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What do half naked race car drivers know about web hosting?

Tue, 9th April 2013, 18:08

Rhetorically speaking, that caricature of an alligator used by HostGator isn't really that awe-inspiring. Yet the gator (or possibly the success of the web hosting company that adopted it) has seemingly spawned a host of imitators over the years. Hawk HostCrocWeb, Flipper HostHostCatsHostTiger, and Hosting Lizard name just a few of the web hosting companies utilizing mascots of animal caricatures to market their brand.

Just how much does your average bird, crocodile, beaver or turtle know about web hosting? Using the same rationale, what does a clown, a king, or a girl with red ponytails know about hamburgers. Is McDonald's successful at providing the best burger on the planet, or is McDonald's simply successful at selling burgers?

While obviously we all borrow ideas, one web hosting company in particular has had few examples to draw inspiration from. Go-Daddy’s marketing model under Bob Parsons was as much reliant on the conversation that ensued around his tacky adverts, as the salacious adverts themselves. Parsons masterful ability to create buzz around his company, with even the most negative story, (think elephant), or even out of thin air, is unmatched by any company, in any industry.

In 2006 IndyCar driver Danica Patrick joined the "Go-Daddy Girl" lineup and began playing a prominent role in the company's commercials. While tech and web hosting companies like OLM.net may have ventured onto the track first, it was Go-Daddy entrance to the sport that couldn't be ignored. Not unlike the Hostgator mascot, many have followed suit.

 

M247 turn their hand to racing

Recently M247, a Manchester based web host and ICT company announced their sponsorship of Joe Girling, who will be driving for Tech-Speed and Finesse Motorsport and will be running under the banner of M247 Racing. Joe Girling will be competing for the Jack Sears trophy in the British Touring Car Championships 2013.

M247 Technical Director, Chris Byrd explains:

M247 operate some of the most technically advanced datacentres and networks in Europe, so it seemed appropriate for us to partner with an equally innovative and forward-thinking team. We wish Joe the best of luck for the season and we’re looking forward to seeing him in action.

 

SpamExperts sponsors Matt Wallis, CEO of UnitedHosting

While SpamExperts, a provider of professional email security products from Amsterdam, isn't exactly a web hosting company, it makes the list for its 2nd consecutive year of sponsoring the HotBadger team competing in the Toyota MR2 motor racing Championship.

HotBadger Motorsport driver Matt Wallis is the CEO of UK web host UnitedHosting, who along with his brother Simon Wallis are joining forces for their 2nd assault of the championship this year.The challenging Toyota MR Championship will start on March 23rd and run through famous UK circuits such as Donington Park, Brands Hatch and Silverstone. The spectacular ending is scheduled on Oct 26th with a dramatic 6-Hour Endurance Race at Silverstone. 

Matt Wallis, CEO of UnitedHosting says: 

We are very much looking forward to 2013 championship. Our performance in 2012 would not have been so amazing without the help of our sponsors. We are grateful to SpamExperts for backing us again in 2013. We can certainly say that their support is twofold: filtering our email and giving us peace of mind to concentrate on the race and actually sponsoring us in the championship (editor’s note... nice plug Matt)

 

BlackSun

Canadian web host BlackSun sponsored the Auto Clearing Motor Speedway ("ACMS") event known as the "BlackSun 150". ACMS is part of the NASCAR Canadian Tire racing series. The event located outside of Saskatoon features Pro Truck races, Mini series, and the 150 lap Super Late model race.

Steve Rogoschewsky, CEO of BlackSun Inc... 

BlackSun has been apart of the association for over 10 years. Last year's event was a huge success. The BlackSun 150 was partly a tribute to our customers in Saskatchewan. We invited all of our clients to come out and meet our team in the VIP garage.

BlackSun also sponsored the Indy light series for a few years when Indy came to Canada, and we continued the sponsorship in the USA as well. James Hinchcliffe took us for the win more than a few times! Ironically, our efforts to compete with GoDaddy on a larger scale now has Hinchcliffe racing for Godaddy!

 

LunarPages

Lunarpages Internet Solutions has been a sponsor with the Hart and Huntington Premiere Motorsports Group Off Road Race Team in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series for the past two seasons and will continue with the Team's Rob "Fig" Naughton, driving the Pro2 as well as Ryan Beat, who finished second in Pro Lite a year ago.

This year Lunarpages became a partner of Team Lucas and the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series for the 2013 season. Lunarpages Internet Solutions CEO George Natzic says:

We're excited to expand our involvement in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series by joining Team Lucas and taking advantage of all it has to offer. It's a program that provides excellent exposure and hospitality opportunities.

Lunarpages Internet Solutions will distinguish its inaugural season with Team Lucas by awarding exciting prize packages to a trio of weekend events in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series to contest winners who enter through a variety of web sites and social networks...

Lunarpages Team Lucas car flying through the air

(editors note..these races are even more cool than Nascar.. where do I sign up!)

VPS.net 

Lunarpages isn’t the only company awarding prize packages to the races. Last year VPS.net gave away a F1 Dream Vacation for two that included First Class airfare, four nights of 5 Star Hotel accommodations , limousine service and two VIP F1 Paddock Club passes to the United States Grand Prix.

 

David Heinemeier Hansson

While David Heinemeier Hansson isn't a web host, many web hosts and their clients are familiar with his work. The self described creator of Ruby on Rails, partner at 37signals, best-selling author, public speaker, hobbyist photographer, and family man is also a race car driver! (editor *shakes head*.. gee where does he find the time)

David Heinemeier Hansson says:

I'm competing in the World Endurance Championship for 2013 in the LMP2 class with OAK Racing. The season starts at Silverstone in April and includes the 24 hours of Le Mans in June. I'm racing together with Olivier Pla and Alex Brundle. It's going to be a tough season with 12 regular LMP2 competitors throughout and no less than 22(!) for Le Mans.

David started racing sportscars in the Cayman Interseries in 2009, moved to 911 GT3 Cup Cars at the end of 2010 (winning the gold class in his first race!), and then went all out in 2011 with races in GT3 Challenge, Radical Masters, ALMS GTC, Grand-Am ST, and ILMC (in Lotus below).

David Heinemeier Hansson in his lotus race car

“That was all warm up for my break-out season in 2012. Together with Conquest Endurance, I competed in the American Le Mans Series with LMP2 class-wins at Mosport and Road America to finish second in the championship. That performance earned me SPEED's Rookie of the Year”, Heinemeier Hansson says.

 

Fused

While David McKendrick, CEO of Fused has his work cut out for him if he is to match Heinemeier Hansson resume, there is a whisper (and pictures) that suggest all of his energy isn’t devoted to keeping those web hosting clients happy. Word on the street is that Fused will soon be sponsoring it’s own CEO on a asphalt-eating speed rocket!

Fused CEO David Mckendrick racing motorcycle at racetrack 

 

HostGator

Back to where this started. HostGator has sponsored Joe Nemechek’s NEMCO Motorsports entries in a number of NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series races.

Lance Custen, CEO of HostGator.com said,

We are excited and proud to become a part of NEMCO Motorsports and support a veteran driver like Joe. Many of our current customers and staff are huge fans of NASCAR, and we look forward to serving the many NASCAR Fans in the future. We (HostGator.com and Nemechek ) got our start in Florida, and we are happy to begin our sponsorship in Florida.

Picture of HostGator race car driving beside Go-Daddy race car

It would be silly to suggest web hosting companies adopt mascots or become involved in racing just because their counterparts in the industry have. As suggested by many of the spokespeople, and eloquently stated by Lance, many web hosting customers and staff are huge racing fans.

Notwithstanding Go Daddy does hosts 36 million sites — nearly 6% of the world's websites. HostGator hosts over 8 million domains, which makes up approximately 2% of the world’s Internet traffic. Whether they, like McDonald, are successful at providing the best burger on the planet, or just simply successful at selling the burgers maybe open to a subjective opinion. Either way, they are all doing something right.

Arvixe wordpress hosting

Pay as you play Cloud Storage about to get cheaper

Thu, 4th April 2013, 20:43

Pay as you play cloud storage provider Amazon Web Services has cut the cost of getting data out of its storage service, putting pressure on rivals Google Cloud Storage and Microsoft Windows Azure. Request pricing for S3 Storage GET operations across the company's nine globe-spanning data center hubs has been reduced by 60 per cent, and prices for PUT, LIST, COPY, and POST requests have been cut by 50 percent.

Announcing the change on the Amazon Web Services website, the company wrote: 

We are happy to pass along these savings to you as we continue to drive down our costs. New pricing is effective April 1st and will be applied to your bill for all requests on or after this date. PUT requests now cost $0.005 per 1,000, compared with $0.01 previously, and GET requests have fallen fro $0.004 per 1,000 from $0.01.  

Comparison of Data Storage Pricing 

  • Amazon Web ServicesChart showing Storage cost using Amazon Web Services S3 cloud storage 

Although the image show US standard pricing from Amazon, Ireland (EU), and Singapore (Asia) pricing is equal to the USA. Further information with a region-by-region breakdown is available on Amazon's pricing page 

  • Windows Azure Cloud StorageChart showing Storage cost using Microsoft Azure cloud storage 
  • Google Storage PricingChart showing Storage cost using Google cloud storage 

For the moment anyway it appears that Google Cloud Storage Data Storage is cheaper than both Amazon or Windows Azure.  

Comparision of Network Transfer Prices 

  • Amazon Web ServicesChart showing network transfer costs using Amazon Web Services cloud storage 

Amazon's EU pricing appear similar to US pricing shown. Asian pricing structure is higher 

  • Windows AzureChart showing network transfer costs using Microsoft Azure cloud storage 

Microsoft Azure considers North America and Europe as Zone one.. Asia, Africa, and the Middle East are Zone two. 

  • Google Cloud StorageChart showing network transfer cost using Google cloud storage

Comparision of Cost when 'Getting' or 'Putting' that Data

As noted earlier, Amazon Web Services has lowered the PUT request costs to $0.005 per 1,000, and GET requests have fallen fro $0.004 per 1,000.

Google PUT and GET requests are still priced at $0.01 per 1000. Further information on pricing is available on Google Cloud Storage pricing page. 

Microsoft Azure is slightly more confusing in their language:

Service Bus is charged at the following rates: 

  • $0.01 per 10,000 messages
  • $0.10 per 100 relay hours (this only applies when using the Service Bus Relay capability) 

Messages are charged based on the number of messages sent to, or delivered by, the Service Bus during the billing month. This includes delivery of “null” messages in response to receive requests against empty queues/subscriptions. Messages over 64KB in size will be charged an additional message for each additional 64KB of data (rounded up).

There is no relay hour charge if you are only using Service Bus Queues and Topics.In addition to the prices noted above for Service Bus, you will also be charged for the associated data transfers for egress outside the data center in which your services are provisioned... Microsoft Azure Pricing. 

Windows Azure does appear to be the winner in this category.

 

The Free Trials

Many people prefer set monthly fees and are wary of the unknown and potential impact inherent with usage based rate structures... but just in case your curious...

AWS Free Usage Tier

Amazon Web Services lets you start with Amazon S3 for free. Upon sign-up, new AWS customers receive for one year... 

  • 5 GB of Amazon S3 standard storage
  • 20,000 Get Requests
  • 2,000 Put Requests
  • 15GB of data transfer out each month 

Windows Azure offers 90 days free and includes: 

  • 70 GB Storage
  • 50,000,000 storage transactions
  • unlimited inbound transfer
  • 25GB outbound transfer

 

Google Cloud Storage offers a free trial quota until June 30, 2013. This quota is only applicable to your first project that uses Google Cloud Storage and gives you free usage of resources within that project, up to: 

  • 5 GB of storage
  • 25 GB of download data (20 GB to Americas and EMEA*; 5 GB to Asia-Pacific)
  • 25 GB of upload data (20 GB to Americas and EMEA*; 5 GB to Asia-Pacific)
  • 12,000 class A operations
  • 60,000 class B operations 

Regardless of which is the best deal, Amazon's pricing cuts will likely yield a wave of tit-for-tat price reductions across the cloud storage service sector!

 

Try SugarSync Free!

 

Hivelocity newest Dedicated Server doesn't come cheap!

Wed, 3rd April 2013, 20:12

Tampa based web host and Infrastructure service provider HiVelocity announced it was adding quad socket Intel Sandy Bridge E5-4600 systems to its dedicated server offerings. The E5-4600 processors will enable Hivelocity to offer dedicated servers with 32 physical cores of Intel processing power and up to 1 terabyte of memory.

The E5-4600 systems are geared towards enterprise customers whose system resource requirements are extreme. The hyper-threaded E5 processors allow for 32 physical cores as well as another 32 virtual cores. Additionally these Sandy Bridge processors include Intel’s Turbo Technology which boosts clock speed at times of need. It does come at a price though.. these dedicated quad-processor systems start at $1299 per month.

HiVelocity’s Sales Manager Drew Adams says:

The older quad-socket E7 systems we sell have historically been popular with our customers offering VPS hosting. The amount of physical cores these systems allow really lets our customers offer their customers a very powerful virtualized solution.

These systems are not for everyone, but for those that want the maximum amount of RAM and processor for their enterprise they are ideal.

Another reason these processors may be so popular with customers utilizing virtualization technology is Intel’s built-in I/O reducer included on each chip. Bottlenecks and latency are dramatically reduced with these versatile chips increasing operating efficiencies.

About HiVelocity

Hivelocity provides dedicated servers, cloud and colocation hosting services to customers in over 130 countries around the world. Hivelocity was recently named as one of Tampa’s fastest growing privately held companies and is in the process of building out an additional 8000 square feet of datacenter space to accommodate growth.

The SSL Store. Overpriced Slick Marketing

Wed, 3rd April 2013, 15:37

The bold headline on a press release declares, The SSL Store™ is First to Qualify as a Symantec Website Security Specialist Partner.  Symantec Corporation, one of the world’s largest security software companies, has announced that The SSL Store™ is the first company worldwide to qualify as a Website Security Specialist Partner.

 

Now the marketing spiel..

This new level of accreditation recognizes businesses that have demonstrated the highest level of expertise in website security..  only available to companies that were already Platinum or Gold partners of Symantec. ... now have access to specialist online security blogs and roundtables to further ensure they can stay on top of the industry, in addition to Symantec’s preferred partner chat service, which is designed to help streamline a high volume of sales and support contacts... ahh there are the keywords “high volume of sales

Founded in 2007, The SSL Store™ has since grown to become one of the largest SSL providers in the world...  Yada yada yada.

 

Save 20% Compared to Vendor Pricing.. okay whatever!

The SSL Store™ provides an overwhelming array of choices, and pricing with their website offerings.

Example of SSL certificate pricing on The SSL Store website 

One example listed on The SSL Store front page: 

The  Symantec™ Secure Site Pro with EV (SGC)

Enable Server Gated Cryptography (SGC) to Ensure Strong Encryption
1 Year @ $1,199.00 per year [RRP: $1,499.00 ] 20%. of savings
2 Years @ $1,049.00 per year [RRP: $2,695.00 ] 22%. of savings Recommended

The Symantec™ Secure Site Pro with EV SSL Certificate, with 99.9% browser recognition, provides a minimum of 128-bit and up to 256-bit encryption. The Symantec™ Secure Site Pro with EV SSL Certificate includes Server Gated Cryptography (SGC) to ensure strong encryption (a trillion times a trillion times stronger than 40-bit) to all site visitors, including those with nonstandard or older browsers and OSs. Its $1.5 million NetSure® extended warranty is the highest in the SSL industry. Includes the Norton™ Secured Seal.

Extended Validation (EV) enables the green address bar in major browsers, and True 128-bit SSL Certificates (i.e., those with SGC) allow every site visitor to experience the strongest SSL encryption on the market.

Some nonstandard and older browsers and operating systems will not connect at the strongest encryption level without Server Gated Cryptography (SGC) SSL encryption in place. Symantec™ is the leading Certification Authority (CA) for SGC-enabled SSL Certificates, providing across-the-board coverage more than any other company, encryption that protects over 99.9% of Internet users.

(dig deeper and you will find slightly less expense “deals” although it appears you may have to forgo that familiar green address bar)

 

Server Gated Cryptography to Ensure Strong Encryption???

The reality is that there is no need for Server Gated Cryptology (SGC) to conduct secure transactions. SGC was a workaround to some antiquated US law, now-repealed, that prevented US companies from exporting software using encryption higher than 40-bit. SGC allowed the encryption level to “step up” to 128-bit.  All modern browsers provide support for at least 128-bit encryption — which, even with today’s computers, cannot be compromised.

The only people affected by lower-bit encryption are using international versions of the following browsers and/or operating systems: 

  • Internet Explorer® versions from 3.02 but before version 5.5
  • Netscape® versions after 4.02 and up through 4.72
  • Windows® 2000 systems shipped prior to March 2001 that have not downloaded Microsoft’s High Encryption Service Pack and are using Internet Explorer
These antiquated browsers — if you’re still using them you need to get off the web super highway! Internet Explorer 3 was released in 1996 and Netscape no longer even makes an Internet browser — they are so old that the security risk from using them is greater than any risk posed by 40-bit encryption.

 

Paying these prices for SSL certificates is just really dumb

Comparison of pricing offered by various SSL issuers   

Go-Daddy is one of many SSL provider, offering standard certificates with 256-bit encryption and 99% browser recognition, in less time, and at substantially less money. Go-Daddy also offers Premium SSL extended validation certificate which validates domain ownership and verifies the overall legitimacy of the business through extensive vetting. These SSL have the green URL address bar and padlock, as well Verification Seal Options for $99.99 per year... buy the 2 year option for even less!   As I said, Go-Daddy is not the only option out there.

A very quick price check underscores the point. Web host Fused SSL certificates are $65.00 per year and SiteGround SSL certs are priced at $82 per year. Many web hosting companies now include as standard SSL certificates on business packages. Both Fused and A Small Orange business web hosting plans are inclusive of SSL certificates as standard.

There are numerous web hosting companies offering similar pricing and deals. Seriously, why pay more than you need to for an SSL certificate for your website!

Save Now! Go Daddy Standard SSL Certificates for only $5.99! - 300x250

Rackspace acquires Exceptional Cloud Services

Thu, 28th March 2013, 15:59

Rackspace has another acquisition intended to enhance their toolset for developers deploying and managing applications on the open cloud. A post on the Rackspace blog announced that Exceptional Cloud Services and its suite of developer solutions, including error tracking and Redis-as-a-Service capabilities are now in the Rackspace family.

The post shared a number of reasons  Exceptional Cloud Services is a good fit with Rackspace:

The Products

Exceptional offers a deep portfolio of developer-focused tools, including Exceptional.io for error tracking in web applications; Airbrake.io for collecting and aggregating errors generated by other applications; and Redis To Go for easy Redis instance management.

The Users

The offerings are used by more than 50,000 app developers! Its customers include startups like StickerMule and HowAboutWe, and large companies like Exec, Groupon, HotelTonight, Oracle, TaskRabbit and Zendesk, all of which use these technologies to enhance their development, troubleshooting and Big Data applications.

The Team

This acquisition brings with it an incredibly talented team led by CEO Jonathan Siegel, who co-founded RightScale, RightCart and ELC Technologies. Siegel and his crew bring a wealth of developer tooling experience with them to Rackspace and extend our mission to serve developers.

The Technology

The acquisition will allow Rackspace to ad key technologies to their open cloud that boost their focus on the developer community.  Exceptional’s technologies provides the tools and expertise to help startups and cloud developers bring their cloud-based apps to market faster.

Exceptional Cloud Services’ collection of technologies joins other key acquisitions Rackspace has made in the past several months including Mailgun, a programmable email platform, and ObjectRocket, a scalable and high-performing MongoDB database as a service.

About Rackspace 

Fanatical Support has made Rackspace the world's leader in hosting. Rackspace deliver enterprise-level hosting services to businesses of all sizes and kinds around the world. Rackspace got started in 1998 and since have grown to serve more than 99,000 customers, including over 80,000 cloud computing customers. Rackspace integrates the industry's best technologies for each customer's specific need and delivers it as a service via the company's commitment to Fanatical Support. Rackspace core products include Rackspace Managed Hosting, The Rackspace Cloud and Rackspace Email & Apps. 

 

Host4Geeks launch Semi-Dedicated Hosting Plans

Thu, 28th March 2013, 11:40

Miami web hoster Host4Geeks has announced the launch of their Semi-Dedicated Hosting services. Speaking on the occasion, Kushal – CEO for Host4Geeks commented, “providing quality hosting services at an affordable price has always been the prime focus for us here at Host4Geeks and today’s launch is just one more step forward.” Aimed towards power users and small businesses the Semi-Dedicated plans offers a perfect intermediate step between standard shared hosting and virtual private servers.

The pricing on the Semi-Dedicated Hosting packages is lower than that offered by many web hosting companies. HostJury received a very quick response to our request for clarification 

Regarding your query, our semi-dedicated services like our other services is aimed at providing the best possible services at an affordable price. With our Semi-Dedicated packages a user has access to larger amount of server resources. For e.g our Stared Shared Hosting packages allocated 25% of 1 CPU Core to each user and 20 Concurrent Connections whereas our Semi-Dedicated Plans offer 100% of 1 CPU Core or 100% of 2 CPU Core (depending on the package) to the user as well as a limit of 30 and 50 Concurrent Connections. 

Due to the increased resource allocation to the users these servers host a less number of account than our traditional shared hosting servers 

The company is looking to target bloggers, forums and businesses that are hitting the limits of standard shared hosting services but cannot commit to upgrade to a VPS or a Dedicated Server. Kushal, also mentioned that this is just one of the many new launches that are planned over the month of April. The company is soon planning to launch, Master Resellers and VPS Services. 

About Host4Geeks:

Host4Geeks was founded in early 2012 with a motive to deliver affordable hosting solutions without compromising on quality. We were tired of people frustrated and disappointed with their webhosting provider and expressing their disappointment via various forums and blogs. So, we wanted to build a company that focused on customers and customer service from the ground up.

HostPapa 100% Green Energy Web Hosting

My Wordpress site suffered a transient error. Am I @#$%

Wed, 27th March 2013, 17:10

Yesterday, a Wordpress site I'm involved with went down for a number of hours. It would be great to sit here all innocent like, ranting and writing a real nasty review of how the web hosting company messed up, but I simply can’t. It was all my doing and the blame rests squarely on my shoulders. The website is hosted by a company with the most awesome support team. Without their diligence to remedy the adulterated corruption created, the downtime would have been notably extended

WordPress straight out of the box comes ready to embrace search engines. Its features and functions are designed to guide a search engine through the posts, pages, and categories to help the search engine crawl your site and gather the information it needs. Despite this knowledge, there's nothing like a little tweak to make a good thing even better... right. Maybe not!

The collateral damage and resultant fallout was not directly induced by my aspirations to match Yoast's prowess for SEO. Rather it was precipitated by my haste to scrutinize the implemented changes. Deactivating one cache plugin while activating another will decimate a MySql database!

As my initial goal was to increase visibility of the website on the web, I wondered at the cost of my amateur SEO antics. I sought help from the expert of experts in search engine algorithm Matt Cutts:

http://youtu.be/jMxCOV99Umo 

 

While 100% uptime may be the goal of every legitimate web hosting company, the realities in life will dictate a number that fall slightly short of this, a fact that search enigine recognize. Downtime will be inevitable with every web host... (the amount of downtime can certainly be influenced by your choice in web host). Downtime can also be caused by a newb swapping plugins and crashing his wordpress site. How long it remains down can be minimized by having an awesome web host willing to overlook that 3rd party script policy just long enough to revert the chaos.

Lesson in life learned today 

  • Google does forgive short periods of web site downtime.. how often they are forgiving would be speculative on my part.
  • It never hurts to have a web host with an awesome support staff
  • What a transient error is
  • How a little knowledge in the wrong hands is a dangerous thing indeed!

Web Hosting

MyDediServer says Hoo Roo

Fri, 22nd March 2013, 15:56

It would appear that Ozzy dedicated server provider MyDediServer has sent a pretty self explanatory email to their clients, stating that under the current global business climate, they have been left with no option but to close down... bugger that!

MyDediServer
19 Aldenhoven Rd,
Lonsdale SA 5160
Phone: 08 8186 1800

Dear Valued Customer,

We must regretfully inform you that MyDediServer will cease trading as of Monday 15th April 2013. This decision has come about due to being unable to stay competitive with costs and remain a viable business at the same time.

Our customer service team will be available until 5.30pm on our last day of business which will be on Friday 12th April 2013. If you have any enquiries or require any further information or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us on the telephone number above.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued loyalty in choosing us over the years. Without your support, our success would not have been possible but under the current global business climate, we have been left with no option but to close down.

Kind Regards,

The Team at MyDediServer

 

Bug in 123-Reg Panel Allows Unauthorized Domain Transfers.. maybe!

Thu, 21st March 2013, 15:05

El Reg is reporting a claim by a source that anyone with a hosting package from 123-Reg simply had to change the final section of the URL manually to be able to gain access to another site's emails, name servers and billing. El Reg has updated their report to state that Nominet is now clarifying “that 123-reg was not the only domain company involved. Four registrars had domain names that were affected"

The original story had 300 domain names misappropriated using a security flaw in 123-Reg control panel. The thief allegedly gained access and changed the contact details for UK registry Nominet to a new email address. A password reset request would be sent to the new email address.

The name game was up when Nominet discovered some irregularities in registration and renewal patterns after a query from a registrant last year.  As part of Nominet's standard operating procedures they locked the affected domains from any transfer or adjustment while they investigated further. Nominet has said that its investigations into the issue revealed a total of 300 domains had been transferred over to a new registrant in the post-expiry period without the permission of the original registrant.

Nominet has reportedly terminated their registrar agreement with one registrar.

The El Reg report says that neither Nominet or 123-Reg would comment on how the the breach had come about. Nominet says it couldn't elaborate any further because “we understand there is an ongoing police investigation into this issue while 123-Reg is offering its full support to resolve the matter.

A quick search in the 123-Reg blog reveals no mention of the incident although that is likely to change.

HostPapa 100% Green Energy Web Hosting

 

The Elusive Quest: Finding Ideal Web Hosting

Mon, 18th March 2013, 15:26

A HostJury consumer sent an email expressing frustration in his quest to find a suitable replacement that meets his web hosting needs. Many of the web hosting companies being researched appear to have carbon copies of the same offerings, so we proposed a possible solution.. why not have the web hosting companies articulate what sets them apart from the competition.

 

His story, in his words...

Over more than a dozen years of managing websites for clients and myself, I find myself feeling a bit like Don Quixote in a land of former used car salesmen. Let me explain …

America has a gut of web hosting resources, perhaps bordering on overbuilt. Yet, ownership and marketing of hosting services for individuals and business lags far behind and is copycat in many respects. They copy wording of their competitors. Services, pricing, and bold claims are all copycat when what’s needed is transparency and openness. I am convinced that many if not most people in the web hosting industry are unsophisticated when it comes to the most important element of marketing – honest differentiation.

I find that my quest in the hosting world is like many people who have multiple WordPress sites, as I do. Like it or not, WordPress is fast becoming the most popular, most used CMS platform in the world. Many web hosting companies, even the big guys, are lagging far behind in honestly compensating for the resource demands and needs of WordPress.

My sites have been with a terrific smaller hosting company but are now bumping against resource limits. (You know, those “unlimited” limits?!)

What I am seeking – and, I dare any web hosting company to meet my challenge – is a reliable hosting company that recognizes it’s just not just selling web hosting. A web hosting company is not about hosting websites, it is partnering with each and every customer to help customers achieve success. Web hosting is merely a tool to help me succeed in business, not unlike my computer and smartphone.

In my case, I want a hosting partner who provides reasonably priced and robust shared IP hosting with a smooth and affordable pathway to upgrade into managed VPS, not the 512MB RAM type that should be banned, but at least 1GB. 

Need more details: 

  • presently have 12 wordpress sites that need hosted.
  • a reseller account is an option
  • budget is maximum $25 per month.. with the right quality of web host! 

The reality is more of a game I would label as “dishonest.” Hosting companies lure customers to shared IP plans with “unlimited” resources. After a few weeks, the customer gets a warning they are exceeding resources … and, how about checking out VPS. That practice is more the case than the exception, and it’s not honest. We customers are forced to mess with game-playing hosting companies rather than focus on our own business success. That’s a failure of the hosting industry to understand its place in the world.

So, who will step up and win my business?

 

Marketing the goods!

While many venues strongly discourage web hosting companies from blowing their own horn, HostJury is actually inviting the purveyors of the web to strut like a peacock.

Web hosts, respond with a comment sharing why this gentleman should seriously consider your web hosting company as a viable alternative for his web hosting desiderata!

 

So the dedicated server market sucks... but its great for consumers!

Fri, 15th March 2013, 21:27

A recent report found that the austerity measures in Europe over the past several years are taking its toll on the server makers of the world.  According to the report from IDC, compared to 2011, server shipments in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) were collectively down 11.1% in the fourth quarter ended in December, to 569,000 units. This rate of decline was slightly softer than in the previous quarter when revenue was down 10.4%. In the context of seasonality factors — the last quarter of the year has historically been the strongest for legacy sales. 

The x86 server segment remained the main growth engine, with revenue of $2.6 billion, down 4.9% annually and equivalent to 68.7% of the total market (a decline in market share from the previous quarter, when x86 systems reached 76.4% of the total server value market in EMEA). Industry standard servers also suffered a decline in volumes, with shipments down 10.8% annually. 

The picture for the full 2012 was nevertheless negative, with a 10% yearly decline in dollars and -3% in euros. Volumes remained under considerable pressure in 2012, down 7% yearly, as consolidation and macroeconomic factors took their toll. If one compares that to the slower, but still slightly positive growth in compute capacity during the past year, it appears clear that datacenters are really learning how to do more with less. 

Giorgio Nebuloni, research manager, Enterprise Server Group, IDC EMEA 

Of course another scenario possibly overlooked by the report is a growing trend by server manufacturers to bypass traditional server vendors (you know, the guys who markup the price for just putting their brandname on the box) and directly marketing to the end users.. the web hosting companies.. but that's another story.

 

So it suxs to be them

Marketing servers hardware in a global economy may be getting more competitive, but that can also mean companies, and their sale staff may be incentivized to sweeten offerings to meet quotas and market targets. For the average joe/jane doe consumer of goods, this mean there are dedicated server deals to be had... and its a buyer's market! 

 

UK2NET

UK2 Dedicated Server from £49

Okay so the banner is a little dated but the deals are not! Right now UK2net has some hot deals on dedicated servers starting at £49 per month.  The link also has a coupon available for even greater savings on select servers. Well worth having a look!  

 

SingleHop : Data Center Outlet. Servers 30% Off 

SingleHop : Data Center Outlet. Servers 30% Off.

Servers are discounted for a variety of reasons including being overstocked configurations, last years models, or due to it being a specialty configuration. All offers are subject to change and data is updated once per hour.

 

ServerPronto

Page compares server hardware and offering details on server packages. Managed and Self-Managed dedicated servers. Custom Solutions are also available. 

 

Heart Internet 

All dedicated servers utilize the latest Dell and Intel technology for powerful web hosting suitable for highly popular websites, demanding projects, large-scale multi-site hosting and more. With full root access, complete control and no shared resources, Heart Internet Linux dedicated servers are the perfect choice for serious developers and mission-critical websites. 

Heart Internet service level agreement includes a 99.9% uptime guarantee. Heart Internet manage the day-to-day running of your dedicated server’s hardware and network 24/7 every day of the year. All Linux dedicated servers are located in UK data centers.

 

Interserver  


Interserver offers virtualized dedicated servers like, managed cheap linux Dedicated servers, windows dedicated servers, cpanel dedicated servers, and Direct Admin dedicated servers. Our atom dedicated server starts at $49 per month making it one of the cheapest dedicated solutions. 

 

Superb Internet


Dedicated servers include unlimited traffic on a 10 Mbps port. If you decide to upgrade to a 100 Mbps ($15) or GigE port ($99), your server will come with a set amount of traffic and overage fees do apply at $95 per 500 GB. In addition to unlimited traffic, they have increased RAM on Corporate and Enterprise dedicated servers as part of the new Superb Standard.

 

100TB 

 

What you thought we were done.. we said there are deals on dedicated servers and we're not kidding!

Want to get ignited with a hot deal. Click on the 100TB banner above and look for the link to the '100TB Specials" in the upper left corner.. we were impressed and you will be also!

All 100TB server deals sit in a Tier 3 data center ensuring optimal uptime; coupled with world-class networks, including best-of-class hardware and high capacity bandwidth, you'll never feel like you got in the door on "cheap," dedicated server deals… Until you notice how fat your wallet is getting.

 

WHUK.. aka Web Hosting UK

Webhosting UK Banner

WHUK has managed dedicated servers to suit every budget & every requirement, starting at £55 per month.

 

The Disclaimer:

As always, HostJury recommend that while price may be a consideration when choosing a web host, it should only be one of the many factored into your research. Page load speeds, additional features, good communication, and a fast knowledgeable support team will always top saving a few cents per day... And as always, HostJury makes no recommendation or endorsement of providers. You are encouraged to practice due diligence.. and at some point leave a review of the services provided.

Despite the disclaimer, saving some greenbacks (or any other color of money)  is always cool.. or hot depending on your perspective!

Coupons, deals, and steals may also be found on review pages of many of the web hosts reviewed on HostJury. Look in the right column under the related blog post section. 

Reports of Softlayer acquisition deal in works

Fri, 15th March 2013, 13:37

Reuters has published an exclusive story citing unnamed sources that state International Business Machines Corp and EMC Corp are among parties in talks to buy web hosting company SoftLayer Technologies. The report says that the deal could fetch over $2 billion..

SoftLayer is majority held by GI Partners, which purchased all of the equity in a partnership deal with SoftLayer management in 2010. After the deal, GI Partners merged The Planet and SoftLayer. 

SoftLayer provides web hosting for over 25,000 customers. We will update this story as more information becomes available.

 

PlanetHoster deploys Noction Intelligent Routing Platform

Thu, 14th March 2013, 16:20

PlanetHoster, a Paris and Montreal based web hosting provider for Dedicated Servers, Shared Hosting and Reseller Hosting services, has announced the deployment of Noction Intelligent Routing Platform (IRP) in what they call a” response to a rapidly growing client base and an ever-expanding need for further scalability”.

To handle route optimization through its multiple IP connections, PlanetHoster has deployed Noction IRP -- a route analysis and optimization system used to ensure efficient packet delivery from PlanetHoster's networks. IRP accomplishes that by choosing the route with optimal loss and latency metrics. The system enables PlanetHoster to proactively reroute congestion and outages, evaluate overall performance and dynamically modify network paths in order to attain maximum network performance. The process is now completely automated excluding the need for constant manual intervention as was previously needed. (editor’s note.. the relatively old adage comes to mind...  to err is human...to really screw it up you need a computer)

PlanetHoster CTO Saber Bariz commenting on the change says:

We noticed great performance and latency improvements in our multi-homed network. Thanks to IRP our BGP optimization processes are now fully automated, allowing our staff to spend less time on manual maintenance, while focusing more on strategic management and growth of our network infrastructure.

PlanetHoster is not the first to deploy this technology. Late last year, dedicated servers provider GorillaServers, and cloud hoster Enzu out of L.A. also deployed Noction IRP.

 

Price for Melbourne IT's DBS division almost market cap of entire company

Tue, 12th March 2013, 16:38

Melbourne IT has sold off its digital marketing division to US company Corporation Services Company for $152.5 million. Not a shoddy number considering Melbourne IT entire market capitalization prior to the sale was “just” $160 million.

The sale of the division which registers and sells internet domain names as well as services to protect brand image online was announced to the market after close of trading on Tuesday. Melbourne IT had requested a trading halt earlier in the day. The sale was considered a surprise by analysts, along with the value as it was expected that Melbourne IT would sell off other, less profitable units as part of their ongoing strategic review.

Melbourne IT CEO Theo Hnarakis says that: 

While the DBS division had not been specifically earmarked for sale, the opportunity to sell to CSC couldn't be ignored. What this does is return Melbourne IT to a hosting business for enterprise and small and medium sized businesses. We’re confident now that we don’t have the distraction of international operations, we can put all our energy into growing the SMB and enterprise hosting market. 

Melbourne IT’s DBS division was born in 2008 following the merger of the company’s Corporate Brand Services division with VeriSign's former DBMS business, which Melbourne IT bought for $50 million. The digital marketing division recorded flat revenues of $55.2 million in 2012.

Arvixe wordpress hosting

CentriLogic Acquires Capris Hosting

Tue, 12th March 2013, 14:45

CentriLogic has announced a deal to acquire Canadian managed hosting and IT services provider Capris Hosting (aka The Capris Group).

Capris Hosting, founded in 1996, will be combined with CentriLogic’s existing data center solutions to create a new business unit focused on delivering Application and Platform management services to new and current customers.  CentriLogic will also add additional data center and disaster recovery space to its existing infrastructure footprint in the Greater Toronto Area. The strategic acquisition of Capris Hosting places CentriLogic in a unique market position, providing innovative cross-border Hybrid Hosting, Business Continuity / Disaster Recovery, and DevOps solutions to local and international organizations with enterprise-class workloads.

Robert Offley, CentriLogic’s President and CEO commented: 

The Capris Group’s team has 17 years of experience delivering comprehensive services to its entire client base, including several of Canada’s major financial institutions that have stringent uptime and service delivery requirements. We will leverage The Capris Group’s existing expertise to better fulfill our customer’s complex hosting and application management requirements, ultimately creating synergies throughout our core service offerings to facilitate the growth of our business locally and internationally. 

CentriLogic will integrate into its current offerings The Capris Group’s entire portfolio of services, including Application & Platform Management, Managed Hosting, Development, and Co-Location. Other assets acquired by CentriLogic include The Capris Group’s staff, its existing office and data center facilities, and all current customer contracts.

“CentriLogic has quickly established itself as a flexible and reliable provider of international data center solutions, with a very strong presence in the Greater Toronto Area and an excellent track record of delivering outstanding services to organizations with enterprise-class requirements,” said Boris Novosel, President of The Capris Group. “We have been actively seeking opportunities to take our company to the next level, and after a thorough evaluation of numerous candidates we determined that CentriLogic was the ideal partner to help us achieve this goal.”

CentriLogic will maintain Capris Hosting 15,000 square foot data center and Disaster Recovery area in Mississauga, Ontario. This facility will be used to service Capris Hosting existing customer base while also accommodating new and existing CentriLogic customers.

HostPapa 100% Green Energy Web Hosting

 

In the dying ebb of winter these web hosts are just dead

Thu, 7th March 2013, 21:03

Not all clients of web hosting companies are afraid of death.. some just don't want to be there when it happens... The lucky ones (aka..former clients) may write a review concurring with Mark Twain when he said “I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it." For those misfourtunate to still be clients, they possibly wish they had just paid closer attention to the web hosting reviews and are praying for backups that are not corrupted!  Welcome to the HostJury deadpool

Man in coffin saying on the phone  

 

Layered Networks

If you've been looking for Australian based Layered Networks, founded in 2007, the domain now currently redirect to a search page allowing you to search faster. Layered Networks have closed the doors but they did send out an email before their demise. 

Dear John Doe 

We regret to inform you that, due to financial constraints, Layered Networks is unable to continue providing hosting services. In order to prevent downtime of website services, customers should transfer their web hosting and domain name registration accounts to a new provider as soon as possible.

Special codes are required to transfer domain names. They can be known as domain keys, passwords, or auth/epp codes. Please visit our client portal, click on My Domains, click the details icon next to the domain, then the Get EPP Code button down the bottom under Management Tools. If a Registrar Lock is enabled on your domain, please uncheck this option and Save Changes before transferring.

We appreciate your past business and wish you well with your new provider. 

 

Shortly after another email was sent to clients with additional information stating: 

We have previously sent out an email in regards to the discontinuance of services. Website and remote email access should continue to operate as normal during the next few weeks, allowing you some time to make alternate arrangements. 

In order to make the transfer of web hosting easier, we are generating a backup of your cPanel account in your home directory. Updates will be posted soon. 

Layered Networks. 

The description of Layered Networks may lends some clues to their corporate philosophy.

Layered Networks aim is to provide quality hosting services to web developers and webmasters. With highly skilled staff that have over 10 years experience in system administration, Layered Networks is a provider you can count on.

While any web host closing up shop is never easy, there are lessons that could be learned by others on how to handle a difficult situation tactfully. Layered Networks handled their unfortunate reckoning with grace, and class, in a manner meant to bring the least disruption to the clients they served.

Well done. On to the next one which may be one in need of the lesson!

 

ChuneX

ChuneX  company profile stated the the web host was founded in January of 2012. While it may be accurate that the company idea was hatched in January, the domian ChuneX.com was only registered in July of 2012.

The majority of search returns using the keywords “ChuneX web hosting” renders links for either ChuneX Affiliate Program "neX" which could net up to $50.00 per referral or to coupon codes for 50% off discount links.

Continuing with the company description  “From the very beginning, ChuneX had one goal in mind: To provide the best hosting service possible. ChuneX strive to provide the best service and do everything we can to ensure our many clients with a QUALITY web hosting solution that will meet the rising technology demands of today's business society.“

Lofty ambitions but goals that many in the web hosting industry, who have garnered their reputations through hard work, may take exception to considering the methods utilized by ChuneX.

Before the ink was hardly even dry on the domain registration,  ChuneX was touting itself in one marketing forums stating in the about us description:  

We are an established web hosting company that offers Web Hosting as well as VPS Hosting. We have recently set up shared minecraft hosting in order to bring a quality service that users will never forget to the Minecraft Market. Our philosophy is different from the rest. We won't even attempt to compete with those who are offering servers at $5 per GB of RAM, as we feel that you truly do get what you pay for. Our prices are definitely affordable, and with the quality you receive, you won't be disappointed. 

In this same marketing forum JChun suggested growth may be outpacing resources when he wrote:

“We have added a plugin setup package (one time $15) and a plugin advanced management package ($10/monthly). Grab them today before they're all gone! (we can't accept unlimited orders of these due to staffing and difficulties in finding proper staff)”

This established web hosting company now returns a blank white page with privacy enabled on the domain.

 

Holdfire Network

A review of Holdfire Networks that appeared prior to their demise, posted by Marie, may have suggested things were not heading in a good direction for Holdfire. The review stated in part: 

a good host right up until mid 2011, when the original owner stopped updating any of the social network accounts for the company, and in the following months, uptime continually decreased until at one point in February 2012, my site was reverted to its state in either 2008 or 2009. At which point I knew that due to a lack of available support and multiple online forum postings indicating that others were having the same issues, the company had gone under. 

Marie added that while the domain was functional, it was redirecting to a company called Flaredhost.

Hostjury sent an email address posted on the redirected page and got a response quite quickly.

As well as confirming that Flaredhost closed shop in 2012, the respondent stated regarding the Holdfire landing page 

it's quite simple. Maintenance mode was disabled and not re-enabled. Email notifications are [obviously] sent out so if there were orders coming in (which there aren't) then I would have caught this sooner. Thanks for the heads up and have a lovely day. 

Holdfire it appears, is now gone! 

 

dynacloud

screenshot of redirected dynacloud domain to Fit 2 Page website 

The screenshot says it all. Yes I was expecting dynaCloud and I get a placeholder from.. Fit2Page

Moving on..

 

Vizaweb 

Vizaweb was prominently featured in a post written on HostJury back in 2007. Being a web hosting company featured on HostJury is not to be construed as a bad thing... unless of course the title of the post is Horrible web hosting providers reviewed

 

Since 2002 Vizaweb (at least from what we can gander based on the score) has been sucking like a Hoover. Sadly, this is the web hosting industry & not home appliances. If it were though, these folks would be in the lead! 

While the Vizaweb domain did continue to resolve until very recently, a search of the company on the web could lead to speculation that very few clients remained with the sinking ship.

Chose your web hosting provider wisely.. and read the reviews! 

Savvis now operates more than 50 data centers worldwide

Thu, 7th March 2013, 19:30

Slough is one of the top three most productive towns in the UK outside of London and  home to some well  known business including Amazon, Honda, Research in Motion, O2 and Mars. In 2008 Savvis opened their L01 data center and demand was high from day one. Within 18 months the first floor sold out and Savvis expanded the data center in 2010.

In what has become Europe's biggest trading business park Savvis is expanding yet again , opening their second Slough data center, Savvis LO5.  The addition doubles capacity across the two Slough data centers and raised floor space by a third. Savvis says it wants to give businesses in the European market access to the best experience possible.

Jeff Von Deylen, president of Savvis says: 

The success of our existing data center in Slough confirms that businesses view this area as a strategic geographic location, Our hosting portfolio in Slough allows businesses in the financial services, consumer brands and other verticals to benefit from Savvis' carrier diversity, inter-connectivity and cloud services. 

LO5 is Savvis' fifth data center in the London area and sixth in Europe, serving growing demand for the company's full suite of cloud, collocation and managed-hosting services, including the recently announced Savvis Symphony Cloud Storage.

Savvis operates more than 50 data centers worldwide, with more than 2 million square feet of gross raised floor space throughout North America, Europe and Asia.

cPanel hacked. Maybe or maybe not!

Fri, 1st March 2013, 19:33

Last May, Matt the owner of WHMCS, the all-in-one client management, billing & support solution platform used by many web hosting companies, made an announcement that their servers were compromised. In a post, Matt explained a ‘hacker’ impersonating him, contacted HostGator (the web host used by WHMCS). The person, by providing the correct answers to HostGator’s verification questions was able to gain access to the WHMCS client account with the host. Ultimately this person then changed the email and requested a mailing of the access details. In the aftermath that followed, a marriage of convenience was announced. WHMCS was integrated into cPanel. The control panel used by many web hosting companies and millions of their clients worldwide. (editor’s note: The WHMCS incident was not a hacker. As pointed out by Matt in his post it was social engineering. I am being sarcastic!)

Karma...

Web hosting management company cPanel has announced one of the company's technical support servers was compromised potentially putting some of their customer data at risk...

On February 22, cPanel sent out an email to clients potential affected stating: 

Sent: Friday, February 22, 2013 12:48 AM

Subject: Important Security Alert (Action Required) 

You are receiving this email because you have opened a ticket with our support staff in the last 6 months. cPanel, Inc. has discovered that one of the servers we utilize in the technical support department has been compromised. While we do not know if your machine is affected, you should change your root level password if you are not already using ssh keys. If you are using an unprivileged account with "sudo" or "su" for root logins, we recommend you change the account password. Even if you are using ssh keys we still recommend rotating keys on a regular basis. 

As we do not know the exact nature of this compromise we are asking for customers to take immediate action on their own servers. cPanel's security team is continuing to investigate the nature of this security issue. 

--cPanel Security Team 

Another announcement made yesterday shed more light on the investigation and the steps taken to ensure better security in the future.  One has to love the terminology used:

- the risk of this type of sophisticated attack in the future.
- was compromised by a malicious third-party by compromising a single workstation used by one of our Technical Analysts.
- How the server was accessed and compromised is not clear

Despite the language this was not likely a “hacker” or even a case of social engineering. More likely someone sitting at the desk rooting around.. read the latest

 

cPanel Announces Additional Internal Security Enhancements

This is a follow up on the status of the security compromise that cPanel, Inc. experienced on Thursday, February 21, 2013.

As mentioned in our email sent to cPanel Server Administrators who’ve opened a ticket with us in the past 6 months, on February 21 we discovered that one of the proxy servers we utilize in the technical support department had been compromised. The cPanel Security Team’s investigation into this matter is ongoing.

We’d like to relay additional details about the intrusion that we have gathered with you, and we want to explain what preventative measures we’re putting in place that will introduce additional layers of security to our new and existing systems, already in place. How the server was accessed and compromised is not clear, but we know a few key facts that we’re sharing.

Here’s what we know:

* The proxy machine compromised in this incident was, at the time, utilized to access customer servers by some of our Technical Analysts. It's intent was to provide a layer of security between local & remote workstations and customer servers.

* This proxy machine was compromised by a malicious third-party by compromising a single workstation used by one of our Technical Analysts.

* Only a small group of our Technical Analysts uses this particular machine for logins.

* There is no evidence that any sensitive customer data was exposed and there is no evidence that the actual database was compromised.

Here’s what we’re doing about it:

Documentation is now provided at: http://go.cpanel.net/checkyourserver which we encourage system administrators to use to determine the status of their machine.

We have restructured the process used to access customer servers to significantly reduce the risk of this type of sophisticated attack in the future. We have also been working on implementing multiple changes to our internal support systems and procedures as outlined for your information below.

* Our system will now generate and provide you with a unique SSH key for each new support ticket submitted.

* We are providing tools to authorize and de-authorize SSH keys and instructions on how to use them whenever you submit a ticket.

* Our system will generate a single-use username and password credentials for accessing WebHost Manager that are only valid while our staff is logged into your server.

* Additional enhancements are also planned behind the scene that should be transparent to our customers.

With these new layers of security in place, it is now possible for our Technical Analysts to service your support requests without you providing your server’s password for nearly all requests involving machines running our cPanel & WHM product going forward. However, we will still offer the ability to provide your password for server migrations, or in the event you cannot use SSH keys.

cPanel’s Internal Development Team has been working on an automated solution with the end goal of eliminating the need for our Technical Analysts to view any passwords you provide during the ticket submission process. We are testing this solution right now, and hope to have it fully implemented in the next few days.

cPanel, Inc. understands your concerns expressed over the last few days, and we very much appreciate the cooperation and patience you have provided us during this time as we work through all of this.

 

 

Accelerated WordPress anyone. VPS.NET partners with W3 EDGE

Fri, 1st March 2013, 14:17

VPS.NET has announced that they have partnership with W3 EDGE and will include their WordPress performance framework, WP Total Cache, inside its WordPress cloud application installation.

Hosted on their well-known cloud platform, VPS.NET has taken the reins for their WordPress hosting customers by integrating their WordPress hosting stack with WP Total Cache to make it one of the fastest and most reliable out-of-the-box solutions on the market today. Put simply, WordPress performance takes on a whole new meaning.

Rus Foster, the cloud product manager for VPS.NET states: 

Partnering with the expertise of W3 EDGE, and including WP Total Cache in our WordPress application stack will make WordPress performance typically known only to large enterprises a reality to everyone. WP Total Cache effectively reduces the amount of resources required for WordPress and increases performance substantially. Adding it to our optimized WordPress installation is a natural progression toward a faster and more reliable website experience.

Since 2003 W3 EDGE has consulted startups and well known brands including Yahoo!, Sony, Smashing Magazine, Mashable and many others. While their projects usually include WordPress configuration and optimization, one of their largest contributions to the Wordpress community has been the web performance optimization framework plugin W3 Total Cache.

W3 Total Cache is considered one of the fastest and most complete WordPress performance optimization framework. It improves website performance by more than ten times through caching every aspect of the sites with which it is installed.

Frederick Townes, the founder and CEO of W3 EDGE adds:

W3 EDGE has a singular goal to increase the competitive advantage of those with whom we work. Partnering with VPS.NET delivers a mutually beneficial opportunity for the entire WordPress community to innovate and accelerate the platform. I don’t know a developer or business who couldn’t use more time to do what they do best; VPS.NET’s optimized WordPress installation makes getting more time a reality.

ABOUT VPS.NET

VPS.NET operates one of the largest cloud hosting systems in the world. It offers affordable cloud hosting to everyday users, while giving enterprise users the flexibility they need to adequately scale, and handle their growing IT demands. VPS.NET is a division of the UK2 Group, which provides domain registration and Web hosting services to thousands of customers globally through its family of hosting brands - UK2.net, Midphase.com, WestHost.com, 100TB.com, ANHosting.com, Resell.biz, and VI.net. VPS.NET is committed to providing secure and reliable products and services underpinned with excellent support.

Clients of VPS.NET can review their experinces here.

 

Signetique JumpQ for Dedicated & Cloud Clients. What about everyone else?

Fri, 1st March 2013, 13:18

Signetique Has Announced  JumpQ Priority Support for Dedicated and Cloud Hosting Customers

In a press release, Singapore web host Signetique has announced a new priority technical support service that is available free of charge to its dedicated and cloud hosting customers. Kenneth Tan, COO Signetique states “The service is believed to be a first in the Singapore web hosting scene”

Continuing, Tan states:  

JumpQ” is a red carpet technical support service where Signetique's premium hosting customers can expect to be served quickly and issues resolved up to 50 percent faster. 

JumpQ reflects Signetique's commitment to its growing and diversified global customer base. With JumpQ, Signetique's customers can choose to call in on a dedicated phone number, raise a support ticket on a dedicated queue or simply use its online web chat service 24/7. 

Through our frequent engagements with customers, we have noted that while the issues faced by our dedicated and cloud server customers are minimal, they expect a lot more from us and want to be served in the snap of a finger, so to speak, and rightly so too. After months of planning, we are pleased to launch JumpQ, the industry-leading hosting support service. We have created an exclusive team of engineers focused on the needs of our dedicated and cloud hosting customers. As the name suggests, with JumpQ, our customers can expect to be served quickly and have any issues addressed and resolved within a much shorter time frame. 

Recent industry studies have shown that hosting customers' needs have changed. Today's servers may be part of a virtualized or cloud environment, resulting in a greater level of complexity. Customers may also require a more streamlined support when issues arise,” said Raymond Tan, CEO Signetique. “JumpQ addresses that need as our engineers are qualified not only to resolve the server problems encountered, they are able to do so with greater insights as they are trained to offer personalized service to our customers.  

So just how does JumpQ work

A customer contacts Signetique via a dedicated JumpQ phone line, raise a JumpQ support ticket or simply write via the web chat client. Signetique's exclusive Priority Support Team will offer a suggestion and respond to the customer within 30 minutes. If the issues encountered by the customer is of a more severe nature, Signetique pledges to resolve the problem within 4 hours.

For web hosting clients everywhere, any announcement of improved services or faster resolution to issues that arise is always good news. Good news or not, the announcement raises some valid observations.

JumpQ is expected to resolve issues up to 50 percent faster.  The “Exclusive Priority Support Team” will respond to the customer within 30 minutes. Sorry but responding to a customer in 30 minutes is not exactly ground breaking. Numerous web hosting companies have built their reputations on minutes, not half hour increments.

The bigger question raised in the press release is the implications for client of Signetique not utilizing their dedicated servers or cloud hosting services. Allowing clients to jump the cue, runs a risk of coming at the expense of other clients submitting support tickets. A degradation of support responsiveness and/or longer wait times for customers utilizing VPS or shared hosting environments are distinct possibilities.

Comparision of Signetique shared hosting plans

As can be seen, (well it would be if there was a decent screenshot), the monthly costs with Signetique shared hosting plans are comparable, (if not higher), than many prices offered by other web hosting companies. Price are only one small factor to be considered though. Regardless of the industry, companies implement improvements to customer service either to:

- Quell criticism
- Remain competitive
- Retain customers
- Increase their market share.

The press release does suggests Signetique may be doing all four.. at least for their dedicated server and cloud hosting clients. Kudos on that. Only time will tell who pays the price for the improved service.

About Signetique

Signetique is one of the largest Singapore-based web hosting providers. It provides shared, virtual and dedicated hosting services and maintains facilities in Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand, Taiwan, China and Japan. Customers requiring a one-stop Asia Pacific hosting solution can do so through their Singapore sales office. It pioneered the sub $100 dedicated hosting solution in Singapore and continues to provide cost-effective hosting solutions to its customers. Apart from providing standard dedicated server solutions, Signetique also allows complete customization of its servers that encompasses redundancy, high availability, disaster recovery and enterprise email hosting solutions. Signetique's customer profile ranges from small local businesses to multi-nationals and has been in the business for over 15 years.

Clients of Signetique can review their experinces here.

 

Reviewers are just disgruntled users. So who made them disgruntled?

Tue, 26th February 2013, 19:48

Many a web host has placated themselves that the majority of web hosting review written fall into a couple of categories. The following statements are randomly copied from forums populated by owners of web hosting companies:

- positive reviews posted by the hosts themselves, under the guise of random users
- flames by disgruntled users (abusers) who have been terminated/canceled by the host. Very seldom is there any unique content actually added in honesty by real end users, positive or negative.
- disgruntled client are more likely to leave bad reviews than a satisfied client

or how about

- I don't trust these reviews sites at all. Full of nonsense. These "reviews" sites get more fake reviews than real ones. By fake I include negative reviews from customers who were suspended/terminated for abuse/violation of TOS.

While it may be certain that a vast majority of web hosting review sites are indeed “fake affiliate driven” enterprises, less true is the notion that reviews are only written by disgruntled terminated users...

Reviews of two firms

I managed to escape the semi frozen tundra of the northern wasteland for a week of sunny warm vitamin D rejuvenation therapy. An awesome trip that included a night out watching the best hockey game ever.. Florida Everblades and the Evansville Icemen. Seriously, an awesome, entertaining, and memorable game! Notice that I’m neither disgruntled, nor was I unceremoniously ejected from the venue! Then again my review is not about ice hockey.

Traveling north on I-95, a quick pit stop was required for an earlier coffee and a top up on fuel. I was just north of where Danica Patrick was preparing to be the first woman ever to start her Go-Daddy car from the NASCAR pole position. I eased out of traffic and onto Okeechobee Rd in Fort Pierce, Florida.

While those race enthusiasts types may be inclined to utilize a particular brand and octane of gasoline, ensuring maximum power and efficiency, my one step up from a minivan is less demanding. It only asks for a brand name fuel.. which brand exactly is motivated by proximity.

I seen the sign for BP, priced at $3.85 for regular gas. Outrageous enough but competitively priced. Pulling in, I hooked up the intravenous drip. Enjoying the warmth, I noticed a stretch limo fueling and felt a twinge of pity. Then I seen the sign. $4.09 per gallon. I looked at the pump. Sure enough it says $4.09 a gallon.

I looked at gas stations within my range of sight and they were priced substantially less.  Did I or did I not see a sign? Was there something to that statement “the internet is making us dumber”. The drip stopped at $40, and I investigated.

BP vs Mobil 

Ahh.. While the picture does not do the optical allusion justice, tucked behind that regular sized BP sign is the smallest Mobil gas station sign ever made... with prices 25 cents higher per gallon. Awesome marketing ploy Mobil. You scammed me for approximately $2.50 extra.. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice. Well you won’t cause We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together. Ever. I will never purchase anything again at a Mobil gas station.. Any Mobil gas station, ever!

 

Disgruntled client...  maybe, but I’m not done!

Rogers is the Canadian cable/wireless phone and Internet Service Provider (ISP) people love to hate on. Seriously, a quick search for “Rogers sucks” will provide Twitter feeds, Ihaterogers.ca , rogerssucks.com, Rogers sucks FB pages, its own listing in the Urban Dictionary, countless you tube videos and rants. Rogers is hated! Why do people use it.. we’re waiting on Google!

I've used Rogers for years because it worked. Not the cheapest but it worked. Then in the first part of January we got the email saying we have used 75% of our monthly allocation.. then another a day later saying we reached 100%. We use on average a couple of gigs a day. We have for years. In excess of 20 gigs in a day... never happened! Faced with 7 days before our monthly bandwidth usage reset and ridiculous overage fees, I called Rogers to cancel our service. After the typically long waiting cue, the Rogers retention person explained that our outdated modem needed to be upgraded to a newer model to take advantage of our full plan allowance. They even upgraded the plan to match the competitor I had lined up as a replacement. Placated, I picked up the new modem and resumed work.

Less than a week later I get another email reaching 75% of our usage allocation. Get serious.

Two more hours on the phone with Rogers Retention Agents brought a resolve. (I am being so nice now whereas I am sure I may have broke some laws that evening). As Rogers Terms of Service (ToS) requires a cancellation period, she would upgrade our allowance for the month but we had to return the modem prior to the 21st of February. After providing us the amount of the final bill, the call was concluded and a new service was ordered the following day.

Amicably resolved right...

The new service was installed but as I was paying for Rogers, I continued to use it. My co-horts utilized the new service. Prior to leaving for my road trip for a warmer locale, I took the modem back to the Rogers store (more than a week prior to the 21st). The nice girl behind the counter took the device and stated that she could not find a cancellation notice attached to the account..  

Her: “Would you like me to connect you with a customer service rep”

Me:  Hmm.. “No thank you”.

I called Rogers from home. They have this automated system that determines why you are calling. Oh you’re cancelling... prepare to wait. No, I mean prepare to wait with a week supply of nourishment!  

The first line of defense broke down.. the rep insisted on using the terminology "cancel", whereas I referred to myself as their former client. The matter was escalated to a manager.

Although he could see the call history, he insisted the rep I had spoken with a couple of weeks prior, wrote that I would call back and spend another 2 hours on the phone confirming that I hated Rogers to the very core of my being. As Rogers ToS says they need x amount of days to process a cancellation, I would need to pay for another month of service.

This is about the point when I know some laws were broken!

While neither of these two situations involve a web host, the reviews are real. It is not some negative reviews from customers who were suspended/terminated for abuse/violation of TOS. I was their client.. for years.  The Rogers manager hoped we would someday return... I’m hoping the complaint I’m writing to the CRTC (gov oversight agency for communications), when added to all the others that are filed, adds another nail to Rogers coffin. Rogers you suck!


Liquid Web Fully Managed Web Hosting

Real Deal or just hawking web hosting? A Hawk Host steal.

Sat, 23rd February 2013, 17:22

Hawk Host

The Hawk Host homepage states that they believe in one thing above all else: quality. It's the driving force behind the type of servers they utilize, the features offered in their control panel, and why their support team is available around the clock. Their prices are not so bad either. Hawk Host’s goal is to provide you a hosting experience second to none.

Is this the real deal or just hawking web hosting

Starting this coming Wednesday February 27th for 72 hours only, you will be able to get a 60% off one-time coupon / 35% recurring coupon for any of Hawk Host services in their Dallas data center. It’s not exactly the dog days of summer but that’s hot. 

Use coupon code hostjury35 / hostjury60 depending on your choice, when checking out. The coupons become active at Midnight (CST) on the 27th. But act fast because after 72 hours this deal is done!


Hawk Host Banner                                              click image to open link in new tab

The Disclaimer:

As always, HostJury recommend that while price may be a consideration when choosing a web host, it should only be one of the many factored into your research. Page load speeds, additional features, good communication, and a fast knowledgeable support team will always top saving a few cents per day... And as always, HostJury makes no recommendation or endorsement of providers. You are encouraged to practice due diligence.. and at some point leave a review of the services provided.

Despite the disclaimer, saving some greenbacks (or any other color of money)  is always cool.. or hot depending on your perspective!

Coupons, deals, and steals may also be found on review pages of many of the web hosts reviewed on HostJury. Look in the right column under the related blog post section.

Web hosts - Got a really great deal - Want to participate in HostJury Deals and Steals - Contact us by email: feedback@hostjury.com

 

Court Rules You Have the Right to Google a Lawyer

Tue, 19th February 2013, 20:22

An interesting legal ruling out of Canada that has nothing in common with web hosts or the reviews of web hosting companies caught my attention. For the tech industry the ruling highlights how technology is permeating society to its core. Legal firms hedging their bets on the alphabetical placement of their names and law enforcement agencies may not breathe a similar collective sigh of relief.

Legaltech advocate Michael Geist wrote an excellent dispose of a legal case involving the individual charged with a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offence in Alberta, Canada. At the hearing there was no dispute that Christopher McKay told police that he wanted to exercise his right to legal counsel. As the accused cellphone and other personal belongings were placed in a police locker when he arrived at the station, McKay was instructed there was a toll-free number available to contact a lawyer as well as White and Yellow pages that could be consulted.

McKay testified that the telephone call to the toll free number was abrupt and it appeared that the person on the other end of the telephone did not want to talk to him.  At the hearing, McKay when asked about his level of satisfaction with his toll free telephone call replied, “no satisfaction at all”.  Mr. McKay reiterated that at the time, he thought he could only have one telephone call and that his understanding arose from pop culture and Hollywood movies.  McKay did concede that he did not tell the arresting officer that he wasn’t satisfied with his telephone information and he reiterated that he did not know that he had any rights to further opportunities to get legal advice at the time.

Then it gets interesting!

Judge Heather Lamoureux of the Provincial Court of Alberta considered "whether Internet access should form part of police resources provided to detainees in order to facilitate a reasonable opportunity to exercise the constitutional right to counsel." Acknowledging that many teenagers view their smartphone, iPad and other devices as essential parts of their daily lives, she noted that Google is the primary source of information for everything from maps to medical care to access to lawyers.

The judge conducted a Google search for "Calgary criminal defense lawyer" and found that within seconds there was provided with a long list of potential local lawyers. Moreover, the judge noted that police routinely use the Internet for investigations and evidence gathering. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms grants anyone arrested or detained the right "to retain and instruct counsel without delay and to be informed of that right." For this judge, the failure to provide Internet access meant that the Charter rights had been violated, concluding:

"In the year 2013 it is the Court's view that all police stations must be equipped with Internet access and detainees must have the same opportunities to access the Internet to find a lawyer as they do to access the telephone book to find a lawyer."

Read Michael Geist take on the story and the court ruling.

 

Hot off the press. A Steaming Hot Deal from Energized I.T.

Tue, 19th February 2013, 17:11

HostJury is getting fired up about some sizzling web hosting deals that won't burn a hole in your pocket!  Stop shopping around for a bargain. We're doing the legwork so you don’t have to! Unless you happen to be residing in one of those hot tropical kind of locales, the only thing hotter than today’s deal and steal would be a plane ticket to some exotic hotspot!

You better get cracking because like all HJ deals & steals, they are limited!

 

link to Energized IT. Click to open link in new tab 

click image to open link in new tab

 

Energized I.T. is offering 66% off on your first payment on any Web Hosting plan. Although the coupon code may be valid for any billing term, like winter its only going to last for a short while. This deal end on the last day of February.  Use Coupon code: HostJury at checkout.

 

As always, HostJury recommend that while price may be a consideration when choosing a web host, it should only be one of the many factored into your research. Page load speeds, additional features, good communication, and a fast knowledgeable support team will always top saving a few cents per day... And as always, HostJury makes no recommendation or endorsement of any listed providers. You are encouraged to practice due diligence.. and at some point leave a review of the services provided.

Despite the disclaimer, saving some greenbacks (or any other color of money)  is one great way to celebrate!

Coupons may also be found on review pages of many of the web hosts reviewed on HostJury. Look in the right column under the related blog post section. More coupons are added daily!

Web hosts - Got a really great deal - Want to participate in HostJury's deals and steals - Contact us by email: feedback@hostjury.com

 

Illinois Senator's Claim To Fame: Sponsoring Dumb Internet Bill

Tue, 19th February 2013, 13:14

It would appear one of the few freedoms in the land of the free not under attack is the right to propose stupid laws. In what is being billed as an early candidate for Worst Illinois Senate Bill of 2013, Senator Ira Silversten has sponsored Illinois Senate Bill 1614 titled INTERNET POSTING REMOVAL ACT

The legislation to create the Internet Posting Removal Act would require that a website administrator shall, upon request, remove any posted comments posted by an anonymous poster unless the anonymous poster agrees to attach his or her name to the post and confirms that his or her IP address, legal name, and home address are accurate. It would take effect 90 days after becoming law.

While the bill has little likelihood of success, it does demonstrate either a gross ignorance, bordering on incompetence, of certain elected officials over how the Internet works, or their willingness to be openly ridiculed by the same to achieve a short moment of glory in the spotlight of shame.

As Illinois does not have jurisdiction over the entirety of the internet the only thing this bill could actually succeed in doing is driving internet-related business (both individual online businesses, as well as the infrastructure that supports them, ie, webhosting companies and datacenters) out of the state.

Luckily, the courts of Illinois continue to exhibit a common sense approach to civil liberties even if a certain elected official insists on leaving his at the polling station.

A decision handed down recently by the Appellate Court of Illinois, Brompton Bldg., LLC v. Yelp!, Inc., 2013 WL 416185 (Ill.App. 1 Dist. January 31, 2013),  affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of the petition that an aggrieved real estate owner filed to discover the identity of a tenant who was badmouthing the petitioner’s rent-collection practices. The decision was a win for First Amendment rights in anonymous online speech.

Ira I. Silverstein is about to become famous... for all the wrong reason. Great job representing your constituents Ira!

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