Who wouldn’t want his or her website to be fast, steady and simply managed for the lowest cost? Undoubtedly, that is the major promise of all hosting companies. Nevertheless, there are some things to take into consideration when choosing a host.
Since they are set by marketing these are often wily. Avoid getting enchanted by the unlimited and infinite options. Being able to host an unlimited number of sites while having endless bandwidth and infinite disk space and support is something you should distrust.
When the price is too low, it is considered a sign of warning. Sometimes the price is so low that you have to think that a revolutionary technology should have been invented in order to maintain such costs. Actually, in general the reasons are:
- Long term subscriptions to support survival of businesses for a brief period. You would probably not want to invest years of subscription with a host that is surely going to bankrupt within months.
- Overselling and poor service. One way to reduce expenses is setting an unpractical number of users and few resources. The combination results into a slow performance, constant interruptions and unstable performance.
A most common mistake is acquiring an inexpensive dedicated solution (dedicated or virtual private server). These solutions are often in short of a user-friendly management interface (for instance; cPanel). For the task of a daily server, support is often basic and the resources are too low. With these issues, the cheap server usually becomes unusable since you cannot set the server to handle the site and mail correctly. Moreover, there is always the case of inexperienced server administrators who leave easy-to-exploit security holes.
It all comes to support – most people will tell you this. The reality that the only way in which the service is useful is if you get effective support in the moment that is need – you have to be sure that the site is opening and mails are being delivered. Be also in alert with promises of a 24/7 support by phone – in the best scenario, this support will be able to help you if you have forgotten what your domain is. But do not pretend to get an answer solving your PHP errors from an experienced, English fluent, web developer.
What technology suits you better? Open Source is a mostly chosen option since it includes Linux, MySQL, LAMP stack, Apache or PHP. Basically, the reasons are;
- Quick and steady development. Pretty much all known web applications are Open Source or depend on it. – phpBB, WordPress, Joomla and many more. As a matter of fact, for almost anything there is an Open Source application. What is more, Open Source has a public code and permits quick detection and repairing of security and development bugs.
- Wide community and commercial support. The best support is Open Source’s, you will find from assisting communities to committed support departments.
- Products have a reasonable price, if they are not free. For instance; Joomla, a content management system from Open Source, is completely free.
- Simple to use. Open Source products are thought for the standard user who participates intensively in the development process.
In summary, Open Source is very appealing to developers since full access is allowed and code re-usage is permitted. Also, Open Source is being currently sponsored by some big IT companies such as Google, Sun, IBM and many more. Not long ago, Microsoft contributed with a plentiful sum to the Apache foundation. Such foundation is in charge of the development of the Apache web server, the best product in its category. Alternatives to the Open Source are found but, regrettably, it is not for us to recommend them.