Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-12-2019, 03:46 PM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745

HELP! Lunarpages was sold to HostPapa. :-(


I have a hobbyist site, in which I've invested much time, effort and emotion. I have a large number of files, some of them of largish size. I even have fans who appreciate my site! (If I had ads I might even be making a little bit of money!)

I have recommended Lunarpages for a webhosting service several times here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post
I am extremely happy with LunarPages. They have different plans and may be slightly more expensive than others, but I pay much less than $100/year for high traffic, very large diskspace, domain registration, e-mail, support for server-side scripts, etc. etc. From time to time they offer free site-building software but I never tried it. When I've had problems, their e-mail response has always been prompt, friendly and helpful.
(In addition to excellent e-mail support, they had live chat support that was even better.)

Several gigabytes of disk-space, high traffic, excellent personal support, very low cost. It all seemed too good to be true! I wondered if Lunarpages were somehow a front for a drug cartel or, more plausibly, a data gatherer like the NSA.

It was too good to last. Today in my e-mail in-basket I find:

Quote:
Originally Posted by <noreply@hostpapasupport.com>
Hi Septimus,

We are proud to announce that Lunarpages is now a part of the HostPapa family!

HostPapa has been operating since 2007 and is one of North America’s fastest growing hosting and cloud solutions companies. We help more than 150,000 small and medium businesses around the world realize their dreams.
...
I use tarballs (e.g. foo.tar.gz) to upload new pages and happened to be ready for some updates. I click on Cpanel and upload. Real fast: 100% complete color blue. Then I wait a few seconds till blue changes to green; then click Expand.

But blue didn't change to green. After several seconds it changed to red. (I "exceeded quota.") Yet right there at the top of that Upload page was that happy Lunarpages news:
Maximum file size allowed for upload:


I tried it again ... and again ... and again and again. Eventually I concluded that it refuses to upload any file larger than 700 kilobytes or thereabouts, OR a tarball which expands to more than that threshold. The long delay after uploading a tarball before it changes color to green or red is evidently HostPapa calculating how large the inflated tarball will be. (Actually, the space I need is about Zero: I'm just overwriting files already there.)

I did discover a trick. If I rename foo.tar.gz to foo.txt I can upload it (if it's less than the 700k maximum). Then I rename it back to foo.tar.gz in Cpanel and inflate it successfully. This will NOT work for me, however; some of my updates are preposterously huge.

Googling suggests that many new HostPapa customers have similar problems. Sometimes, when a customer complains, his website is taken down with a note like (paraphrased) "Your resource usage exceeds that of our target customer base. Bye Bye."

I hope to find another hosting service. I'll happily pay twice what I was paying Lunarpages, but I do NOT think HostPapa is going to work for me. Recommendations?
  #2  
Old 09-12-2019, 04:30 PM
TwoCarrotSnowman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: West Yorks, UK
Posts: 527
I'm unclear from the above whether LunarPages (I hadn't heard of them before) are providing a virtual private server offering, where you get a Linux VM to manage and control the webserver directly. If so, Linode or Digital Ocean would be worth looking at.

Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services are the two dominant players in the cloud hosting market, and they both have Platform as a Service web hosting offerings if that's more your bag.

If you're looking for a simple blog style website, then WordPress is generally the go-to.

Edit: I'm posting from my phone, and it seems to have screwed up the whitespace around the links. Sorry.

Last edited by TwoCarrotSnowman; 09-12-2019 at 04:31 PM.
  #3  
Old 09-12-2019, 04:41 PM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745
My site is entirely "do it yourself" — little except Html files that I generate myself. I just want disk space and access to something like Cpanel.
  #4  
Old 09-12-2019, 04:45 PM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
Standard Amazon storage is 2.5 c/GB/month. If you need to run scripts and such, a simple virtual server is like $3.50/month.

Last edited by DPRK; 09-12-2019 at 04:46 PM.
  #5  
Old 09-12-2019, 05:11 PM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745
Quote:
Originally Posted by DPRK View Post
Standard Amazon storage is 2.5 c/GB/month. If you need to run scripts and such, a simple virtual server is like $3.50/month.
Thank you! Assuming 'c' means 'cents', the price is certainly right! My only scripts are client-side Javascript.

I get easily confused. Will Amazon give me a Cpanel interface or the equivalent? Will they provide routine services like Lunarpages provided, e.g. domain name renewal, subdomains?
  #6  
Old 09-12-2019, 06:30 PM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post
Thank you! Assuming 'c' means 'cents', the price is certainly right! My only scripts are client-side Javascript.

I get easily confused. Will Amazon give me a Cpanel interface or the equivalent? Will they provide routine services like Lunarpages provided, e.g. domain name renewal, subdomains?
You mean Lightsail? Straight from the website, all Lightsail plans include
Static IP address
Intuitive management console
DNS management
1-click SSH terminal access (Linux/Unix)
1-click RDP access (Windows)
Powerful API
Highly available SSD storage
Server monitoring

But, you don't actually need that plan if all you are serving is "client-side JavaScript". You can try the AWS Amplify Console; look here: https://aws.amazon.com/websites/

The Storage Service has its own console to, for example, upload and download files by dragging them to or from a browser window.

You can configure all of these services from the AWS Management Console. Anyway, the point is that you can sign up for a free trial of all these services, so you know exactly what you will be getting.
  #7  
Old 09-14-2019, 02:00 AM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745
So I gave Amazon my credit card number. I've got a static IP address (which produces only error messages if I ping or browse it), an "EC_2 instance" and a Unix prompt.

I could get started if I knew how to upload files and how to associate that ip address with a folder, but looking for a How-To on these simplest possible things seems like looking for a needle in a haystack of glorious but irrelevant features. What's an S3 'bucket' and do I need to care?

With Cpanel's File Manager I clicked a button that said 'Upload.' Where is the Amazon/AWS/Lightsail/S3 'Upload' button?

Last edited by septimus; 09-14-2019 at 02:01 AM.
  #8  
Old 09-14-2019, 12:01 PM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
OK, an EC2 instance is essentially a (virtual) computer, but remember that you don't need that to host a static web site, so you may as well delete it.

One possibility that I mentioned is to store the entire website on the S3 service, following the example here. S3 is object storage; the objects are organized into "buckets", which are just names. You need to create two buckets, as detailed in this tutorial: one named yourdomain.com and another named www.yourdomain.com (mutatis mutandis). Then you upload all your stuff (your entire website) to the yourdomain.com bucket and finish setting everything up as detailed in the tutorial.

You asked how the actual upload works: assuming you created the bucket from the S3 console, you choose that bucket from the list and you can then drag and drop your files, or click on the "Add Files" button and choose which files to upload. See the pictures here.

Last edited by DPRK; 09-14-2019 at 12:01 PM.
  #9  
Old 09-15-2019, 03:24 PM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745
Thanks for the help, DPRK !

I'm afraid that Amazon will not be a good fit for me. For one thing, it sounds like little experiments could end up as new charges on my credit card — quite different from a host like Lunarpages where the fee is exactly $X, period. And, although my website is 99.99% static I like to dabble with server-side scripts, just for fun. And I have read-protected directories and other things that Amazon S3 doesn't seem to like.

Especially important to me is the ability to inflate tarballs. (Rightly or wrongly my site has a preposterously large number of pages!) It seems that Amazon has some "Uploading Objects Using Multipart Upload API." I don't want Blah-blah-blah. I want tar xzf. Good old 45-year old tar xzf.

Given the stupid questions I ask, it's even hard for me to believe that I was once a Unix kernel guru. Certainly I know that 'cp foo bar' overwrites the old version of 'bar' if any; and so does Cpanel. Amazon S3, I read, keeps old versions of 'bar.' A few slip-ups from me and I might end up with wasted gigabytes I don't know about but am paying for!

I think this old-fogey had better stick to Cpanel.
  #10  
Old 09-15-2019, 05:03 PM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
I don't work for nor care about Amazon, just mentioned it as a possibility. Their thing is that you pay as you go for only the specific services you use, so it can be cheap for certain use cases.

If you signed up for the trial you have 5 GB of Amazon S3 free for 12 months. You are right, it's possible to keep several versions of objects in a bucket, but you are not forced to enable that feature. An Amazon S3 bucket can be set up to serve a static website, not server-side scripts. If you want server-side scripts then you can do that through eg Amazon Lightsail, where you create an instance (a virtual server) configured with the operating system and applications of your choice and manage it however you want. The free trial is only 1 month on that. You can also create an Amazon EC2 instance (12 month free trial) and set it up like you would a real machine. (Including Cpanel if you like...)

Since you mention it, you can transfer large numbers of files to an S3 bucket using commands like

aws s3 sync your_directory s3://example-bucket

but it's not an ideal way if you have literally millions of files.

Last edited by DPRK; 09-15-2019 at 05:06 PM.
  #11  
Old 09-15-2019, 05:34 PM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
This is the guide on the Cpanel site explaining how to launch an instance using the Amazon infrastructure. I have never used their software, though, so cannot really comment on it.

cPanel itself is just a control panel; if that's what you want to use then Amazon and similar may not be the absolute dirtest cheapest, since maybe you can get a virtual server somewhere with a cpanel license thrown in as a package deal.
  #12  
Old 09-15-2019, 08:55 PM
septimus's Avatar
septimus is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: The Land of Smiles
Posts: 19,745
I'm certainly not "married" to Cpanel per se. In fact, when I saw the Unix prompt I thought I might be able to steer my website from there, doing 'chmod', 'tar', etc. on the hosted files. I still suspect that's quite possible, but I didn't want to learn all about 'buckets' and other jargon to get there.

I'm not looking for the absolutely cheapest option. I'd happily pay $100/year — in fact that's what I was paying Lunarpages before they lowered their fee with no prompting from me. The cheapest Lunarpages comes with online chat — I'm amazed they can afford it. The minimum Amazon contract that allows chat is much more than $100 IIRC.
  #13  
Old 09-16-2019, 08:10 AM
DPRK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,817
Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post
I'm certainly not "married" to Cpanel per se. In fact, when I saw the Unix prompt I thought I might be able to steer my website from there, doing 'chmod', 'tar', etc. on the hosted files. I still suspect that's quite possible, but I didn't want to learn all about 'buckets' and other jargon to get there.
It's not only possible, that's how it is meant to be used. You can spool up a prepared image with software like Wordpress on it, or pick an operating system and set up everything yourself from scratch. If you stick to free software (so, not Cpanel) then with the cheapest Lightsail package you pay nothing beyond $3.50/month. Well worth it IMO for a small to medium site.

The buckets business is for the Simple Storage, which is what it sounds like. (And it really is a "simple" model. Think of a "bucket" as a directory or folder if it helps to visualize it.) If you have terabytes of media files that need to be on your site, then, yes, you probably want to dump them into simple storage. If not, you don't need to worry about it at all. The cheapest Lightsail package mentioned above includes 20 GB of block storage. The $5 package has 40 GB.

Since you already signed up for the free trial, you might as well upload your site and see how well it runs. There are also plenty of video and other tutorials explaining how to configure any type of site imaginable on Amazon Lightsail and/or Amazon EC2.

Quote:
I'm not looking for the absolutely cheapest option. I'd happily pay $100/year — in fact that's what I was paying Lunarpages before they lowered their fee with no prompting from me. The cheapest Lunarpages comes with online chat — I'm amazed they can afford it. The minimum Amazon contract that allows chat is much more than $100 IIRC.
You get normal customer service with your account, but they are not going to help you with Unix system administration or technical support for free, no.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:40 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017