General question about hosting providers

Started by ilhm, Jul 08, 2022, 04:17 AM

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ilhmTopic starter

I want to ask a general question about hosting providers, what information do you pay attention when ordering these services?
Price, maximum load capacity, disk space, etc.


In general, the price, of course, at the first stages of development, loads and so on are not so important ...
But after that, either stay with this hosting provider, changing the tariff to a more profitable one. Or find something else ... you can always move and reschedule. It is also possible to order dedicated servers.

Selection options:
1. If major service provider
2. Demand in SEs queries, compare with IM data
3. Geography: USA is better
4. English support, 24/7
5. Price
6. Less involved in server operation (ideally - powerful and budget virtual hosting with the ability to switch to VPS in the future)
7. Additional services FREE (website transfer from third-party servers, backups, IP)
8. Backup;
9. Automatic restore from backup
10. Payment methods
11. Number of simultaneously running processes
12. DDoS Protection
13. Uptime


When choosing a new hosting, first of all, I pay attention to the technical characteristics. Is it possible to work with Wordpress and other popular engines, what disk space can be obtained at a certain rate, is there round-the-clock support, is there a fresh version of PHP. It is also good if it is possible to order a virtual or cloud server to host large services.


Choosing the server where your project will be located can be difficult, especially if you are new to site building. Choosing the wrong type or hosting plan can be an expensive mistake — it makes no sense to spend a lot of money on functions that you don't need, but excessive savings can lead to the loss of some site visitors due to slow operation or low uptime.

David Gibbs

When creating plans for web hosting, the hosting company creates 2 to 5 packages, which are most often limited to 500 Gb of free space. This distribution allows the hosting provider to determine the number of users that will be assigned to each machine (server). This does not mean that they cannot provide you with 1, 5 or 10 TB, however, creating a unique offer turns web hosting into renting a dedicated server.
I think you can easily find offers from hosting to rent dedicated up to 10Tb.


Reliability and Uptime: One of the most important considerations when choosing a web hosting provider. Examine the company's history of uptime in the past to understand its reliability. 

Customer Support: Another important factor is customer support 24/7.


For me, the main thing is the availability of the server 24 hours 7 days a week. Technical support first of all. The presence of different servers in different countries and the quick transfer of the site to another server (dos attacks, etc.) .. It all depends on the project that you want to host.


To decide once and for all which hosting to use, paid or free, find out what you are creating your website for.
If you just want to play around, create a website for yourself, your family or friends, then you can use free hosting.

If you have an interesting idea of creating a web project and you are going to extract monetary or other benefits from it now or in the future, then you definitely need to use paid hosting for the site.

I will briefly explain the main disadvantages of free hosting -

- 1. The web hosting provider is not responsible for anything and does not guarantee the safety of your site. At any time, your site may be completely or partially destroyed, or be unavailable. And you will not even be able to make any claims, because you are not the owner here.

- 2. Surely you are already an аdult and understand that in that life almost no one does anything for nothing. Free hosting is no exception. If you do not pay money, then you will pay in another way.
Most likely, all the pages of your site will display ads from a hosting provider. And why do you need someone else's advertising on a project in which you invest your strength, soul and money?

- 3. And despite the above disadvantages, free web hosting may not have sufficient technical capabilities for the normal functioning of the site.

Currently, due to the huge competition in the market, you can purchase high-quality and reliable virtual hosting for a website for $ 3-5 / month, which is not such a big fee for that service. You probably pay much larger amounts per month for your mobile phone.

The working hours of the hosting provider and the number of clients.

Pay attention to how long the web  hosting provider has been working on the market with that type of service.

It is best to give preference to firms that have been working on the market for a long time. Since the competition for this type of service is high and it is very difficult to provide high-quality service for a long time, then choosing a company that is present on the market for a long period, you have more chances to get high-quality services.

New firms entering this market due to non-fulfillment of certain obligations or lack of funds may even wind down their activities at one point. In this case, you will not be able to pick up either your website or prepaid funds.

Along with the duration of the provision of services, I also advise you to pay attention to the number of customers who currently use the services of a hosting provider.

Of course, few people will tell you the exact number of customers. However , there are services with which you can find out the approximate number of domains .RU and .RF located on NS servers of that web hosting. Thus, we can roughly assume how many sites are on the servers of this hosting and draw certain conclusions.

If the company operates on the market for a long period, respectively, and the number of customers who use its services should be large. Of course, the number of clients is small, in comparison with other companies providing hosting for about the same time, most likely the company does not have a very good reputation.

If the monthly increase in customers is small or there is an outflow at all, then there must also be reasons for this. And most likely this is an insufficient quality of services.

Naturally, the number of clients will be influenced by competent, effective marketing conducted by a hosting provider, but as practice shows, it is definitely worth considering this parameter when choosing a hosting.

That is why in the reviews of hosting hosted on that project there is an indicator of "RU Domains on NS servers", which is worth paying attention to when choosing hosting.

Technical characteristics of hosting and their limitations.

Next, let's look at the technical characteristics of web  hosting. Conditionally, they can be divided into site-specific and general requirements.

Windows or Linux platform.
The server on which your site will be located can run on a Windows or Linux operating system.

The choice of operating system will depend on the requirements of the CMS on which your site is made and the technologies used.
If your site requires technologies such as ASP and ASP.NET and their components, as well as support for MS SQL databases, then you definitely need hosting with Windows.

If the system on which your site is built can run on both Windows and Linux operating systems, then it is best to give preference to Linux OS.

Hosting provided on the Linux platform has become the most widespread.

Advantages of hosting on the Linux platform +

+ 1. The price for that type of web hosting is usually cheaper.

+ 2. The system is more stable and secure.

+ 3. Supported by a large number of CMS and other applications.

PHP configuration and required modules.
The most common scripting language used by many CMS and web applications is PHP. Accordingly, for the normal operation of your site built on a particular system, when choosing a hosting, it is necessary to take into account the PHP configuration used on the hosting.

PHP version. There are significant differences between some versions of the PHP language. For instance, between version 5.2.X and 5.3.X. Respectively, if the CMS on which the site is running is built and runs on PHP 5.3, then when choosing a web hosting, you need to make sure that its servers have support for this particular version of PHP.

Memory limit for executing a PHP script.
The speed of the scripts will depend on that indicator, and hence the speed of the entire site. Various CMS and scripts have certain memory needs, so you need to look at their technical specifications.

Currently, the memory limit for executing a PHP script, on most hosting sites, is 128 MB or more. Some still provide hosting with a 64 MB memory limit, but as a rule, this amount of memory is available only at the cheapest rates. Although some providers may have a limit of 128 MB or more on the cheapest tariffs. Therefore, take this indicator into account, focusing on the price of tariffs.

Available PHP modules. Naturally, the PHP version you have chosen must have certain modules enabled. Which ones will also depend on the needs of your scripts and CMS.

The most popular are the following PHP modules:

Zend Optimizer
Other scripting languages are Perl, Ruby, Python.
If your CMS or web application runs in any other scripting language, you need to make sure that the web hosting has support for that language and all the necessary modules.

Databases supported on the hosting.
Many CMS support several types of databases. The most common and frequently used are MYSQL databases. In addition to that type, PostgreSQL databases are most often used for sites that run on Windows, MS SQL databases. See the technical specifications of your CMS and consider this parameter when choosing hosting.

Free disk space for the site.
The required disk space for the site will depend on the size of folders and script files required for the site to work and various additional files, which, for instance, are provided to visitors for download. This is the simplest indicator. As a rule, there are no problems with the amount of disk space and hosting providers provide it with a margin.

Hosting security.
There are several basic aspects of the security of your hosting that you need to consider when choosing it.

Timely update of the server software. Certain software is installed and running on the server for web hosting. This is the OS, the web server, etc. When choosing a hosting, it is necessary to pay attention to the fact that only the latest versions of software are used on the hosting. High-quality hosting providers usually pay great attention to that and make timely software updates.

But in addition to timely software updates, it is necessary that it is properly configured.

Automatic creation of backups (backups) of the site and database. Be sure to find out whether the website and database are automatically backed up on the hosting. This will allow you to restore the functionality of the site in case of failures, infection with viruses or loss of some information.

In addition, you need to take into account how often these backups are created and how many days are stored. It is best if they are created every day and stored for as long as possible, for instance, a week or even more.

A long storage time is necessary so that if suddenly, you do not immediately detect any malfunction of the site, and after a while, there is a high probability that there may no longer be a backup with a working site.

When creating a new backup, the oldest one is automatically deleted. Therefore, if the storage period, for instance, is only 2-3 days, then it may happen that the working version of your site will be deleted quickly and you will not be able to restore it.

The policy of the hosting provider regarding the load on the server.
A large number of sites are located on a virtual hosting on one server. Each site creates a certain load on the server. Because all sites are completely different and have different traffic, then the load they create will also be different. On a virtual hosting, each site is allowed to create a load only up to a certain level.

When you reach that level, you will be asked to either switch to a more expensive tariff or change your virtual web  hosting to a virtual server.

It is good when the hosting provider sets a certain threshold value for the load on the server for each tariff and allows you to monitor this load from the control panel.

The thing is that many providers are trying to speculate on this. Without giving the client a clear idea of the load created by his site, they suggest switching to a more expensive tariff, motivating that with a large load created by the site.

Hosting control panel.
The control panel used on the hosting should have an intuitive interface and many tools that allow you to effectively manage hosting.

Recently, many hosting providers have been creating their own control panels that allow you to both manage hosting and pay for services and monitor the write-off of funds. The main thing is that such a panel is understandable to you and allows you to easily perform all the necessary actions.

In addition to self-made control panels, ready-made software solutions are very often used, which are web  hosting control panels. The most common of them are cPanel and ISPmanager.

Geographical location of the server.
Pay attention to the geographical location of the server on which your site will be located. Try to host your website on a server located in the country for which your project is designed. This way the site will have a faster response and load faster for the vast majority of your users.

Technical support.
Technical support is a very important indicator, especially if you are a novice webmaster and do not know all the tricks of hosting.

The mode of operation of the support service. As a rule, currently all web hosting providers declare that their support service works around the clock and seven days a week. But in practice, some are just lying and asking any question at late or at night, you will receive an answer only in the morning or by lunch the next day. Using the services of such a hosting is definitely not worth it. 

The normal average response time of the support service is considered to be 15 minutes. Except in some cases, for instance, related to some software configuration specifically for your needs.

You can check all this by asking the question you are interested in in the late evening or at night and preferably on a day off.

Competence of the support service. The competence of the support service is more difficult to check, especially if you are new to hosting issues. The only thing that can be done is to ask about the availability of quality certificates of the support service from the hosting provider.

Free trial period.
Free trial period

It is good if the web hosting provider provides a free trial period. As a rule, if the provider is confident in the quality of its services, then it provides such a period.

It can be from 7 to 30 days in duration. The longer the duration of the test period, the more opportunities there are to test its quality.

During the test period, some providers impose certain restrictions. Due to these limitations, it is sometimes impossible to properly test the quality of services, in which case the availability of a test period is not a plus.

Pricing policy of the web hosting provider.
Pricing policy of the hosting provider.

The price is a very important factor when choosing a hosting. In order not to overpay, it is best to compare prices for similar services from several providers.

Pay attention to whether the company has a suitable hosting payment method for you. If you represent an individual entrepreneur or a legal entity, take care of the availability of such payment methods as wire transfer.

All financial transactions and spending of funds from the internal account should be as transparent as possible. As a rule, you can monitor the spending of funds from the hosting control panel.

A good sign is the possibility of returning unspent funds.

Bonuses and discounts provided to hosting clients.
Bonuses and discounts provided to web hosting clients.

As mentioned above, the competition in the hosting market is high, so all other things being equal, give preference to the hosting provider that, if using its services, provides any bonuses and discounts for hosting fees.

Very often, you can save a lot when paying for hosting for a long period. For instance, when paying for a period of 12 months or more, many providers offer big discounts and the possibility of free domain registration in the .RU zone.

Reviews and reviews of hosting services.
Reviews and reviews of web hosting services.

Focus on the reviews left by hosting clients on various specialized forums and services. But at the same time pay attention to the fact that there is no completely ideal company.

In any case, there should be both positive reviews and reviews containing disadvantages of web hosting. Naturally, if only negative reviews are left about any hosting, then most likely that company does not provide a very high-quality service.

Since the problem of choosing high-quality web  hosting has always been acute and will be faced by both beginners and more experienced webmasters, we have opened a new section on the site dedicated to the choice of hosting. In it, you can get acquainted with reviews and reviews of various virtual hosting services and choose the most suitable high-quality web hosting for yourself.

At the same time, I draw your attention, our project does not cooperate with web hosting providers in any way and does not post reviews on a paid basis.