I am looking to start a web hosting business in the near future, it is something I've thought about and been working towards for awhile. I have my website done nearly, I have a basic plan of my target market and I am so wanting to just get going. However at this point I really don't feel like I have enough experience and knowledge about the in's and out's of web hosting enough to actually sell my service.
So what I am asking really is, How do I gain more experience and learn everything I need to know?
I have spent ages playing around and fixing things when they have gone wrong but I feel I need some literature or tutorial to give me better understanding and depth of knowledge.
Can anyone recommend me anything?
Should I learn the basics and volunteer as a support for someone else's company to gain some experience.
For me I want this business to grow gradually and i'm not looking to just get rich quick, at the moment the experience of having and running a business would be far more valuable than the monetary gain.
Thank you for pointing me to that document, I have actually read that before but not in awhile.
I do currently have a re-seller account but just don't feel I have the experience to offer my customers quality support.
Or maybe you do but just don't feel it because you lack confidence?
For everything there is a first time, so at some point you just have to start and do it.
Then time will tell if you are capable of running that hosting business or not.
Find 10 relatives\friends\friends of friends with webpages and blogs and offer them hosting,migration, support for free. Help someone with small business get online. You will learn things that matter for regular customer and gain confidence.
As others have pointed out for you, experience is something you can only gain by the times you run your business (either as a staff or the owner), it's the same for everyone and there is no shortcut in getting it.
However, there is a way to gain both experience, confidence and skills at the same time, which is by working on another web hosting company before starting a company yourself.
Look for a company that you admires (or a company that you want to compete in the future), and tries to get employed by them for at least 1 year. Learn how they do business, what do they do to ensure the satisfaction of their clients etc.
Reading a lot is also a great help, there are a lot of web hosting/system administration related e-book that would get you off to a good start, however it cannot replace the experience you gain from actually doing (rather than just reading) it. When I'm reading an e-book, I usually accompanied myself with 1 unmanaged vps (can be rented for $5/month) which I used as a guinea pig for trying out everything I learned from the e-book. When it fails, simply reload the OS and redo.
1. Pro Linux System Administration By James Turnbull , Peter Lieverdink , Dennis Matotek
2. Classic Shell Scripting By Arnold Robbins & Nelson H.F. Beebe
3. Mastering UNIX Shell Scripting By Randal K. Michael
I wonder if a web hosting company would let me do weekend work for them for a few months for free.
Probably not unless they're desperate enough looking for anyone to help them. If you're planning to get employed on a big, established company, the best way would be applying for full time job with minimum wage salary for at least 1 year (under signed contract), that way they will see you as a person fully committed to do the job.