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      How to Make a Minecraft Server with DreamCompute (In 3 Steps)


      Minecraft is a rare game with the longevity to still be wildly popular over nine years after its initial release, boasting 126 million monthly players. However, if you’ve ever wanted your own block kingdom, the technical aspects of making a Minecraft server may make it seem like you’re dealing with a real-life Enderman.

      Fortunately, there are ways to make the process fast and easy. 

      DreamCompute is our cloud computing service that can help you set up your own Minecraft server. With just a few simple steps, you’ll be ready to launch your Minecraft world.

      In this article, we’ll discuss some of the reasons you might want to make your own Minecraft server and cover the technical aspects of the process. Then we’ll provide you with three easy steps to get it up and running with DreamHost. Let’s go! 

      The Benefits of Making Your Own Minecraft Server

      Minecraft servers let you play the game either online or in a local network. It’s like a subset within the larger game that is yours to customize as you see fit. You’re free to build inside of it on your terms. 

      There are lots of benefits to making your own server. For one, you have full control. You can use any mods you want to customize your gameplay. Creating a unique environment with these tools can be advantageous if you’re looking to start your own YouTube channel

      It doesn’t have to be just you, either. Having your own server enables you to build a community. You can invite people you want to join you in-game for a multiplayer adventure. If you’d rather keep to yourself, you can still share your custom designs with the world. 

      To top it all off, creating your own Minecraft server can be a pretty painless experience. You might be surprised by how accessible the process can be. With a little bit of guidance, you’ll have your own space up and running in no time. 

      Why You Should Use DreamCompute for Your Minecraft Server

      DreamCompute info on dreamhost.com

      You probably have a few options when it comes to server hosts. They might seem similar at first glance, especially if you’re just starting out. However, there are some important differences to be aware of before you make your choice.

      The first thing to look for in a host is whether it offers a cloud-based server. These are generally a better choice than more traditional local servers, as they don’t directly tax your computer’s resources. Typically, this translates to smoother, improved gameplay. 

      Tech support might also have an easier time navigating a cloud server than a local server if you run into any trouble. Plus, having a cloud server means you won’t have to worry about keeping your computer running at all times for other server members who want access to it. 

      Our DreamCompute service offers cloud servers for Minecraft with competitive features. It’s suitable for both simple and complex configurations, offering impressive speeds for all users. It also has a straightforward and predictable billing system to prevent any nasty surprises at the end of the month.

      Further, it’s flexible enough to grow with if you need to change any aspect of your account. Rest assured that any alterations you need to make will get the support they need. 

      If you already know you’re looking for premium performance and control, you might want to check out DreamHost’s dedicated server option. It offers impressive benefits, such as fully-managed, cross-platform cooperative play. However, if you’re just looking for a basic server setup, we’ve got you covered there too. 

      Get Minecraft Hosting That Scales

      DreamCompute is the ideal solution for Minecraft servers that require fast speeds and consistent uptime.

      What to Know Before You Get Started

      There are a couple of tools you’ll need to get started. First, make sure you have a downloaded copy of Minecraft ready. You’ll also need to set up a DreamCompute account.

      You also might find some knowledge of servers to be informative since it will help you understand exactly what’s going on in each step. However, if you’re a beginner, don’t fret! The process is very accessible, and our guide is here to help. 

      How to Make Your Own Minecraft Server with DreamCompute (In 3 Steps)

      Once you have all the resources you need, just follow these three simple steps to create your own Minecraft server.

      Step 1: Create a Security Group

      The first thing you’ll want to do is create a security group. This is a set of rules that define network access and will allow or prevent traffic into your Minecraft server according to your preferences. All you need to do is adjust some settings.

      To get this started, navigate to your DreamCompute dashboard and click to expand the Network option on the left-hand side.

      The DreamCompute Dashboard with the network options expanded.

      Next, you can click the Security Groups button and then select Create Security Group. This will bring up a window where you can add a name and description. We’ll be using “Minecraft” for both in this walkthrough, but feel free to get creative with yours.

      The DreamCompute security group creation screen. 

      Once you’ve finished filling in those fields, click on Create Security Group to move on to the next step. You’ll then be presented with the options to create rules for this new group.  

      Step 2: Manage Your Rules

      In the new group, click on the Manage Rules button on the far right. Next, select Add Rule to bring up the following screen.

      The “Add Rule” pop-up screen in DreamCompute. 

      There are a lot of options on this page, but you don’t have to worry about them too much. If you’re looking to quick-start your server, you can just fill it in the same way we did above.

      Specifically, we suggest selecting Custom TCP Rule in the first field, Ingress in the second, and Port in the third. Under Port, enter the number “25565”; this is the default port for Minecraft.

      Next, make sure the bottom two fields are set to CIDR and “0.0.0.0/0” respectively. Once you’re ready, click on the Add button.

      Step 3: Create a Virtual Machine (VM)

      For the last step, you’ll need a Virtual Machine (VM). Anything with Java will suffice. We’ll be using Ubuntu-14.04 for this walkthrough, and we recommend using it if you’re unsure which solution to choose.

      You can then navigate back to your DreamCompute dashboard, and under the Compute menu, click on Instances. Next, select the Launch Instance button on the far right. This will bring up a screen that looks something like the following:

      The “Launch Instance” pop-up with the “Details” section selected.

      Try not to get overwhelmed by all the options! There are only a few that you’ll need to deal with. Start by naming your server in the top field under Instance Name. We used “My New Minecraft Server,” but you can name it anything you like.

      Click Next to move on.

      The “Launch Instance” pop-up with the “Source” section selected.

      From the provided list, select Ubuntu-14.04. The search function can be helpful here if you’re having trouble finding it. Then you can click on the up arrow to move your selection into the Allocated section. To make sure that your instance does not immediately run out of disk / storage space, adjust the Volume Size (GB) to be 10 GB and then click on Next to browse to the Flavor section.

      The “Launch Instance” pop-up with the “Flavor” section selected.

      You can also use the search function here to find a specific ‘Flavor’ you’re looking for. If you’re not sure which is best for you, we recommend the Lightspeed option. It has 4GB of RAM, making it a solid choice for most users. 

      Next, select the up arrow next to your chosen Flavor to move it into the Allocated category. Click on Next until you get to the Security Groups section.

      The “Launch Instance” pop-up with the “Security Groups” section selected.

      This section is an easy one. Simply click on the arrow next to the Minecraft security group we created earlier, so it’s listed under the Allocated category as shown above. 

      Click on Next to get to the Key Pair section. If you’ve already imported a Key Pair into your DreamCompute project, use the arrow next to that key to assign it to your instance. Otherwise, use the “Create Key Pair” button to create a new Key Pair and then assign that Key Pair to your instance (this is used for emergency connections and for making additional adjustments to the MineCraft server). 

      That should be all you need to do before switching to the Configuration section.

      The “Launch Instance” pop-up with the “Configuration” section selected.

      At this point, you’ll be brought to a page with a blank field titled Customization Script. On it, you can copy and paste the below code:

      #!/bin/bash
      
      apt-get update && apt-get -y install wget screen openjdk-7-jre-headless
      
      su - ubuntu -c 'wget https://s3.amazonaws.com/Minecraft.Download/versions/1.8.9/minecraft_server.1.8.9.jar -O ~/mcserver.jar'
      
      su - ubuntu -c 'echo 'eula=true' > ~/eula.txt'
      
      su - ubuntu -c 'screen -S mcserver -d -m java -XX:+UseConcMarkSweepGC -XX:+UseParNewGC -d64 -Xms512M -Xmx2G -jar mcserver.jar'

      You can also load the script from a file. However, you might find that the copy and paste method is quicker and easier.

      Keep in mind that the -Xms512M -Xmx2G part of this code is what tells Java the minimum and maximum allowed memory for the Lightspeed flavor we chose earlier. As such, it may not be suitable for other Flavors.

      After you’ve entered that code, click on Launch Instance. Sit back, relax, and give your server a few minutes for the setup process to complete. Once that’s done, your server will be online and ready to go!

      To add your new server to your client, you can open Minecraft and click on Multiplayer > Add Server. Name it whatever you’d like, and provide the IPv4 address of the VM you set up earlier. 

      If you want to modify the default server settings, you can log into your server via Secure Shell (SSH) as “ubuntu.” This will give you access to a server.properties file where you can change the message of the day, spawn different creatures, adjust the maximum number of players, and more.

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      Build Your Minecraft Realm

      Minecraft offers nearly endless opportunities for creative freedom. If you want to take full advantage of all it has to offer and elevate your game to the next level, making your own Minecraft server is the way to go.

      In this article, we covered three simple steps for setting one up using DreamCompute:

      1. Create a security group for your new server.
      2. Adjust the network access rules.
      3. Set up your VM to finish the process.

      Can’t wait to create a world of your own? DreamCompute can help you set up your own Minecraft server in a matter of minutes. Get ready to grab your pickaxe and get out there!  



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      How to Set SMART Goals for Your Website (In 4 Steps)


      When you run a website, it can sometimes feel like you’re pulled in many directions at once. There are sales to make, content to publish, and customers to respond to. With so many obligations, it can be easy to lose sight of why you started your business in the first place.

      However, setting Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely (SMART) goals for your website can help you focus your energy on what is most important. This concentrated effort can result in measurable progress toward a better site.

      In this article, we’ll explain what SMART goals are, discuss why they matter for your site, and provide you with a few examples. Then we’ll walk you through how to set SMART goals in four simple steps. Let’s get started!

      We’ll Support Your Dream

      Whatever your goals, we’ll be right there with you, making sure your site is fast, secure, and always up. Plans start at $2.59/mo.

      An Introduction to SMART Goals

      As we mentioned above, SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. Goals that meet these five criteria tend to be more effective than overly broad, ambitious, or ambiguous ones.

      Making more money” is a fairly common goal, for example, but it doesn’t fit the definition of a SMART goal. However, with a little tweaking, it could.

      Here’s a quick breakdown of what each element entails and how it could be applied to turn the above goal into a SMART one:

      • Specific. A specific goal is narrow in scope and focuses on a single target. Getting as precise as possible with a goal comes in handy when building the necessary steps to achieve it. This gives you a clear bullseye to aim for. For example, how do you plan on making more money, and what resources will you use in the process?
      • Measurable. If a goal isn’t measurable, there’s no way of knowing if or when you reach it. Typically, creating a measurable goal involves choosing a number or quantitative metric to pay attention to, such as a percentage or dollar amount. For example, how much more money do you want to make? Whatever metric(s) you decide on, you’ll also need a way to track your progress, such as a bookkeeping system that measures your income.
      • Attainable. When it comes to your business, it’s not bad to dream big. However, you also want to be realistic. If your revenue has steadily grown by 5% per month, attempting to increase it by 20% may be impractical, especially if you’ve made no significant changes to your products, pricing, or promotions.
      • Relevant. No matter how small, every goal you set should align with and get you closer to your long-term objectives. Consider why you created your site in the first place. For example, increasing profits is a relevant goal if your site’s primary purpose is generating income. However, if it’s to showcase your writing in hopes of landing a book deal, a more relevant goal might be to increase readership.
      • Timely. SMART goals need to have a deadline or timeframe. Without a sense of urgency, you may not be motivated to achieve the goal. Therefore, give yourself enough time to work on your plan, but not so much that you procrastinate. For example, you might want to see your profits increase by the end of the quarter.

      As you can see, with a little fine-tuning, it’s possible to take a vague goal (such as making more money) and turn it into a SMART goal that is more helpful and effective. Now let’s dive into why it’s necessary to set these types of goals for your website.

      Why SMART Goals Matter for Your Site

      Setting a SMART goal isn’t as simple as just stating what you want. You need to do some research and serious thinking to develop a goal that matches the SMART criteria.

      So why is this strategy worth the effort?

      SMART goals can be a useful tool for your site because they can help you see what’s working and what isn’t. If you’re just starting out, having goals can encourage you to keep an eye on your site’s metrics, which can be a hard habit to get into.

      Tracking a goal can help you understand which metrics are crucial to pay attention to and provide you with some motivation to keep monitoring those numbers. What’s more, it can help you accomplish your goals faster by forcing you to focus on the most critical objectives of your website.

      Here are a few good goal examples:

      Overall, working on SMART goals can give you an idea of where you’re currently at, what you might want to achieve, and how you can get there. The extra effort that goes into setting goals like this can pay off in the long run.

      How to Set SMART Goals for Your Website (In 4 Steps)

      By now, you probably have a solid grasp on what SMART goals are and why they matter. Let’s move on to discussing how you can set them for your own website in just four simple steps.

      Step 1: Identify What Can Be Improved

      The first step is to find the aspects of your website that could be a bit better. One way to do this is by identifying and interviewing stakeholders, which usually means department heads. However, if you’re the only employee, get ready to put on all your different hats.

      Spend time exploring and thinking about your website from various perspectives, and note your observations.

      For example, have a look at your content. Is it engaging and valuable? Also, look at your content creation process and think about whether you can improve it or change it to be more efficient.

      Additionally, it’s smart to consider your site from a sales, customer support, and IT perspective. If you’re having trouble with this, it might help to dig into your sales reports or customer inquiries to try and pinpoint common or recurring issues that crop up.

      Step 2: Determine a Reference Point

      Next, you’ll want to set a reference point by determining where your website currently stands. If you don’t do this now, it will be difficult to tell if your efforts have any effect. This prep work can help you set goals that matter and actually move your business forward. In other words, this is a large part of creating relevant goals.

      For example, you may be planning to put some extra time and energy into getting more site traffic. However, if you ultimately want to make more money, you need to focus on getting the right traffic, not just more of it. After all, there’s a difference between visitors and customers.

      To increase the quality of your traffic, you may want to try creating stronger, more tailored content and making updates to what you already have. You can also try looking at your existing content from a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) standpoint.

      Yoast SEO can give you an idea of where you’re at.

      The Yoast SEO website homepage.

      This is a freemium WordPress plugin that analyzes your site content and makes suggestions for improving it using target keywords. It can also be useful for performing an SEO audit to use as a reference point.

      Of course, the SEO tools and solutions you use to figure out where your site stands depend on the goals you’re setting. However, it’s essential to have a performance baseline to work from.

      Step 3: Set Some Goals

      Now that you’ve gathered some information and determined a reference point, it’s time to start setting your goals. While it can be tempting to chase after a few at once, try to limit yourself to no more than two goals at a time.

      This can be difficult if you have a lot to accomplish, but you’ll likely make more progress if you laser focus your efforts. Also, some of your goals may be short-term in nature.

      For example, if you’d like to create a new lead magnet, you probably won’t need an entire month to do it. More likely, this is something you can take care of in an afternoon of dedicated work.

      Once you’ve selected the goals you’re going to pursue, make sure to write them down. Put them in your calendar, your day planner, on a sticky note on your monitor — any place that you’ll see them every day.

      Step 4: Track Your Goals

      As you work toward your goal, it’s critical that you track the key metrics that will inform you about your progress. Doing this can help you determine what is and isn’t working.

      If your goal is to get more traffic to your blog, increase engagement or conversions rates, or something similar, you might want to use Google Analytics to see if you’re hitting your desired numbers.

      Google Analytics data analysis tool.

      Remember: If you don’t meet your goal, that’s OK!

      Use it as a learning experience and try to figure out why you fell short. Perhaps the goal was too ambitious, or you just need to change your approach and try again.

      The important thing is to try not to be discouraged. Even if you didn’t reach your goal, you likely came away with valuable information to use in the future and make some improvements along the way.

      Ready to Set Some SMART Goals for Your Website?

      Whether you need help finding a target audience, crafting the ideal social media strategy, or setting up a newsletter, we can help! Subscribe to our monthly digest so you never miss an article.

      SMART Goal Setting

      Working without a clear idea of what you want or how to accomplish it can be incredibly draining. Setting a few SMART goals gives you a better chance of directing your energy where it will result in the biggest payoffs.

      For best results, try following these four steps when setting your own SMART goals:

      1. Identify what can be improved. Take some time to evaluate your website and processes from different perspectives.
      2. Determine a reference point. You’ll have a much easier time setting SMART goals and measuring your progress if you have a clearly-defined starting point.
      3. Set some goals. Use the information you’ve gathered to create goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
      4. Track your goals. Monitor your progress as you work through your plan, and be prepared to make changes if you don’t hit your goal the first time.

      If your goals include driving more traffic to your website, you’ll want to choose a quality hosting provider such as DreamHost. Check out our high-performance, reliable managed WordPress hosting plans to learn how we can help!



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      Kubernetes: Beyond Baby Steps


      Video

      About the Talk

      Designed for developers who have an in-depth understanding of Kubernetes concepts, this talk covers scaling apps with persistent storage and advanced networking.

      What You’ll Learn

      • Recent Kubernetes trends
      • Kubernetes autoscaling
      • RBAC (Role Based Access control)
      • Kubernetes resource quotas
      • Kubernetes extensions
      • Kubernetes security best practices

      Resources

      About the Presenter

      Saurabh Gupta is a tech enthusiast with more than a decade of experience in the software industry. Currently a Senior Developer Advocate at DigitalOcean, he focuses on open source, DevOps, cloud, containers, and Kubernetes. He is also part of the CNCF Speakers Bureau, and is often found speaking at community meetups and conferences.



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