Open edX: Hosting Options
25 Sep 2014

Assuming that you’re setting up a small instance (less than 1000 users), the most difficult hosting requirement is enough RAM. Open edX is composed of many software components, all of which use RAM even when they’re idle.

Put simply, you need 4GB of RAM. More won’t hurt. You can get away with less, but you need to fiddle around; see my post on reducing edX memory consumption for more details.

For a single machine instance, you’ve got a few options for hosting:

Amazon Web Services (AWS)



Moving an AMI to your region

The Open edX AMIs are only available in a few regions. I wanted one in Sydney. To transfer the AMI to ap-southeast-2 (Sydney):

EBS vs. Instance Storage

A Virtual Private Server (VPS)



OpenVZ or KVM?

Roughly, OpenVZ isolates multiple users of the same hardware and kernel from each other. KVM is a virtual machine, so it will behave more like a real computer.

Both have some advantages:

My preference is KVM, but if I had more users, I’d be leaning toward OpenVZ or Amazon.

There’s some excellent discussion of different virtualisation options over here.

Your own hardware



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