Sunday, December 4, 2016

My first steps with AWS Lightsail

It is Sunday evening, it is quiet in the house.
Perfect time to play with my new toys.

I just spun up my own virtual server on Amazon AWS Lightsail.
Just amazing how fast and easy that is...literally takes just a few minutes:
  • go to AWS Lightsail (with a valid AWS account)
  • pick your instance Image (plain OS with/without stack like Wordpress, NGINX...)
  • choose the plan (I picked the 5US$ one)
  • select a Name for your instance
  • click on CREATE
  • around a minute later you can access your own VPS via SSH in the browser. Whoa!

As I wanted to setup a simple web server and reverse Proxy I chose to manually install NGINX (the pre-packaged Comes with PHP and many other goodies I don't need. yet.).
  • install NGINX (sudo apt-get install nginx)
  • update the HTML pages in the default Location 
  • install GOACCESS.IO to analyze the web logs
  • setup a cron-job to update the GOACCESS html report every 10 minutes
  • create a DNS-record in my own Domain (
  • boom - ready: my own static Website hosted on my own virtual private Server!
After a few hours I can see the activity in the Lightsail Dashboard. It is alive!

And what took the longest? Exactly, the Content:

Picking a new HTML5 template and adding some text/content.

Setting up a reverse proxy with NGINX and port forwarding to another NGINX instance...

Finetuning the subdomain/Proxy configuration...

Let's see how this works out...maybe time to retire my Homepage that is still hosted on Google App Engine.

But then...Hosting a few static pages (and reverse proxying)

What's next?

Now, what else can I do with this little Server? My own Proxy/VPN to circumvent geo-fencing?

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