is dead, long live!

A couple of months ago, I thought about having my own Mastodon instance. I was very happy at, after being a user for a long time, but still…

Mock-up of an iPhone displaying a website monitoring service, with one site down:

This was not my first go at a single user instance, mind you. A while back I had one, for a few months. I used a hosting service. Doing it myself is totally out of the question, it’s way out of my technical expertise. I might even get it working, but maintenance is certainly a pain. This was great: a small amount made its way to a very nice gentleman, and he took care of everything. Customer service was awesome too.

In the end I gave up, for a couple of reasons: I couldn’t justify the cost of keeping it alive, no matter how reasonable that expense was, and I was missing some of the perks of being on a bigger instance.

Elastic search is great, but not practical on an instance for one. It adds to the cost. Also, the local timeline becomes your own feed when you’re in a single user instance. Of course.

On the plus side: custom emoji, as many as you want. And your own domain. Two things that are hard to beat.

You get to moderate the links, and hashtags, that show up on the trending section but, since there’s only one of you there, it makes little sense.

Anyway, I did it again. Fully aware of how it would work, and why it might not, I couldn’t stop myself, and took advantage of a very generous offer from Vincent.

He carefully installed the instance, and kept it alive for as long as it took me to give up on it. Again.

The reasons for quitting were the same this time around, with an added lack of disposable income at the moment thrown into the mix. It’s still not too expensive to have one, but, if you think about it, it is silly to do it for the vanity domain alone.

If you’re a company, a business, that’s a whole different ball game, of course. For private users, for this private user, it’s still hard to justify.

There are, literally, thousands of instances where you can have an account. For free, or contributing to keep them going by supporting the person paying for hosting them. And you should really contribute, as things can get quite expensive, pretty fast. has gone to the proverbial farm upstate, and is now happily living with all the other nice instances.

I’m back at, a nice home, set up for the community. I’m a little sad, but it’s ok. Who knows what the future will bring?

If you’re looking to have your own instance, I can’t recommend Vincent highly enough. Talk to him, I’m sure he’ll take excellent care of you.