Opinion on using cheap hosting

Discussion in 'Web Hosting' started by davidm1, Feb 7, 2010.

  1. davidm1

    davidm1 aMember User & Partner

    May 16, 2006
    I hope that Alex can chime in here on his experience with client sites using amember on the various hosts.

    I would like to share my own experience with my sites as well as members.
    Since starting to put up various types of sites in 1995, I've probably been through a dozen hosts. Some of which I was kicked off of for using too much of their resources, others I left because their service stunk.

    Most of the problems were with "shared" hosting plans, where you and hundreds of other sites are crammed onto a single shared server. These types of plans are fine for basic HTML sites and some may be ok for your membership site with a low number of members or email going out. For example, I've found hostgator and bluehost to be good for starter sites.

    The only hosts that I've been with long term have been a dedicated server or VPS (virtual private server), which is a cheaper alternative to a dedicated.
    I would say that if your site has over, or you are sure it will have over 500 members, its time for a VPS, and over a couple of thousand, a dedicated. Also, if you will be doing a "launch" where you have lots of people visitiing the site at the same time, you should be on a VPS or dedicated. I use a company call servint for my VPS. You should also use a service like amazon s3 to show your launch videos.

    Whichever host you go with- make sure you get cpanel hosting. Its a lot easier to use than plesk. Also check to see what the email capabilities are, some hosts restrict the amount of email you can send an hour. If you are gonna move from one host to another and are currently on plesk with the old host- see if your old host can change your site to cpanel, this can make the transfer easier.

    Bandwidth limitations used to be an issue, but you can now place a lot of content off-site and pay per usage on sites like amazon s3. I've had my sites shut down for going over usage limits, which has cost me much more than the few dollars they wanted for the usage. Fortunately, not many hosts still do this. I think most host have pretty big allowances and you can by extra bandwidth pretty cheaply.

    I hope this helps you avoid some of the headaches I've had with hosting.


  2. jackgordon

    jackgordon Member

    Mar 23, 2009
    Amen. I wholeheartedly agree with everything David says.

    The only thing he neglected which I believe to be important is security. The moment you are handling credit card information, you no longer belong on shared hosting. You should have VPS at a minimum with SSL.

    I would also suggest my host, www.wiredtree.com - they have been spectacular to work with for both my VPS and dedicated boxes. And they offer true 24x7 phone support at very reasonable rates.
  3. skippybosco

    skippybosco CGI-Central Partner Staff Member

    Aug 22, 2006
    Great post, I could not agree more David.

    I do think that you can get a lot of mileage on a quality shared hosting provider, but you do need to be conscious of the support and management of the service they provide and if the "shared hosting" provides the requirements and flexibility of the scripts you will be running.

    I've been very happy with the hosting from MDD Hosting. There are a few value added services they provide such as migrating your existing scripts/data/configuration over for free (ie. they move your site for you from your existing host for free!), individual personal attention and room to grow (4 levels of shared hosting, VPS, Dedicated Hosting, etc)

    They are pretty particular about what/who they allow on their network so you can be sure your not on an overloaded server or sharing an IP address with malicious/spammy sites.

    Another consideration is grid based solutions such as VPS.NET which allow you to scale your server based on your needs. As your customer base increases you can scale up your server resources instantly with just a simple slider. Fear not, however, they allow "bursting" so that you are not caught off guard with unexpected spikes.

    Regarding storage and bandwidth, while I see a number of individuals using S3 for storage, I actually prefer ad recommend using a true Content Delivery Network (CDN). In the long run you have lower costs (~$.05/GB), quicker access (content cached many locations around the world as opposed to just one or two locations with Amazon), and more control over the security of your files (aMember protection works to maintain security of your files whereas Amazon this is not possible without obfuscation hacks which do not actually protect your content, just attempt to mask its true location)

    Also consider local testing solutions such as XAMPP.. it can save you a ton of money and headache when you are just in the "kicking the wheels" mode of getting your site put together.
  4. hostcolor

    hostcolor New Member

    Sep 24, 2010
    Hi David,

    I agree about cPanel. It is appreciate buy most of the website owners. it is also more secure than other server management software.
  5. alexhudson

    alexhudson New Member

    Dec 15, 2014
    Yeah to some extinct Cpanel is really appreciate-able but you can levy on it totally. Even the sites which are onto C-panel sometimes don't provide proper security for any of the business website design service sites.
  6. wckicksass

    wckicksass New Member

    Aug 5, 2012
    I use Vmnode. member for years, great hosting company (reseller). Affordable plans.....

    I've been with several hosts as well. Many do SUCK!

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