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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Bay Area
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    iWeb and their network stability + SLA's

    Hi,

    I'm looking for a dedicated server that will be hosting a couple of websites that should not endure any/much downtime. In other words, I'm looking for a stable network.

    Budget is about $100 a month, and I require at least a fast dualcore with 2GB ram and 10TB traffic. Location should be Americas east coast.

    What comes to mind directly is Softlayer, through one of their resellers. I have been searching a bit but not really been able to find anything at that price point.

    An alternative I found might be one of iWeb's smart servers. They can offer me a 2.93Ghz Core2Duo, 4GB ram and 2*1TB drive for $99 a month. The smart servers also offer a KVM/console, so if problems occur I would be able to fix them myself.

    I have been reading up on iWeb and have found very mixed reviews. Basically from what I read their support is far from helpful, nor is it any fast. Which is my experience as well with their online chat, these people seem to not have a clue about the services offered.

    However my view is basically that all non hardware/power/network related issues I can fix myself with a KVM. The hardware/power/network issues they have SLA's on, refunding one day of service per hour of downtime. Hardware is replaced in less than 4 hours. If they can meet these SLA terms it might still be worth it. How are your experiences in this?

    Furthermore I have been trying their test download a few times. I get very mixed results. One moment I pull the full 100MB file at 3MB/sec to europe, the next moment (same location, just 5 seconds later) the download of the next file doesn't go past 450K/sec. Do they have some kind of 'intelligent' routing platform that cant decide which route is fastest?

    Thanks for your help on iWeb. Other tips on reliable hosting at this pricepoint are very welcome as well. Thanks!
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    United Kingdom
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    205
    Their 'Smart Servers' are basically an Xen VPS - Supposedly your VPS is the only one on the Physical Server (so you basically own a VPS on a server that you also own)

    I wouldn't believe them myself though (personally I can see a company throwing a couple extra people on the server behind the curtain, why not?)

    And hence, that is why you get KVM, your actually getting vKVM which is just as good but for virtual servers OR servers connected to a switch running vKVM.

    Never been with them, as I can't say much about them, I wish you good luck.

    One thing I do know about iWeb - is that it can take a week or more for them to actually accept your order (they do a bunch of stupid farcry fraud checks I guess)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bay Area
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    Thanks

    I'm not convinced they will put more than one client on a server, and it will be possible to verify this using benchmarks as well. After all if they would its basically fraud, and I doubt a large company like iWeb would commit fraud to save just a few bucks.

    Thanks for the advice on ordering, that is something to keep in mind

    Does anybody know if both the drives are available to the guest host, or is Software raid-1 done at the parent host?
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    33
    Hi,

    I ordered a server with them last saturday night.
    I did the payment through my credit card and it was approved instantly.

    On sunday my server was delivered around 2 pm what made me love them.

    There was just some confusion between the server I ordered that was supposed to be ready in 72 hrs but as I couldn't wait so long, they gently prepared another offer to deliver the server asap.

    I would highly recommend them, as their customer service is very open and up to help you with anything you do need.

    I prefer to wait a little longer to make a final review, but it's being a good start

    Thanks,
    thepixel

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bay Area
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    Thanks, looking forward to your review.

    Is the customer service chat-based like their sales team? Are they knowledgeable? And have you by any chance had a chance to try out the KVM facilities? Does it work right from the moment of booting and can you load your own virtual media?

    Thanks!
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    33
    I haven't tried their KVM yet, I'm running with win2008 no need for that actually.
    I felt their chat based slow and not helpful, as I was in a rush, did everything over the phone.

    Thanks,

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    476
    Yes overall their team is good but when it comes to solving issues it seems to be dragged out. Don't know why but they just always seem to make sure you do everything before they need to do anything. Overall they are great and have some pretty good pricing.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Montréal
    Posts
    953
    Does anybody know if both the drives are available to the guest host, or is Software raid-1 done at the parent host?
    Drives are available to the guest host but it is not recommended to modify the drive settings as it could cause problems in the case of automated migrations (coming) or automated reinstallation (drives would be reconfigured as RAID-1), etc.

    And have you by any chance had a chance to try out the KVM facilities? Does it work right from the moment of booting and can you load your own virtual media?
    You can see the whole boot process of the VM but not of the physical server.

    Their 'Smart Servers' are basically an Xen VPS - Supposedly your VPS is the only one on the Physical Server.
    That's what it is. Through the control panel you get access to hard reboot functionalities (power off the physical server) in addition to VM reboot functionalities. Hardware is not shared at all and we can't add other VPS on your server. The whole system is built for a single vm per physical server and you choose the server but the specs (cpu, ram, disks, etc.).
    :: Martin Leclair
    :: Linkedin Profile

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    33
    Hi Martin,

    Do you know if and when are you going to have windows smart server available?

    Thanks,

  10. #10
    You might want to check interserver.net and their dedis. Good network for the price.
    My personal blog -- rubiverse.net

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bay Area
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    1,320
    Quote Originally Posted by atchoooo View Post
    Drives are available to the guest host but it is not recommended to modify the drive settings as it could cause problems in the case of automated migrations (coming) or automated reinstallation (drives would be reconfigured as RAID-1), etc.

    You can see the whole boot process of the VM but not of the physical server.

    That's what it is. Through the control panel you get access to hard reboot functionalities (power off the physical server) in addition to VM reboot functionalities. Hardware is not shared at all and we can't add other VPS on your server. The whole system is built for a single vm per physical server and you choose the server but the specs (cpu, ram, disks, etc.).
    Hi atchoooo, thank you for the clarification

    I am seeing very strange behavior from the network, this is basically the only thing keeping me from ordering. I did the following last night:

    Code:
    while true; do 
    wget -O /dev/null http://test-bgp.iweb.com/10mbtest.bin; 
    sleep 1800; 
    done
    About half the files downloaded at 480K exactly. The other half downloaded at 2+MB/sec. And I have seen this behavior from multiple locations.

    Is there any reason why this might be happening?
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Montréal
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    About half the files downloaded at 480K exactly. The other half downloaded at 2+MB/sec. And I have seen this behavior from multiple locations.Is there any reason why this might be happening?
    Can you run traceroutes and send them to me by PM? I would have to run traceroutes from our servers to see if the routes to you are always the same too and try to see if there is a specific problem on the route you are routed through.
    :: Martin Leclair
    :: Linkedin Profile

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bay Area
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    Hi Martin, thanks for the reply. I ran a reverse traceroute from your BGP network segment, I take it this is the network the Smart servers are located on?

    Trace Output:
    HOST: tescia Loss% Snt Last Avg Best Wrst StDev
    1. test-bgp-gw.mtl.iweb.com 0.0% 5 37.1 49.4 0.3 100.6 40.9
    2. 216.187.90.133 0.0% 5 12.9 2.9 0.4 12.9 5.6
    3. ??? 100.0 5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    4. ??? 100.0 5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    5. ??? 100.0 5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    6. ??? 100.0 5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    7. ??? 100.0 5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    8. gn-rc0002-cr102-ae0-0.core.a 0.0% 5 102.0 102.2 101.9 102.7 0.3
    9. csw2-ge1-1.hnglo1.ov.home.nl 0.0% 5 104.7 104.7 104.5 104.7 0.1
    10. 213.51.158.172 0.0% 4 104.8 104.7 104.5 104.8 0.1
    11. 213.51.139.59 0.0% 4 102.8 102.8 102.8 102.9 0.0
    12. ??? 100.0 4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
    done ...
    I have to say that the speeds have improved, although still strangely fluctuent per download. (First download goes at 4MB/sec, a second download 5 minutes later at 1.2MB/sec).
    However I did notice though that other US east coast hosts show the same issue, for example Softlayer in DC. At first I suspected my ISP but I do not see this behavior when downloading from Europe servers (I am located in AMS). So it might be related to the intercontinental link somehow? The reverse traceroute above does not say much on which network is being used, though I suspect it is Peer1. The other way around it looks like this:

    Host Loss% Snt Last Avg Best Wrst StDev
    1. 192.168.0.1 0.0% 15 1.3 1.9 1.1 5.0 1.1
    2. 10.205.8.1 0.0% 14 8.0 9.3 6.2 15.8 2.6
    3. zl-rc0001-cr101-ae20-213.core.as9143 0.0% 14 11.5 10.7 6.2 25.6 4.7
    4. 213.51.158.171 0.0% 14 9.8 15.2 7.1 83.8 19.9
    5. asd-lc0006-cr101-ae3-0.core.as9143.n 0.0% 14 9.8 13.1 9.8 20.8 3.7
    6. unknown.Level3.net 0.0% 14 9.8 12.0 8.8 19.1 2.6
    7. ae-34-52.ebr2.Amsterdam1.Level3.net 0.0% 14 13.6 13.4 9.7 24.5 4.4
    8. ae-45-45.ebr2.London1.Level3.net 0.0% 14 19.2 22.1 17.6 31.4 5.0
    9. ae-42-42.ebr1.NewYork1.Level3.net 0.0% 14 88.4 88.2 85.1 93.8 2.4
    10. ae-81-81.csw3.NewYork1.Level3.net 0.0% 14 95.3 94.5 88.3 108.0 6.4
    11. ae-82-82.ebr2.NewYork1.Level3.net 0.0% 14 86.0 89.1 85.4 99.0 3.4
    12. ae-5-5.car1.Montreal2.Level3.net 0.0% 14 94.1 96.2 94.1 103.3 2.3
    13. test-bgp-gw.mtl.iweb.com 0.0% 14 99.5 104.0 98.6 123.3 7.2
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  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Montréal
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    @Xandrios can you send me the details by email ? Or would it be possible to give us some access to try the download from? If we open a server at Softlayer you say I should see the same issue?

    Do you know if and when are you going to have windows smart server available?
    "If" would be yes. But it is still far on our roadmap.
    :: Martin Leclair
    :: Linkedin Profile

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