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I just finished moving one of my website to another web hosting company. That took me about 3-4 weeks just to look for which web hosting company I should go with. REASON : One of my website started to have a lot of data. 1and1 allows user to have no more than 100 MB of each database and it's not enough for me. I have to look for somewhere else to move my website there. Empty Cache and Search Index were what I did to keep the database below 100 MB while I was looking for a new hosting service. WEBHOSTING : I've checked with many companies listed below:

  • ANHosting
  • BlueHost
  • HostNine
  • ResellerZoom
  • InnoHosting
  • HostGator

Here are what I got with each hosting companies :

1. ANHosting This seems to be good. Still, I've read a lot of bad review lately. (That's about their servers are unreliable and got a lot of downtime because of their data center.) Moreover, I remembered that I read in their Midphase forum. (Midphase and ANHosting are the same company.) There was a statement said that they don't have any UPS for the server. They have only power generator. (Sorry but it was many weeks ago. I couldn't remember find that link anymore.) I'm not sure if it's common not to have UPS but if I know, I prefer not to go with them.

2. BlueHost - This is the company I really pay to use their webhosting. The support is pretty good. The features I got are a lot more than what I got with 1and1. Still, I found that one of limitation they have is pretty annoying. That's CPU Quota that you can only use 40 seconds of processing time in a 60 second time frame and it's hard limit. That means, it takes down your website for about 5 mins every time it goes beyond the CPU Quota.

What I did to test their server was to copy everything I have with 1and1 and tested with their server. The first time I tried to access my website hosted with Bluehost, I immediately got the error page "This account has exceeded its CPU Quota". I have to wait for a while to be able to access my website again. Well, that was the only time I got the problem and it was the website that there was ONLY ME access it. I've contacted Bluehost and they replied back that my index.php cause that trouble. The thing I never have with 1and1.

Not only that, with SSH/Telnet access, I think that I can use WGET to pull my data from 1and1 FTP server. (To make it faster to transfer all the data.) The first reply is that WGET will only work with port 80 due to security reason. If I want to use with FTP, I can do that by purchase dedicated IP for $2.50/month. That's ok with me. I just want to know if I can apply for only a month just to transfer the data. That took about 3 days later for them to reply me back that they don't allow me to do that even a minute. (Well, if that's the case, whey didn't they tell me at first.)

3. HostNine - I've contacted them and they look ok too. I got all of their limits and they said they are soft limit. That means, they won't take down my website if there is any over usage from time to time.

4. Resellerzoom - I've heard from somewhere and I found that their limit is pretty tight. Here is what I got from there website : Budget resellers may not use more than 1% CPU daily, 3% memory daily, run more than 5 simultaneous processes, allow any process to run for longer than 15 seconds CPU time, run any process that consumes more than 10% of available CPU at any time, or run any process that consumes more than 16 MB of memory. Databases are limited to 8 max user connections with a max query time of 5 seconds. Cron jobs must not execute more than once every hour and will be niced to 15 or greater.

5. InnoHosting - I saw a lot of people recommend this place. The only thing I don't like is the time to get answer back. It took me a full day to get a reply back for the first contact. I'm still waiting for their reply of my second e-mail I've sent to them a week ago.

6. HostGator - This is where I decided to move my website to. The features are a bit less than Bluehost but still, a lot more than 1and1. I got some problem with them a bit at first when they set my up on the server that has both PHP and MySQL in version 4. I, then, requested to get both of them in version 5. They did that but they kept pointed me to the same IP address I got at first. That IP is pointed to the old server. It took them a day to realize that they had to give me a new IP address to access a different server. So far, my website works good with their hosting service and I hope that I won't have any problem with them in the future :P

FINAL THOUGHT : By having experience with Bluehost, I've learned that Hard limit and Soft limit are really matter to look for hosting service. I'm sure there is a time that the website got a major hit. With hard limit, that means the website goes down immediately. That is not what the owner of the website wants. If the website constantly uses the resources, the hosting company should warn them but if it's just .. let's say .. 3 times a month. The hosting company should let it go.

Actually, I found that 1and1 has soft limit with 100 MB database limit. While I was looking for a new hosting, I found that my database went beyond 100 MB from time to time. I had to empty both caches and search index once I found that. Still, my website never goes down.

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