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  1. #1

    Another "recommend a host" thread

    Hello all,

    I run a forum/community & am beginning to come up against the top end of what they offer in terms of bandwidth & site resources. So I'd like to start looking at alternatives. Here is what I'm currently using:

    +/- 50gb bandwidth/data transfer per month
    500 mb database size
    1.25 gb disk usage

    Right now I'm paying $50 per month for 50gb bandwidth & 2gb disk space. No Cpanel.

    Upside to current host - site is never down. In over 4 years with them, I can literally count on 1 hand how many times the site has been down. It also runs fast, & hardly ever experiences slowdowns (maybe count that on both hands ).

    Downside: No Cpanel. Anything that I want to do with the site outside of FTP, I have to contact them for. I had to write a script to get backups of the database done, through Cpanel that would be a slam dunk. I can't even change a password without calling them to do it. The good thing is that they're always responsive & professional, but if I'm working on the site on a weekend (a common thing), I have to wait until Monday to make changes like that. So I'd love to have Cpanel as part of the move.

    Requirements for the board include Mysql 5.0 & PHP 5.2 (actually those are the recommended specs, but I'd rather stay on that side of things).

    Budget: would like to stay between $50-100 per month

    So, with all of that in mind, here are my questions:

    1. Any suggestions on a host? I've looked at Pair & Futurequest, & right now I favor Pair for either a shared or VPS solution. (Although, it doesn't look like Pair uses Cpanel, is that true?) Any other good ones out there? I'm not too interested in budget hosts, I'm willing to pay a little more for reliability & speed. My members have been spoiled on that point by our current host.

    2. Should I be looking at a VPS? If so, would Pair be a good one to go with?

    3. Any other thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Check out the PrecisionPro plan from Precision Effect.

    Dave

  3. #3
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    www.uncorrupted.net do high-demand sites well, most clients are forums and heavy bandwidth bloggers.

  4. #4
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    Are you paying $50 per month for a shared plan? If your budget is that high then you can easily afford a fully managed VPS. I recommend Wiredtree

  5. #5
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    Any non-oversold shared hosting plan would fit your requirements. You do not need a VPS at the moment. All cPanel hosts should support MySQL 5.0 and PHP 5.2. Your budget is pretty good but you can easily find a reliable shared host within the range of $10-$30/month.

    You should look in the Shared Hosting Offers section:
    http://www.webhostingtalk.com/forumdisplay.php?f=4

    Some hosts that have a good reputation on WHT are FusedNetwork, HawkHost, A Small Orange, etc.
    HighLayer - Canadian Web Hosting, Reseller Hosting & Dedicated Servers
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    Visit www.highlayer.com or Call 1-888-84-LAYER

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by igxhost View Post
    Are you paying $50 per month for a shared plan? If your budget is that high then you can easily afford a fully managed VPS. I recommend Wiredtree
    Yes, it's a shared plan. The host that I'm on just does a good job of not overselling/overloading their servers. I'm a firm believer in getting what you pay for.

    So what advantages would I have at this point of going to VPS vs. staying with shared?

  7. #7
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    You could go for a semi-dedicated which will give you what you've got now but with more space/transfer for a bit less with a control panel and being fully managed.

    It would be simpler for you to do what you need to do with most likely.

  8. #8
    The site grows at a pretty steady pace each year, so maybe a VPS or semi-dedicated would be a better long term solution (at least if I'm going to go through the trouble of moving the site). Definitely needs to be managed though.

  9. #9
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    Your budget is perfect for a managed VPS, it's always great to see people with realistic pricing in mind

    A fully managed service should include the site migration, but may involve a bit of a delay because of your limit access.
    http://www.rskeens.com
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  10. #10
    My 2 biggest priorities are speed & reliability, & it's splitting hairs as to which is more important. Looking at Wiredtree & Liquidweb for a VPS solution at the moment.

  11. #11
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    I would suggest Wiredtree, as it gives you full access to cPanel/WHM with no extra cost.

  12. #12
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    I can recommend: http://www.liquidweb.com. Their "VPS Basic" is excellent for you.
    I think that you can stay in a shared hosting, but if you look more control of your environment you should go to a vps.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamson View Post
    I would suggest Wiredtree, as it gives you full access to cPanel/WHM with no extra cost.
    Liquid Web also offers cPanel/WHM with no extra cost.
    -It's not about how much, it is about how to.

  13. #13
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  14. #14
    You do not need a VPS unless you require ROOT access to a server to customize the server for your own benefits, you should be fine on a shared hosting plan or a semi-dedicated plan.

  15. #15
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    Everybody seems to be encouraging the OP to go with a VPS plan.

    I'd suggest sticking with shared - as long as it's not oversold. You'll get better speeds than a VPS and will be able to utilize more resources periodically if your site gets a burst of traffic. The earlier recommendation for a semi-dedicated solution is a good bet, but I think you'd be better off trying a regular shared plan first. Look for a host that makes an effort to offer an undersold service and has a good reputation (search this forum!). If you do your homework, you'll come out ahead in the long run.

  16. #16
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    Dave has a point, just avoid anything 'virtualized'. It generally adds management overhead (something you probably don't want) and in most cases actually reduces performance because you're allocated significantly less resources vs. a shared environment -- you probably don't want to be responsible for tweaking your daemons to increase performance and such.

    I'd have to say the semi-dedicated idea sounds best though, quite frankly, vs. a basic shared environment where you could rather quickly reach limitations.
    David
    Web hosting by Fused For businesses with more important things to do than worry about their hosting.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by David View Post
    Dave has a point, just avoid anything 'virtualized'. It generally adds management overhead (something you probably don't want) and in most cases actually reduces performance because you're allocated significantly less resources vs. a shared environment -- you probably don't want to be responsible for tweaking your daemons to increase performance and such.

    I'd have to say the semi-dedicated idea sounds best though, quite frankly, vs. a basic shared environment where you could rather quickly reach limitations.
    David's got a point as well, and to sort of add to it. With a VPS, you get guaranteed resources, like say 200Mhz and 256MB of Memory (these are just for example). These are guaranteed, but at the same time, you're also limited by them. On a shared package, you have access to 100% of the servers resources. On a semi-dedicated plan, you get the convenience of shared hosting, but with fewer accounts per server, so that means you have more basic resources, with the option to burst to 100% of the server.

    Unless you need a VPS for either root access, custom software, or something that you have to have, a semi dedicated account would be cheaper, and would probably work better. With a VPS, it's like a dedicated server, so that means you need to either know how to manage it, or pay someone to do it, or have it included with the plan. Either way, it's a cost. With semi dedicated, the host maintains it as they would a shared plan.

    So it honestly depends upon your specific needs, and if you really need what a VPS has to offer. I personally would opt for a cheaper semidedicated package first, then transfer to a VPS if needed. It's really easy to migrate to a VPS if you actually do need to.

  18. #18
    Point taken.

    Okay, Liquidweb seems to be well thought of in terms of VPS solutions. How is their shared hosting?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawksfan View Post
    Point taken.

    Okay, Liquidweb seems to be well thought of in terms of VPS solutions. How is their shared hosting?
    I don't know about their shared hosting. You can try to search in WHT about that.
    -It's not about how much, it is about how to.

  20. #20
    Have you thought about a dedicated server?

  21. #21
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    <<Snipped quoted removed post>>



    Quote Originally Posted by David View Post
    Dave has a point, just avoid anything 'virtualized'. It generally adds management overhead (something you probably don't want) and in most cases actually reduces performance because you're allocated significantly less resources vs. a shared environment -- you probably don't want to be responsible for tweaking your daemons to increase performance and such.

    I'd have to say the semi-dedicated idea sounds best though, quite frankly, vs. a basic shared environment where you could rather quickly reach limitations.
    So many people on various forums recommend VPS as some sort of solution or for better faster speeds. No one seems to take into account overhead of running the applications themselves. When someone has shared hosting the host isn't counting the overhead resources of running the web server or mysql. On a VPS though that 512MB of ram will include not only the memory used to run the site but to also run the services themselves.

    Everyone should keep recommending VPS's though maybe one of the users who gets the recommendation will sign up with them
    Last edited by anon-e-mouse; 10-04-2009 at 05:45 AM.
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Zackvz View Post
    Have you thought about a dedicated server?
    I have, but dismissed it as being outside of my budget for a fully managed solution. Is this true?

  23. #23
    Back to Pair, they have a program called "High Volume Hosting". Basically it looks very similar to their top end shared programs, except that they offer more (& are more expensive of course). Could this be considered "semi-dedicated"?

    Also, Wiredtree has something called "Managed Hybrid", but they talk about using "industry-leading virtualization software Virtuozzo", which was mentioned as a not-good-thing earlier in this thread because of the overhead that it can add.

    I feel like I need to know a second language called "Marketese" to make sense of any of this.

  24. #24
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    Pair would be a great option -- high volume hosting is essentially semi-dedicated. Again, stray from anything virtual unless it's got a fantastic management package behind it.

    If you're going virtual, check out liquidweb or servint.
    If you're going shared -- can't go wrong with pair.

    No need to learn other languages. English works -- semi-dedicated is like having a townhouse. Shared is living in an apartment. Dedicated is your own house. Less to worry about when there's less neighbours and their kids around
    David
    Web hosting by Fused For businesses with more important things to do than worry about their hosting.

  25. #25
    Aside from their reputation & history, I'm attracted to Pair because they appear to have all 3 - shared, semi & dedicated. I could start out with one of their upper or top tier shared plans & move up as I need to, without having to actually switch hosts. Their history gives me confidence that they'll be around for that.

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by TonyB View Post
    So many people on various forums recommend VPS as some sort of solution or for better faster speeds. No one seems to take into account overhead of running the applications themselves. When someone has shared hosting the host isn't counting the overhead resources of running the web server or mysql. On a VPS though that 512MB of ram will include not only the memory used to run the site but to also run the services themselves.
    You make an excellent point, Tony. I don't understand why someone would spend 20 or 30 dollars on a VPS with 512MB of RAM that barely has the muscle to run cPanel and the necessary components when they could purchase a high end shared plan that offers performance that is far superior.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawksfan View Post
    Aside from their reputation & history, I'm attracted to Pair because they appear to have all 3 - shared, semi & dedicated. I could start out with one of their upper or top tier shared plans & move up as I need to, without having to actually switch hosts. Their history gives me confidence that they'll be around for that.
    You get what you pay for with Pair. They are pricier than most... but it's justified. And I think you made a great point... you can grow with Pair.

    I would start with Pair's High Volume account and then keep stepping up until you need their dedicated offerings. They have been around forever and their support & network are excellent. Don't be tempted by all the hosts offering more for less. It costs money to provide what they offer. Focus on your site/business and let them worry about the technical side.

    Like others have said, I don't think you need a vps. If you decide to go that route, I would focus on 4 of the top managed vps providers (ServInt, KnownHost, LiquidWeb, and WiredTree).

    Quote Originally Posted by hawksfan View Post
    Although, it doesn't look like Pair uses Cpanel, is that true?
    Pair doesn't use Cpanel. Pair has their own homemade panel and use it for their shared, vps, and dedicated plans. The vps & dedicated version is slightly different and offers a few more options.
    Last edited by mainpipe; 10-04-2009 at 05:47 PM.

  28. #28
    Do they offer any sort of database management tool? My current host uses PHPmyadmin, & there are some things that I will need that for. Pair's "tour" of their control panel is decent, but I don't see any real database tools. I see no mention of anything like that on their site.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawksfan View Post
    Do they offer any sort of database management tool? My current host uses PHPmyadmin, & there are some things that I will need that for. Pair's "tour" of their control panel is decent, but I don't see any real database tools. I see no mention of anything like that on their site.
    With Pair you can manage your databases using phpMyAdmin.

    Checkout these links:
    http://www.pair.com/support/knowledg...ing_mysql.html
    http://www.pair.com/support/knowledg...hpmyadmin.html
    Last edited by mainpipe; 10-04-2009 at 06:44 PM.

  30. #30
    Perfect, that's exactly what I was looking for.

  31. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by mainpipe View Post
    With Pair you can manage your databases using phpMyAdmin.

    Checkout these links:
    http://www.pair.com/support/knowledg...ing_mysql.html
    http://www.pair.com/support/knowledg...hpmyadmin.html
    Almost every web host offers phpMyAdmin.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by WN-Ali View Post
    Almost every web host offers phpMyAdmin.
    True. But the OP was specifically asking about Pair.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawksfan View Post
    Aside from their reputation & history, I'm attracted to Pair because they appear to have all 3 - shared, semi & dedicated. I could start out with one of their upper or top tier shared plans & move up as I need to, without having to actually switch hosts. Their history gives me confidence that they'll be around for that.
    The same could be said for LiquidWeb.com which is one of the few web hosts which can match Pair in those respects:

    Established in 1997 and incorporated in 1998.
    They offer cPanel with Fantastico which IMHO is more user friendly than Pair's control panel.
    They offer 24/7/365 support via tickets and phone. When I had a VPS and dedicated cluster with them, they always answered the phone whether it was 3PM or 3AM.
    Last but not least they offer shared, VPS and dedicated hosting plans.

    That being said if I were the OP, I'd go with either LiquidWeb.com or ServInt.net, that would be a tough choice. Remember to check the hosting offers forum which has coupons to save even more. Best of luck!

    Disclaimer: I don't work for or own LiquidWeb, if you think otherwise I have a bridge I'd like to sell you
    What's your budget?

    Seriously, what's your budget?

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