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Andy Brice
Successful Software

Doug Nebeker ("Doug")

Jonathan Matthews
Creator of DeepTrawl, CloudTrawl, and LeapDoc

Nicholas Hebb
BreezeTree Software

Bob Walsh
host, Startup Success Podcast author of The Web Startup Success Guide and Micro-ISV: From Vision To Reality

Patrick McKenzie
Bingo Card Creator

Web Hosting (shared server)


Can anyone suggest a web hosting company that offers:

- FTP for me to upload files.
- POP3 and SMTP or secure SMTP.
- Provide raw logfiles.
- Ideally > 20 GBytes per month bandwidth.
- Ideally with a phone number for emergency support.
- Ideally under about £100 per year.

I don't need ASP, Frontpage, PHP or anything else, and I don't need a dedicated server, and I don't mind if it's Unix or Windows based. I just want to be able to use FTP to create my site structure, then upload the html files and other files, and download the logs.

I've spent some time googling for suitable hosts and the requirements that cause problems are SMTP and providing a phone number. Many hosts hide the number, others have a phone number that doesn't work. The best host I've found so far is http://www.netpivotal.com but they won't give me SMTP, also their control panel doesn't work through Windows Small Business Server ISA. Any ideas?
William Rayer Send private email
Saturday, May 28, 2005
Why do you need phone support? I don't think you'll find many hosting companies offering this. I'd rather the company have a good help desk software package running, backed by competent, responsive techs. And Forums are very nice to have so you can get help from others hosting there.

Also make sure the company has been around for a while and has a good reputation. Check out http://www.webhostingtalk.com Don't take post there as gospel, but it should help with your decision making process.

For Unix hosting I'm happy with Servint. I've got a VPS which I would recommend over shared hosting. Tech support is good and they've been in business for about 10 years. They do support via. e-mail which isn't ideal, but in the end gets the job done.
Neville Franks Send private email
Saturday, May 28, 2005
I have a serverpronto dedicated server.  $30/month, which is only slightly more expensive than most VPSes and much more performant.
Jonathan Ellis
Saturday, May 28, 2005
Worth taking a look at http://www.devbizhost.com/
Saturday, May 28, 2005
I am using these guys, for 2 websites.


They are a good price and their support has been responsive (at max 1 business day). I haven’t tried their phone support, but email has been fine.

CNet has some pretty good reviews for hosts, that is where I found these guys.

N. Send private email
Saturday, May 28, 2005
I am using www.webhosting4life.com.
Everything that you requested except raw log files will be $4.95 per month. With raw log files - $9.95.
+ $19.95 setup fee.
Katerina K.
Katerina K. Send private email
Saturday, May 28, 2005

As a suggestion, I'm using www.asmallorange.com and I'm quite happy with them. Except phone support, which I haven't even checked, they support everything you ask for. They have some low-price high-bandwidth plans if you forget about scripted sites (php, ...).

Regarding support, I used their e-mail based trouble-ticket system and they were really quick and helpfuul (between 1 and 4 hours).

I researched in webhostingtalk, that's how I found out about them.
J Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
+1 for webhosting4life. Their support is nothing short of amazing. We're talking less than one hour turnarounds on all low priority support tickets.
--Josh Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
www.webhost4life.com as well.  Typically great support, less than 1 hour except for yesterday I had to wait over 3 hours for them to fix an issue with SQL Server, but for the most part very happy for the price, especially considering all the features you get.

The servers can be a tad slow at times as I think they overload the servers too much but again for the price and support they can't be beat IMHO.
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Thanks for the suggestions, I will check them all out. The reason for the phone support was so I could check the requirements were OK before going ahead. I also like that some of the companies mentioned offer 30 day money back guarantees.
William Rayer Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Ah, and one more thing:

Don't host with GoDaddy.  Their uptime is not bad, prices are good, but technical support is terrible.  I keep getting canned answers that have nothing to do with my questions.  Looks like their entire level 1 support staff is outsourced to junior-level personnel who is paid $80/mo.  And the one single time when I managed to get an escalation of an issue to actual _engineers_, the engineers - level 2 - did not bother to respond.
Sunday, May 29, 2005
"Don't host with GoDaddy."

Yes that's another lesson I learnt. Make sure the registrar where your domain names are kept is different from the web host company that hosts the pages. Otherwise you risk your names being held hostage if you part company from your web host in unfriendly conditions.
William Rayer Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
OK I've contacted asmallorange.com, webhost4life.com and servage.net with some questions. I will post the results here later!
William Rayer Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
William, most hosts don't offer money back gaurantee's or free trials as it is too easy for a spammer to set up a site and cause mahem. It may only be the more desparate one's that do this now.

I've had to move hosts 4 times over the years and each time it is a huge hassle. I urge you to check thoroughly over at webhostingtalk.com before signing up with someone and would personally shy away from any host that hasn't been around for at least a few years. I realise this is hard on new hosts just starting out, but I've been there and done that. Go and read about Dinix on WHT for the horror story.

Also try and go with a host that a) owns their on servers, b) has their own data center, c) has their own tech's.

You'll find that nearly all small hosts simply purchase dedicated servers and start a hosting company. It is difficult for these folks to build a sustainable business IMO.
Neville Franks Send private email
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Try http://www.varhosting.net. I never has problems with it and I host 6 sites on it.

Price is very cheep and also they have 24 hours support.

I used the support quite a number of times and it they are really helpful.
Ajay Send private email
Tuesday, May 31, 2005
I am hosting my blog on http://www.jodohost.com and they are good. There were few downtimes but they were mostly communicated in advance and they were not more than 30 mins.

JD Send private email
Tuesday, May 31, 2005
I've been recommended www.webhosting4life.com also, and may be use their hosting services for my next sites :).

William, if you choose www.webhosting4life.com or have more information about them, post it here pls. As I saw in their web site, they offer 45 days money back warranty now.
Tiendq Send private email
Friday, June 03, 2005

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