Well it's been over a year since I started this thread, but I wanted to inform of how things have been:
Some of the Hosting Providers I Currently Use:
As many of you would guess from seeing other comments around these forums, JaguarPC has stood at the top of my list for sometime now with their fast response time (via the control panel ticket system), the server uptime, and the cost. They truly have been there when needed.
I have set up around 8 accounts with them for myself and my clients and referred friends to use their services. Using the 2 year payment method, each account currently for $5.95 a month gives 1000 megs storage with 45 gigs of transfer per month.
A big plus (and recently updated to be controlled via CPanel) are the 5 extra domains you can 'multihost' with. Although these are merely a subdomain, you can fake email account by filtering an email address like [email protected] to reroute to [email protected] -- afterwhich in Outlook, you can set the general information to be the desired [email protected] so it appears in an outgoing email as such, but the server username must be the [email protected] which is only visable in the message source. (I like to squeeze every penny!)
They also offer a dedicated IP for $1 extra a month. They are proactive about maintaining their customized Cpanel interface and also adding new features and add-ons from time to time.
Overall, they are the one of the best I've dealt with in my limited exposure.
My only complaint is their reseller account doesn't do it for me. I've never opened one, but I've failed to see how it would be better since the math says it's better to just set up another Gigaplan for your clients. The reseller account is $29.95 a month for 800 megs of space and 30 gigs of transfer ($718.80 for two years) compared to just using a Gigaplan at $5.95 a month ($142.80 for two years).
The plans that are available for resell are also skewed as the Gigaplan is only available to resell at $7.95/month per account. There are lesser plans, one for $6.95 for 500 megs and 25 gigs transfer, another for $4.95 for 300 megs and 15 gigs transfer, and one more small plan for $2.95 a month.
So by becoming a reseller, if you sold a Gigaplan for $10 a month, you would earn $2.05 a month profit, but if you just set up another Gigaplan under your own account, you would earn $4.05 a month.
The major difference though is what your needs are. The reseller package will mask JaguarPC.com as the host, and you would of course be the web host provider, responsible for support, and you clients get their own Cpanel without any reference to JaguarPC. They also include name servers in the reseller account, so even a WHOIS will be your own domain. This is a true reselling setup.
Alternatively, if you intend on managing sites for your clients and do not want them to have access to the control panel (or the JaguarPC trouble ticket system), then you could just add another account to your own and be the middle man between the hosting and the client.
I pointed this out and got a response that felt a little off saying, 'At this point with the number of clients you have a reseller plan would not be cost beneficial to you.' The point is that the reseller plan would never be be cheaper than 'reselling' the Gigaplan accounts.
All in all, I did speak alot about the reseller plan, but I'm 100% happy with the shared hosting they provide. I still choose JaguarPC for most of my hosting.
Uptime results for two unique servers:
Although they have a 99.99% uptime guarantee, they have not met that mark. Honestly, for the cost of the hosting, I can't complain. I believe the worst was one day was out from 2am until 9am on one server. They have somewhere around 50 servers and are dedicated to maintaining them in a timely manner, but as we all know, sometimes computers have problems that can't be fixed simply with a reboot!
Their policy states: We guarantee that the network will be available 99.99% of the time in a given month (this does not include functionality of software/services on a server), excluding scheduled maintenance. If network downtime exceeds 0.01% the customer will be refunded 5% of their monthly fee for every 60 minutes of downtime, up to 100% of the customer's monthly fee.
I've never asked for 5% for any downtime in a month as I really don't feel that getting $.75 for 2.5 hours (99.63%) downtime over a month minus the scheduled maintenance would be worth anyone's time (mine or JaguarPC's).
Since I needed a host that was more friendly to large video and mp3 files, I selected this company. They are based in Canada and have been excellent hosting providers. They are a bit more expensive than other hosts, but for $20 a month (actually $15 if you pay by the year) for 2000 megs and 40 gigs of transfer a month.
They, as JaguarPC does, run Cpanel servers and are similar in set up. I don't do as much with 100megswebhosting as I do JaguarPC, but they have generally been good with their response time with trouble tickets. They have taken anywhere from a few minutes to 6 hours to respond.
They offer a reseller plan 'for free' as long as you have any account open with them. They suggest that you sign up for monthly billing so that you can manage your own accounts. If you are signed up for yearly, then you would have to have them set up resold accounts for you and you can't control them from your reseller account control panel. Either way, they will accomodate.
The plans they offer for reselling are 75% of the listed rate. So for $3.75 a month, 20 megs with 8 gigs of transfer (but only 1 email account!!! Something I don't like - 10 would be more reasonable). Two other plans are for $7.50 and $15 a month for 200 megs/20 gigs transfer (10 emails, subdomains, FTPs, mySQL DBs) and 2000 megs/40 gigs transfer (unlimited emails, subdomains, FTPs, mySQL DBs).
The reseller plan of course masks the acutal hosting company and provides you with your own name servers. You are responsible for your own support (1st level).
One thing that is a bit odd is they do not have any uptime promises. I never needed to know that until some serious downtime occured last January. Often though, I would get 100% uptime in a month otherwise.
Oh man, I wouldn't wish this company on my worst enemy, but this one is like that guy down the street that helped you fix your car one day and has been hanging around since. He's greasy, doesn't seem to bathe, and knows his stuff when he's not passed out or drunk. Occasionally, he disappears, but you know he'll be back.
In some senses you wish you never met, but then again, sometimes you can appreciate him. That's DHEX. For $9.99 a year up to $29.99 a year, you can have unlimited email, and such with varying space and bandwidth up to 10 gigs of space (with the $29.99 a year). It's dirt cheap.
But just like that guy down the road, the site might be drunk and 'forget' what you uploaded the day before. I use this as kick around space, like an old truck that you can go mud bogging with. Hell, if it gets stuck in the mud, you can pull your plates, scratch the VIN numbers, and find another one. Yup, if this goes away, no big deal.
But, I've got it, so I use it. It's my temporal space.