Running a server as a life philosophy
Recently I had some server problems, which meant downtime for this site amongst other things. Without going into much technical detail about the exact issue besides being a hardware related failure, it made me realize how much I depend on my little Linux box to do it's job to be able to do mine. Although my backup schema is pretty good (I didn't lose any data and had the means to access it during the downtime).
Of course I could opt for a more reliable hosting solution but that would bring additional costs and would only satisfy my website needs. My server already has a 24/7 job to do without the website and thus is a logical choice for me to also store my website there.
In the future I would want to get a UPS to protect my server from power spikes, power failure (not very common in The Netherlands) and other power related issues that can effect electronic equipment. This will certainly extend hardware life but still you will always have some problems along the the line.
Running your own server to maintain a website just has it's pros and cons. And limiting downtime by monitoring your system with tools like Cacti to anticipate possible future problems is part of the ever ongoing maintaining process.
But why put yourself through all the fuzz? Well I love tinkering with this kind of stuff. When I was a little kid I loved playing with electronic appliances, mostly taking them apart and see how they worked. Computers weren't an exception, practicly raised with them by my father whom started as an electrician and handle some of the beasts they called computers back then. So I guess I was spoon fed to be curious by nature and thus try to understand everything I come across.
I believe that what I do isn't that difficult, it just requires time and not being scared to try out something new. I would compare it to riding a bike, sure you'll fall off some of the time in the beginning but eventually you learn to balance yourself. You could even extend this to your own life philosophy.
Don't be scared to try something new once in a while.