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WordPress Deployment – Alibaba Cloud Simple Application Server

A slow website is always a pain for any bloggers using WordPress. There are many reasons for a slow WordPress site and one of them is a noisy neighbours.

One can host a WordPress blog on a shared hosting, however if there are any site on the same server which requires high computation of memory power then it may impact the overall performance of the website. Using a cloud server is one of the solutions to resolve the issue.

This blog post will guide you through building a wordpress blog using Alibaba Simple Application Server. Alibaba Simple Application Server can help one to deploy pre-build application with just a few mouse clicks.

Simple application server provides integration with other popular Alibaba Cloud Services such as VPC, DNS and SSL. For the static content delivery it can also be integrated with Alibaba Cloud CDN.

Simple Application Server can help deploying an application with no or little experience with cloud technology.

Simple Application Server Product Architecture

(Reference: https://www.alibabacloud.com/help/doc-detail/58612.html)

Simple Application Server Use Cases:

Simple application server is the best choice when one has less IT and server management knowledge and wants to start a cloud journey. There are many use cases for the Simple Application server some of them are mentioned as follows

  • Personal Blog Hosting : Simple application server can be used as a personal blogging platform. Once deployed, one can map it with a custom domain name.
  • Development Environment: Simple Application Server is a developer’s friend. Developers can use it as a development or staging environment.
  • Small E-Commerce Store: Simple application server can be used as a small ecommerce store, developed with WordPress and WooCommerce, Joomla or OpenCart

Simple Application Server Deployment:

There are a couple of steps required to install and configure Simple Application Server WordPress Application.

 

  1. Visit Alibaba Cloud Simple Application Server purchase page. (https://www.alibabacloud.com/product/swas)
  2. Click Buy Now
  3. Select Region: Region should be selected from where most of the website visitors are expected. Currently a limited number of regions are available. If the website traffic is mainly expected to come from south east asia then select Asia Pacific SE1 (Singapore)

Select Application Image / OS Image:

Application Image: There are a number of predefined application images defined such as WordPress, LAMP (Linux Apache MySQL PHP) , Drupal, Joomla, Ghost, Open Cart, Plesk.

If your application does not match with any of the predefined CMS and using LAMP environment then you can deploy applications on LAMP image of Plesk image.

OS Image: In the case, one wants to deploy the application and do not want to use the predefined application images then OS images is one of the options. For this blog post the scope is limited to the WordPress predefined image, In the future blog post we will include the OS images option.

At a glance, one can choose any of the popular images options from Linux and Windows.

Select Instance Plan:

Select the instance plan that fits the needs. Plan differs from region to region.

Select Additional Data Disk (optional):

Based on the needs one can buy additional data disk. One can configure a backup / data storage and retrieval from the data disk for the additional layer of disaster recovery.

Additional data disk configuration is out of scope for this blog post, we will include additional data disk configuration in future blog post along with the OS disk configuration.

Select Subscription:

Select subscription for your application server. There are some discounts available for the long time subscription. If one wants to auto-renew the subscription then make sure to select the option.

Verify the current selection before making a purchase. If everything looks good then click Buy Now.

Pay for the instance:

Select the general terms and End user license agreement and click Pay

Final Confirmation before Payment:

Verify all the details before final payment and if everything looks good then click Pay now. The payment process and server allocation may take 5-10 minutes. Once the server is ready you should receive an email or one can get details from Alibaba Cloud Web Console – Simple Application Server menu.

WordPress Access and Configuration:

To access the server from the Alibaba Cloud Console, Navigate to the products menu and select Simple Application Server. To add the simple application server to quick launch menu, click the star sign next to the Simple Application Server.

The simple application server menu will show the configured application name with status.

The left navigation menu shows the dependent components of the server.

  1. Disk List: Disk list shows the list of storage disks configured with the application
  2. Snapshot List: Snapshot lists shows the snapshot chains if backup is configured for the application. It is a best practice to configure snapshots, so in the case of any failure the server can revert back to the previous known state.

Application Configuration:

The application dashboard shows website traffic utilization, CPU Utilization, Public and Private IP addresses, Application image detail and package validity.

From the package validity one can upgrade the configuration to next available package if needed.

 

Once the application initialization is completed, there is a three step process to complete the configuration.

Step 1: Map the Domain Name: The website can be accessed through a public IP address however to make it accessible through a domain name, click Add Now, under the Website Settings.

Enter the domain name you wish to bind with the website. Once the domain name is added, add A record on your domain control panel to point to the application server IP address.

If you do not have any domain name and with to purchase, then click on the Buy now, and you can purchase a domain from Alibaba Cloud Domain Registry Service

If you with to bind an SSL certificate with a website then you can click on HTTPs to open an SSL dialog and bind a certificate purchased from Alibaba Cloud SSL certificate service

Alternatively you can activate the SSL at CDN level (if you do not wish to buy an EV certificate. Alibaba Cloud provides free certificate to CDN service however the HTTP rewrite service is chargeable on number of request)

Step 2: Firewall: The simple application server configures three Firewall rules

A. Port 80 – HTTP traffic

B. Port 443 – HTTPS traffic

C. Port 22 – SSH traffic

It is recommended to keep only the ports that are needed for the application. If you do not wish to use SSH port then remove it from the configuration by clicking delete next to it.

If your application requires any different port then it can be added by clicking the Add New or modifying the existing one.

Step 3: Application Access Details: After completion of the above step, get the application details to logon to the WordPress control panel by clicking Set Now under the Deploy Application.

Click on the Connect button under WordPress information. This will open a browser based command terminal. Paste the command as given in the box.

Open the browser window to access the WordPress control panel.

http://<your website>/wp-admin , Enter admin as the username and password as you received from the command shell.

This should redirect you to the WordPress administrator dashboard. From here you can upgrade the WordPress version to last available version and start using the system.

 

This concludes the tutorial to deploy a WordPress website on simple application server!

Next Steps:

In future blog posts we will cover Security and performance fixes for the Simple Application Server.

Have you deployed application on Simple Application Server? Please share your experience with us by writing in the comments box below.