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VirtualRocket (vRocket.io) - SmartVPS with 512MB RAM for $4/month

vrocket io 2015-09-24 13-26-19Recently I noted a thread about VirtualRocket on LowEndTalk. After reading this I thought this would be an interesting offer to share with you all!

The offer

  • 512MB RAM
  • 1x Intel Xeon vCore
  • 30GB zSSD storage
  • 2TB transfer
  • 1Gbps uplink
  • SmartOS and Linux Datasets
  • Instant Snapshots
  • $4/month
  • Order here

There’s some things in the above offer that need explaining. First of all, what the hell is zSSD? It means you get 30GB of storage (with the above offer that is) on a ZFS storage pool which is fronted by 1.2TB in SSDs and backed by 15k SAS drives. Needless to say which is speedy in most tests (including dd), though I’d be interested to see how real-world performance is. I’m guessing it’s good, but is it as good as SSDs? Then on to the SmartOS and Linux Datasets. This VPS is ran on SmartOS, an OS created by Joyent and designed specifically for “the cloud”. The OS is said to run mostly in RAM, which is where you want most of it to run anyway for speed. You can either launch appliances on SmartOS or pick any known major linux distribution (like Ubuntu or CentOS) on this SmartOS-based VPS.

So, if you give these guys a shot, please let us know how things go for you!

Couple of more things you ought to know about though. You do need an SSH key for all of this to work and you need it during registration. Unfortunately, the software can be very picky about the format of your SSH key. You need an RSA-based one ending with an e-mail address! Otherwise you’re in for a big struggle. You’ve been warned :-)

You can pay using a Credit Card or Bitcoins (via Stripe). The setup process is pretty smooth and you should be running a machine in no time.

This offer is located in Columbus, Ohio in the WOW! data center. More information about that here (including test IPs): https://vrocket.io/datacenter.php


We sent a message through vRocket’s feedback page and Petar kindly respoded to our clarifications. He provided a test IP and two test files. And as a good gesture, he also gave our community two exclusive coupon codes. Thank you so much Petar!

  • LowEndBox50 – This gives 50% off the first month on any VPS chosen. Expires after a month at which point the cost of a VPS goes back to regular price. Good for those who just want to test. This is valid for 1 VPS at the most.
  • LowEndBox15 – This gives 15% RECURRING discount that never expires for any VPS they offer. Good for those who may like to stick around. This is valid for any number of VPS’s customers want.

So there you go, if you want to try them, you can use the 50% off coupon. And when you are satisfied, you could purchase for long term commitment using the 15% off coupon. Codes are valid for new or existing customers.

And since our readers have some questions, Petar kindly gave us additional information. Here is a portion from our email exchange:

…Could you please state for users that we’re primarily SmartOS focused and that KVM support is coming soon. Right now Linux flavors are LX branded Zones and are in Beta. If one would compare us to any other provider – we are pretty much a Digital Ocean of Joyent world, though at a fraction of price Joyent charges for their services and still at a lower cost and w/ a bit more resources than what Digital Ocean offers in their plans.

We cater to developers. That’s our target market and being us-midwest makes us a bit unique as most other providers are located in us-east, us-west, etc. Rarely, if ever, does one see “midwest” as an option.

– SSD Cached ZFS File System (we have enough cache per host to store 100% of customer workloads in it)
– SmartOS hypervisor (reliability + speed)
– Open Solaris Zones (unparalleled security in virtualized world)
– Gigabit NICs for every VPS no matter the size, no bandwidth throttling or limiting

Features that are coming shortly:
– Ability to redeploy images from the GUI – as of now, one must submit a ticket for an image change of an existing VPS.
– RDNS management via the GUI – currently one can open a ticket and we’ll make the change.

Features coming within couple of months:
– Per hour pricing and full API

We also support and run the Open Source Project Fifo Cloud Orchestrator and give 10% of all SmartVPS proceeds to this project.

Network information

WOW! DC – Columbus, Ohio, USA
Test IPv4:
Test file (100MB):

Test file (1GB):



  1. OpenVZ, Xen or kVM ?

    September 24, 2015 @ 12:56 pm | Reply
  2. Lucas:

    Powered by space shuttle :)

    September 24, 2015 @ 9:21 pm | Reply
  3. Thanks for posting this Maarten :) I’m quite humbled you chose to feature us here.

    If there are any specific questions, please, anyone, feel free to reach out to me directly at peconi at vrocket dot io.

    We’ve been around for awhile doing custom cloud solutions for large businesses and ISPs, but vRocket is really our way of doing it 100% our way and giving back – by offering something new, different, reliable, but also affordable.

    If you need an IP to ping or a file to download for your speed test head to this page hosted on one of our 1GB RAM Smart VPS



    September 25, 2015 @ 12:12 am | Reply
  4. Thanks for sharing! Looks like a good deal!

    September 28, 2015 @ 7:42 pm | Reply
  5. snape:

    Ordered and was provisioned instantly. Chose a Debian image; very minimal install, yay. Much weirdness with the virtualization, reminiscent of vServer in many ways. They warn the Linux images are beta, so I’m not sure what’s intentional and what’s accidental, e.g. I can see 23 CPU cores in /proc/cpuinfo, iptables isn’t installed and can’t be insmod’d, outgoing traceroutes don’t work… vmstat seems to show stats for the whole host node/cloud. The root filesystem just sort of magically exists without an mtab or fstab entry so things like quotas – and indeed “df” – don’t work. Control panel is very minimal. Ordering process has some un-intuitive quirks. Seems very very speedy, though, so we’ll see how things go…

    September 29, 2015 @ 3:35 am | Reply
    • Hey Snape,

      Debian is the most beta of all LX brand images so yes, the quirks are there, though it should work for most things.

      For those who need more info on what beta linux images do not support, here’s the URL: https://docs.joyent.com/public-cloud/instances/infrastructure/images

      In short:

      – Cgroup namespace is currently not supported.
      – Certain socket and device system calls and options are not supported at this time.
      – iptables is not supported due to its Linux kernel requirements.

      When Project-Fifo cloud orchestrator v0.6.2 comes out it will bring Full SmartOS firewall integration where you won’t have to utiluze your guest VPS firewall rather underlying hypervisor will protect your vps based onrules you set.

      As for more features to our fifo portal:
      – currently you can open console, take/restore live snapshots, and power on/off vps
      – coming shortly: private vlans

      Coming with 0.6.2:
      – hourly billing
      – full backups (instant and incremental) to object storage off the host
      – ability to reprovision VPS with any other dataset
      – firewall integration
      – create your own templates/datasets

      As for things that’ll stay the same: performance as you see it now ;)


      // vRocket Commander

      September 30, 2015 @ 2:16 am | Reply
      • snape:

        It’s definitely usable (and fast), it just takes a little getting used to. I’ve used vServer for a couple years, so I’m used to not being able to, e.g., make sysctl adjustments, or insmod kernel modules, or whatever. Just kind of weird not having a mount point, not having a /proc/sys, and so on.

        Definitely looking forward to a firewall… and IPv6. (Can’t even add an IPv6 tunnel.)

        October 1, 2015 @ 9:10 pm | Reply
      • snape:

        Just thought I’d add, after using it for a week or so and having migrated a live site over to it, overall performance seems excellent, but memory usage seems really high, and weird; it seems to be impossible to get meaningful memory usage statistics from within a linux zone. (free doesn’t report buffered/cached memory, nor does vmstat.) Doing a little tinkering, hoping to see if I can’t figure out a way to reduce either actual memory usage, or at least reported memory usage…

        October 7, 2015 @ 1:46 am | Reply
        • Since we launched KVM – we can now upgrade you to that for FREE! Just let me know and we’ll re-deploy your VPS! :)

          This will give you FULL Linux experience, unlike LX branded Zone.

          October 9, 2015 @ 3:01 am | Reply
          • snape:

            Appreciate the offer, but I’m happy enough to stick with the SmartOS Debian image for now. May pick up another zone and play around with a SmartOS zone, even. :)

            October 9, 2015 @ 4:06 am | Reply
  6. Hello Friends,

    We’re happy to announce that tonight we bring you KVM Virtualization!

    It turns out that even though we love SmartOS (which is in reality Unix) about 70% of our customers choose vRocket as a home for their Linux OS instead.

    With LX branded zones in SmartOS it is possible to run Linux, however, this approach left a lot to be desired: cgroups, iptables, traceroutes, openVPN, etc. None of these things really worked.

    Tonight, we’re happy to announce KVM virtualization support, but unlike any other hosting provider our version still comes with SmartOS Zones (for security), as well as unparalleled performance and reliability of our zSSD (SSD-fronted ZFS file system). Yes – KVM machines will be deployed on the same hosts as our SmartOS machines.

    Instead of SmartOS Console Access, you’ll now have full VNC access via our FiFo portal.

    KVM on SmartOS is even better than KVM on Linux – as the “hypervisor” runs within it’s own Zone, and it is absolutely the most secure way to run KVM anywhere.

    As you can see on our VPS Servers page on the main web site, the pricing for small VPS’s (512MB – 3GB) will include a small surcharge of $2-$4/mo for KVM machines. This is simply due to fact that KVM virtualization on SmartOS takes another 1GB of RAM per VPS (no matter what size the VPS is) in order to run the KVM internals (the hardware emulation layer).

    Due to this, on the smaller plans we’ve included this little premium to account for extra RAM utilized on the hypervisor, however, any VPS larger than 3GB of RAM does not include the fee no matter which virtualization technology you choose (SmartOS or KVM).

    If you’re currently running Linux on an LX-branded Zone we are offering a FREE upgrade to KVM Virtualization (without the said fee). If interested, just open up a ticket and we’ll re-deploy your Linux VPS with the Linux template of your choice.

    Currently, you may choose the following templates: Ubuntu 15.04, Debian 7 & 8, CentOS 6 & 7 and FreeBSD 10.2. We’ll work hard during the following few days to bring you even more choices (including, if all goes well, Windows Server 2012R2 as well).

    If you are, on the other hand, happy with your LX-branded zone, please keep it as it is. While our KVM deployment is fast, nothing really beats the Bare-Metal speed of pure SmartOS! Promise :)

    Petar Smilajkov
    // vRocket Commander

    October 5, 2015 @ 7:01 am | Reply
  7. So, we just updated our plans. The minimum plan now comes with 2 vCores and 888MB of RAM, versus 1 vCore and 512!

    Also – all KVM pricing is now SAME as SmartOS – no more premium for the extra GB of RAM as I noted above 3 days ago :)

    Check out the latest plans here: https://vrocket.io/virtual_private_servers.php#vpsOptions.

    Petar Smilajkov
    // vRocket Commander

    October 9, 2015 @ 3:03 am | Reply

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