First wish me happy birthday, lol :)
Throughout the rest of the year my parents don't remember my age, and when my birthday comes, something funny happens. Suddenly they become over-enthusiastic about my age and start counting 1…2…3…etc. And then both mom and dad fight about the exact numbers ;)
In my previous article, where I discussed the problems I was having with LiquidWeb VPS (I forgot to mention in that article that the Mod_Security of my VPS was so badly configured that I couldn’t edit some of my old blog posts), I left you hanging in the mid air. Now it is time to clear it up.
Well, for the next three days after I wrote the Nuttiezine issue, I spent several hours at webhostingtalk.com researching hosting companies, especially those who offer VPS plans.
The forum is indeed a great resource and if at any point of time you are not sure about which hosting company to choose from, just do a search in that forum or ask! The forum is of course more than just a hub of hosting information; you can also find info on domain names, programming, and all that stuff. Definitely my third favorite forum after Warrior Forum and Earn1Kaday forum.
If you wish to use Google to do your research, DO NOT make the mistake of using search phrases like "host name reviews" or "host name"! That was how I made the mistake of signing up with Liquidweb, since it had too many good reviews. The type of search phrases you should use are (be sure to replace "host name" with the name of the hosting company you are searching for, e.g., Hostgator):
1. "hostname" problems
2. "hostname" issues
3. "hostname" support
4. "hostname" support issues
5. "hostname" downtime
6. "hostname" uptime and downtime
7. "hostname" troubles
8. "hostname" sucks
Better yet, don’t use Google at all, as it is too vast and overwhelming. I personally believe that Webhostingtalk.com is exhaustive enough for you, regardless of you are seeking a shared hosting plan, Virtual Private Server, Dedicated Server, Managed Server, Collocation, Email Server, etc. In fact the three hosts I mentioned above were chosen by me after reading the opinions of the WHT users alone!
Now when you are using forums for research, something to keep in mind is that no matter how good a host is, there would be at least one person who won’t be happy with it for one reason or other; conversely, a person could be happy with a bad host too, as you can see from the dozens of forum posts where people swore by the "excellent" services of LiquidWeb.
So don’t jump to any conclusion based on just a couple of forum posts; dig deeper and you would find the real truth about many popular web hosting companies. If any hosting provider is not discussed at length in the forum, I won’t choose it. The fact that a certain hosting company is not getting any attention at WHT doesn’t necessarily mean it is a bad company, but I would better be safe than sorry.
Note: This article contains links to third-party hosting companies for reference purposes only! I am NOT recommending any of these hosts to you (which is why I am not using my affiliate links), coz I don’t want you to bite me in the butt should anything bad happen to any one of these companies. So please signup at YOUR own risk!====================================
So here are some of things my week was spent in:
1. I signed up with three VPS (Virtual Private Server, or Virtual Dedicated Server as it is called) hosting companies: What happened with me at Myriad Network and LiquidWeb was enough to teach me a great lesson- one should never put all his eggs in one basket, for if that basket has a large hole at the bottom, all the eggs would be lost ;)
Actually, until now, my entire internet marketing business was on one host, though my niche sites were on hostgator. However, post-Liquidweb phase, I decided to split my IM sites among three hosts. The three VPS plans I signed up for cost me more than $100 (even with the coupon codes they offer to first time customers), enough to fetch me a dedicated server! But I chose to spread out my business among three different service providers rather than putting it at the mercy of a single host!
I have found what I would probably call one of the cheapest VPS at Datahostdirect.com. Don’t be misled by their cheap plans though; their customer support is much better than what I received at Liquidweb, even though the latter charged me much more! With DatahostDirect, I first signed up for a shared hosting account to try them out before upgrading to a VPS, and from what I have experienced, they don't have the kind of silly restrictions Hostgator puts on cron jobs and other stuff, and I think that for the price Hostgator charges for their reseller hosting plans, you can easily get a decent managed VPS plan at DHD (I JUST CANCELLED MY VPS ACCOUNT THERE=>HINT: Too cheap=>If it sounds to good to be true…)!
Next in line are Knownhost.com, and Futurehosting.com, both of whom offer decent support and so far I am happy with them. Knownhost also offers money-back guarantee!
I don't celebrate my birthday, but if I did, I guess I couldn’t have a better birthday gift! I got rid of two big bad hosts and got three good ones in exchange. I know a week is not long enough to judge a hosting company, but considering the fact that with Liquidweb I started having problems right since the first day of signup, I can hope that this time my business is in better hands!
2. I no longer like Hostgator: Hostgator used to be a decent host, but with the arbitrary and silly server upgrades they have been doing in the last couple of months, I don’t think they would remain in my good books for long. Their unexpected and sudden enthusiasm about upgrading the servers too frequently is quite unwarranted IMO.
Not only they don’t notify their customers in advance of the upcoming upgrades (unless you subscribe to their announcements forum on your own to get these notifications, but then again, if you know anything about Vbulletin, it won’t send you all of the forum updates diligently), they also don't seem to do their due diligence before upgrading the servers. Just take a look at this thread and you would know what I mean!
Upgrading servers and softwares is a good thing and must be done on a regular basis, but equally important is to THINK before jumping. Since they don't think, their upgrades end up breaking several applications (even something as run of the mill as WordPress) of their customers.
I have had troubles with their upgrades in the past but chose to keep mum considering that their service was okay. But I guess now I am running out of patience a bit! As of this writing, I have decided to move my sites somewhere else where I could have a little peace of mind.
The only good thing about HG is their support, which is still very good, and I hope it stays that way, for if they keep their current rate of enthusiasm about server upgrades intact, they would be receiving hundreds of support tickets in the coming weeks!
I personally think that moving to another host is much better than having to struggle with broken applications every now and then and asking support to fix them for me after every upgrade, especially since the recent upgrades have been too frequent! And I am amazed at how my .htaccess file keeps changing with every new upgrade (though they keep a backup of the old file on the same directory)!
So this article concludes the "hosting headache" series, unless I have more hosting headaches to share in the coming weeks, that is! Something else I forgot to mention is that the series have been titled "Hosting Headache" for a good reason; during the time I struggled with this hosting stuff, I used to suffer from sudden and short bouts of headache! :P
Here is hoping for a headache-free month. Of course I would keep you updated of any future troubles too, lol! :D
As always, you can post your comments on my blog (provided that you don’t give me anymore headache, lol :D )!