Super Easy Server Administration: The Nitrado Cloud Server Web Interface

To manage your own cloud server, the usual accesses are available such as SSH on Linux and Remote Desktop on Windows servers. In addition, there will be a web interface for the Nitrado Cloud Servers in conjunction with a daemon, which provides many useful features and makes server administration much easier.

The web interface is equipped with basic functions, but with the help of the free Nitrado daemon for Linux server, extended functions are offered.

The Nitrado Cloud Server and the technology behind the Nitrado Public Cloud have already been presented in the previous two articles "Nitrado Cloud Server available July 2017" and "Behind the Scenes: Nitrado Cloud Server". This article focuses on the web interface, which makes the administration of the cloud servers for beginners and advanced users child’s play.

Basic Functions for all Game Servers

The Dashboard provides important information and features, such as "Restarting servers" or graphs of resource usage at a glance. Current traffic statistics and an event log about the actions taken in the web interface are, of course, also available.

CLOUD WI

The advanced settings can be used to set the hostname of the server, as well as the PTR entry per IP address.

VNC Console

The server can be accessed at any time via the HTML5 VNC console. This function is helpful for emergencies, for example, if you have blocked yourself by a faulty configured firewall. The full-screen function and the virtual keyboard make the work easier.

Cloud VNC

Cloud VNC GIF

SSH-Key Management

For secure authentication on Linux servers, SSH keys can be used during installation or managed during reinstallation. Instead of a password, the login is done by exchanging a key pair, where the private key is loaded locally, and the server only knows the public part of the key. This type of log in is the safest on a Linux system.

New installations and Backups

The server can be reinstalled at any time via the web interface. If necessary, the operating system can also be changed.

Backups can also be imported via the web interface. The associated backup option can be selected during the order, or configured later on. Up to four backup slots are available, which can be used for creating manual backups of the complete system.

If at least one backup slot is configured, daily backups made by Nitrado are also available. These are not simple snapshots on the same file system, but a complete mirroring of the data on separate hardware. This is independent of the HPE 3PAR SSD Storage System.

Advanced Nitrado Daemon Features for Linux Cloud Servers

The Nitrado daemon is a background process, which can be installed optionally on Linux Cloud servers free of charge. It makes it even easier to manage the server via the Nitrado Web Interface.

In the development of the Nitrado daemon, our engineers gave safety a top priority. All communication with the daemon takes place via a central interface, the so-called NitrAPI. The connection between NITRAPI and daemon is secured in both directions by TLS, each cloud server identifies itself with its individual certificate with NitrAPI and vice versa. On the complete path from the Nitrado daemon, via the NitrAPI to the user's browser, all communications are encrypted.

In the security concept, of course, not only safe communication was respected, but also local security. For example, all operations that do not require root privileges are executed with the rights of the particular user, and the file browser, discussed below, can be used to select the user to work with. This prevents possible attacks on file browsers that do not have such a function - known in the professional world as a "confused deputy" problem. Additional risks, such as the use of a common / tmp directory, were also considered and avoided during development.

Nitrado Cloud Apps

The "Nitrado Cloud App Store" allows game servers and other useful applications to be installed with a single click. This makes it possible to install and manage game servers and other applications even without prior technical knowledge. For the start, the most popular Nitrado games will already be available and we look forward to expanding the list with the wishes of our customers.

Cloud APPS

File Browser

Just like on a Nitrado Game Server Web Interface, a file browser is available for file management, which additionally allows the user to change the user context ("sudo"), as well as to perform chmod and chown operations. This makes it easy and secure to exchange files between the cloud server and the PC at home.

Cloud files browser

Services and Logs - Systemized and journaled

System services can also be conveniently controlled via the web interface. In the background, the tools and functions of the operating system are used (systemd). For example, it is easy to configure the automatic start of services or restart a service after a configuration change. To complete this function, a logviewer can be used to view the system logs. The systemd component journald is used as the source.

Cloud logs

Conclusion

The Cloud Server Web Interface provides useful features for beginners and advanced users. It gives newcomers the ability to install and manage even complex applications and game servers in a simple and secure way. Experienced users also benefit from comfortable administration functions for their services.

Stay Tuned!

Until the launch of the Nitrado Cloud Server next month, we will regularly publish further details in detailed articles. The next article illuminates the core of Nitrado architecture: the NitrAPI. It is the central interface (API) for ordering and managing all services. This is especially exciting for developers who want to order and operate their cloud servers automatically.

Jun 8th, 08:46 pm
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Matthew Wiebke
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