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  1. #1

    SpeedySparrow Review

    Comical SpeedySparrow Alteration
    imgcrave.com/u/untitlfuf.png
    Speedy is defined by Websters Dictionary as quick: accomplished rapidly and without delay or rapid: characterized by speed; moving with or capable of moving with high speed. No delay, rapid page loads, sounds perfect right? A Sparrow can move pretty fast too, they’ve been clocked at just under 20MPH. But it seems, when you combine Speedy and Sparrow, the outcome is not so speedy after all.


    Slow Speeds & CPU Spikes

    IMCrave
    As of late I have been receiving quite the fluctuation in page load time and have noticed massive CPU spikes. Would you please look into this. Thanks.

    SpeddySparrow Support
    The current load spikes that is causing the slow connection at times – is due to the SAN storage we currently are relaying on. It’s based on SATA drives, a mistake we will never do again! Our new private cloud has a SAN storage built on SAS and SSD drives for better performance. The OnAPP infrastructure has been ordered from our Data Center, and we should be ready to take it live within the next few weeks.

    IMGCrave
    Just to understand correctly. You want me to cope with the slower speeds, while more clientele come aboard, for a few weeks?

    SpeddySparrow Support
    We are doing our best to resolve the issues the current SAN is causing – but since it’s based on SATA drives, there really isn’t much we can do. We are currently checking all network configurations with our Data Center. If you could forward a traceroute to your website hosted with us, that would be really helpful! We hope that the slow response times won’t cause much issue, we are working on resolving them as well as moving over to a better network. But we really appreciate all patience our clients will show us during this time.

    Just to sum up that entire last paragraph in to one word; Yes! We would like you to cope with the slower speeds as we bring on more and more clientele for a few weeks.

    Down for an Entire Day

    Each morning I visit IMGCrave, scan over the blog and examine Analytics for the day before and the current day thus far. Everything was running in tip top shape and I went about my day. A few hours later I received a text message from our System Administrator and Lead Developer Clark. IMGCrave as barely loading, the CPU was well above 10.00 and we needed to move.

    At the time, it did not seem to far fetched to submit a support ticket addressing the sites total loss of functionality, but looking back, I guess that is a bit too much to ask for /sarcasm. The entire Client Area was down, after an hour wait, finally it would load. I then went about entering my details, press log in… waiting…waiting…Wrong Password. How odd, I did not change my password. Well, I must have. Let me go ahead and request for the password to be reset. “Click” Forgot Password, here we go. Enter in your email, alright, time to submit. Waiting…Email not found in our database. What? My account no longer exists, it is inaccessible. Not only is my site down, but I am unable to submit a ticket. Complete and utter fail.

    At the end of the day, an email finally came rolling in.

    Server Load (8hrs Delay) Website Maintenance!

    How are you today?

    Well, it’s a Saturday and the sun is shinning. Yet I am trapped indoors attempting to access my otherwise inaccessible hosting account. Not the greatest today.

    Firstly i’d like to apologize for the extensive delays in regards to our server performance, yesterday afternoon our Datacenter informed us of an immediate upgrade to the system and maintenance would come into effect through Easter Sunday. The maintenance came as SpeedySparrow was moving it’s main site from one datacenter to another to increase it’s performance to cope with the growing demand of our internal growth from aspects of (bandwidth, diskspace, traffic, and hardware).

    I see. Your main site is catered for so that you may maintain an illusion of speed and stability.

    During this time SpeedySparrow Staff were not able to represent our customers while this transition was in effect, the overall process was being performed back-end and the transition was meant to be a little un-noticable, though after this period to where the transition of our main site was already in effect we got news that our datacenter would be performing upgrades of the servers that our main customers were being hosted on was going to come into effect within the first 24hrs and to which would not be in time for us to make notifications to our customers to make preperations for this maintenance to come to effect.

    Is it just me, or is that just a paragraph of one excuse after another topped with, well we (your host) didn’t know what was going on.

    This has lead to some rather hassling issues and we are slowly restoring the website and services accordingly.

    Slowly; finally they come out and say it
    .

    During today I have taken time from family (being Easter Sunday) to come and rectify the issues caused and I have restored our main website to it’s noticeable glory, I have restore the “my.speedysparrow” billing and support center so that you may contact us directly for immediate assistance and Live Chat is currently available to those who require urgent assistance with their websites or concerns that they may have.

    I won’t touch that one.

    Due to the issues we have had today for those who feel that we have under supported you through a maintenance and not being able to assist in your support requests do feel free to contact our billing department and we will happily arrange a credit on your account for the outages caused and this credit will post through onto your current or future invoices.

    That is right folks. If you would like to have your site remain inaccessible, battle painfully slow load times and not be able to reach the support crew…then stay aboard. They will credit your account so you can keep on hosting with them.

    I’ve left SpeedySparrow – Not so speedy after all – and I will never return.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    4,904
    Wow, it's unfortunate you had to go through with that. From what I've read on these forums, they seem to have been doing a good job.

    Do you happen to have a tracert from when your site was loading slow on SS?

    Either way, to be down for an entire day would suck.

    Thanks for the review and detail.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    New Delhi
    Posts
    633
    One of rare negative reviews for SpeedySparrow.
    They are otherwise regarded highly here. It seems more number of customers is taking a toll on their servers.
    Would like to listen from host on this.
    Qtriangle - Website development and web hosting solutions
    The very best of PHP/MySQL development services

  4. #4
    During the easter weekend we ran into several issues with our data center, that lead to extensive downtime. We migrated all our operations to a new datacenter in New Jersey just a few days later. We are currently running the last configuration of our new SAN with our new DC and once that's ready and the SAN has been tested to the maximum extent, we will deploy OnAPP on all our servers.

    To give a better insight, I'll quote the whole e-mail we sent out to all clients on April 28, 2011
    SpeedySparrow Pty Ltd.

    New Data Center Notification

    SpeedySparrow Pty Ltd has been serving several hundreds of clients during our years in operation. During the last month our Data Center in Atlanta, Georgia has been subject to several hardware and network issues that have led to several periods of downtime.

    We are deeply sorry for all the inconvenience these issues have caused our current and potential clients. We have been working around the clock to get the problems resolved at the earliest. Sadly, new problems have kept coming, and this last weekend our main SAN Network caused several iowait spikes on our servers, leading to massive connectivity issues and downtime.

    The Management of SpeedySparrow Pty Ltd has no other choice left at this point. To ensure that our servers can meet the requirements of today and the future – we will be migrating to a new Data Center facility in New Jersey, USA. This will be our new home for our operations.

    The changes will take effect immediately and the migration has already started. We will during the next few months introduce our completely new Cloud Solutions – built on the award winning solution: OnAPP. We have during the years learned the importance of having a great SAN to rely on. We are still working with our new Data Center to build it up, with multiple different fail-over systems in place.

    While we wanted to move directly from our Atlanta Cloud into our new Cloud in New Jersey, the last weekend issues have proven that to be an unreasonable expectation. We have as such decided to move all our Shared, Business and Reseller Clients away from the failing SAN infrastructure as soon as possible, to ensure maximum satisfaction!

    Sadly, while we are awaiting the new SAN to be delivered, and configured we will have to use a standard dedicated system, relying on a powerful CPU and RAID-10 configuration. This will ensure a more stable environment for our clients. The new servers will as always run on the latest stable release of cPanel, CloudLinux and LiteSpeed for best the performance possible.

    But our actual Cloud has been removed while we are working on a more stable SAN configuration and network. Once the SAN is ready and has been tested, all our servers will be moved over to the OnAPP network and we'll be back on the cloud again. All these changes will occur with only minimal downtime – if any at all.

    These new changes will also allow us to expand our services; we will introduce new dedicated servers and VPS systems very soon! But the changes will also provide all current customers with a more stable hosting experience. We do sincerely apologize for all the inconvenience the last few weeks’ troubles have caused and we are looking forward to the future.


    We will list the highlights of our new Data Center and Network below:

    55,000 sq. ft. facility
    7,500 sq. ft. of raised floor
    (8) 20-ton Liebert AC units
    500 Smoke and Heat Detectors
    Pre-action dry fire suppression system
    Security badge entry/exit on all doors to facility
    (2) 225KVA Liebert UPS units, (1) 160KVA Powerware
    1-megawatt caterpillar generator (1000-gallon tank)
    6000 gallons of emergency fuel is located within 5 minutes from our Data Center
    24x7 Network and facility monitoring software
    100% Redundant Cisco Network

    What are the specifications of the new system?

    Intel Core i7-950
    12GB of DDR3 Dedicated RAM
    100MBPS Up-Link to System
    8-Core Processor
    Raid-10 Protected Drives

    Features of the new system include:

    Softaculous Installer
    Installatron Application Installer
    R1Soft Daily Backups & Restores
    Litespeed Webserver
    CloudLinux Operating System
    Fantastico Deluxe
    cPanel & WHM
    and a whole lote more


    At the current moment all accounts are in migration mode, if you would like to directly test the IP for ping times, tracerts, or for other requirements you may use the following IP address:

    http://65.98.104.34/

    We would like to thank everyone for their continued patience and we look forward to assisting you further as we progress, if your account is assigned with CloudFlare please do note that certain changes will need to take effect on the system such as your site propagation to the new IP's before CloudFlare will update properly, if in any event you encounter issues if running on CloudFlare please do contact ou Support Department for further assistance.

    We hope you have a fabulous spring, we over at SpeedySparrow is looking forward to continue serving all clients for many years to come!

    If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Support Department (https://my.speedysparrow.com) or post on our Forums (http://forums.speedysparrow.com)

    Sincerely,

    Sean Bowtell, Eric Cooper, James Lee
    Management – SpeedySparrow Pty Ltd.
    http://speedysparrow.com
    All clients that was affected by downtime will be credited as per our terms of service and SLA. Please forward the request to our billing department and they'll assist you.

    As ironic it might sound, during the easter weekend our off-site VPS that holds our main site was offline during several hours, and we were forced to migrate to another VPS provider in order to regain access.

    We are doing our best to ensure that this will never happen again.
    l Spiral Hosting Limited • Shared • Reseller • Cloud VPS • Since 2003
    l Leading UK and Ireland Hosting Provider • Multiple locations - around the globe!
    l cPanel/WHM • R1Soft Backups • 24/7/365 Support • 99.9% Uptime Guarantee
    l www.SpiralHosting.com

  5. #5
    @JoshuaD; I think I have found your client profile, and it appears that we already have refunded your payment as per your request. If that isn't the case, please PM me the e-mail address we have on file for your account together with the primary domain and I'll issue a refund.
    l Spiral Hosting Limited • Shared • Reseller • Cloud VPS • Since 2003
    l Leading UK and Ireland Hosting Provider • Multiple locations - around the globe!
    l cPanel/WHM • R1Soft Backups • 24/7/365 Support • 99.9% Uptime Guarantee
    l www.SpiralHosting.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    1,870
    I have heard many good things of SpeedySparrow and I'm certain this was a rare occurance.

    Also, if the clients have been compensated for this as stated and the probems been fixed, I don't really see the issue.

    I would like to note, defacing that image has just freaked me out. Something really unsettling about his hand being the wrong way round...

    Regards
    Last edited by iJake; 05-07-2011 at 02:07 PM.

  7. #7
    I have no doubt in my mind that SpeedySparrow is backed by those that want to be there; that truly care. I just had a taste of bad luck and moved to SpeedySparrow only to be confronted with immediate down time.

    Never wrote a hosting review, figured I'd give it a shot. Not supposed to be a low blow, or to deter anyone away from your service. You were kind in the refund, as you guarantee and I found another host.

    This topic just entails my experience and how I felt about that experience.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Bogotá, Colombia.
    Posts
    368
    They have very good reputation, and I have no doubt that they are working day and night to provide the best service.

    I'm very sorry to hear about your problems, and I'm glad that you are working pro-actively to solve these problems, I ask all SpeadySparrow's customers to be patient, these transitions are not so simple nor fast. I hope that very soon you are back in those glorious times!

    Praying for you guys! (hehe)

    edit: 3 posts right after mine...
    Whitesystem.NET, INC. root [at] whitesystem.net
    Native SSD True CLOUD cPanel-based Shared, Reseller (root access!) Hosting.
    LiteSpeedLow Populated Servers7 Years Hosting Experience
    Fast and Friendly multilingual (Spanish and English) Support www.whitesystem.net

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Beach
    Posts
    113
    They used to be good so far.

    Wonder what is going on and why they take much time to sort it out!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by JoshuaD View Post
    I have no doubt in my mind that SpeedySparrow is backed by those that want to be there; that truly care. I just had a taste of bad luck and moved to SpeedySparrow only to be confronted with immediate down time.

    Never wrote a hosting review, figured I'd give it a shot. Not supposed to be a low blow, or to deter anyone away from your service. You were kind in the refund, as you guarantee and I found another host.

    This topic just entails my experience and how I felt about that experience.
    Glad to hear that you have found a new host and that your services had been refunded already. We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience you encountered.

    Best of luck in the future!
    l Spiral Hosting Limited • Shared • Reseller • Cloud VPS • Since 2003
    l Leading UK and Ireland Hosting Provider • Multiple locations - around the globe!
    l cPanel/WHM • R1Soft Backups • 24/7/365 Support • 99.9% Uptime Guarantee
    l www.SpiralHosting.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Lancs, UK
    Posts
    2,152
    To be fair Sean has had some difficulties with the DC and the issue with the SAN was outside of his control and from what I understand the DC wasn't exactly fixing it pro-actively.

    As you can see from above they are already making preparations for the move to the new SSD system and as Im sure we all know SSD don't come cheap. Im pretty sure that we wont be seeing another negative review again for SpeedySparrow because Sean runs a tight ship over there.
    HeroBill - On-premises Enterprise billing software for hosting providers
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    /etc/my.cnf
    Posts
    10,039
    Cloud hosting can be good, But when it something horrible go's wrong its normally a complete headache for both the client and provider.

    Hope Sean gets his ship sailing smoothly again soon.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    10,482
    We appreciate everyones support in this matter, however, just on a side note I'd plead that the image used on the 'Imgcrave' website be removed as it is in direct violation to our copyright (using our images against us) is really not something that I find overally appealing.

    The issues as @Matt mentioned were related a lot to I/O and Wait times that was more out of my control than anything, we were advised there was also 'RAM' usage issues but since we moved to the new server they actually are non-existent, in this case we have moved all customers directly from Atlanta and moved them into New Jersey and with the same amount of customers and the same physical setup you can really see the difference in performance from the clusterd SAN that we were providing our services on.

    Technically we were being advised the issue was with "us" from our end but with the same amount of clients on the same setup with another provider I'd be more than happy to same the blame game really falls back on the datacenter as we have had no problems at all since we made the move

    @Joshua, We do apologize for the inconveniences caused by the issues you had experienced within our company on the Easter week, it was totally not expected and it really threw my day out of whack with family and I had to actually come back from a family Easter weekend back to server related issues to which I was stuck on till 3am the very next morning.

    Eric, James, and I worked hard on getting the issues resolved but the matter of the fact was we were not getting anywhere with the datacenter so we took the ultimate plunge and decided that moving would be the best option for us - at the end of the day it really played out well with much better performance and customers are once again having the smiles come back.

    Unfortunately it did leave us in tatters in some respect because we aim for the best but in this certain event it well, didn't play out as good for some customers. Joshua is in every right allowed to post a review on us, but using the image from "imgcrave" well is a little bit more of a childish act, I don't think defacing our Sparrow and Logo was the best thing to do, even though we did everything right by the customer, and I personally refunded the $3.00 that Joshua paid us.

    In the events that took place they were totally unexpected and really had me in a headspin working on transferring accounts as well as forking out more money to give customers what they really deserve. It has been a little bit of a road trip and that has worked for us in a good and a bad way.

    I am glad Joshua has found a new provider and I do hope that everything does work out for him, I felt it was necessary to give my aspects and views to this review and I do hope that everything has been addressed appropriately.

    They used to be good so far.

    Wonder what is going on and why they take much time to sort it out!
    I am not sure I am following your point?

    I have no doubt in my mind that SpeedySparrow is backed by those that want to be there; that truly care. I just had a taste of bad luck and moved to SpeedySparrow only to be confronted with immediate down time.
    Joshua, it really turned out that way. We had many issues with the datacenter in that same week and also back a month or two prior. We gave the datacenter multiple chances and at the end of the day they failed us on many counts.

    We chose the right path from the Easter weekend experience and moved to a new datacenter on a totally new server and it has worked better since, I am sorry this come out as strike of bad-luck and we do hope that these issues become very minute over the years to come
    l Dedigeeks (Twitter) Shared Reseller Cloud VPS Since 2010
    l Leading AU Hosting Provider Multiple locations - around the globe!
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  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Kepler 62f
    Posts
    14,877
    Quote Originally Posted by Sparrow-Sean View Post
    the image used on the 'Imgcrave' website be removed as it is in direct violation to our copyright (using our images against us) is really not something that I find overally appealing.
    No, it is not. It is a parody, and therefore protected speech.

    Quote Originally Posted by JoshuaD View Post
    It’s based on SATA drives,
    This is a huge red flag.
    You're best to use a host with SCSI or SAS -- never desktop SATA drives.
    || Need a good host?
    || See my Suggested Hosts List || Editorial: EIG/Site5/Arvixe/Hostgator Alternatives
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