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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393

    Best hosting option for a social networking website

    Hi

    We're launching a social networking project that we're currently beta testing on mediatemple's servers. Below are the point based on which we require a host suggestion.

    1. High Uptime(being a social networking website)
    2. Quick Response times/Quick Servers
    3. Easy scalability (Cloud preferably)
    4. Easy integration with a CDN if required
    5. Full Root Access
    6. Multiple domain and subdomain Hosting
    7. LAMP Platform
    8. Easy to use control panel
    9. Great support
    10. Growth ready - a host that will help us as our site grows. Think load balancing, CDNs, Additional IPs etc.
    11. Price - Its a startup

    Need some serious advice on this as we want to pick a host and then stick with them. Also, we concentrate on development and don't want to be concerned with the burden of managing the server.

    Thanks guys

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LAX, DAL, MIA, ATL, ORD
    Posts
    8,982

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    61

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Modesto California
    Posts
    6,461
    Quote Originally Posted by zahirw View Post
    Hi

    We're launching a social networking project that we're currently beta testing on mediatemple's servers. Below are the point based on which we require a host suggestion.

    1. High Uptime(being a social networking website)
    2. Quick Response times/Quick Servers
    3. Easy scalability (Cloud preferably)
    4. Easy integration with a CDN if required
    5. Full Root Access
    6. Multiple domain and subdomain Hosting
    7. LAMP Platform
    8. Easy to use control panel
    9. Great support
    10. Growth ready - a host that will help us as our site grows. Think load balancing, CDNs, Additional IPs etc.
    11. Price - Its a startup

    Need some serious advice on this as we want to pick a host and then stick with them. Also, we concentrate on development and don't want to be concerned with the burden of managing the server.

    Thanks guys
    Any reason in particular why you are looking to move away from mediatemple? Looks like they have everything you are looking for (at least resource wise).
    Need Web Hosting? Click Here to Learn Why You Should Switch To FernGullyGraphics
    FernGullyGraphics --- 426 14th St. Suite #115 --- Modesto, California --- 95354

    Need Business Cards? Click Here

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    @semoweb
    Thanks will check, know anything about their uptime?

    @WebairMetz
    Figured its just better to ask than hunt honestly

    @FernGullyGraphics
    Mt servers are really slow, their support is even slower.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    UK: Oxford
    Posts
    1,256
    Liquid Web or RackSpace. If you seriously want quality providers, go to the top dogs..
    Garbott Ltd - Professional web development & consultancy services
    Oxford.Hosting - Prestigious shared, cloud, dedicated and gaming hosting solutions.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    Both liquid web and rackspace offer different products, which ones are you referring to? Cloud? Dedicated?

  8. #8
    thought you're looking for cloud stormondemand will be a good startup for you.
    StableHost.com - Home to over 23,000 websites.
    Contact us: 866.945.6952
    Offering: 24/7/365 Support, Web Builder and Softaculous.
    Read over 100+ reviews about us at RateLobby!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    58
    I guess for cloud you might need a high budget, so do you've it?

    as may be social network site of you is just in beta.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    Actually we're open to any type of hosting(Cloud, dedicated) as long as we have the points mentioned above covered. High availability is very important to us.

    Thanks

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    How does stormondemand do when compared with vps.net, linode, cloudweb & voxel?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    111
    1. High Uptime (being it's a social networking website)

    Make a distinction between your server(s) uptime and the provider's network uptime. Network uptime is
    essential, find out how many providers they're using,.

    Server uptime is going to be strongly dependant on your application, how it scales, how it deals with
    problems (like a mysql database being unavailable). Make sure you oversize to start and have a path for
    growth.

    2. Quick Response times/Quick Servers

    Make sure your server is NOT the limiting factor here. Have access to CPU, memory, and I/O graphs. Find out how many IOPs your storage can handle. Find out how backups are being taken of your content and SQL data, does it slow down the server when it runs? If so by how much?


    3. Easy scalability (Cloud preferably)

    Be careful here, many of the new and exiciting methods for elastic scalability are still going to require you
    putting in a good amount of development to work with their platforms. You may opt for a more 'traditional'
    scalability scenario which requires no awarness by your application or the need to write helper scripts to
    grow the app, such as load balancing web servers with shared storage.

    4. Easy integration with a CDN if required

    What is your definition of easy integration? Mine is publishing the files to your server as you normally do,
    and letting the host deal with the CDN distribution with complete transparency. It's also nice to work with 1
    company who will provide CDN as well as hosting, since that integration is essential and you don't want 2 or
    more companies blaming your issue on the other.

    5. Full Root Access

    Usually you will find hosts providing you with full 'root' access only if you're planning on managing
    everything yourself. I would probably change this definition to be true SSH access which provides you with
    all of the commands and access needed to perform daily maintenance tasks.

    6. Multiple domain and subdomain Hosting of course

    7. LAMP Platform

    100% Agreed

    8. Easy to use control panel

    100% Agreed. Look at this in conjunction with the response time and look for features you REALLY need, ftp
    management, website managment, mysql, email, etc.

    9. Great support

    This is a tricky one, you want to find a host that has the right balance.

    If you tell them your site is suddenly slow, are they going to reply back and say 'well the server looks
    fine, so it must be an application issue, go speak to your devs' or will they look further?

    Where do they draw the line? Are they willing to spend the extra 15-30 minutes really analyizing the 'big
    picture' before saying its not their problem? Are they willing to jump on a call with your developers? Do they
    support your software applications?

    Look at the METHODS of response the host provides. How many hoops do they make you jump through before
    speaking with an actual tech? Can you chat with a tech directly 24/7? Is it someone who is actually logging
    into your server? Be careful, ALOT can be lost in translation when you're dealing with technical problems. Do they offer Live Person Chat Support? Do they have Toll Free phone support you can call into? Ticket systems can be good, but they may slow up your response time.


    10. Growth ready - a host that will help us as our site grows. Think load balancing, CDNs, Additional IPs
    etc.

    Yes. Have a plan for your infastructure growth from day 1. Make sure it does not involve any huge changes in
    environment, paths, usernames/pass, and that your IPs will stay the same. Verify your application can
    handle whatever potential changes may lie ahead and plan for it.

    11. Price - It's a startup

    Look for a balance of price and growth. You can get a 'basic' expandable cluster setup pretty cheap, something like:

    * 2x load balanced web servers
    * Shared/cloud storage
    * 2x SQL servers
    * CDN

    Then simply scale out horizonatly, add more boxes as needed by cloning your existing config. More requests,
    more servers and never a huge change to infrastructure.

    Wheeewww.. hope that helps! =)
    ~ Webair Managed Cloud Servers ~ WEBAIR VSYS Virtual Hosting Platform ~ Advanced CDN Network ~ Server Genius Support ~
    ~ Custom Complex / Managed Hosting Pros ~ ICANN Accredited Registrar ~ Multiple Data Center Locations - NY, NL, CA, & Montreal ~
    ~
    ICQ: 20458616 - AIM: MODUKE96 - TWITTER - @WEBAIRINC - EMAIL: [email protected] - LIVE CHAT!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Modesto California
    Posts
    6,461
    Quote Originally Posted by zahirw View Post
    @FernGullyGraphics
    Mt servers are really slow, their support is even slower.
    I see, I always get media temple and medialayer confused. I know one of them has a terrible reputation and one has a pretty good reputation.
    Need Web Hosting? Click Here to Learn Why You Should Switch To FernGullyGraphics
    FernGullyGraphics --- 426 14th St. Suite #115 --- Modesto, California --- 95354

    Need Business Cards? Click Here

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    58
    Quote Originally Posted by WEBAIR View Post
    1. High Uptime (being it's a social networking website)

    Make a distinction between your server(s) uptime and the provider's network uptime. Network uptime is
    essential, find out how many providers they're using,.

    Server uptime is going to be strongly dependant on your application, how it scales, how it deals with
    problems (like a mysql database being unavailable). Make sure you oversize to start and have a path for
    growth.

    2. Quick Response times/Quick Servers

    Make sure your server is NOT the limiting factor here. Have access to CPU, memory, and I/O graphs. Find out how many IOPs your storage can handle. Find out how backups are being taken of your content and SQL data, does it slow down the server when it runs? If so by how much?


    3. Easy scalability (Cloud preferably)

    Be careful here, many of the new and exiciting methods for elastic scalability are still going to require you
    putting in a good amount of development to work with their platforms. You may opt for a more 'traditional'
    scalability scenario which requires no awarness by your application or the need to write helper scripts to
    grow the app, such as load balancing web servers with shared storage.

    4. Easy integration with a CDN if required

    What is your definition of easy integration? Mine is publishing the files to your server as you normally do,
    and letting the host deal with the CDN distribution with complete transparency. It's also nice to work with 1
    company who will provide CDN as well as hosting, since that integration is essential and you don't want 2 or
    more companies blaming your issue on the other.

    5. Full Root Access

    Usually you will find hosts providing you with full 'root' access only if you're planning on managing
    everything yourself. I would probably change this definition to be true SSH access which provides you with
    all of the commands and access needed to perform daily maintenance tasks.

    6. Multiple domain and subdomain Hosting of course

    7. LAMP Platform

    100% Agreed

    8. Easy to use control panel

    100% Agreed. Look at this in conjunction with the response time and look for features you REALLY need, ftp
    management, website managment, mysql, email, etc.

    9. Great support

    This is a tricky one, you want to find a host that has the right balance.

    If you tell them your site is suddenly slow, are they going to reply back and say 'well the server looks
    fine, so it must be an application issue, go speak to your devs' or will they look further?

    Where do they draw the line? Are they willing to spend the extra 15-30 minutes really analyizing the 'big
    picture' before saying its not their problem? Are they willing to jump on a call with your developers? Do they
    support your software applications?

    Look at the METHODS of response the host provides. How many hoops do they make you jump through before
    speaking with an actual tech? Can you chat with a tech directly 24/7? Is it someone who is actually logging
    into your server? Be careful, ALOT can be lost in translation when you're dealing with technical problems. Do they offer Live Person Chat Support? Do they have Toll Free phone support you can call into? Ticket systems can be good, but they may slow up your response time.


    10. Growth ready - a host that will help us as our site grows. Think load balancing, CDNs, Additional IPs
    etc.

    Yes. Have a plan for your infastructure growth from day 1. Make sure it does not involve any huge changes in
    environment, paths, usernames/pass, and that your IPs will stay the same. Verify your application can
    handle whatever potential changes may lie ahead and plan for it.

    11. Price - It's a startup

    Look for a balance of price and growth. You can get a 'basic' expandable cluster setup pretty cheap, something like:

    * 2x load balanced web servers
    * Shared/cloud storage
    * 2x SQL servers
    * CDN

    Then simply scale out horizonatly, add more boxes as needed by cloning your existing config. More requests,
    more servers and never a huge change to infrastructure.

    Wheeewww.. hope that helps! =)
    I guess he compiled enough information for you (a pros idea) what more you need now?

    Just a price infrastructure.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    Hey Webair, wow thanks man. That was some reply. It pretty much reiterates what I'm looking for. Any suggestions on who to go with?

    I checked stormondemand. Looks promising. I've used a bunch of hosts in the past(mt,vps.net,godaddy,aplus etc). Personally I really like vps.net but I keep reading about their server downtimes & that's making me a little nervous.

    How well does storm do when its pitted against vps.net, linode, cloudweb & others in terms of speed, reliability & scalability + other points uve discussed?

    Also, how exactly does a load balancing layer work?

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    checked stormondemand. Looks promising. I've used a bunch of hosts in the past(mt,vps.net,godaddy,aplus etc). Personally I really like vps.net but I keep reading about their server downtimes & that's making me a little nervous.

  17. #17
    Use Cloud VPS Server and then upgrade to Dedicated Servers with Server Mirroring when needed.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    393
    Still doesn't answer my question

  19. #19
    you can start on any dedicated server with raid for data security but still keep backups and then youll need to look into load balancing

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