A Beginner’s Guide to Setting Up a CentOS 7 VPS


Setting up a Virtual Private Server (VPS) can be a daunting task for beginners. However, with the right guidance, setting up a VPS running CentOS 7 can be a relatively straightforward process. In this beginner’s guide, we will walk you through the steps needed to set up a VPS running CentOS 7.

Step 1: Choose a VPS Provider
The first step in setting up a VPS running CentOS 7 is to choose a VPS provider. There are many reputable VPS providers in the market, such as DigitalOcean, Linode, and Amazon Web Services. Compare the pricing, features, and customer reviews of each provider to choose the one that best suits your needs.

Step 2: Create a VPS Instance
Once you have chosen a VPS provider, you will need to create a VPS instance. This involves selecting the operating system (CentOS 7 in this case), the server location, and the server size. Most providers offer pre-configured CentOS 7 instances, making the setup process easier for beginners.

Step 3: Connect to Your VPS
After creating a VPS instance, you will need to connect to your VPS using an SSH client. You can use popular SSH clients such as Putty (Windows) or Terminal (Mac/Linux) to establish a secure connection to your VPS. Simply enter the IP address and login credentials provided by your VPS provider to connect to your VPS.

Step 4: Update and Secure Your VPS
Once connected to your VPS, the next step is to update the system packages and secure your VPS. Run the following commands to update the system packages:
sudo yum update
sudo yum upgrade

To secure your VPS, you can configure the firewall using the following command:
sudo firewall-cmd –permanent –add-service=http
sudo firewall-cmd –reload

Additionally, you can install and configure fail2ban to protect your VPS against brute force attacks:
sudo yum install epel-release
sudo yum install fail2ban
sudo systemctl start fail2ban
sudo systemctl enable fail2ban

Step 5: Install LAMP Stack
If you plan to host a website on your VPS, you will need to install a LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) stack. Run the following commands to install Apache, MySQL, and PHP on your VPS:
sudo yum install httpd
sudo systemctl start httpd
sudo systemctl enable httpd

sudo yum install mariadb mariadb-server
sudo systemctl start mariadb
sudo systemctl enable mariadb
sudo mysql_secure_installation

sudo yum install php php-mysql
sudo systemctl restart httpd

Step 6: Configure Virtual Hosts
To host multiple websites on your VPS, you will need to configure virtual hosts in Apache. Create a new virtual host configuration file for each website you want to host on your VPS:
sudo nano /etc/httpd/conf.d/example.com.conf

Add the following configuration to the virtual host file:

ServerName example.com
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/example.com

Don’t forget to create the document root directory for each website and upload your website files to the respective directories:
sudo mkdir /var/www/html/example.com
sudo chown -R apache:apache /var/www/html/example.com

Step 7: Test Your Website
After configuring the virtual hosts, you can test your website by entering the domain name in your web browser. If everything is set up correctly, you should see your website’s homepage displayed in the browser.

Setting up a VPS running CentOS 7 may seem overwhelming for beginners, but by following this beginner’s guide, you can easily set up a VPS and host your website or application. Remember to regularly update your VPS, secure it against potential threats, and monitor its performance to ensure the smooth operation of your online assets.