This will not be a story about apples. This will be a fork of Bobikos Mastodon story. IE – why i hate ownhosting stuff. And why i moved to ownhosting mastodon server. First look – because i know that my perspective will change in next days so… I want to show both “now” and “after some time” point of view.
Links to blogs, shops and services ARE NOT AFFILIATED
Today – 17th of February 2023 is second day of working on Mastodon server. Yesterday i have created a clean Ubuntu VPS at german company netcup that i have never heard before, but its cheaper then Hetzner, is EU based and is listed in so many places in the internet as one of european alternatives to “big” that i`m really suprised that i have not used it before. Also I know a bit about “issues” with Mastodon instances from Bobiko and others experiences so… i knew that i will need two more services: e-mail sending and external object storage.
For e-mails i decided that “one person instance” doesnt need much so sendinblue.com should be ok with 300mails/day cap. How much mails do i need if i DO NOT want nearly any notification mails. Its just “register”, “moderation needed” and “recovery passwords” so… if it will be used at rate of 1/day i think it would be max.
And I needed to think about media storage. It is biggest pain in the ass of hosting this service as we need to cache ALL media posted by people that we follows for our use (my apps/web clients will download EVERYTHING from MY instance, not from original one). Also all avatars of everyone in discussions, all media from comments… and when we have this “global” timeline – it also need to download ALL that stuff. So…
It can be a lot of data. I have heard about people having about 20gb/week of cached images. So it is not a small stuff. Hopefully i do not follow any pixelfeds accounts yet, also i dont need to have old cache as i watch my timeline … too often. So i hope that i will manage to stay in about level of 10-15gb in total of caching + data that i will “create”. Its why i choose to go with tebi which also has this advantage of being EU based company. Because if i will be spending any cash on that… i want my cash to stay nearby.
So I`ll try to stay within 25gb free tier (with cheap additional gigs) and there is 250GB/month of transfer which looks like A LOT for single person instance, so maybe 2-3 clients connected (web client, app on mobile… whats else?)
There are different solutions that can be used to selfhost it. You can use any other VPS like Hetzners, you can try to use free tier of Oracle Cloud with this ARM based machines (maybe ill use it at some point as storage? who knows… i am looking there with hope for bigger storage, just in case)
You can also self host smtp server without pushing your mails thru other services. Same as you can self host your media files inside VPS file system and its “out of the box” solution.
I want to discover how much of usage there will be on my VPS while running only Mastodon instance. If it will not be too busy i will have to think about OR add some additional functionalities OR additional fedi software maybe OR invite few additional people to use this instance from friends.
A lot of things to think about. But now the most important is – to manage it to be safe and stable.