WordPress is the most popular content management system in the world. Free to copy and free from charge, easy to install and to use, it continues to grow in popularity and spread the good word about open source software since 2003. Today, it’s estimated that 30% of all websites use WordPress.

With a PHP/MySQL instance, Gandi users have long been able to quickly install and run WordPress for themselves but we recently asked ourselves how we could make this process even simpler.

It couldn’t be simpler than our answer: one-click installation on the new PHP 5.6 and PHP 7 instances with MySQL 5.6 (Percona), and PHP 5.6 with MySQL 5.5.

Here’s how it works. First, navigate to your instance’s control panel and access the WordPress installation feature. You can install WordPress on any of your vhosts (that is, the web addresses liste on that page). You don’t have to worry about creating a database anymore: it will be automatically created during the installation process. You’ll just have to enter the username, password and email address for your WordPress site’s admin account.

You can install as many WordPress sites on an instance as you want or redirect additional domain names to an already existing WordPress site; you just need to return to the admin page to add a new Website to your instance.

The only limitation is, of course, the resources allotted to your instance based on its size, which you can modify as needed.

One of our favorite things about WordPress is that it’s a great tool for those who may not already be crack coders who nonetheless want a truly customized blog. So we’re happy to help facilitate newcomers who may be intimidated by the manual installation process.

WordPress is also robust enough to be preferred by a large swath of the professional development community as well who find the manual process tedious. This allows such users to save time.

If you want more information on the automatic installation process or if you’re curious to know how the manual process works, check out our WordPress tutorial, available in our wiki.

We try to make sure when we roll out a new feature that everything works correctly and smoothly, but of course, we’re not immune to bugs. So if you see something, say something, and we’ll fix it. Or if you have any additional feedback on how to make things easier or how to improve this feature, feel free to send us an email with your thoughts and impressions to feedback@gandi.net.

And of course if you run into any difficulties you can also contact our Customer care team for help.

We’re excited and proud for this new feature to roll out but by no means is this the last WordPress-related improvement we have in store. Stay tuned for more …


You may have noticed that in the past few months we’ve been bringing you a lot of new improvements on Node.js instances. The idea has obviously been to better align the user experience on Simple Hosting Node.js with current practices among developers. After all, the developer ecosystem for Node.js has evolved quite a bit since 2013, the year we first introduced Node.js support on Simple Hosting, culminating with its fusion with the io.js project.

Today, we are launching a new version of our Node.js instance which is designed to be entirely at the service of developers.

  • Each application can use the version of Node.js and of npm that it needs. The platform puts no restriction on the Node.js version.
  • The Node.js process is completely customizable—you can use any Node.js binary flags and even alternative process managers
  • Everything is managed from the package.json file—no Simple Hosting-specific file is required

These features bring together the Node.js application hosting experience on Simple Hosting, which offers benefits such as:

  • Most prepackaged Node.js applications can be installed without modification
  • An application can be deployed in three commands with Gandi CLI: gandi paas attach, git push and gandi deploy
  • Built-in HTTP caching
  • WebSocket with SSL (in beta)

The new Node.js image is recommended for the creation of new instances. By default, it uses Node.js 4 LTS and is available with one of the following three database management systems: PostgreSQL 9.4, MySQL 5.6 (Percona server) and MongoDB 2.4.

You can create a new Node.js instance either from our website or with Gandi CLI:

$ gandi paas create --name nodenode --type nodejspgsql9.4 --size M --datacenter LU-BI1

Please consult our Wiki for more information about the Node.js Simple Hosting instance, including examples for creating and deploying an application.

Of course, feel free to contact our Customer care team with any questions or concerns, or contact our developers directly on IRC at #gandi on Freenode (irc.freenode.net). You can also send any feedback or suggestions to feedback@gandi.net.


Two important considerations whenever you pick a hosting service are how much control do you need to have over what elements and what kind of technical skills do you have to work with.

So to help make the differences between different hosting options clear, we have peeled back the layers of a standard website and looked at the level of expertise you would need to be able to manage your site from that layer.

We broke down hosting options on a scale showing both the level of control you get at each level and the technical knowledge required:

Hosting Options

In summary:

Content is just that: what you or anyone else sees when navigating to the site. If all you want to do is control the content, you can link your domain to it.

Layout is the organization of those elements on a page. Gandi offers a WYSIWYG editor that lets you organize elements in a graphic interface and insert some rudimentary code in the form of Gandi Site

Applications, which aren’t necessary but increasingly common, are the software that produces a site. To have control at this level, consider using Gandi’s Simple Hosting service. If you want to try it out, you can opt for a 10 day free trial.

Servers are all the containers, virtual machines, and software those applications run on, and …

Infrastructure is the virtual and ultimately physical components those servers run on.

For these options, consider Gandi’s Cloud VPS Server.

To pick a hosting option, then, you really just need to ask yourself what level of control you need and what level you have the technical skills—or the will to acquire—to manage.

And remember: every advanced user starts as a basic user. If it seems too complicated now, you can work your way up.

If you’re up to it, we encourage you to challenge yourself. There are a lot of great resources out there to help you learn, just take baby steps and don’t go in too far over your head.

We hope in any case that with this knowledge, you may choose wisely. Of course, if you still need help, feel free to contact our Customer care team.


We have reduced the number of available system images for creation on our Cloud platform today, as previously announced.

The following images will no longer be available for use in the creation of new servers (EOL):

  • ArchLinux 32 bits
  • ArchLinux 64 bits
  • Centos 5 32 bits
  • CentOS 5 64 bits
  • Centos 6 32 bits
  • Debian 6 32 bits
  • Debian 6 64 bits
  • Debian 7 32 bits
  • Fedora 17 32 bits
  • Fedora 17 64 bits
  • OpenSUSE 12.2 32 bits
  • OpenSUSE 12.2 64 bits
  • Ubuntu 10.04 32 bits
  • Ubuntu 10.04 64 bits
  • Ubuntu 12.04 32 bits
  • Ubuntu 14.04 32 bits

Currently existing servers using these images will not be impacted and will continue to function normally. You may also create new servers from snapshots and from existing disks. We do recommend keeping your system updated for security reasons.

Supported images at creation are:

  • Debian 8 64 bits (HVM)
  • Debian 7 64 bits (HVM)
  • Debian 7 64 bits
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS 64 bits (HVM)
  • Ubuntu 14.04 LTS 64 bits (HVM)
  • Ubuntu 14.04 LTS 64 bits
  • Ubuntu 12.04 LTS 64 bits
  • CentOS 7 64 bits (HVM)
  • CentOS 6 64 bits (HVM)
  • CentOS 6 64 bits
  • FreeBSD 10.3 64 bits (UFS)
  • FreeBSD 10.3 64 bits (ZFS)

Starting today, all official images use the 64-bit architecture. We recommend opting for our HVM platform (images with the "HVM" suffix), on which you may also create your own images and use custom kernels.


We're happy to announce the release of a new instance family for Simple Hosting offering support for PHP 7 with MySQL 5.6, PostgreSQL 9.4 or MongoDB 2.4. It's in Beta stage and we look forward to your testing.

PHP 7 introduces several improvements and is claimed to be the fastest version of the language. On Simple Hosting, you can pair it with MySQL 5.6 (Percona Server), an optimized and more stable version of MySQL, PostgreSQL 9.4, which includes native JSON support with great performance, or MongoDB 2.4.

You can create a new instance by selecting "PHP 7 / MySQL 5.6 (Percona)", "PHP 7 / PostgreSQL 9.4" or "PHP 7 / MongoDB 2.4" at the following URL (you'll need to login or create a free account first):

https://www.gandi.net/hosting/simple/create

With Gandi CLI, you can run the following command replacing {instance type} with php7mysql5.6, php7pgsql9.4 or php7mongodb2.4:

$ gandi paas create --type {instance type}

All three databases are also available for PHP 5.6 instances. Simply substitute "PHP 7" for "PHP 5.6" and "php7" for "php5.6" in the instance type names to create PHP 5.6 instances with MySQL 5.6 (Percona), PostgreSQL 9.4 or MongoDB 2.4.

There is no automatic migration feature available, but you can check out our migration guide if you want to manually move your PHP applicationto a new instance -- just remember we're still in Beta!

https://wiki.gandi.net/tutorials/simple/php/migration

Please feel free to contact Customer Care if you encounter any issues or come hang out with the staff and other customers on our Freenode IRC channel: #gandi on irc.freenode.net.


We are happy to announce that FreeBSD 10.3 is now available on Gandi Cloud.

The latest version of FreeBSD 10 series boasts stability improvements over the previous release and quite a few new features. Here are some highlights that might interest you:

  • improved stability over 10.2
  • new jail(8) utility option (-l) to launch jails with clean environments
  • ability to mount the root file system from a temporary source file system without needing a full reboot
  • CAM Target Layer ctl(4) now supports High Availability setups
  • Linux compatibility layer is now capable of running 64-bit applications on amd64 (x86_64) and has received several other improvements

Check out the official Release Notes for more details.

You can create new FreeBSD 10.3 servers right away using Gandi's website, CLI, API or community tools such as libCloud. You can choose to create ZFS- or UFS-based servers in 64 bits on all our datacenters.

For example, to create a ZFS FreeBSD 10.3 image from the command-line with Gandi CLI :

  $ gandi vm create --image "FreeBSD 10.3 64 bits (ZFS)" --memory 4096 --cores 2

Please note that FreeBSD 10.2 is no longer available for new server creation.

We hope you'll enjoy this new version. You can learn more about using FreeBSD on Gandi Cloud or contact Customer Care if you experience any troubles. If you're an IRC user, come join our staff and other customers in the #gandi channel on irc.freenode.net.


ImageMagick announced a security vulnerability, registered as CVE-2016-3714, that allows malicious users to craft filenames to execute code remotely.

We have applied the appropriate fixes on Simple Hosting to protect customer applications using ImageMagick libraries.

If you're using ImageMagick in your application, make sure you restart your instance after 18:00 UTC (11:00 AM PDT) on May 4, 2016 in order to apply the patch.

You can restart your instance from the website or from the terminal with Gandi CLI:

$ gandi paas restart {instance_name}

Please don't hesitate to contact Customer Care if you experience any issues or have any questions related to this topic.


We are happy to announce the release of Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus) on Gandi Cloud.

 

New features

Xenial Xerus uses systemd for the init process and includes with several new features, including Snap, a new application packaging format that works alongside .deb. Many popular software packages have also been updated in this new release, such as PHP 7, MySQL 5.7 or docker 1.10.

Take a look at the official release notes to learn more about Ubuntu 16.04 LTS:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/XenialXerus/ReleaseNotes

 

Server creation

You can create a new server on any of our 3 datacenters from our website, Gandi CLI or our API.

For example, with Gandi CLI, run the following command in your terminal to create your server :


  $ gandi vm create --image "Ubuntu 16.04 64 bits LTS (HVM)" --hostname "xenial" --datacenter LU-BI1

To upgrade an existing Ubuntu system, check out Ubuntu's upgrade documentation.

If your current system is running on our legacy Xen platform, please read our documentation to learn how to migrate to HVM.

 

Built-in kernel and Docker support

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS servers will use the distribution's built-in kernel, Linux 4.4, instead of using our managed kernels by default. Your server will start with the low latency version of the Linux kernel prepared by Ubuntu. It uses a grub boot from Gandi platform and uses the kernel installed in the image. The grub boot method is an option of our HVM platform.

We are therefore making Ubuntu 16.04 LTS the default image for the Gandi plugin to Docker Machine and are recommending it for Docker usage on our platform.

You can get started with and learn more about the docker-machine-gandi plugin on GitHub.

Enjoy the latest release of Ubuntu! Don't hesitate to contact our Customer Care if you experience any issues. You can also hang out with Gandi staff and other customers on our IRC channel: #gandi on irc.freenode.net.


We are very happy to announce that Node Version Manager, best known as nvm, is now available on Simple Hosting Node.js.

You are now able to run any version of Node.js distributed via nvm and not limit yourself to the ones pre-installed on your Simple Hosting instance.

All you need to do is add a ".nvmrc" file to your project's root directory and deploy your code.

For example, for a project deployed with Gandi CLI:

$ cd myapp
$ echo "4.4" > .nvmrc
$ git add .nvmrc
$ git commit -m 'Use Node.js 4.4'
$ git push gandi master
$ gandi deploy

Simple Hosting's deploy and build process will detect the presence of the ".nvmrc" file and install the required version if necessary.

Please check out the Node.js instance documentation to learn more:

https://wiki.gandi.net/en/simple/instance/nodejs#selection_of_nodejs_version

Bonus: Run a Parse server on Simple Hosting!

Facebook has recently announced that they will be discontinuing the Parse service and have released the code as free software. Users can now self-host parse-server.

The "parse-server" package requires the latest version of Node.js 4, which wasn't previously supported on Simple Hosting. Thanks to ".nvmrc", nothing is stopping you from running your own Parse server on your instance.

Follow our complete tutorial and example project to set up your own Parse server on Simple Hosting Node.js:

https://wiki.gandi.net/en/tutorials/simple/nodejs/parse-server

Enjoy!


If you have a PHP 5.4/MySQL Simple Hosting instance you can now upgrade to PHP 5.6 in a single click. All you need to do is go to your instance’s control panel and click on the “Update” link.

This operation will move everything over to PHP 5.6 automatically, though you might experience some issues during the next few days as we still consider the feature to be in Beta. We also highly suggest checking our guide to learn more about the differences between versions and about the issues you might encounter, since you won't be able to rollback this update.

Users of other types of PHP instances, such as PostgreSQL or MongoDB databases, unfortunately will still have to upgrade manually. Our documentation also includes instructions and examples to help with manually migrating your instances

As always, don’t hesitate to contact our Customer Care team, join us in our IRC channel #gandi (on Freenode) or tweet us @gandibar if you have any issues.


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