I'm looking for a service that will give me root access in virtual (or physical) instances of servers such that I can run arbitrary code.

For ethical reasons, I'd like to avoid feeding into any more super powers.

This is what google lists as AWS alternatives:

Amazon Web Services.
Microsoft Azure.
Google Cloud.
Alibaba Cloud.
Oracle Cloud.
IBM Cloud.

Does anyone have suggestions for something more in the mid-to-small tier of company sizes?

1 Answer 1


The full featured cloud provider you haven't listed there is Digital Ocean.

Digital Ocean has the concept of 'Droplets' which is basically the same thing as EC2 instances.

The alternative is that you could go for more conventional 'Just give me static box', AKA a Virtual Private Server (VPS) type solutions, (eg. GoDaddy hosting, these were what was common before cloud providers like AWS came along), but these are less flexible (ie. you might not be able to bring one up programatically).

You could also go for an actual dedicated server - but these look like they're much more expensive.

Note also that there are tier two cloud providers like Heroku or Netlify, but these are infact running AWS under the hood.

  • The conventional "static box" solution could be promising. I've experienced that finding small website hosting services is not too difficult. None of my search engine query methods have yielded much for linux server, or otherwise. Do you have any insight on this? Is it just too much for a small business to handle?
    – Seph Reed
    Mar 5, 2020 at 1:16
  • @SephReed - They usually give you a choice of distributions (typically a linux distribution, and it would be up to you from there to ssh in do the things).
    – dwjohnston
    Mar 5, 2020 at 2:44
  • 1
    @SephReed - I think the key term you want is VPS
    – dwjohnston
    Mar 5, 2020 at 2:49
  • "small vps" is exactly the keywords for querying
    – Seph Reed
    Mar 5, 2020 at 3:31
  • for what it's worth, vultr.com is where I've landed
    – Seph Reed
    Dec 2, 2020 at 22:59

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