Website hosting

I’ve been a programmer for a while (web, client/server, desktop, pretty much anything) and I was thinking about creating a web presence for myself.

The place I pick should have the ability to host apps and I should be able to create a DB table or two (and update / query it of course). Do they all do this now? I’m more into Java nowadays but wouldn’t mind going with something more common.

If they have domain name services included that’d be great as well (registration, DNS).

I’m not looking for a huge amount of bandwidth and/or disk space, the ability to host apps is more important

any recommendations?

GoDaddy isn’t the most sophisticated host out there, but they’re reasonably cheap, you get a MySQL server with the account, and the longest I’ve waited on hold to get an actual human being in their tech support was under 10 minutes.

I host four sites there at the moment.

As the owner of a company that operates a small datacenter and hosting division, I would advise you to run the other way if you find a host that doesn’t offer free (no extra cost), unlimited* or very high limit database storage.

In the interest of not soliciting here, I’ll say that GoDaddy is a safe bet. The only trouble one may run into with GoDaddy is because of their massive popularity or size, they have a history of “doing whatever they want”. This is particularly true of their domain name operations. GoDaddy is only able to offer domain registrations because of an accrediation they hold from an organization named ICANN that manages all domain registrations worldwide. ICANN compels accredited registrars to follow a set of policies to protect consumers. GoDaddy/Wild West has been known to shrug off these policies, at the expense of consumers, and to the benefit of themselves, probably because they know ICANN can’t do anything about it. What are they going to do, pull the accreditation of the largest registrar in the world because of some isolated incidents of abuse?

Direct from my conversations with the chairman of ICANN, no.

  • There is no such thing as unlimited anything when it comes to computers, in the hosting industry this is a marketing term.

I prefer 1and1 over GoDaddy. I’ve never had any issues with downtime and they are quick to answer your questions and they have a varitey of plans. The fact they don’t charge extra to keep your personal info private is a plus for the individual. And they often have sales on domain names.

If you’re a total novice their site makes it easy.

I had an extremely bad experience with 1and1, namely that their tech support was incompetent. Back when email authentication was suddenly becoming the new standard, I was tasked with trying to make our business email compliant with it so that our business emails wouldn’t get bounced for questionable authenticity (ultimately resulting in lost business).

I am not an IT person, but I did a bit of Googling and then called them up to ask them to update our SPF record so that our email would authenticate (as we had no means of doing this via our control panel).

Their response was, at first, “SPF record? What’s that?”

After I got a supervisor, “We don’t support SPF.” (And he made it sound like he believed SPF was some sort of web application, but I’m not entirely sure because what was coming out of his mouth was completely nonsensical.)

I was a bit agog that my one hour of Googling made me more of an expert on SPF records than the tech support team. :rolleyes:

My personal favorite, and I’ve been very happily with them for a decade, is Smaller company, very competent tech support, reasonable fees, nice features.

I use Blue Host They have a really nice user CP, have a lot of basic software available for 1-click install, but also access to MySql so you can install and alter your site yourself. And I believe they are a Mormon company, which means pretty good phone tech support from polite and courteous people who speak English natively.

I am currently running a Drupal site with them.

I pay $ 86 for the year and have all sorts of unlimited stuff, from space to e-mail addresses and such. A lot of the native software makes setting it up easily. I particularly like it’s e-mail stuff, good mailing list app, good forwarding, and autoresponders stuff.

I’ve also had negative experiences with 1and1 regarding tech support, and don’t particularly care for their control panel.

I have no real complaints about godaddy, but I could live without their insipid ads.

I personally recommend one of two providers, depending on the level of support and reliability you require. for a small personal site and/or limited budget, try dreamhost; for a more commercial site with more support, try mediatemple.

(if you decide on dreamhost, I can get the setup fee waived if you’re going monthly, or a sizeable discount if you’re going yearly)

I use

I occasionally help out with admin for a website hosted at Dreamhost… their uptime isn’t all that great. I’m not saying it’s terrible, but this website has gone down 2 or 3 times in the last six months (anywhere from a few minutes to recurring intermittent problems for most of a day). My point of reference being, where my website has gone down for a few minutes maybe 3 or 4 times in the last ten years, and it seems to me that Dreamhost is down a lot.

You can get a lot of advice and opinions in the Web Hosting Forum at Web Hosting Talk. There seem to be a lot of people there with considerable experience, including people who act as resellers and who host sites for clients.

Of course, as with any set of recommendations, there often seems to be a tendency for people who have very good or very bad experiences to be the most vocal, meaning that it’s not always clear how representative the ratings are likely to be. Still, the more information, the better, right?

I’ve been thinking about finally putting my own site up as well, and as someone who would like to post comments of a political and critical nature, including criticisms of things like news stories and other media, i want to be sure that i don’t get shot down for making fair use of other people’s work for the purposes of satire or criticism.

Unfortunately, plenty of web hosts have no guts when it comes to evaluating threats from self-interested people who want to shut down your site, and take the easy route by closing you down. There are some hosts, though, that “won’t dump you at the first sign of controversy,” and the Electronic Frontier Foundation has a list of them.

I host six sites on Dreamhost and have never had a minute of downtime (of which I’m aware). I will go ahead and recommend this company - you get shell access and control and lots of freebie software, even at the most basic account level. Good customer service and very cheap too.