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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    341

    CoreNetworks 4 Month Review

    I used CoreNetworks service for about 4 months (February - May, 2010).

    I started with their "Starter LE26" plan for $24.95/month and upgraded after a month to the "Starter LE16" plan for $29.95/month.

    To be honest, my needs are pretty modest, but I always thought it would be neat to have my own dedicated server, and with such a low price, I thought it would make more sense than a VPS.

    The "Starter LE26" plan for $24.95 a month had a $30 setup charge, so the cost for the first month was $54.95.

    It came with a 10 mbps port, 1,000 GB of transfer, and 2 IP addresses.

    It had a single 2.66 GHz Celeron CPU, 512 MB RAM, and an 80 GB SATA hard drive. They installed CentOS for me as part of the setup.

    I placed the order on a Saturday morning (East Coast time). CoreNetworks is based in Lansing, Michigan and has their own data center.

    Even though they don't guarantee weekend installs, they had my server ready later that Saturday afternoon, after 7 hours 7 minutes.

    I ran Unix Bench 5.1.2, which reported a score of 421.0. You can see the results I posted at the time here:

    http://www.webhostingtalk.com/showpo...8&postcount=20

    Here's a hard drive test I ran on the single 80 GB SATA hard drive:

    Code:
    # hdparm -t /dev/sda
    
    /dev/sda:
    Timing buffered disk reads:  218 MB in  3.02 seconds =  72.13 MB/sec
    Reverse DNS was setup within 4 minutes of my request.

    Support was always friendly and quick to respond. Critical items were resolved quickly. Non-critical items were responded to quickly, but sometimes took several days to actually resolve. This was fine, since they were non-critical, afterall.

    Initially, I found my bandwidth transfer speed was only around 3 mbps. Support was quick to respond, but it took 5 days to actually resolve to remove a stale filter on my IP address. They gave me an extra 5 days of service for free as a result, without having to ask.

    After having the "Starter LE26" server for a week, I changed my mind and decided to replace it with a "Starter LE16" server instead. I kept the first server for the remainder of the billing period so I had both online for a time so I could move things over.

    The "Starter LE16" plan has a newer 1.6 GHz dual core Celeron E1200 CPU. It also comes with 512 MB RAM, an 80 GB SATA hard drive, a 10 mbps port, 1,000 GB of bandwidth transfer, and 2 IP addresses. The main difference is the better CPU for an extra $5/month. It scored 959.7 with Unix Bench (results posted here):

    http://www.webhostingtalk.com/showpo...0&postcount=21

    The older 2.66 GHz Celeron CPU was perfectly fine for my needs. I thought at the time I'd be keeping the server for a long time, though, and for an extra $5/month I thought it would be nice to have something a little faster.

    The "Starter LE16" plan had a $69 setup charge, so the first month was $98.95.

    I also did a one-time upgrade to increase the RAM to 1GB and add a second 80GB hard drive. I setup software RAID-1 myself.

    CoreNetworks also includes free KVM access to the console on request, and I used this a few times. It was hooked up promptly after emailing the request and I was able to do what I needed to do, and then let them know when I was finished with it.

    There were a few network interuptions (probably DDOS attacks), but they were handled quickly.

    So why did I leave? After I began using OpenVPN on the server, I began to notice the network quality to my location (in the Philippines) was not the greatest. While it seemed fine for web hosting, it was often not able to maintain consistent high transfer speeds, at least for the single connection that I needed for VPN use.

    At one point towards the end, it became so bad that it was basically so slow as to be useless. I contacted support, and as usual they responded very quickly, and after providing traceroutes, they said they'd have the networking team look into it.

    In the meantime, I decided to sign up for a Linode at their Fremont, CA Hurricane Electric data center. I was able to get the Linode setup very quickly, and had OpenVPN running the same day. The Linode network quality to my location was so excellent, that I was really won over. Since I didn't really need all of the dedicated resources I had at CoreNetworks, the Linode Xen VPS did just fine (it was a Linode 360 at the time, which later became a Linode 512). The network quality was most important to me.

    After 3 days, I got an email from CoreNetworks support that said they'd identified an issue and made some adjustments to help with the network issues. And when I checked again, it had indeed improved greatly. But the network quality of the Linode was still better for me, and after 3 days with the Linode, I was spoiled and couldn't go back.

    So I moved everything over to the Linode and cancelled my CoreNetworks server. After paying all the setup fees, it hurt a bit to switch, but it made sense. If I had just been using CoreNetworks for web hosting, I might not have switched. Since I was also using it for VPN, network quality to my location was important.

    The server itself, and the friendly support staff were great. If you need the resources that a dedicated server provides and you're on a tight budget, I'd definately check them out. If the network quality is sufficient for your needs, it's a great bargain. They provide test files on their website, so you can do some testing before you order.

    Another thing to note, is that bandwidth overages could be pricey. According to their TOS bandwidth overages are $0.50 per GB. That would be $500 for an extra 1 TB. So if you do use CoreNetworks, you'll probably want to keep a close eye on your bandwidth usage and make sure you don't go over your quota.

    Note to Mods: If you need to check my domain history, you can check kilovox.com or voxph.com. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,882
    Thanks for sharing a review with every details. I hope it would definitely help those who search for reviews regarding them as it is very detailed. I would appreciate if you would spare some time to update your experience with current provider in the same way

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    341
    I'm behind on writing reviews. I'm currently using an eNSCloud VMware VPS (for the last 7 months) and it's great. I'll get around to writing a proper review soon.

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