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  1. #1

    Hosting for a medium sized forum

    Hi!

    I currently have some websites based on wordpress on some cheap hosting. They don't require to much bandwidth but still there is good amount of visitors every day.

    Now I want to create a forum for these sites and promote it. From my experience on other sign up projects I have run, I think it has potential to grow quite fast.

    I going to use Vbulletin and I need reliable hosting for this. I would probably end up somewhere with 10 000 signed up members in the future, at least I want hosting that can handle that amount.

    So for a standard forum of this size would I be able to use a standard shared webhosting package if I want it to run ok and not be slow. Or do I need to buy some expensive fancy solution to make it work.

    BTW I have looked at Godaddy for example and they offer huge amounts of traffic and space for a decent price but I'm afraid it will be slow..

  2. #2
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    Don't recommand GoDaddy. Though it all depends on what you will be running on the forum. If you run a shoutbox on the forum then you will see that you will be using a lot of resources and will not probably be suitable for shared hosting.

    Though my recommandation is just to try shared hosting first then move to VPS / Dedicated when needed. Keep good backups.
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  3. #3
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    I cant recomment a host, as I cant think of anything right now (Mind has gone completely today),

    But you only want to be spending no more then 10 - 15 (Maybe 20) p/month.

    Which should include =<250 GB Bandwidth, and I dont think you'll much more then 30 GB storage. This will give you enough space to grow and allow uploads, changes and upgrades.

    If you already know that great! But it's what I've used before and I now host my own (sucsessful) gaming forum.

    Just a handy tip.
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  4. #4
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    I would suggest starting out with a cheap account because many people start new forums everyday but most don't get crowded. Since your site is already getting traffic but not too much bandwidth, it is very likely that standard shared packages will be more than enough for a long time.

  5. #5
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    may i know your budget?
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  6. #6
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    BTW I have looked at Godaddy for example and they offer huge amounts of traffic and space for a decent price but I'm afraid it will be slow..
    Technically what they offer cannot be used or guaranteed to be used. You would be better off searching for a host that fits around your requirements and not a host that cannot guarantee you the entire usage of the resources they would allocate you for a measly few dollars.
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  7. #7
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    What's your budget? And definitely avoid GoDaddy - for two reasons:

    1) Their servers typically are quite slow (and dynamic scripts don't always work well with them due to the way they configure their servers)

    2) They are quite big oversellers. You won't be able to use the "huge" amounts that they advertise. It's just a marketing gimmic

    Since you plan to grow quite a bit, I'd suggest that you look for a host that doesn't oversell, or only oversells in a controlled way meaning that you will be able to use all the disk-space and bandwidth advertised (plus ensure that a potential host doesn't have a problem of having overloaded servers).

    Also consider looking for a host that allows you to easily upgrade your disk-space and bandwidth (and possibly to VPS) in the future.
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by yajur View Post
    may i know your budget?
    10-20 euro / month

    I may consider to pay a little bit more if there is a very very good option just outside my budget.

  9. #9
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    Another quick question sorry - you mentioned your budget as 10-20 euros/month - does this mean you are looking for a host based in Europe?
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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by DH - Tristan Perry View Post
    Another quick question sorry - you mentioned your budget as 10-20 euros/month - does this mean you are looking for a host based in Europe?
    It doesn't matter as long as it is fast and has good uptime.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by zizacon View Post
    It doesn't matter as long as it is fast and has good uptime.
    Makes sense Just wanted to clarify that point.

    To be honest your requirements seem fine, and your budget is good. Try checking out the various hosting offers boards, come up with a list of hosts you may be interested in, and then Google (and/or search here) for reviews etc.
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  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by DH - Tristan Perry View Post
    Makes sense Just wanted to clarify that point.

    To be honest your requirements seem fine, and your budget is good. Try checking out the various hosting offers boards, come up with a list of hosts you may be interested in, and then Google (and/or search here) for reviews etc.
    1. Is there a specific english word for a host that don't oversell, or at least not to much, if I want to search for those hosts.

    2. what kind of package do I need minimum in terms of bandwidth and space to make a basic vbulletin forum of that size run properly.. I suppose these hosts won't supply "unlimited" amounts like go daddy claims to do.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by zizacon View Post
    1. Is there a specific english word for a host that don't oversell, or at least not to much, if I want to search for those hosts.

    2. what kind of package do I need minimum in terms of bandwidth and space to make a basic vbulletin forum of that size run properly.. I suppose these hosts won't supply "unlimited" amounts like go daddy claims to do.
    Unfortunately there's no specific word really; it's not too common (especially for an "unlimited" host or one that oversells *a lot*) to say whether they oversell or not.

    I guess it just takes a bit of experience to be able to see who is overselling or not, and more importantly the extend of overselling.

    I mean, a host that offers (say) "500 GB disk-space, 5,000 GB bandwidth, $5 per month" would clearly be oversell to an extreme since a typical server may come with 500 GB hard-drives and ~3,500 GB bandwidth - and such a server would cost more than $5 per month of course.

    On the other hand, something like (say) "25 GB disk-space, 100 GB bandwidth, $6 per month" is overselling a bit, but probably a controlled/manageable amount.

    This is just a quick example, but one hopefully showing that there's different "levels" of overselling, and a little bit of overselling isn't a bad thing at all.

    Sorry if this confuses things; it can be tricky to explain, since (as above) a little bit of overselling is fine.

    In answer to your second question, I would imagine that - even with a fairly active forums - you'd need more than around 50 GB of bandwidth

    I once had a forums (powered by SMF; but the bandwidth usage compared to vBulletin is similar) which had over a million posts and around 50 users online at the same time (at peak times), and that used up around 40 GB per month of bandwidth I believe.

    Sorry if I've confused things a bit; feel free to ask anymore questions you may have
    Last edited by writespeak; 11-17-2009 at 12:37 PM. Reason: Fixed typo by request
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  14. #14
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    Do you know how many users you have online at peak and average?
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by DH - Tristan Perry View Post
    Unfortunately there's no specific word really; it's not too common (especially for an "unlimited" host or one that oversells *a lot*) to say whether they oversell or not.

    I guess it just takes a bit of experience to be able to see who is overselling or not, and more importantly the extend of overselling.

    I mean, a host that offers (say) "500 GB disk-space, 5,000 GB bandwidth, $5 per month" would clearly be oversell to an extreme since a typical server may come with 500 GB hard-drives and ~3,500 GB bandwidth - and such a server would cost more than $5 per month of course.

    On the other hand, something like (say) "25 GB disk-space, 100 GB bandwidth, $6 per month" is overselling a bit, but probably a controlled/manageable amount.

    This is just a quick example, but one hopefully showing that there's different "levels" of overselling, and a little bit of overselling isn't a bad thing at all.

    Sorry if this confuses things; it can be tricky to explain, since (as above) a little bit of overselling is fine.

    In answer to your second question, I would imagine that - even with a fairly active forums - you'd need more than around 50 GB of bandwidth

    I once had a forums (powered by SMF; but the bandwidth usage compared to vBulletin is similar) which had over a million posts and around 50 users online at the same time (at peak times), and that used up around 40 GB per month of bandwidth I believe.

    Sorry if I've confused things a bit; feel free to ask anymore questions you may have

    Thanks for your answers. I have a couple of more questions.

    1.You mentioned that you had a forum. How much space (gigabytes) did you need for all those posts?

    2. I also wonder how many signed up members roughly you had. Just to have something to compare to

    3. Did you host this forum on a shared server, and did you experience any other problems doing so.
    Last edited by writespeak; 11-17-2009 at 12:37 PM. Reason: Fixed typo in quote

  16. #16
    I'd personally look for Semi-Dedicated shared hosting. It has the benefits of shared hosting, but with greater resources, and lower amount of users per server. It looks like your budget could definitely handle a reasonable semi-dedicated account.

    Good luck in the hunt !
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by zizacon View Post
    Thanks for your answers. I have a couple of more questions.

    1.You mentioned that you had a forum. How much space (gigabytes) did you need for all those posts?

    2. I also wonder how many signed up members roughly you had. Just to have something to compare to

    3. Did you host this forum on a shared server, and did you experience any other problems doing so.
    You're welcome

    1) From memory, it was around the 6-7 GB disk-space mark when it had 1 million posts. Of that, the DB was 600-800 MB (can't fully remember sorry), then images (avatars, attachments etc) took up a fair bit of space.

    2) I think around 8,000-9,000 members at that time.

    3) It was hosted on a shared server up until it had around 350,000 posts. Then we moved to a VPS.

    It ended up on a VPS with KnownHost.com; I no longer host it now, so am not sure it it's currently hosted.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by zizacon View Post
    I going to use Vbulletin and I need reliable hosting for this.
    I suggest you look at hosting services which offer Vbulletin.

  19. #19
    Save yourself some money, start off with a reliable shared hosting plan and as your forum grows scale up your hosting requirements as needed.(shared-->High-end VPS--->Dedicated)

    Best Of Luck,
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  20. #20
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    Go to a regular shared account on a host on where you can grow, this mean, if your forum is too much for a shared account have an alternative (VPS, Semi-dedicated, dedicated) to where move in the future. I understand that everybody expect to have a huge forum when start, but unfortunately, big forums are not that common.
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  21. #21
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    BTW I have looked at Godaddy for example and they offer huge amounts of traffic and space for a decent price but I'm afraid it will be slow..
    They're slow, but not because of what they offer. Other hosts offer the same and are way faster. Now, that doesn't mean you can really expect to push say 1TB of data transfer with a forum on a <$10 account. You need a dedicated server or more for that feat, and that means $$$ or $$$$.

    I agree with Jedito (Jorge by his real name ) above, that you're much better off starting small, and plan for an upgrade path. Once I'd get to the point of having 50-100 constant online users, I'd start looking to get out of regular shared hosting, but that's just me liking to play it safe. You could just wait until the host asks you to upgrade or suspends your account and asks you to upgrade.

  22. #22
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    Now-a-days you can pickup a decent VPS for your budget. Giving you more flexibility so might be worth looking at that.

    Other than that i'd recommend openhosting for basic webhosting.

  23. #23
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    Is it possible to know the number of users hosted on a particular server.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by waqyum View Post
    Is it possible to know the number of users hosted on a particular server.
    No ........

  25. #25
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    Is it possible to know the number of users hosted on a particular server.
    What one can know is an approximate number of domains that point to an IP (and IP is not the same as "server"). To know the number of users on the server, you'd better ask the server admin.

  26. #26
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    a vps should be fine. but it all depends on how many active users you have.

  27. #27

  28. #28
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    I would recommend Invision Power Board over vBulletin, especially after the recent changes to the licensing from Internet Brands.

  29. #29
    I'd put in for Semi-Dedicated shared hosting. I would also use MyBB instead of vBulletin.

  30. #30
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    Call me old fashioned but I's still stick with Vbulletin. Due to it been the biggest commercial board for many years, there's alot of flexibility and customizations available.

    I've got a board running on a nice little VPS. Only @ about 100K posts and approx 20-30 active users at any point, so for a small board, shared hosting will work but there are good VPS hosts in your budget.

  31. #31

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