4.2 Ubuntu in the Cloud


The cloud provides quick and cheap access to Ubuntu servers from $5 per month. Cloud vendors often provide free credit (from $100 to $200) to get you started. Linux oriented vendors include Linode and Digital Ocean. The larger providers Azure and Amazon also support Ubuntu.

A new Ubuntu 22.04 LTS server can be set up on any one of the cloud platforms, such as Azure (Section 4.3). You will often have a choice of hosting locations from around the world. Typically, you will name the virtual machine and provide a user name for the default user. A password or ssh public key will be required, being sure to open network port 22 for ssh connectivity. Machine sizes to suit your needs can be chosen. A DNS name will usually be created so as to refer to the server by name rather than IP address.

Once you have created your cloud server, from your local machine you can connect to it using ssh:

ssh -X myhub.westus.cloudapp.azure.com

If you have your own domain name, perhaps something like myhub.net, then now is a good to update your domain name server provider with the new IP address as the content of an A record, then:

ssh -X myhub.net

The server can then be set up as described in Section 4.1 which also covers setting up desktop access using X2Go.

Note that cloud servers are virtual machines running on top of real machines in data centres around the world. A common problem occurs with snap installed packages not setting up the correct scope in a virtual environment:

$ firefox
/user.slice/user-1000.slice/session-818.scope is not a snap cgroup

See Section 7.4 for the solution.

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