Sunday, November 30, 2014

Changing Your Server Hostnames

There's no shortage of server solutions these days. Whether you're choosing to go with a dedicated server, a cloud server, or a local virtual machine, you're going to want to give your servers meaningful hostnames. Here, I'll be going over the meaning behind the hostnames of some cloud instances I've set up. But before I do that, you can follow these steps to rename your own servers:

Warning: This will change the hostname of the server. You may have to go through the control panel of your hosting provider to update the server instance name.

Prerequisites: This guide was written for Linux Ubuntu 14.04 users.

# switch to root
sudo su -

# change the hostname
hostname <newname>

# update the /etc/hostname
nano /etc/hostname

# update the /etc/hosts
nano /etc/hosts

This will open up a file where you can update any instance of the old hostname with your new hostname.   localhost   <newname> <newname> # change these

# The following lines are desirable for IPv6 capable hosts
::1     ip6-localhost ip6-loopback
fe00::0 ip6-localnet
ff00::0 ip6-mcastprefix
ff02::1 ip6-allnodes
ff02::2 ip6-allrouters

Finally, run this command to reboot your server: reboot.

The Names of My Current Cloud Instances


My backend server is named after Fairchild Semiconductors, a company founded in 1957 by the Traitorous eight, eight men who left Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory after finding its founder, William Shockley, impossible to work with. Shockley is considered the father of Silicon Valley and the "fairchildren" of the Traitorous eight's new company include AMD and Intel. So why Fairchild? I guess there's something to be said about dreaming of something bigger or better than the current situation you're in, and having the courage and resolve to make that step. Nolan Bushnell did the very same thing when he founded Atari, and it's the same spirit that most people who launch their own startups share.

[Image Credit: PushAndStart]


"This man is a total enigma" - Roald Dahl

I named my logging and monitoring server after Sir William Stephenson, a Canadian soldier and spymaster for British Intelligence who went by the codename Intrepid. He was also an airman, a businessman and an inventor. His headquarters was located in Rockafeller Center, NY, where he posed as a British Passport Control Officer, involving himself in forgery, coding, counter-espionage, and propaganda. He was literally everywhere and nowhere.

Harry Viera, Former Member of Parliament, Bermuda spoke of him as having the ability to absorb, analyze and interpret information, and form a judgment very quickly, a quality found in many representatives of the espionage community. Sir Stephenson's directives during WWII were to relay British and American secrets between the two countries, as well as improve public opinion of America's involvement in the war. I could not think of a better figure to name a monitoring server after.


In case you haven't been able to guess already, I'm referring to Elon Musk, arguably one of the important men alive, today. Even though he's known as being an engineer and an architect at heart, he's also known as being able to raise an absurd amount of capital, hence the naming behind my client-side applications server. Among his many achievements, he's the cofounder of Paypal, founder, CEO and CTO of SpaceX, CEO and chief product architect of Tesla Motors, and the chairman of Solar City.

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