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  1. #1

    Considering a new host

    It's the time of year when I consider whether I want to renew my lease with iPage or not. Some background: I have previously been with Bluehost, Hostgator, and most recently iPage. They are all priced more or less equally, and I changed from one to the other when server-errors and support went downhill. I've had a shared web host since 2006, and started hosting with iPage in 2011.

    Now, each of the hosts have charged between $95-120 per year. The price is not bad, and their features are mostly identical. However, all of them have at one time or another been struck by technical faults which resulted in several days of downtime each year. Granted, not everything is in their power to control, but their communication about it and support in resolving issues is pretty useless across the board. I don't run heavy-weight sites, mostly some WordPress blogs and a few development projects, so I don't really need more space than 10 GB nor traffic exceeding 50 GB. I do, however, require updated technology, most notably PHP > 5.4 and some standards such as MySQL, Imagemagick, SSI, CGI-bin etc. Also, more or less any control panel would work, but any host-enforced .htaccess rules, 404 pages or other such bloat is unwanted. I only rarely contact support, practically only when the site goes down from a server configuration or there is some technical aspect that can only be resolved by the host.

    To renew with iPage for another year, the cost is $118.20, and I have a good mind not to. From reputation, I am mainly considering two alternatives: 1and1 and GeekStorage, but I am open to suggestions.

    I did the initial customer-service test and e-mailed both about their server uptime. GeekStorage was very informative, accurate and included as much relevant information as they could. 1and1 referred to their plan comparison initially, and when prodded wrote some worthless mumble about how great their plans are. By recommendation a few years ago, 1and1 would appear to be an excellent choice in terms of stability and cost, and the price of their unlimited plan certainly seems fair. Before this weekend I had never hear of GeekStorage, but both their Basic and Pro plans certainly fit the bill, and their prices are more reasonable than iPage.

    In essence: Should I renew my lease with iPage at a higher cost, despite their occasional lack of performance and support, or move to a new hosting company at a fairer price with roughly equivalent features?

    Bit of a long post, but I hope it will make for some informed opinions or recommendations.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Surrey, BC
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    iPage is an EIG brand and they're known for incompetent support and unreliable service, you can find tons of complaints and reviews about their hosting brands that include iPage, BlueHost, and even recently HostGator as they were bought out by EIG. Service has degraded quite a bit.

    GeekStorage would not be a bad choice, they have in fact been around for quite a while.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    4,694
    I take it you are aware that although you switched between Bluehost, Hostgator and iPage, they are all the same company. It slightly depends on when you did your switches, but certainly today switching between them is a facade - you simply switch which branding you go with. They are all owned by one company. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endura...national_Group

    Neither of the two hosts you mention are owned by EIG; I've not used either, so I cannot comment on the quality of service you'd get (at least, not from first-hand experience).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    New Jersey, USA
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    4,680
    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    It's the time of year when I consider whether I want to renew my lease with iPage or not. Some background: I have previously been with Bluehost, Hostgator, and most recently iPage. They are all priced more or less equally, and I changed from one to the other when server-errors and support went downhill. I've had a shared web host since 2006, and started hosting with iPage in 2011.

    Now, each of the hosts have charged between $95-120 per year. The price is not bad, and their features are mostly identical. However, all of them have at one time or another been struck by technical faults which resulted in several days of downtime each year. Granted, not everything is in their power to control, but their communication about it and support in resolving issues is pretty useless across the board. I don't run heavy-weight sites, mostly some WordPress blogs and a few development projects, so I don't really need more space than 10 GB nor traffic exceeding 50 GB. I do, however, require updated technology, most notably PHP > 5.4 and some standards such as MySQL, Imagemagick, SSI, CGI-bin etc. Also, more or less any control panel would work, but any host-enforced .htaccess rules, 404 pages or other such bloat is unwanted. I only rarely contact support, practically only when the site goes down from a server configuration or there is some technical aspect that can only be resolved by the host.

    To renew with iPage for another year, the cost is $118.20, and I have a good mind not to. From reputation, I am mainly considering two alternatives: 1and1 and GeekStorage, but I am open to suggestions.

    I did the initial customer-service test and e-mailed both about their server uptime. GeekStorage was very informative, accurate and included as much relevant information as they could. 1and1 referred to their plan comparison initially, and when prodded wrote some worthless mumble about how great their plans are. By recommendation a few years ago, 1and1 would appear to be an excellent choice in terms of stability and cost, and the price of their unlimited plan certainly seems fair. Before this weekend I had never hear of GeekStorage, but both their Basic and Pro plans certainly fit the bill, and their prices are more reasonable than iPage.

    In essence: Should I renew my lease with iPage at a higher cost, despite their occasional lack of performance and support, or move to a new hosting company at a fairer price with roughly equivalent features?

    Bit of a long post, but I hope it will make for some informed opinions or recommendations.

    iPage, bluehost and hostgator are all owned by EIG. If you are looking to move and for an alternative that is reliable and priced reasonably I would recommend MDDhosting.

    - Daniel

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    LocalHost
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    Check Shared hosting offer section.
    Short list few providers.
    Search for their reviews on WHT and Google.
    Select a host and start with month-to-month payment.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    I have previously been with Bluehost, Hostgator, and most recently iPage. They are all priced more or less equally, and I changed from one to the other when server-errors and support went downhill.
    Same company which is why their prices are identical with the same marketing gimmick "Unlimited"... They know people don't read the small print.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    To renew with iPage for another year, the cost is $118.20, and I have a good mind not to. From reputation, I am mainly considering two alternatives: 1and1 and GeekStorage, but I am open to suggestions.
    iPage, you said has bad support, why stay with them because when you'll need them most you wont get a reply by the time you do, you will be bald.

    1and1, you will experience the same but from another bigger company called United Internet, they own 1and1 and fasthosts (Who I used when I was at college and they really had bad support and the only way to get anything done was by their rubbish 0845 number.

    GeekStorage, I don't know much about them, however they seem much better with fixed limits per package, which if I was in your shoes out of your shortlist would be the one which I'd go with.

    Other than that, I recommend FreshRoastedHosting and CrocWeb, good luck with your outcome.

  7. #7
    Interestingly, looking at my trajectory of signing up with the three EIG companies, they might have actually been acquired at roughly the same year I signed up. I mainly signed up for their prices, as I never really needed unlimited space or bandwidth, nor much support really. The major reason I stay with the host is for stability in the sense that I pay for hosting year by year, and expect the host not to ruin their own servers from day to day.

    My reason for considering a change is mainly two things: The cost of iPage does not match their service, and their customer support - though eager to respond - are not competent. To justify the latter claim: They responded to my tickets, the 4-5 I've had over two years, fairly quickly, but getting someone technically competent on the case took a day or two. And the issues were of the nature that I could not resolve them myself, not being a server administrators.

    I will consider a few more companies, based on your suggestions, at least until tomorrow, thank you for the input.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Singapore
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    EIG employs this strategy that makes customers jump from brand A to brand B unknowingly. It’s completely understandeable to be a victim of it. Now that you’ve realised it, it will be wise to avoid EIG companies in future.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by JFSG View Post
    EIG employs this strategy that makes customers jump from brand A to brand B unknowingly. Itís completely understandeable to be a victim of it. Now that youíve realised it, it will be wise to avoid EIG companies in future.
    Time and time again you see users flip-flop between EIG Brands. Their Wikipedia page should be an auto-response to EIG related threads at this point.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    Bangalore
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWS2006 View Post
    Time and time again you see users flip-flop between EIG Brands. Their Wikipedia page should be an auto-response to EIG related threads at this point.
    Perfect! What a mess they are creating!

  11. #11
    The thing is, I guess as it has always been: Navigating the vast amount of possible hosts and picking one among many identical ones is hard. If there were clear differences in pricing, technical quality, and service, it'd been an easy task. Any many ways, you have the ultimatum of choosing specific technical details for a relatively high price, or choosing between identical technical features for a relatively low price. Of the hosts I'm considering, I've looked all up on this forum to see how their reviews are. In the past I would do this by a Google search, but getting unreliable review sites are too common.

    I did, in fact, lease hosting from NSLH to test it out with a smaller project I'm working on, and am still considering whether I need a bit of a larger solution for the regular sites. I suspect the no support model might actually be ideal, seeing as all my support tickets with previous hosts were trying to get them to resolve a technical issue on their part.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Orlando, Fl
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    57
    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    The thing is, I guess as it has always been: Navigating the vast amount of possible hosts and picking one among many identical ones is hard. If there were clear differences in pricing, technical quality, and service, it'd been an easy task. Any many ways, you have the ultimatum of choosing specific technical details for a relatively high price, or choosing between identical technical features for a relatively low price. Of the hosts I'm considering, I've looked all up on this forum to see how their reviews are. In the past I would do this by a Google search, but getting unreliable review sites are too common.

    I did, in fact, lease hosting from NSLH to test it out with a smaller project I'm working on, and am still considering whether I need a bit of a larger solution for the regular sites. I suspect the no support model might actually be ideal, seeing as all my support tickets with previous hosts were trying to get them to resolve a technical issue on their part.
    One thing that might help is finding companies that have a trial account you can sign up for. That way you can test out the support and reliability before you drop some money on hosting.

  13. #13
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    Jan 2013
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    70

    No support linux hosting very reliable

    Have two small sites with them for 3-4 years. Almost never need to contact them servers been up almost 100% of time past several years according to my monitoring programs.

    Mods I can verify if you send me a link to do so.

  14. #14
    The only uncertainty I have about NSLH is their definition of website: Can I host a website with a WordPress Multisite installation, i.e. a primary domain, from which I host several smaller sites? That is the setup I have currently, with 7-9 smaller sites and projects taking up less than 500 MB and using less than a GB of bandwidth. It does entail, however, associating several domains with one website, but ultimately saves space and bandwidth.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    The only uncertainty I have about NSLH is their definition of website: Can I host a website with a WordPress Multisite installation, i.e. a primary domain, from which I host several smaller sites? That is the setup I have currently, with 7-9 smaller sites and projects taking up less than 500 MB and using less than a GB of bandwidth. It does entail, however, associating several domains with one website, but ultimately saves space and bandwidth.
    I think you should be able to do that.
    You should contact the host directly with this query.

  16. #16
    I think geekstorage would be a wonderful choice, they have been around for years and I've not personally read any negative reviews about them.

  17. #17
    One thing is for sure: I'm leaving iPage, as one of their "Senior Technical Specialist" managed to take the site offline for several hours during the night. I know there was some incompetence in their support department, I did not know they were capable of ruining a site that easily.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    One thing is for sure: I'm leaving iPage, as one of their "Senior Technical Specialist" managed to take the site offline for several hours during the night. I know there was some incompetence in their support department, I did not know they were capable of ruining a site that easily.
    Plenty of web hosts to choose from at WHT. Head over to the offers forum.

  19. #19
    You have basically been going from one EIG company to another. Although the way they are managed differs slightly, Bluehost, Hostgator and iPage are all owned by EIG as the rest of the forum pointed out. What this means is that while their terms of service and the way they allocate and handle clients may differ (slightly or considerably depending on which companies), your site has always been hosted on the same servers called Unifiedlayer (the in-house datacenter from EIG).

    Those servers are well-known to be slow and unreliable. I would not worry about any issues with Wordpress multisites. Most hosts can support those nowadays. The thing you need to look for is decent speed and reliability as that is what can make the difference between your site's visitors making a purchase or them making a click-back as soon as ten seconds have passed and your site isn't yet loaded.

  20. #20
    A quick clarification about NoSupportLinuxHosting: They do not allow WordPress multisite installations with multiple domains, as confirmed by e-mail and by the cPanel (0 addon domains). I think this is a shame, as this setup saves both space and bandwidth.

    Anyway, I opted for the EU-Pro package from GeekStorage for a two-year period. At the time of purchase there was an offer for 30% off for a lifetime, which helped. I am currently waiting for the verification code, and hope I'll be happy with their service.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    A quick clarification about NoSupportLinuxHosting: They do not allow WordPress multisite installations with multiple domains, as confirmed by e-mail and by the cPanel (0 addon domains). I think this is a shame, as this setup saves both space and bandwidth.

    Anyway, I opted for the EU-Pro package from GeekStorage for a two-year period. At the time of purchase there was an offer for 30% off for a lifetime, which helped. I am currently waiting for the verification code, and hope I'll be happy with their service.
    Good to hear that you found a host that fits your needs. Incidentally, wouldn't WP multisite require parked domains (rather than addons that will have individual doc roots)?

  22. #22
    My understanding is that they require a doc root in as much as each domain has a folder of the same name in the root of the primary domain, containing a .htaccess file which directs it to the WordPress installation of the primary domain. From there, plugins delegate each domain a subsite of the multisite installation.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingah View Post
    My understanding is that they require a doc root in as much as each domain has a folder of the same name in the root of the primary domain, containing a .htaccess file which directs it to the WordPress installation of the primary domain. From there, plugins delegate each domain a subsite of the multisite installation.
    I've never used WP Multisite and was just curious. It's surprising there isn't an option to have all domains share a doc root and then use the requested hostname to return the desired content, you'd think that would be a lot more efficient. Maybe it has to do with the url rewrites that WP likes to do via .htaccess.

  24. #24
    In a sense they do, in fact, share the doc root. But it requires that subsites be installed as either subdirectories (ie site.com/subsite) or subdomains (ie subsite.site.com), and then a plugin handles each subsite as a domain. All sites utilize the same installation, but have their own folders for media and database settings for themes and plugins.

  25. #25
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    I see, thanks for taking a moment to answer a question for a non-WP user.

  26. #26
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    I've always used a single wildcard subdomain, and it seems to work fine.

    Edit: Ah - but you're talking about different actual domains, not just subdomains. Yes, I've always had control over the master domain that subsumes all the individual sites.

  27. #27
    A quick update on the sign-up process with GeekStorage: I had a small problem receiving the verification code, in that my phone never got it, and submitted a ticket about 5 minutes waiting for it. I had kept the tab open as I often do when multitasking (reading news waiting for a ticket reply), and 2 minutes after I submitted the ticket Jay from GeekStorage had opened a chat-window in that very tab (from the "Chat with us" bar at the bottom of the page which I did not notice at first).

    I briefly explained my problem to him, and within a couple of minutes he had verified my account and I was all set to go. This is not only a rare example of good service and technical solutions, but for me vastly better than the customer support I received from my previous hosts. Truly satisfied with my choice so far.

  28. #28
    Join Date
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    I personally think you can go for a new host because it seems that you are paying a little more as per what you require. I think you need to do little bit of research about might be through offers section here on WHT and stuff like that. I am pretty sure that you might get a better deal. It might cost you somewhere around $80/year or something but I am not sure you will need to browse through it. I hope you get a better deal.

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