I'm a new member who found this great forum for hosting stuff. Thanks for everyone here!
First of all I apologize in advance for this long post. I have to write all details because I'm serious about having a good hosting service.
Currently, I'm hosting my basic site with a hosting company that I don't prefer to mention it's name. There are many bad things about them;
- Large number of database errors (MySql timeouts and connection errors)
- Untrained customer support staff because sometimes they give very silly and unbelievable replies, and sometimes they do not have enough knowledge to answer or solve simple problem.
- Their staff do not care enough. For example if they are stuck and don't know how to solve a problem, they just don't reply and leave tickets open.
- Without any prior notification, they perform sudden restores if something goes wrong in their servers. The bad thing is, sometimes they restore a 2 weeks old back-up, which means every 2 week old content will be deleted including hundreds of forum posts, emails, html pages, etc.
I have been with them around 3 years. As usually known about many hosting companies, the first 1 year is great, but I got the problem stated above at the beginning of the second year and I think that's enough, my visitors are leaving my site...
Anyway I'm planning to extremely extend my site with more contents and I think the current hosting provider cannot handle my needs. My plan is to move during June 2008 so that I have enough time to look for a really good service. I'll leave you with following details.
::: My Site's Contents :::
1. A PHP-based forum : vBulletin® (via one MySql)
2. A PHP-based website (via more than one MySql)
3. A PHP-based upload/download system for visitor's public use (via one MySql)
4. A PHP-based guest book (may or may not use MySql)
5. A PHP-based photo gallery / album (via one MySql)
::: Technical Requirements :::
1. Expected amount of monthly bandwidth usage = 500GB - 750GB per month
2. Minimum disk space needed = 500GB
3. Minimum MySql databases needed = 25
4. Streaming support for audio and video files including Real products
5. Support for Flash, Shockwave, and all other common multi-media files
6. Ability to add our own MIME types
7. Daily extreme access to the vBulletin® forum via MySql (expected around 150 online users at the same time)
8. Daily heavy downloads of audio & video files
9. Unlimited URL redirects
10. Additional FTP accounts for at least 500 users/ sub-users
11. Domain pointing management for at least 5 domains (can be pointed as Add-on Domains OR Parked Domains)
12. Password-protection for directories
13. Reasonable email accounts
14. Backup and restore tools for the home directory and all other contents such as the MySql databases
15. Secure Shell (SSH) access
I am seriously thinking about BLUEHOST. My budget is less than $10/month. But if it's really needed to pay for real quality, I would say no more than $13/month.
I would like also to add the following summary to get a feedback from you about BLUEHOST, please, about whether this is true or not
::: Positive things I heard and read about BLUEHOST :::
- They have very helpful, well-trained and friendly customer support staff.
- Most of technical features are great (High bandwidth, large storage, security, etc)
- According to their high quality service, their price is very cheap and competitive
::: Negative things I heard and read about BLUEHOST :::
- BlueHost is NOT perfect for MySql databases, even for normal usage (such as my case 150 users online at the same time). This will affect their CPU resourses and they will shut your site off!
- Because of the expected downtime in their MySql databases, BlueHost is not suitable for professional "real", reliable business. It is very good for little sites such as personal blogs.
- They will host your site is a server "Box", which can make you lucky or entirely unlucky. If that box is new and doesn't have many sites on it, it will be great. However, if it is busy and many sites on it, it will be bloody bad!
- A bad business strategy about the "Box" is that BlueHost hosts new customers in new "Boxes" which have no problems and no heavy load. By this customers will be satisfied having no issues during the first period. This means that they defiantly won't ask for cancellation or money refund, and they will continue with BlueHost. Once the time goes further, that "Box" will have much load and will be given to old customers, and then suffering begins!
Important note: I will not use horrible scripts in my site, they are all checked and validated via 3WC standards. Also I'll use the last updated version of vBulletin forum script. So there won't be serious problems from my side.
If you think my needs will not fit on BLUEHOST, then what's the alternative?
Thanks in advance