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  1. #1

    BurstNET Experience - Wasted Time and Money

    Signed up for BurstNET VPS service about a week ago, and ended up asking for refund (and not getting, heading to Paypal). I don't know if the performance issues I faced with them affect others hosting there, but I guess I have to post for others to beware, or alternatively, to convince me that I am wrong and there are no issues and that's how it's supposed to work (final BurstNET's response).

    I am not a newbie when it comes to VPS, and I have been operating 5 VPS servers for a few years now: 1x Servint, 1x WiredTree and 3xLinode.

    About a week ago I was looking for a home for a pretty busy website which needs to serve about 2-3M pageviews monthly. I should have sticked to my winners (WiredTree or Linode), but I believe in diversification, and was tempted to give a try to a low-budget VPS provider. Picked BurstNET. Signed up for a Premium VPS plan #4 which is supposed to be a pretty powerful machine with 4GHz CPU, 2.5GB RAM (burstable to 5GB), etc, and "premium" at BurstNET means 50% less user on the node. So far so good.

    And then the troubles started.

    PERFORMANCE
    -----------
    After I got my VPS and started to apply Ubuntu security patches I noticed that the server is hell slow. So I ran the UnixBench benchmarking tool to quantify the performance. I did it in parallel on BurstNET and my California Linode768 (that's the slowest VPS I have with 768MB RAM and much lower specs in general than the one I ordered from BurstNET). The UnixBench tool on BurstNET ran about 8x slower and took many many hours to complete.

    In the following days, as I digged deeper and tried many different benchmarks, I found that many (in fact, most) of the tasks were running very fast. All CPU-intensive tasks were lightening fast. Clearly, the machine had a powerful CPU. That was very well reflected in the UnixBench scores. The UnixBench was running hell slow, whereas the scores were really high! Going through the UnixBench source code I realized that's what is not counted in the UnixBench scores is the I/O overhead spent on "sync" calls that are supposed to flush memory to hard disk.

    So I tried from shell

    >> sync
    >> sync
    .....

    Every command took 1 to 2 min to return. Tried that on my other VPSes - sync returned instantly.

    I must say that after all the work done by BurstNET support the sync time is now at about 30sec and many apps are running really slow. Most are fast. But some are very very slow. If you are experiencing performance issues on your BurstNET VPS I suggest to run from shell

    >> time sync

    and see how long it takes. Many applications that are doing cache flushing are almost certainly to call "sync" and experience delays.

    SUPPORT
    =======

    The support was very slow comparing to Linode, WT - but I was ready for that.

    I think they really tried to solve the problem, but the result is disappointing. To sum up, the first few replies were "issue fixed" (sync time reduced indeed, but not enough), and then "that's how it should work" more or less, and if "you want better move to dedicated". The thing is - my Linode 768 runs faster, why would I move to dedicated??

    The most outrageous thing with BurstNET is that they are refusing refunds. Supplying a broken VPS and refusing refund makes it a rip-off!

    Back to Linode for another Linode 2048

    PS I could post an entire thread of my conversation with the support for more details but my post is already long enough. If u want to see, let me know, I can post it here.

  2. #2
    A 2048MB linode is 80 bucks a month, a 2.5GB Burst vps is 30 bucks a month. I think it was expected that there was some difference in performance, no?

  3. #3
    A 2048MB linode is 80 bucks a month, a 2.5GB Burst vps is 30 bucks a month
    NO. First, I am on premium 2.5GB burst which is $60/month, and when it is slow (again, not all use cases are slow) it is unusable slow, much slower than my Linode 768, which is $30/month

  4. #4
    well, okay. The premium should behave a lot better. Disregard my comment!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr-Horrible View Post
    A 2048MB linode is 80 bucks a month, a 2.5GB Burst vps is 30 bucks a month. I think it was expected that there was some difference in performance, no?
    No. It is just fallacious argument.
    You will only find out how good a provider is when the going gets tough

  6. #6
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    Sorry to hear about your bad experience with Burst. Linode has always been a great provider.

  7. #7
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    Why did they refuse the refund on the VPS?
    Hosting is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get.

  8. #8
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    I'm pretty sure I worked on this ticket a bit on Friday. I do believe we offered to move you to another node.

    You also neglected to mention you were trying to run a mailserver ad well as a "busy websites".

    We have been working with you the whole time. We have hundreds of premium vps customers with no complaints, including the few others on your present node.

    Not knowing exactly what you are doing, I did suggest looking into a dedicated server instead, but inthat same response offered to move you to another node.

    Without your applications, does the vps run okay? Is there a chance it's your applications? Since I am not a tech I cannot say, but I am sure if you're showing proof that as delivered the vps us slow, then we will fix it or refund you. Once you install your stuff, however, as an basic managed provider, we can't do much for you and no refund is due.

  9. #9
    @TheJoker

    Why did they refuse the refund on the VPS?
    Because "per our service agreement we do not offer refunds" and "this node is performing now far better than should be expected for a shared-server style VPS service"

    @Burst

    I do believe we offered to move you to another node.
    Sure, and I told you please check the sync time on that another node you want to move me to, and you didn't want to do it

    You also neglected to mention you were trying to run a mailserver ad well as a "busy websites".
    I was not running a busy website or a mailserver, I was planning to run a busy website and a mailserver, but your server is not up to the task

    Without your applications, does the vps run okay? Is there a chance it's your applications?
    It is "sync" that is running slow, not some one-of-a-kind exotic application. Sync is called by many applications to flush data to hard disks. The apps that are using it a lot are heavily affected. May be there are other problems too, but I am not going to spend days troubleshooting your system - your tech stuff should do it.

    I am very fair with you and telling that CPU-intensive application with heavy math are running super fast. It could be a great VPS unless you had this problem, and apparently you do have a problem of a slow I/O sync. May be it is a HW, may be it is vePortal, I don't know, but don't tell that's how it should work. None of my other VPS servers take more than 1 sec to sync even after heavy data transfers.

  10. #10
    I am sure if you're showing proof that as delivered the vps us slow, then we will fix it or refund you
    Just a second. Measuring .....

    If that's not a proof for you I don't know what will be a proof. Here is "sync" on your VPS

    [email protected]:~# time sync

    real 0m12.590s
    user 0m0.000s
    sys 0m0.023s
    [email protected]:~#

    and 12 sec is good comparing to the 30 sec I had today morning on your VPS. All my Linode servers never take more than 1 sec, and OpenVZ servers like I have with Servint and WiredTree can be sometimes 3sec or 4sec at peak load times - that's slow ..

    And here is my Linode 768 in CA

    [email protected]:~# time sync

    real 0m0.011s
    user 0m0.002s
    sys 0m0.003s
    [email protected]:~#

  11. #11
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    I don't understand you don't you just buy a dedicated server?

  12. #12
    Because VPS is good enough for my needs when it works as it should

  13. #13
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    Ummmmmm... My BurstNET VPS in LA (Premium, but lower spec than yours):

    [email protected] [~]# time sync

    real 0m0.161s
    user 0m0.001s
    sys 0m0.006s
    [email protected] [~]#
    Maybe you should take them up on the offer of a node-move?

  14. #14
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    Have you ever considered moving to a cloud based server? You might be able to migrate all your VM's to a single bare metal cloud server, where you would not be sharing with anyone.

    Just a thought
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkassets View Post
    Because VPS is good enough for my needs when it works as it should
    You definately should accept the offer of a node-move. I tried your test on several other BurstNET VPSs at different locations. It looks like you got the one with a disk-hog (or 2) because others report.....

    PREMIUM @ Miami:
    [email protected] [~]# time sync

    real 0m0.021s
    user 0m0.001s
    sys 0m0.003s
    [email protected] [~]#

    BUDGET @ Scranton:
    [email protected] [~]# time sync

    real 0m1.139s
    user 0m0.000s
    sys 0m0.600s
    [email protected] [~]#

    BUDGET @ Manchester:
    [email protected] [~]# time sync

    real 0m0.201s
    user 0m0.002s
    sys 0m0.009s
    [email protected] [~]#

    PREMIUM @ Manchester:
    [[email protected] ~]# time sync

    real 0m0.044s
    user 0m0.001s
    sys 0m0.003s
    [[email protected] ~]#

  16. #16
    Burst saying "why don't you go dedicated" is an admission of how their VPS product is poor, as a high quality VPS, like Linode, would do almost everything cloud or dedicated can do. Linode is cloud with a different pricing model.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Question Everything View Post
    Burst saying "why don't you go dedicated" is an admission of how their VPS product is poor, as a high quality VPS, like Linode, would do almost everything cloud or dedicated can do. Linode is cloud with a different pricing model.
    Actually, I believe they are offering you a non-shared resource solution.

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  18. #18
    Some Linode resources are shared, some are not, a lot like a high quality could provider.

  19. #19
    @F_DNS

    Thank you, great info! I was ok moving to another server when they offered it I just asked them to measure time sync, which they didn't want to do. They just kept saying my VPS is fine, sync is reasonable and if I want better I have to move to dedicated.

    At this point, I' rather take a refund, because I have no trust in them whatsoever.

    @BurstNET_CSM

    You see? Take a note. What F_DNS is posted -that's are reasonable sync times. So stop telling my server "performing now far better than should be expected for a shared-server style VPS service"

  20. @mkassets

    From the looks of it, you had the misfortune of landing on a heavily used hardware node, and the fact that the support staff keeps saying that "everything is fine" is most likely due to the fact that it's sometimes difficult to notice an issue unless you are actually the consumer of that service.

    I'm really trying to be impartial here, however, I'd think you should really consider their offer to move to a different node, as most likely you'll be placed on a good node this time, and based on the replies of the other participants of this thread and my own personal experience with them, I didn't encounter any serious issues and their VPS plans actually perform better than some other ones which I am not going to name.

    Bottom line is that you could always follow this up with paypal after the move (which shouldn't take long anyway) in case you are still not satisfied with the new VPS they'll give you.

    Just my two cents

  21. #21
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    From what I see, Burst is trying to help you, and you just are trying to cry out on WHT? I don't understand it why everyone that goes to burst has one problem and comes running to WHT.. Weird?

    I tried one of there Windows VPS's, and ran perfectly fine I think it ends next week and I'm not 100% if keeping it as I no longer need for it, but it runs perfectly and haven't had no problems with it or any 'sync' problems, it seems you tried loading up the stuff you needed to on a budget service expending a premium cloud service on a budget service and now are crying on WHT because they wouldn't give you your ice cream back.

    I still don't get why this couldn't be resolved in their helpdesk? I know Burst would of refunded you if you would of worked with them, how long have you had the service (you might of stated this but I stopped reading after the crying came to play) and how much have you used the service? Why didn't you take them up on the offer to move to a new node, and if it sitll had a problem then you could of turned around and burst would of refunded you for the problem not being you, but the node unless it was proven to be the service(s) you where running on the VPS it self.

    Good luck, I still think this could of been resolved via there helpdesk like most of the threads about burst here, I don't get why everyone runs to WHT about burst, and then complains about support, I do notice on weekends if I needed something it's a bit slower but during the week it's quiet quick, and weekends I might get a hour or so extra response-time but I dunno.

    Good luck I guess?
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  22. #22
    @SlickWebHost Daniel

    Thanks for the advice. I think moving to qnother node is something that can be considered ... but not when BurstNET tells me that kind of sync performance is normal. What will I do if I move to another node, and after few weeks some abuser on that node, or some HW malfunctioning will drive sync times to these levels again

    Today I measured 27 sec sync again. That's ridiculous.

    When both sides acknowledge the problem exists they can work on it and find a solution, but when 1 side claims no problem exists, it is very difficult to do smth about it

    @FN Mark

    it seems you tried loading up the stuff you needed to on a budget service
    I am not sure you even read my post.

    I still don't get why this couldn't be resolved in their helpdesk?
    Me too, ask BurstNET why.

    I tried one of there Windows VPS's, and ran perfectly fine
    Very possible, I am sure it works fine for many others too. Some of them are lucky to be on better nodes, some others are clueless about performance or simply do not need much performance. What does it have to do with my case?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkassets View Post
    I think moving to qnother node is something that can be considered
    Considered? I'd jump at it if it's still on the table. Those few tests I posted yesterday suggest that your experience isn't the norm, and I don't see dozens of other customers posting "Oh yeah, I get those high times too".

    My guess is that you've been provisioned on a node with a few heavy users, but none that reach the level of what Burst deem abusive or excessive. That's just tough luck as provisioning is automatic - You get the node you get. Accept the node-move and see how things are then - BurstNET get to choose which node they move you to, and I doubt they're gonna move you from the frying pan to the fire

    Quote Originally Posted by mkassets View Post
    What will I do if I move to another node, and after few weeks some abuser on that node, or some HW malfunctioning will drive sync times to these levels again
    So said the eternal pessimist All VPS customers might have to deal with this at some point - You're hosted on a shared environment. If it's an abusive user, BurstNET kick them. If it's a HW problem, BurstNET fix it. If you can't accept the "risks" of working within a shared environment, you take their alternative suggestion and move to dedicated, which I presume is why they suggested it.

  24. #24
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    Post

    Hello,

    This may be off Topic but i have had a Windows VPS Server with BurstNET for around 2 weeks now. And i can tell you i have never had ANY Downtime what so ever. There support staff are very helpfull! I will keep paying for this server because this is the best server i have ever had!

    Kind Regards,

    Ross

  25. #25
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    Very possible, I am sure it works fine for many others too. Some of them are lucky to be on better nodes, some others are clueless about performance or simply do not need much performance. What does it have to do with my case?[/QUOTE]

    It's a budget service? There a budget provider? They offered to move you to a new node? Move? Try it? Stop crying to WHT?
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  26. #26
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    For some people who are with BurstNET and any other Hosting company's. They always start to cry here. To try and get the buisness not that popular.

    But it doesnt work! You must be a very unlucky person!

    Kind Regards,

    Ross.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by VPS-Ross View Post
    For some people who are with BurstNET and any other Hosting company's. They always start to cry here. To try and get the buisness not that popular.

    But it doesnt work! You must be a very unlucky person!

    Kind Regards,

    Ross.
    Looks like you registered just to blame unhappy BurstNET customers.
    You will only find out how good a provider is when the going gets tough

  28. #28
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    Nope.

    I did not register just to do that lol. Ive got many better things to be doing but that was at the top of my list :L

  29. #29
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    To the op, pm me your ticket number, please. I know I worked on it on Friday, but it will speed things along. My offer is to move you to another node, and give you a new month to start with (so basically we go back to square one).

    Try it for a week. If you like, we continue on. If not, we will find out why and refund if it's the same thing.

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by BurstNET_CSM View Post
    To the op, pm me your ticket number, please. I know I worked on it on Friday, but it will speed things along. My offer is to move you to another node, and give you a new month to start with (so basically we go back to square one).

    Try it for a week. If you like, we continue on. If not, we will find out why and refund if it's the same thing.
    Great proposal from Burst, TS should definitely take this opportunity.
    In the end VPS customers are still sharing one physical server and one problematic client can effect everyone on a node.
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  31. #31
    This may be off Topic but i have had a Windows VPS Server with BurstNET for around 2 weeks now. And i can tell you i have never had ANY Downtime what so ever.
    You haven't had downtime in 2 weeks?? Wh-a-a-a!

  32. #32
    @Burst

    Let's move the node. Just let's make sure the 'sync' time is ok on the othe rnode before moving, it takes exactly few sec to check.

    PMing the ticket

  33. #33
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    For what it's worth, I tried "time sync" on a YardVPS "LEAF 3" VPS and got times between 0m0.046 and 0m0.416s.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkassets View Post
    You haven't had downtime in 2 weeks?? Wh-a-a-a!
    Hi,

    The only 1 downtime i had was when they was updating there servers.

    Other than that i have had nothing!

    Ross.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by VPS-Ross View Post
    For some people who are with BurstNET and any other Hosting company's. They always start to cry here. To try and get the buisness not that popular.

    But it doesnt work!
    Agreed. I'm starting to think that Burst does it on purpose for the free publicity.

    It definitely is not hurting their business at all. They are one of the more established companies in this industry. Yet they get endless threads with their name bouncing on the board all day.

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  36. #36
    Ross, I was sarcastic but your naive reply makes me feel bad. You see, you can't really judge host's downtime by 2 weeks period ....

  37. #37
    ut the OP was offered to be moved to a new node to try and resolve it which should have ended the issue right there.
    You disregard the fact that I was ok moving the node immediately, but asked to check sync on the new node first (to save time for both sides), the request that Burst declined.

    @techjr and others speculating whether this thread is helping or hurting Burst's biz and whether it should have been posted at all.

    Hurting Burst's business wasn't my intention. Honestly, I am very much trying to focus my (hopefully, constructive) energy on my own business and not on anyone's else.

    I think this thread is informative and may be useful for others troubleshooting performance issues. Especially, the issue of UnixBench running slow but producing high performance scores. I have seen quite a few threads about it and never the right answer! And the correct answer is that the problem is likely to be with Linux sync system calls.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by BurstNET_CSM View Post
    I'm pretty sure I worked on this ticket a bit on Friday. I do believe we offered to move you to another node.

    You also neglected to mention you were trying to run a mailserver ad well as a "busy websites".

    We have been working with you the whole time. We have hundreds of premium vps customers with no complaints, including the few others on your present node.

    Not knowing exactly what you are doing, I did suggest looking into a dedicated server instead, but inthat same response offered to move you to another node.

    Without your applications, does the vps run okay? Is there a chance it's your applications? Since I am not a tech I cannot say, but I am sure if you're showing proof that as delivered the vps us slow, then we will fix it or refund you. Once you install your stuff, however, as an basic managed provider, we can't do much for you and no refund is due.

    What a silly policy!

    "Once you install software we won't refund"
    - Wah?

    "We expect you not to run a mailserver"
    - Wah?

  39. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by techjr View Post
    People really need to read the threads all the way and read it properly. Some of the posts I am seeing (Not the one I quoted) are just silly and it makes all of your companies look bad. Guaranteeing I will NEVER sign up with people who post like that.
    I'm not a host, just a user who's found this forum useful. I'm also pretty disillusioned with the web hosting industry as a whole, particularly budget webhosting. It just makes no sense to me why people would try to save a couple bucks a month by going with a cheaper less repeatable host, while the website, or whatever they're hosting is important to their business or organization and the consequences of problems are high.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Question Everything View Post
    It just makes no sense to me why people would try to save a couple bucks a month by going with a cheaper less repeatable host, while the website, or whatever they're hosting is important to their business or organization and the consequences of problems are high.
    Not everything people use web hosting for is mission critical.

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