Has anyone seen an appliance out there for a virtual hosting company. Something similar to commerical service like PLESK?
I basically run a small hosting company. Its really me and about a dozen friends who have some small websites. Right now I run IIS and a mail server and I have to manually set each "friend" up with a website/ftp/mail etc. I am looking for a solution where I can in esscence create a DOMAIN with a user name and password and then hand it over for each friend to configure however they want independantly of the whole. I need to keep the cost down becasue none of us are really doing anything for profit but I am also looking to eliminate my involvment other than having a server in my office that everyone can share.
VMWare server does work well for me. I am looking for an appliance to run under VMware to in essence act as a small hosting Company. Take a look at Plesk which is a commerical product and you will understand what I am looking for better.
From my understanding it sounds like you want to have your own virtualization environment so that each of your buddies can have their own Dedicated account. If so could you could set something up using Open VZ: http://openvz.org/
Getting closer. I think that is part of the puzzle. Check out this link and you will see exactly what I am looking for. OpenVZ is half of the plat form. The second part is something similar to Plesk (made by the Company OpenVZ is copying) which goes a step further to create web managable inferstructure. Basically in a couple of clicks I can setup a hosted domain send the user a username and password and then they can go to a web gui and start setting things up for themselves including email etc.
Check out GPL Host: http://www.gplhost.com/software-dtc.html sounds like it would be what you are looking for. Otherwise Plesk is just a web hosting control panel...you can search for open source web hosting control panel or check out sourceforge.
This is definately in the right direction. I was hoping for a pre-configured appliance becasue I don't really have a good understanding of Linux but this is leading me in the right direction and I think some good search words. I found two possible appliances now and I may be able to find someone help me try the one you pointed me to.