Saturday, October 8, 2011

Webhosting: IX Webhosting Review

After two years of using IX Webhosting to host my website (not this blog), I've finally decided to change to a new hosting provider. I must say that their customer service is excellent. Most of time I got an answer in 1-3 hours, and the problem was solved right away. I'm also impressed by the positive attitude and the willingness to help. Not all of my requests were solved, but that was usually related to 3rd party software that they of course could not control.

Why Change
So, why do I want to look for another webhost? I was hosting my site on a windows plan (due to ASP.net) and used MS SQL as the database layer. I experienced extremely slow performance of both the shared webserver and the SQL server. I know for a fact that the SQL server was shared among more than 1,500 other sites, and I'm sure that the webserver was the same. Sometimes I could experience that the front page of my web application took more than 30 seconds to load, if it displayed at all. For a website with no users I would expect more from the hosting company.

VPS or dedicated servers
Since this was a spare time project with limited earning capabilities I did not want to invest extra money in a VPS plan or a dedicated server. The IX Webhosting VPS and dedicated servers seemed very expensive compared to other suppliers, and I had a limited budget.

Suggestions
So far I have not decided upon any other hosting provider, but I am determined to change, or maybe set up my own server.

Finding a good hosting company that supports windows servers and affordable SQL server databases is quite hard, and I would recommend any .NET developers to consider to use PHP instead. That way you can run your website on much better hardware and the Linux plans are most of time much cheaper (due to less license costs for the provider).

I enjoy programming in .NET, and I believe that the programming language and development tools are far better than PHP and Java, but sometimes you need to evaluate other possibilities.

Other webhosts
So far I have not yet decided which new webhost to use. I've looked at the following webhosting providers that offer affordable shared windows plans and SQL server support:
  • Hostgator (good reviews, unlimited storage, bandwidth and SQL databases. Even supports scheduled tasks)
  • Mochahost (good reviews, unlimited storage, bandwidth and SQL databases)
  • Arvixe (good reviews, unlimited storage, bandwidth and SQL databases)
  • 3essentials (good reviews, unlimited storage, bandwidth and SQL databases)
I will follow up with a new post when I have evaluated the webhosts.
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