Select the System Command from the Start tile’s menu. When the System dialog box appears, click the Change Settings link, shown below.

Screenshot of the "System" dialog box in Windows Server 2012

Screenshot of the “System” dialogue box in Windows Server 2012

The server should now display the System Properties sheet. Make sure that the Computer Name tab is selected, and then click the Change button. When Windows displays the Computer Name/Domain Changes dialog box shown below, enter your domain name and click OK. Windows will locate the domain and then prompt you for a set of administrative credentials. When the domain join completes, you will then be prompted to restart the server.

Screenshot of the "Computer name/Domain changes" window in Windows Server 2012

Screenshot of the “Computer name/Domain changes” window in Windows Server 2012

Conclusion

The process of joining a domain to a Windows Server 2012 is relatively straightforward. With just a few clicks, you can assign an active domain to your Windows server without issue.


Cómo Instalar De Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP, (LAMP) Con Debian 8

Ariel Beltre June 9, 2015 by under Cloud Hosting 0 Comments

Introducción

En este artículo, le mostraremos como instalar LAMP en un servidor cloud con Debian 8. LAMP es simplemente un paqute de software que consiste de 4 componentes. Linux es la base de la plataforma; todos los componentes son instalados en el entorno Linux. En este caso, vamos a usar Debian 8 para el sistema operativo Linux. Vamos a usar Apache para el servicio web. MySQL se utilizará para la gestión de bases de datos, y PHP sera como el lenguaje de programacion. En total esto forma LAMP, que tambien se llama un LAMP stack.

Requisitos Previos

Un servidor con Debian 8 instalado. Si usted no tiene un servidor ya, usted puede visitar nuestra pagina de cloud hosting y configurar un nuevo servidor en menos de 30 segundos.

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How To Rollback A Cloud Server

Verified and Tested 04/20/2015

Introduction

In this article, we will be going over how to rollback your server. Rolling back a server can be helpful when you have experienced performance issues, and the server will not boot or operate as it should. This process is similar to a system restore on a computer where the system will revert the settings to a point in time where the issue is no longer present. Here, we will review how to complete this process.

What Do You Need?

You will need an Atlantic.net cloud server with backups enabled. Please refer to the articles “How To Create A New Atlantic.net Cloud Server” as well as “Does Atlantic.net Offer Data Backup For My Cloud Server” for more information.

Rollback A Cloud Server

In order to rollback your server, first log in to your Atlantic.net account and click on “Servers” from the left-hand side, as shown below.

Select Servers locate to the left of your screen.

Manage Cloud Server

Once done, a window will display with a list of all the active servers on your account. You must click on the server you want to perform the rollback on from this list.

Select Cloud server to manage

Select Cloud server to manage

After you have selected the desired server, the network information for that server will be displayed. Click on the button that reads “Backups” on the upper right-hand side.

Select Backups

Select Backups

Lastly, you will be presented with a list of available dates from which you can revert your settings to. Scroll through the available rollback dates, and select a desired restore point from the drop-down box. Once you have chosen a date, click on the “Restore Backup” button. This will revert the server’s settings and once completed will reboot the server. The server will once again be accessible.

Select Restore Backups

Select Restore Backups

Conclusion

Having backups for your cloud server is a good feature to have enabled, as it can be used as a last resort to correct any issues the server may be experiencing at the time. Check back for more updates from Atlantic.Net, or learn more about our HIPAA compliant database hosting options.


How to: Common Tasks In A Windows Server 2012

Ariel Beltre February 27, 2015 by under Managed Server Hosting 0 Comments
Verified and Tested 2/27/2015

Introduction

In this article, we will be reviewing a few common tasks that can be performed in your Windows 2012 server. Many administrators find themselves having trouble performing basic tasks because the interface in Windows 2012 is so different from what they are used to. We will go over what some of these tasks are, and how to complete them.

Prerequisites

A server with Windows 2012 already installed.

Getting Started!

How to reboot Windows Server 2012

Some administrators have a tough time figuring out how to reboot their server in Windows 2012. This is mainly due to the absence of the Start menu, and also the shutdown option that has always existed on the start menu.

To power down or reboot your server, move your mouse to the upper right-hand corner of the screen. Once done, Windows will display a series of icons along the right side of the screen. Click the Settings icon and you will be taken to the Settings page, shown below. The bottom row of icons includes a power button. You can use this option to shutdown or reboot the server.

You can use this option to shutdown or reboot the server.

Start: Power

Accessing the Control Panel in Windows Server 2012

There are several different ways to access the control panel. Here, we will go over the two most common methods.

The first method is to use the same set of icons explained in the previous step. Move your mouse to the upper right corner of the screen, and click on settings.  When the settings page appears, click on the Control Panel link.

Another way to access the Control Panel is by going into Desktop mode, and then moving your mouse to the lower left corner of the screen. Once done, the start tile will appear. Right click on this tile and a menu will appear. This menu will contain an option to access the Control Panel.

Accessing the Administrative Tools in Windows Server 2012

In Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2, you can access the Administrative Tools by clicking on the start icon, and then going to All Programs and then clicking the Administrative Tools option. Since we know the start menu does not exist, you have to access the Administrative Tools in a new way.

In Windows Server 2012, there is a couple of different ways to access the Administrative Tools. One way involves using the server manager. As you can see below, the server manager’s tools menu contains all of the Administrative Tools that you are probably familiar with from Windows Server 2008.

Open Server manager and select tools.

Server Manager: Tools

Sometimes Administrators might prefer not to have to go into the server manager every time they need to access an administrative tool. It would make it a lot easier if the tools were accessible from the start screen. Thankfully, it is quite easy to make that happen.

To do so, make sure that you are looking at the Windows start screen. Please keep in mind that this technique WILL NOT work if you are in desktop mode. Now, move your mouse to the upper right corner of the screen, and click on the Settings icon. When the settings page appears, click on the Tiles link. As you can see below, there is a slide bar that you can use to control whether or not the administrative tools are shown on the start screen.

Move your mouse to the upper right corner of the screen, and click on the Settings icon. When the settings page appears, click on the Tiles link. As you can see below, there is a slide bar that you can use to control whether or not the administrative tools are shown on the start screen.

Start: Administrative Tools

Accessing Your Applications in Windows Server 2012

One of the most frustrating aspects of the new interface is that applications are no longer bound to a centralized start menu. Some administrators have found that after upgrading from a previous version of Windows Server that their start screen only contains a small subset of the items that previously resided on their server’s start screen. These missing items still exist, you just have to know where to look for them.

To access all of the tiles that the start screen is hiding, click the small arrow at the bottom portion of the screen, as shown below.

Click the small arrow at the bottom portion of the screen, as shown below.

Start: Apps

Once done, you will be taken to an apps screen that’s similar to the one shown below. As you can see, the apps are categorized in a manner similar to how they might have been on the start menu.

Apps are categorized in a manner similar to how they might have been on the start menu.

The Run Prompt and the Command Line in Windows Server 2012

The run prompt and the command prompt are both easily accessible. To reach these items, navigate to your start screen. Once done, move your mouse to the lower left corner of the screen. When the start tile appears, right click on it and you will see a menu listing options for run, command prompt, and command prompt (ADMIN).

Move your mouse to the lower left corner of the screen. When the start tile appears, right click on it and you will see a menu listing options for run, command prompt, and command prompt (ADMIN).

Start: Tools

Changing Administrator Password in Windows Server 2012

To change the Administrator password, you must first access the server via remote desktop. Once at the Start screen, click on Administrative Tools. This will open the Administrative Tools window from which you will want to double click on Computer Management. Once done, expand Local Users and Groups, and click on Users from the drop down. From here, you should see two options for Administrator and Guest, as shown below. Right click on Administrator, and then click on Set Password > Proceed. Type your new password in both fields then press OK.

Front the computer management page, select Users from Local Users and Groups, then right click your user and select Set Password.

Computer Management: Administrator

Conclusion

Although the interface may be confusing at first, the vast majority of the items that were available in the Windows Server 2008 R2 interface still exist. You just have to know where they are located.

Atlantic.Net

Atlantic.net offers managed hosting services which include a layer of business-essential managed services to your hosting packages. Contact us today for more information.


How To Protect your Server Against the POODLE SSLv3 Vulnerability

Ariel Beltre February 5, 2015 by under HIPAA Disaster Recovery 0 Comments
Verified and Tested 02/05/2015

Introduction

On October 14th, 2014, a vulnerability was established in version 3 of the SSL encryption protocol. This vulnerability, known as POODLE (Padding Oracle On Downgraded Legacy Encryption), allows an attacker to read otherwise encrypted information with this version of the protocol in plain text using a man-in-the-middle attack.

Although SSLv3 is an older version of the protocol, many pieces of software will still revert to SSLv3 if better encryption options are not available at the time. Also, It is important to keep in mind that an attacker can force SSLv3 connections if it is an available alternative for both participants attempting to connect.

The POODLE vulnerability affects any services or clients that make it possible to communicate using SSLv3. As this is a flaw with the protocol design, every piece of software that utilizes SSLv3 is vulnerable.

The POODLE vulnerability exists because the SSLv3 protocol does not properly check the padding bytes that are sent along with encrypted messages. An attacker can replace these and pass them on to the intended destination. When done, the modified payload will potentially be accepted by the recipient without complaint.

Protecting Yourself from the POODLE SSLv3 Vulnerability

There are actions that can be taken in order to ensure protection from this type of vulnerability. Since encryption is negotiated between clients and servers, this is an issue that effects both parties. Clients should take steps to disable SSLv3 support completely. Many of the applications today use better encryption by default, but even these applications use SSLv3 as a fallback option if none are available. This should be disabled, as an attacker can force SSLv3 communication if both parties allow it as an acceptable method of encryption.

Apache Web Server

To disable SSLv3 on the Apache Web server you will have to adjust the SSLProtocol directive provided by the mod_ssl module.

This can be set either at the server level or in a virtual host configuration. Depending on your distributions Apache configuration, the SSL configuration maybe located in a separate file that is sourced.

In Ubuntu, the server-wide specification for servers can be adjusted by editing the /etc/apache2/mods-available/ssl.conf file. If mod_ssl is enabled, a symbolic link will connect this file to the mods-enabled subdirectory:

sudo nano /etc/apache2/mods-available/ssl.confIn

CentOs, you can adjust this in the SSL configuration file located here (If SSL is enabled):

sudo nano /etc/httpd/conf.d/ssl.conf

Inside you can find the SSLProtocol directive. If it is not available, create it. Modify this to remove support for SSLv3:

SSLProtocol all -SSLv3 -SSLv2

Save and close the file. Restart to enable the changes.

On Ubuntu, you can type:

sudo service apache2 restart

On CentOS, this would be:

sudo service httpd restart

Nginx Web Server

To disable SSLv3 on a Nginx web server, you can use the ssl_protocols directive. This will be located in the server or http blocks in your configuration.

For example, in Ubuntu, you can either add this globally to /etc/nginx/nginx.conf inside of the http block, or to each server block in the /etc/nginx/sites-enabled directory.

sudo nano /etc/nginx/nginx.conf

To disable SSLv3, your ssl_protocols directive should be set like this:

ssl_protocols TLSv1 TLSv1.1 TLSv1.2;

You should restart the server after the above modification has been made:

sudo service nginx restart

HAProxy Load Balancer

To disable SSLv3 in an HAProxy load balancer, you will need to open the haproxy.cfg file.This is located at /etc/haproxy/haproxy.cfg:

sudo nano /etc/haproxy/haproxy.cfg

In your front end configuration, if you have SSL enabled, your bind directive will specify the public IP address and port. If you are using SSL, you will want to add no-sslv3 to the end of this line:

frontend name
bind public_ip:443 ssl crt /path/to/certs no-sslv3

Save and close the file. Restart to implement the changes:

sudo service haproxy restart

OpenVPN VPN Server

Recent versions of OpenVPN don’t allow SSLv3. The service is not vulnerable to this specific problem, so you will need to adjust your configuration.

Postfix SMTP Server

If your Postfix configuration is set up to require encryption, it will use a directive calledsmtpd_tls_mandatory_protocols. You can find this in the main Postfix configuration file:

sudo nano /etc/postfix/main.cf

For a Postfix server set up to use encryption at all times, you can ensure that SSLv3 and SSLv2 are not accepted by setting this parameter. If you do not force encryption, you do not have to do anything:

smtpd_tls_mandatory_protocols=!SSLv2, !SSLv3

Save your configuration. Restart to implement changes:

sudo service postfix restart

Dovecot IMAP and POP3 Server

In order to disable SSLv3 on a Dovecot server, you will need to adjust a directive called ssl_protocols. Depending on your distributions packaging methods, SSL configurations may be kept in an alternate configuration file.

For most Distros, you can adjust this directive by opening this file:

sudo nano /etc/dovecot/conf.d/10-ssl.conf

If you are using Dovecot 2.1 or higher, set the ssl_protocols directive to disable SSLv2 and SSLv3:

ssl_protocols = !SSLv3 !SSLv2

If you are using a version of Dovecot lower than 2.1, you can set the ssl_cipher_list to disallow SSLv3 like this:

ssl_cipher_list = ALL:!LOW:!SSLv2:!EXP:!aNULL:!SSLv3

Save and close the file. Restart in order to save changes:

sudo service dovecot restart

Additional Steps You Can Take

You should always update any client applications. Most importantly, web browsers may be vulnerable to this issue because of their step down protocol negotiation. Ensure that your browsers do not allow SSLv3 as an acceptable encryption method. This may be adjustable in the settings or in the installation of an additional plugin.

Learn more about Atlantic.Net’s hosting solutions, including HIPAA compliant disaster recovery services.


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