Center for Applied Systems & Software ยป

OSU Open Source Lab

Hosting Details

We offer a wide variety of services to our hosted clients so the OSL can help offload work from your machine and/or infrastructure team. This list is not exhaustive, but is intended to give a better idea of the types of services we provide.


Hosting Detail - Sysadmin


We offer virtual machines utilizing an open source stack consisting of Ganeti and the KVM hypervisor. We have a cluster for small projects and offer VMs at a variety of sizes and platforms, all with full redundant storage. Ganeti is an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform that we primarily use for long running VMs that need minimal changes. We provide minimal admin access to the VMs to project owners.


ETA late 2017

We're working on offering access to an OpenStack cluster hosted at the OSL for projects to use in late 2017. We've been running an internal cluster for several years and have been working on getting the platform in a stable state for us to start offering to the projects. For now the target is primarily for compute services but we may expand that later as the need arises.

FTP Mirroring

We have a cluster of three servers behind the ftp.osuosl.org name with a total bandwidth capacity of more than 50 gigabits per second. These servers are hosted geographically across the United States. Instead of pushing files and releases out from your own server, let us take care of the dirty work for you. We currently host approximately 100 projects on our mirroring servers using around 8TB of disk space. We do our best to host as many projects as we can, however space is limited.


Mail Relaying

We have a number of local mail relays that OSL-hosted servers can use to help relieve some of the pressure that mail can put on their servers. These relays do spam and virus tagging.

Mailing Lists

We use Mailman for any mailing list needs. We can help you migrate old lists or create new lists that are centrally managed on our system.

Website Hosting

We offer website hosting for projects that require dynamic backend server support. We currently support hosting sites which require languages such as PHP, Python, and Ruby. We don't support every web application but we'll do our best to try and support a widely used platform. If you have a website that needs a home, let us know and we'll see how we can help.

Database Hosting

We offer high performance hosted MySQL or PostgreSQL accounts for our clients on our cluster of database servers.

Co-Location Hosting

For those projects that need more than just a single virtual machine or website, we do offer co-location hosting. We have limited space, power and cooling but we generally can host something provided there is a warranted need for it. Please note that the OSL generally prefers projects to virtualize as much of their infrastructure as possible.

We require all servers to have sliding rails and cable management arms. Hardware must be purchased from a vendor rather than built by hand to ensure it operates as intended. We prefer that hardware also includes dual power, some type of out-of-band management (i.e. IPMI, iLO, iDRAC, etc) and a three-year basic hardware warranty. We prefer not to host any machines larger than 2U, but can work with our clients to accommodate larger servers if needed.



We use Nagios to monitor our managed hosts and send alerts to PagerDuty when services go down. We are able to offer fine-grained monitoring and notification to our hosted clients as needed.

Trend Graphs

We primarily use Munin to monitor the health of servers at the OSL. Statistics such as CPU usage, load, memory, network traffic and more can all be monitored and historically tracked.


This service is to be used for disaster recovery rather than data recovery, meaning we keep backups for a limited period of time (usually long enough to provide a couple of full data sets that can be used to rebuild a server as opposed to recovering files from long ago). We currently utilize rdiff-backup for file storage backups and a variety of other tools for database backups.