Web Host Ethics

Written by Richard Lowe

Continued from page 1

Needless to say, I regained access to my site, copied my databases to my hard drive, then switched web hosts. Within two days I had moved my site to another, much better hosting service (and, of course, I deletedrepparttar offending script).

Don't test on your production servers - I know you want to upgrade your Apache torepparttar 134447 newest version or installrepparttar 134448 new control panel right away, but please don't immediately install anything on your production servers. Believe me, your customers don't care about any of this - they want working sites. Saying "everything is going slow because we upgraded" is not acceptable -repparttar 134449 host should know ALL side effects of any upgrades from actual testing long before any change, however, small, is made to a production system.

Do what you say you are going to do - I was with a hosting company called Bizland for over a year. They were good most ofrepparttar 134450 time except for (a) excessive downtime, and (b) they didn't deliver on their promises. They kept saying CGI will be released in April, then May, then June. Finally, I decided I could not wait anymore (and also concludedrepparttar 134451 host was down too much) so I moved my site.

Free hosting companies seem to have a bad habit of using production systems as test beds. This is one ofrepparttar 134452 strong downsides to using free hosts - they really don't care if your site is up or not, as long asrepparttar 134453 advertisements are displayed.

Acknowledge your trouble tickets - One web hosting company that I was with for quite a long time was Addr.com. These guys had easilyrepparttar 134454 best support so far. What stands out in my mind is every single message that I sent got acknowledged by a human being.

The sequence was as follows: I would send a trouble ticket and get an automated response. A short time later, I got a note thatrepparttar 134455 ticket was handled. I always respond with a "thank you", because I've been a support person before and I understandrepparttar 134456 power of getting thanked. Addr.com even responded torepparttar 134457 thank you with a "you are welcome" message!

To contrast, another hosting company (hostrocket again), had a nasty habit of just closing tickets. I'd send in a question and get an answer, then ask another question as follow-up. I would never get a response, then check to see thatrepparttar 134458 ticket was marked "closed". This is notrepparttar 134459 way to keep a customer happy.

Actually read your trouble tickets - I write very clearly in trouble tickets, precisely because I've been a support person and I know exactly what is needed. I'm constantly surprised at how many times web host support people simply don't readrepparttar 134460 ticket and thus dorepparttar 134461 wrong thing.

One particularly glaring example was a ticket which I sent in which said to set up a certain domain with bigmailbox. The support person (from Hostrocket) changedrepparttar 134462 MX record for an entirely different domain, in spite of my message clearly stating "change it for domain xyz". This caused my site to lose email capability for two days until they eventually figured out what they messed up.

Most importantly, remember where you get your money from - This message is for all web hosting companies everywhere. Your money comes from those people called webmasters. Free hosting companies get their money indirectly viarepparttar 134463 content provided by webmasters. With paid hostsrepparttar 134464 relationship is direct and torepparttar 134465 point - money is paid by webmasters.

If you annoy your customers or don't provide service, then you will find yourselves out of business. And in these days of a looming recession, good customers are gold. Keep them happy and your company will prosper.

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets at http://www.internet-tips.net - Visit our website any time to read over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.

A Change in Paradigm: Dedicated Server

Written by Richard Lowe

Continued from page 1

Log file issues - Log files are very important to any true webmaster. They are useful for finding errors, gauging traffic and determiningrepparttar success of promotions and articles. Yet so far all ofrepparttar 134446 shared hosts gave me incredible grief about log files. They seemed to want to initialize them at odd intervals (unpredictable), didn't allow easy access, allowed too easy (unsecured) access and generally made it difficult.

Okay, given all of that, it was time to make a change. Not just a change to another host, but a change in paradigm.

I had tried free hosts (three of them) before deciding they were not at all suitable for anything except a small hobby web site. I moved up to paid shared hosts and for a while was happy. I moved, then moved again, then again. The hosts were all fine for a while, then starting having trouble.

Shared hosting was not doing what I needed. The straw that brokerepparttar 134447 camels back was a question of bandwidth. Internet Tips and Secrets was exceeding 50gb a month (almost four million hits and three quarters of a million page views). Wow.

I could not find a shared host that offered a package of a full gigabyte of disk and upwards of 50gb a month. Not a single one after looking at over a hundred different packages.

I had a real problem. You see, go overrepparttar 134448 monthly bandwidth charge and you get smacked with huge overcharges. Forrepparttar 134449 web host I had atrepparttar 134450 time,repparttar 134451 charges were $6 per gigabyte. This would make my hosting bill very large indeed.

Thus I began looking for a dedicated hosting service. I quickly found a company and purchased a single month.

Here's what I got. A web server all to myself. I could define as many as 250 different web sites onrepparttar 134452 server, and I had complete control ofrepparttar 134453 DNS. I had root access torepparttar 134454 server (meaning I was more or less god onrepparttar 134455 box) and could literally do anything I wanted. I could install anything, do anything and control or not control everything.

I had 9gb of disk space. Best of all,repparttar 134456 service provided a whooping 400gb of bandwidth usage per month. The server was extremely fast for my needs. All for around $200/month plus a setup fee.

The downside (there is always a downside, isn't there)? The price was a little steep, but a predictable $200 a month is far superior to a surprise $500 or even $100 hosting charge. They also didn't provide any real autoresponders (but I solved that by purchasing a package) or web based email. Their support is also very basic - they have a 24 hour help desk which is friendly and competent, but they do not appear to be technical heavyweights.

Thus I have now, after a week of hard work, begun a new adventure - a dedicated web server forrepparttar 134457 16 sites that my wife and I own. So far,repparttar 134458 experience is far superior torepparttar 134459 shared hosting nightmares that I've been facing.

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets at http://www.internet-tips.net - Visit our website any time to read over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.

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