Hosting for forum . How to choose?

Started by carldweb, Jul 09, 2022, 04:35 AM

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carldwebTopic starter

I plan to make a forum, no more than 1000 visitors dayly.
Do I need to pay attention to any special features of hosting provider? I don't have any experience with forums.

What is alarming is that on several forums where I hang out all the time some problems with hosting, often the forums fall, are often unavailable ....
I would like to immediately choose the hosting on which the forum will settle, and not drag the forum around hosting providers...

And which free forum engine do you recommend? While I settled on SMF, it seems that it breaks less often than PHPBB.


All you need is php and mysql.
Of the free engines, I agree, smf is the best.
For hosting, please the tread below:


When choosing a 'forum hosting', the following facts should be considered:

1) Required PHP and MySQL and a lot of hard disk space. Ideally not limited.

2) Be sure to expand. That is, the allocation of additional processor resources for the increased load.

3) Regular database backups.

4) Reputation and reliability of the host. Reviews, uptime, term of activity.

5) Price.

Uptime and functionality are harder to test. To do this, hosters offer a test period. Take a trial period wherever possible.
The price criterion is determined after sifting out providers according to technical (speed, volume, convenience, etc.) parameters.


When it comes to issues that are of particular importance, if you choose hosting for the forum, pay attention to:

Limits of e-mail — forums send a lot of automatic messages. Registration, notifications about new topics or new messages — if the site is popular, the number of such messages daily can be huge. Pay attention to the daily limit on the server. Although in the case of a regular web site, several thousand emails a day is a lot, it may not be enough for a forum.
Hosting options — in the case of static sites or blogs, you can enable the cache and thus partially unload web hosting. On the forum, however, most of the action is dynamic — registration, adding topics or sending private messages, so the effectiveness of hosting is very important. Therefore, pay attention to:
CPU – or central processing unit. Its resources are used every time an action is performed on your forum, for instance, a message is added or someone creates an account. Check how much CPU power will be allocated to you in that package.
Often this value is displayed as a percentage of the processor, i.e. it shows which part of one processor core can be used by your forum. It can be, for instance, 50% of the processor, but also 200% of the processor. In other cases, that parameter can be specified as MHz or GHz, for instance, 1 GHz. The minimum I suggest is 1 CPU core / 1 vCore / 1 GHz / 100% CPU, but in general, the more the better.

Random access memory (RAM/RAM) is used to store data of currently performed operations. Hosting services often have 2 limitations related to RAM, namely: its maximum amount for all processes and a limit for one process. In this case, my minimum is 1 GB of RAM and 512 MB per process. However, as in the case of the processor — the more, the better.
Server software — web hosting services can run on different software.
There are many types, but the three most popular are Apache, Nginx and LiteSpeed. Tests show that a server with LiteSpeed can be 75 times more efficient than Apache! It's also faster than Nginx, so it's the only right choice.
Disk type – you can meet 3 types. The slowest are HDDs, that is, classic hard drives. The other is an SSD, which is a much faster solid—state drive. The third option is NVMe SSD, which can be even 10 times faster than SSD. However, do not forget to check whether the service really stores the site files and database on SSD, because one part of the data can be stored on HDD, and the other on SSD.

PHP — Make sure your hosting provider offers the latest available version of PHP. It is in the current versions that the errors of the previous ones are eliminated, they are faster and more efficient. Version 7.0 is about 2.5 times faster than 5.6, and 7.0 is not the latest.
HTTP/2 or HTTP/3 — Sites using HTTP/2 load much faster than with HTTP/1.1. You can still find hosting web sites that don't support HTTP/2, but on the other hand, there are hosting providers that are already testing HTTP/3 support. What does it actually give? Well, sending/receiving data via HTTP/2 is much faster than via HTTP/1.1.
When searching for a suitable offer, pay attention to the availability of a free trial period or the possibility of a refund in case of refusal of the service within a certain time. Among other things, it is worth checking how the user agreement is drawn up and making sure that the service package will be enough for the forum that you want to create. Before you do that, read how to test web hosting?

Summing up:

You can choose from a variety of scripts to run the forum, which are available for free (or for a fee). You should choose web hosting with an auto-installer of applications, which will facilitate the process of creating such a web  site.
To create a new forum, one of the cheap packages from the offer of proven companies will be enough. At the very beginning, there is no point in spending more, because you will not use all the resources provided.
Don't forget to protect your forum from spambots. They can "eat" a lot of resources and scare away real users if you don't take care of them properly.