Verify if a dedicated server is really dedicated

Posted on Thursday November 24, 2011 / by Eric Potvin

You have doubts about your current hosting? You want to make sure your really have a dedicated server? Here's some quick tips you can check and command your can run to verify what your are really leasing.

Does the command esxtop works?

This tool is used to check performances on Virtual Machines

Check the network interfaces.

Run the command ifconfig. If you see something like this:

venet0    Link encap:UNSPEC  HWaddr 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00
          inet addr:127.0.0.1  P-t-P:127.0.0.1  Bcast:0.0.0.0  Mask:255.255.255.255
          UP BROADCAST POINTOPOINT RUNNING NOARP  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:99999 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:99999 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
          RX bytes:126223307 (120.3 MiB)  TX bytes:2897538 (2.7 MiB)

venet0:0  Link encap:UNSPEC  HWaddr 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00
          inet addr:6x.xxx.xxx.xxx  P-t-P:6x.xxx.xxx.xxx  Bcast:6x.xxx.xxx.xxx  Mask:255.255.255.255
          UP BROADCAST POINTOPOINT RUNNING NOARP  MTU:1400  Metric:1

you are probably have a VPS since venet0 is telling that this server is being an OpenVZ VPS. Note: This is not 100% fool proof, some VPS like Xen have an eth0.

Check devices/system:

Run lspci and dmesg as root. If you see something like:

VMWare SVGA device
acd0: CDROM <VMware Virtual IDE CDROM Drive/00000001> at ata0-master UDMA33
da0: <VMware Virtual disk 1.0> Fixed Direct Access SCSI-2 device

Then you are using a VPS.

Check if some files exists:

If it's a VPS running OpenVZ they'd have a file called /proc/user_beancounters. View http://wiki.openvz.org/Proc/user_beancounters for more details.

Look if /proc/vz or /proc/vz/veinfo exists (for OpenVZ) or /proc/sys/xen, /sys/bus/xen or /proc/xen (for Xen)

Check if /proc/self/status has an s_context or VxID field.

If one of these file exists, then you have a VPS.

IP lookup:

You could do a reverse IP lookup to check to see if any other websites are hosted on the same IP.

Check Memory:

Run lspci and look for RAM memory: Qumranet, Inc. Virtio memory balloon. Then you have a VPS.

Check The Computer Info:

By checking the computer information, you can find very quickly if you have a virtual processor or not.

grep 'model name' /proc/cpuinfo

If you have a virtual hosting, you might see something like:

model name      : QEMU Virtual CPU version 0.15.0

Check The Computer Manufacturer:

By checking the computer manufacturer, you will now what kind of manufacturer you have.

dmidecode -t system | grep Manufac

Thanks to Sean Reifschneider for this info