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How Much Do You Pay to Host Your Website? 748

DosGusanos asks: "I was curious how much people around the U.S. and around the world pay for hosting. Obviously size in cabinets/rack units/square feet, included features such as bandwidth, UPS/generator, management, etc. factor in. The configuration I am particularly interested in is three machines, one www, one search, and one database. The machines would be hooked up to a T1 and networked to one another over Ethernet. Anyone paying for colo or hosting in this same ballpark? How happy/upset are you with your provider?"
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How Much Do You Pay to Host Your Website?

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  • Do use a little favor and don't use the e-mail that post here to offer your services on the cheap.

    Talk about target marketing...

  • apache (Score:2, Insightful)

    by trefoil ( 153310 )
    on my own gateway.. 'nuff said
  • Rackspace (Score:3, Informative)

    by corz ( 409850 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:26PM (#4821300) Homepage
    "How happy/upset are you with your provider?"

    Two words: Rackspace Rules

    • Re:Rackspace (Score:5, Insightful)

      by hermescom ( 624888 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:35PM (#4821399) Homepage
      That's true if you can afford them - they're definitely on the premium side. I never had a problem with them, but once my site started outgrowing the 30 Gigs they allow you monthly by on their standard plans, additional bandwidth became way too costly.

      At $3.50/Gig, I ended up paying almost 50% over my base fee for a month of popularity.

      As a result, I moved the more bandwidth intensive part of the site off to a cheaper server with beefier specs, and felt the pain right away. These guys have no monitoring included, ignore email requests for support, and charged me a consulting fee when I needed my server backed up and wiped because of a Slapper infection.

      Not that I blame them, since it's not really managed hosting they are selling, but the difference in service is tremendous.

      If you can afford Rackspace - go for it. I think they even have an option to give you a private net work -- link your servers directly one to the other so intra-server communitation doesn't count towards your total bandwidth cap.

      • Re:Rackspace (Score:5, Informative)

        by Darth Maul ( 19860 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:13PM (#4821745) Homepage
        I have three servers at Rackspace with the Private Net between them. They really are amazing. Service is actually *service* and they truly care about customers. It's amazing, and I'm more cynical than most people, but Rackspace truly impresses me.

        My web pages are not just static HTML, either. This site serves an hour-long interactive training course that certifies over 3000 people a day. And the servers have been working perfectly. In fact, one of my three machines there has an uptime of 355 days (tomorrow is a whole year!!!). They're all running Linux, of course.
      • Re:Rackspace (Score:5, Informative)

        by KC7GR ( 473279 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:55PM (#4822127) Homepage Journal
        There's one little thing about Rackspace that they, of course, neglect to tell you; They're a spammer nest.

        Rackspace has a long history of being apathetic at best to spamvertized sites, despite their anti-spam Terms of Service. As of 3-Dec-02, they're still hosting at least 20 or so spammers, [] and chunks of their netspace may still be listed on SPEWS. []

        Cheap or not, good customer service or not, I would be very wary about selecting Rackspace for any sort of hosting.

        • Re:Rackspace (Score:5, Interesting)

          by pjrc ( 134994 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @08:44PM (#4822953) Homepage Journal
          There's one little thing about Rackspace that they, of course, neglect to tell you; They're a spammer nest.

          I'm glad you mentioned this. I've been using Verio for the last couple years. Everything has been really good, except for little skirmishs with the blacklists.

          When I first signed up, just about two years ago, there were just a couple of the minor blacklists listing a netblock that had my IP number. The listings were for a spammer that Verio had kicked off months ago. I contacted the blacklist maintainers (only one of those lists was could be be called "maintained"). It's remarkably difficult to contact these people. Eventually the better list dropped the block, and that gave me enough leverage to convince the other two to do the same (the spammer had long since moved on for greener pastures).

          But in the last year or so, there's been a whole new crop of spammer acusations. I can't verify them... it reads like a whole lot of conspiracy theory. But a couple weeks ago it even got posted as a slashdot story (so it must be true, right?)

          I called Verio. Before the slashdot story, they would just deny everything. They didn't admit they were catering to any spammers, but they didn't flat out deny that no spammers were operating on their network.

          Verio claims that their hosting business is very separate from their network provision services (T1, T3, OC-something lines.... more bandwidth than I can envision). So far, the more reputable blacklists haven't waged netblocks on Verio's hosting side, or at least the few IP numbers allocated to my little server.

          So because of these escalating wars between the spammers and blacklists, if you intend to host a mail server, the ISPs record about hosting spammers should be your top concern. Saddly, there are a lot of mixed messages and it's hard to tell if any particular provider is any good. Two years ago, for example, Verio was listed at the top of SpamCop's page of providers with exemplary anti-abuse policies.

          Recently I've been making some tenative plans for jumping ship from Verio. Other than this spammer/blacklist issue, and one little incident where they didn't notify me in advance of (supposedly) scheduled maintainance (they claim they did), the decicated hosting service from Verio has been great.

          But hitting blacklists, even occasionally, is a real show-stopper. For my little site, we do a light amount of e-commerce. When a confirmation email to a customer bounces (they placed the order over the web), we look like a little fly-by-night company out to steal their credit card info. Of course, emails bounce for a variety of other reasons, so we've gotten into the practive of picking up the phone and calling them with the tracking number.

          The sad news is that there doesn't seem to be any really good way of determining if a provider is hosting or provisioning bandwidth to spammers. Even if everything looks good in advance (as it did 2 years ago with Verio), things change.... and they change more rapidly that you'd want to move providers when everything else is running so smoothly.

          I wish I could recommend Verio, as the service, performance and reliability has been excellent. But this spammer problem and the reaction from the blacklisting community is definately something you don't want to get caught in the middle of.

          I'm taking Rackspace off my short list of "plan B" options if the Verio/blacklist situation gets worse. Rackspace was actually at the top of my list.

    • Re:Rackspace (Score:4, Informative)

      by Amazing Quantum Man ( 458715 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:38PM (#4821440) Homepage
      Isn't Rackspace blacklisted for being host to a bunch of spamhausen?

      Politech got blacklisted [] several times.
    • Re:Rackspace (Score:2, Informative)

      by sartin ( 238198 )

      Rackspace does indeed rule. I run a machine for a non-profit called Knowbility [], that hosts about 30 other non-profits. Rackspace is on the pricey side (which bothered me less when they were donating service in-kind, but is an impact on our budget now), but the support and uptime have been excellent. Every support call I've ever made, even the ones that were due to being moderately clueless (I picked up the site on short notice for a non-profit), has been solved rapidly and completely. Every question gets a complete answer on the first try. No ticket gets closed until I agree that the problem is solved.

      We were running a remote event in California [] that involved building web sites that we were hosting at rackspace. While setting up the hosting late on a Friday night, one of our people managed to hose our VNC so we could no longer get in and also mess up the virtual hosting. Rackspace support walked us through fixing it so we could complete the competition without any major hassles.

      Our current plan is to continue hosting there and convert our Windows server to Linux. Their charge for a basic Linux box is US$230/month with 30 GB (overage is US$3.50/GB).

    • Re:Rackspace (Score:4, Informative)

      by Graelin ( 309958 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @07:10PM (#4822273)
      ** This is a plug, I admit it, I love Rackspace **

      Rackspace rules them all. We've been with them for over two years now and I don't believe we will ever leave them. We've done our shopping, but compare Rackspace to any of the others and you'll realize something - these guys REALLY know what they're doing.

      We will be at 9 servers with them in a couple of days (just added 3 more). We use just under 1.5TB of bandwidth every month. At this level of usage, we get it for $2/GB. That is certainly not bad. Given that their network has never had an unexpected outage (not that I can remember at least) I feel it's very justified.

      The folks there _really_ know what they're doing. The sales guys don't try to be technical guys, the sales engineers are on the ball. The tech support folks can solve a lot of the problems right there but when the shit hits the fan they'll send you straight to the guy in the data-center. I've spoken to one of the founders (something technical, don't remember what) and I didn't even ask for him, they just conferenced him in.

      We've been in some pretty bad spots before (lost most of a RAID 5 array once) and they've pulled us out of the gutters.

      I've had security folks tell me the Rackspace network is very secure. But I cannot personally confirm this.

      We're not a big customer of theirs by no means. We're TINY. I know they've got some very large contracts but they really do care about us. The
      little guys.

      I could easily go on for hours here so I will stop now. If you can afford it, get Rackspace. You will not be sorry.
  • "Free" hosting... (Score:3, Informative)

    by `Sean ( 15328 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:27PM (#4821312) Homepage Journal

    I get DSL through Speakeasy [] and they allow hosting of Web sites. I pay $160/month for 4 static IPs and 768Kbps SDSL. Medium speed hosting and I host dozens of Web sites off my connection. Great deal!

    • I can second this. I've got the same plan through Speakeasy, and their service is excellent.
      • I can second this.

        And third. If you're really worried about reliability and you're someplace where there's a second (non-Covad - which Speakeasy is for SDSL) DSL provider, there are ways to hook up, say two 1.5 meg DSL lines over different providers to the same site, and then run a script from a third site that checks that each line is up every minute or two and uses dynamic DNS updates to refer your traffic one way or the other - or both. Tricky, but it can be done. Then for less than the price of a T1 you're running the equivalent of 2 T1's.

        A main reason to use a remote hosting service rather than host at your own location is such redundancy. But it's much easier to maintain a machine on your own premises. Some hosting services will charge you extra for each time you even ask them to glance in the direction of the machine on their racks they renting you.

    • Speakeasy seems to be the best way to go if you want to host your own sites. My friend in Acworth (suburb of Atlanta), GA, has my domain [] sitting on a box on his Speakeasy DSL which is 1.5/384 ADSL. He's only being charged about $100-$120 for the 4 or so IPs and DSL connection.

      Consequently I'm getting charged only $ it's a pretty good deal to run one domain on a P3 1 GHz, 512 MB RAM, 30 GB HDD machine.
  • HostBaby plug (Score:2, Informative)

    by turnstyle ( 588788 )
    The guys behind CDBaby [] have a hosting service, HostBaby []. It's mostly geared toward musicians.

    It's $20/month for 200MB, no set up and the first month is free. I know about them because their service works with Andromeda [].

    They're good guys.

  • by fobbman ( 131816 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:28PM (#4821323) Homepage
    ...we'll take the best of the ones offered and link them in a /. story to see how they do under load.

  • T1 and local hosting (Score:2, Informative)

    by Kneht ( 218314 )
    At my last job, we had similar to what you're looking for and paid $895 w/ 2 year contract. It was just outside a small city, and location can change price a lot. It was nice having our servers locally, and we got good service too!
  • by dagg ( 153577 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:30PM (#4821350) Journal
    I'm paying a smallish company about $160 a year for a shared server. That includes the use of Ftp, Apache, and MySQL. That includes 300 Megs of disk space and 7500 Megs of transfer per month. I've never had any noticeable down-time... and all of my questions have been answered within about 8 hours. I am extremely happy with the use of my $160.

    Check out for other people's opinions on hosting providers.


    Your Sex []
  • $40/mo (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Same thing I pay for my high speed internet connection. In fact, it's the same bill....

    (Check Post Anonymously)
    (Click Submit)
  • by tempmpi ( 233132 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:31PM (#4821355)
    If you only want to use a shared dual T1, I don't think you need three machines. One good machine with a better internet connection would be a much better configuration for most applications. Space is expensive at most hosters.
  • Colo (Score:2, Insightful)

    by dyrewolf ( 560994 )
    We have 3 servers (web, database, media) that we own and colo at a facility nearby. Most of our bill is bandwidth (we do 300GB a month sometimes), but total including the rackspace (6U's) we pay about $1200. Our host has redundent uplinks and a great facility, and we've had about 20 minutes of total outage in 18 months there.
  • by martissimo ( 515886 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:32PM (#4821371)
    but, Webhostingtalk's website [] is basically a forum with user reviews, recommendations, and gripes dedicated to exactly the questions you seek answers too ;)
  • well im no longer setting up dot com ecom sites... but some prices from back in tha day for comparison:

    '99 Exodus: 1 rack in a shared cage $900/mo. Bandwidth: $950/Mb/mo.

    '00 Qwest: full locked cabinet $800/mo. Bandwidth: $800/Mb/mo.

    Just some prices I remember from then... would really like to hear what these same things are going for right now...
  • of course, I host in brasil. it actually costs R$ 35,00 for a hundred megs, with mysql, PHP, Perl and other goodies with 3 OC3 links to the web. not bad. and I know the ppl that work there. I worked for the company.

    knowing the ppl who take care of the server your sites runs on, the ppl who backs-up your data is important. at for me is.
  • Worldcom (Score:2, Insightful)

    by oZZoZZ ( 627043 )
    I pay 1000CDN for burstable T1 (billing is adjusted based on bw usage).. i've spiked above what im paying for a few months, but they only increase billing if two months in a row.. i had 3 hours of downtime this past year, and it was because of the bell t1 circuit that was installed... otherwise worldcom has been perfect, and i would recommend them.
  • I've got a 1U machine in a colo that provides power and what not, over a very fast net connection (multiple gigabit tier one peers) for about $100/mo, but that only gives me 400 gigs of transfer. Not much in the way of available service or monitoring though, it's only good because it's cheap.

    I also share 4 1U machines and a UPS colo'd in a facility that provides an unmetered 5Mbit connection (provided over ethernet) for about $180/mo per machine.

    On top of that, I split the costs on a data center which has 2 regular old T1s and a whole fuckton of servers, since it's our space, and the Ts run about $1500/mo.

  • DMCA (Score:3, Funny)

    by Koyaanisqatsi ( 581196 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:35PM (#4821407)
    Asking hosting prices is in clear violation of the DMCA according to price copyright laws. Cease and desist, our lawyers are being notified.
  • ServerBeach (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DarkHelmet ( 120004 ) <`ten.elcychtneves' `ta' `kram'> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:36PM (#4821413) Homepage
    I use hosting called ServerBeach... They've done some advertising on slashdot, so I'm sure they're gaining awareness slowly.

    I like them a lot. $100 / month for a dedicated server that's a 1ghz duron with 512 meg of ram and 60 gig hard drive. That's more than enough power for the sites I host. For $1000/month with them, I could get a site that can't be slashdotted.

    The downside is support. They only have a mail ticketing system, and you're pretty much left to handle your own problems, but that's okay. I pretty much considered it a learning experience installing / configuring my own BIND, Apache, Mysql, and GD.

    The best part of this is that they include 400gig/month in bandwidth to use. It would take some serious bandwidth to suck all that up. It's burstable too.

    FYI they're based in Texas. If you're looking for discounted hosting, go for it!

    Of course, don't cry to me if you run a commerce site with them. It's my belief that any site that's a breadwinner for a company should run at a place that has 24/7 support. A ticketing system is fine, just make sure there's always someone there to answer it.

    Overall, I like them. Cheap enough to keep me happy, and it's my own machine with root so I can install/config and run whatever I want.

    • Whoa! I read ServerBeach as BeaverSearch. Perhaps it's time to call it a day.
    • Re:ServerBeach (Score:4, Informative)

      by Ian Bicking ( 980 ) < minus caffeine> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:23PM (#4821823) Homepage
      I'm using SmartHosting [], which I imagine is a similar ($100/mo), though ServerBeach sounds like they give you more. One nice thing, I was able to have any OS, so I could get Debian. They installed the base system, and then I customized it for my needs remotely.

      Support also sounds about the same. Which would be fine, except I had a bad experience with them when they gave me a server with a bad hard drive. Bad hardware happens sometimes -- but they denied the problem and tried to blame it on me for quite a while, which shouldn't happen.

      But most of the time I don't need them to do anything, and everything works well.

  • Speak very, very kindly to the network guys at your place of work.
    No - very very kindly.

    Generally they'll have more bandwidth that they need. And if they've got a Packeteer or a FlowFusion, they can let you have the remainder of the bandwidth that they aren't using. The way I see it, is that any bits on an E1 that aren't being used is money being wasted.
    Obviously, it goes without saying that spam, warez, and pr0n is a no-no.

    But if they're cool, they may well let you sneak in a few boxes.
    • by Courageous ( 228506 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:48PM (#4821537)
      You've just advised people to engage in a behavior which can justify their termination. Did you know that?

      Just curious.

      • > a behavior which can justify their termination

        not all employers are sour pusses, you know.

        Obviously you want to ASK if it's okay to borrow some company bandwidth, and I have no pity for the guy that starts using it without asking. If they give the go-ahead however, there's absolutely nothing wrong with it. Some companies may give you free coffee, others may give you an ethernet port on a switch.. consider it a perk.

        My website has been hosted, for free, for almost 3 years now on a machine that lives in exactly this situation. It exists with the full knowledge of the superiors, and the word is as long as the machine complies with company security policy, it can continue to exist.
  • (Score:4, Interesting)

    by dalutong ( 260603 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:36PM (#4821423)
    Eryxma Networks really has done a great job for me. They use GNU/Linux servers and are dirt cheap (right now 1GB of storage and 50GB of transfer for 3 bucks/month).

    the service has been great. the ceo even gave me his AIM screenname. I recommend them highly.
    • i signed up with eryxma in february. my login password didn't work. i contacted customer support twice and got no response. i then forgot about it cause i didn't have my website ready. 6 months later when i finally had my website ready my password still didn't work. sent them another email. again, no response. not a big deal...i'm out $16 but i won't use them again.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I've been using ServePath ( [])

    I have a couple of dedicated servers with them and their prices are great. They have UPS/Generator, and I can even remotely power cycle my box with a web site. They have a cool site too that tells me how much transfer I've used and that good stuff.

    They're located in SanFran too, so they're pretty well connected. I heard that's like the best place in the US to host a box.

    I'd recommend them to anyone. They do colo's too.

    I know I'm happy when I have a 140+ day uptime.

  • Message Board costs (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Gyorg_Lavode ( 520114 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:37PM (#4821430)
    I help moderate a message board. We have roughly 40,000 registered users and between 100 and 400 on at any one time. We do between about 3 GB per day average with peak days around 7 GB from the forums only. That does not include the forum images which add a few more GB per day.

    We pay roughly 6,000 per year. This includes the software, the hardware, the bandwidth and the service. (This is through We have been very happy with the service, receiving assistance from the company CEO when need be. Their software/hardware is also capable of handling very long threads, (our longest being over 12,000 posts and 130mb for the text only before becoming corrupted.)

    • Their software/hardware is also capable of handling very long threads, (our longest being over 12,000 posts and 130mb for the text only before becoming corrupted.)

      I believe your definition of "capable" differs from mine.
      • Re:hmmm (Score:2, Informative)

        Most of the message boards I know lock threads around 300 posts and start a new thread to cut down on the effect on the server and the chance of corruption of the database. This thread was over 40 times that big. I have seen multiple ezboard threads with a couple thousand posts that have not had any trouble. EZBoard's software does an excellent job at handling large threads.
  • by redink1 ( 519766 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:40PM (#4821461) Homepage Journal
    While I tried to find a new host a month or so ago, I stumbled upon Your Host Sucks [] and the WebHostingTalk Forums []. Both are excellent for finding out if a potential host is worth the bother of going through... I saw quite a few horror stories while browsing around. For example, I think FeaturePrice said a failed router was an 'act of god', and therefore the down-time didn't fall under their uptime guarantee. Yeah. God smited their router... try proving that in court.

    Also, the WebHostingTalk forums have a dedicated forum subsection for having companies compete over you... it was somewhat amusing when I did so. I got like 5 responses within an hour, plus 5 or so e-mails. But then I realized that the bandwidth I'd require was much greater than I anticipated (or could afford), so I edited my post saying something like that. And they're still e-mailing me. Like once a week...

    • by Waffle Iron ( 339739 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @07:02PM (#4822204)
      For example, I think FeaturePrice said a failed router was an 'act of god', and therefore the down-time didn't fall under their uptime guarantee. Yeah. God smited their router... try proving that in court.

      But read the fine print in their service agreement --

      And concerning our routers God hath spoken: tell unto thine people these Terms and Conditions which I give to thee, and abide ye by them and ye shall drink of the fruits of My routers.

      1. Thou shalt allow no spam to enter or leave the confines of My routers, for the spam is sure to sap the life of the men who behold it.

      2. Thou shalt route no pr0n upon My routers, in order to keep them pure.


      10. Thou shalt not hack My routers, nor shall thou employ My routers to hack thy neighbor's ox, nor thy neigbors wife, nor thy neighbor's information systems.

      If thou shalt disobey these terms, I your Lord shall smite down these routers and they shall be barren of all thine packets and the packets of your children and your children's children, and the anointed keepers of this router shall not reimburse unto you the gold which you have given them in payment.

  • This pricing is common to Cleveland, and may have since come down. I havn't been consulting for two years, but this was a very good a price competitive solution for most of my customers.

    $300 a month, one tile, unlimited power, T3 connectivity. You provide the UPS, Rack, and Servers, they provide a chair and an ashtray. Works for me, and you can sublease the rack space.
  • by ShotgunEd ( 621584 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:42PM (#4821474)
    The same guys who host and mirrors have an absolutely amazing deal for website hosting. Ten bucks a month for full Unix development environment (with javac, gcc, crontab, and all that stuff), a real shell account, and a sweet webserver setup: PHP, MySQL, cgi-bin (with Perl and Tcl), anonymous FTP, SSL, and a whole mess of POP features. Plus, they have onsite UPS/generator, a gigabit backbone, and lots of other hardware goodies.

    Running your own server loads of fun, don't get me wrong, but $10 a month for all this stuff seems worth it. Unless you really have money to burn, it's impossible to the same kind of performance out of your own server... Do you think Verizon will run a gigabit backone and Hubble power connector to my house for $10?

    Hurricane Electric []
  • I've been using One2Host [] for the past6 months for my personal site [].

    It's not bad... a couple hundred megs, PHP, CGI, FTP access, etc. Reliability isn't the greatest though, sometimes it's very slow, other times I get host timeouts.

    All in all though, it's worth $4/month to put up some stuff that no one really looks at anyway :-)

  • I pay that much for a Linux machine, reasonably equipped, closely watched, with no (artificial) limits on bandwidth or storage. I'm just asked to keep usage reasonable.

    Hosts like this can be found all over the place if you ask the right people or check the right web sites. Just don't be suckered in by cute web pages; word of mouth is one of the best ways to judge.
  • A lot of people are saying that they just set up a Linux or BSD box behind their DSL or Cable connections. This works perfectly fine for small or personal sites. Some providers don't like you doing this, however. Some providers don't care at all (Speakeasy, for instance).

    In either case, however, this solution is not sufficient for a site that is expected to have lots of traffic, or that you want to use for an e-commercie or other corporate solution.

  • by GiMP ( 10923 )
    Since I work in the web-hosting industry I get free co-location :) However, not everyone is so lucky.

    As someone else suggested, is a great resource.

    There are certainly some hosts to stay away from; I won't mention their names here (as I am in said industry and don't wish to say ill of competitors) but you can figure out who by reading that above site :)

  • I have two dedicated servers with Johncompanies [], they are great machines (they are partitioned dedicated servers, on super beefarse machines) - I've known them to handle a slashdotting with just a shrug of the shoulders.

    The level of support is beyond belief, it is as good as the testimonials on the site say it is.

    Amazing value for my US $65/month. There is not a higher recommendation to give.

  • My small ISP (Score:3, Interesting)

    by warpSpeed ( 67927 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:50PM (#4821556) Homepage Journal
    For a CoLo server:
    $35/mo per machine + $50/mo per 3kB/sec (about 7.5 GB a month) So for $85/mo you can co-lo a server with me. I will say that most clients I have know me. Not too many people are willing to put a machine in someones basement.

    I have a generator, 60 min of UPS for everything, and redundant T1. Not bad for a company called:
    "2 Geeks and a Pipe"


    I am curious how this price compares to what is avaiable out there? Comments?

  • by gilgamesh2001 ( 313066 ) <john&gilgamesh,ca> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:51PM (#4821566) Homepage
    'Nuff with the all the shared crap - the guy's asking about a real multi-server setup here.

    We [] (and we []) host about 5 major sites at a 3-server setup with this service provider [].

    Our cost is less than $1100 US a month. If we use more than 300 GB a month we start paying extra, but not too much ...

    Not sure why you were going to do 1 web, 1 search, 1 db box; we do 2 http and one db, and when we add, we'll be adding http boxes, as putting our (extensively customized per user) pages together takes a bit of horsepower.

  • []

    25 megs server space, email, ftp, and a domain name. [] is hosted through them, and I've never had a complaint.

  • Dreamhost (Score:3, Interesting)

    by timur ( 2029 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:53PM (#4821580)
    I pay $10/month for this:
    • Five Subdomains
    • 150 MB disk space
    • 20 GB/month bandwith
    • 20 Mailboxes (unlimited aliases)
    • 5 Shell/FTP Users

    I don't think they offer co-location, but they do offer dedicated machines for managed or unmanaged co-hosting. If you're interested in signing up, click here [].

  • I already had cable-modem service at home for Internet access, so the marginal cost of hosting myself is zero. It would work over a dynamically-allocated address ( [] makes that possible), but I'm spending the extra $10/month for a static IP.

    (If you're in Las Vegas and considering something similar, the residential-grade service from Cox (the one that uses the cheap cable modems you find in stores) most likely won't work. If Cox issued you a Com21 cable modem (which costs a bit under $300 if you want to buy one), you're getting their business-grade service and can pretty much do what you want (though you'll need a static IP to run an SMTP server). The strange part is that the last time I checked, there's no difference in cost between the two types of service.)

    We do something similar with the cable-modem connection at work. For a low-to-medium-traffic site, there's no reason to not use your existing broadband connection. Having your servers onsite makes keeping an eye on them much easier.

  • I have a very small site for my very spread out borhters and sisters running over my cable modem connection with doing dns duties for me, if youre not picky about your domain name you can get one of theirs for free, but if you want a custom its like 30$ a year, not too bad.
  • In my opinion, [] is far and away the best provider I've found. After using a sub-par [] provider, and another that went under (and didn't tell me), you can't beat modwest.

    I run a personal web site [] that I don't do much more than blog and rant on, but it's still ran using my own MySQL database that modwest provides, and the ability to telnet into my account is definitely icing on the cake. Plus the fact I'm only paying $11.95 a month sealed it for me. In the sixth months or so I've been using the service, I've only had two incidents, both of which not lasting more than an hour, where my website was down. And one of those was due to a DNS problem on my end.

    I'm not sure about any other providers (other than yahoo, which you should stay far, far away from), but modwest is a damn fine choice.

  • I'm in Norway, and I'm pretty happy with the service I get from Easynet []. I have my own box in their fridge, it's an old PC. I do what I want with it. I managed to close myself out of it after having uploaded a kernel to it which was for my workstation and hadn't the correct network card driver compiled in, but that is the only time I've called support...

    I'm paying NOK 1500 a month, that's about $200. Very few ISPs around here just host customers boxes around here, and even fewer allow people to play with it as they please. I'm just aware of one other than this, and they're more expensive. The bill is actually shared between a non-profit I work for, and my father...

    The bandwidth to it is excellent. It is actually sitting on the top of the national backbone. That's not going to last, unfortunately, it was just because they are rebuilding their server room. The bottleneck there is probably the hard drive and not the network anyway... :-)

  • by Desus ( 253573 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @05:57PM (#4821605) Homepage Journal
    I don't usually post but I'm very satisfied with my Johncompanies FreeBSD Box

    I pay $65 / Month
    - root on your own server
    - Full FreeBSD Filesystem
    - 2 gigabytes disk space
    - 40 Gigs transfer / Month
    - Firewall access
    - Unlimited tech support
    - We supply the hardware

    I'm currently running a very kickass apache box with an incredible uptime (they've been down once and they weren't really down, just a network problem, 90% of my customers were able to still reach the sites)

    I'm hosting over 30 domains on there, not low bandwidth either. And I'm probably going to be buying more boxes to setup a web serving cluster as the number of users increases

    The support is fast fast fast. I get replies in less than 5 minutes in some cases.
  • by AltImage ( 626465 )
    I've had a dedicated server for about 5 years now. For the first 4.5 yeas I was on Hurricane Electric. H.E. has got to be the crappiest host in the world. They were great when I first started with them but made absolutely no advances in their servce or technology in 4.5 years. When they told me they couldn't install lib-mcrypt because it was too hard, I knew it was time to move. I've been with ProHosters for close to 6 months now and I think it was the best decision of my life. Realtime 24/7 support via their own IRC channel and super-smart people working there. They totally work their asses off for you. I have a dedicated RedHat box. I get 100 GB/month transfer with $1.50/GB over and they manage it for me. It costs me $300/month which is pretty normal for a dedicated machine.

    ProHosters []
  • by pretzel_logic ( 576231 ) <andy DOT shook AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:04PM (#4821661)
    ask the sales team a few questions:

    Ask how many internet connections they have and what speed with each one.

    Ask how many NIC cards will be in your machine.

    Ask what your max Mbps is

    (This always gets you put on hold) Ask what the machines bus speed is

    Ask if RAM upgrades/HD additions are priced per month or if there is a one time fee.

    Ask if they will search your box for illegal materials. (you be surprised how many said yes) That means you are not the only one with root. so throw them out of the list.

    Ask if you get unlimited users accounts. (dell host caps you at 100 pops) thats not full service!

    Ask what the minimum billing is for support. some have 30 min some have 1 hr.

    Ask if they use a in house linux distribution.

    Ask if they offer security bullitens and offer links to patches.

    call there tech support before you sign up and tell them you are a customer. (play the dumb blonde) see how they treat you.

    Ask your salesman for their cellphone. (that gets some laughs)

    Look up the server companies IP block then hit em on ARIN and see if they own a substantial block or if they own one at all!!

    Ask if you are your own dns or if you have to use theirs.

    Ask if your on a virtual dedicated.

    Ask what the levels of discount are per GIG over allocation.

    Ask who owns them

    Ask about offsite back ups storage., how far away is it?

    Ask if you are allowed on their property

    Ask the price of additional IPS

    Ask if you can tour the facility

    Ask if you can ethernet multiple boxes to bypass bandwidth fees.

    Ask if you can host adult sites

    Ask if your machine has a control panel that support insists you use. (cobalt!!! ahhhh!!!)

    ask how long they have had a business license.

    and last, ask about the spam policies and what they consider spam and what the fine is per message.

    that should help with the fodder ;)
    • by giminy ( 94188 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:46PM (#4822017) Homepage Journal
      Ask if they will search your box for illegal materials. (you be surprised how many said yes) That means you are not the only one with root. so throw them out of the list.

      You present a lot of great questions, but remember: A -> B != ~A -> ~B. They might have root on your box even if they don't search it. So better be anal and just ask them if they'll be logging into your box ever.
  • by Myuu ( 529245 )
    Definitely worth the $90 i send them a year...250 Megs, 25G transfer, php, mysql, perl...well worth it. And I can say that I voted with my money -- part of my decide to use them was based on the fact that they supported a favorite browser of mine, Opera, and they are very proud of their UN*X roots.
  • by uigrad_2000 ( 398500 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:10PM (#4821701) Homepage Journal [] has cheap rates:
    $2/GB traffic
    $.50/GB/day storage
    $.15/minute CPU time (for scripts)

    It's easy to track your usage through their website, and create multiple accounts with different privilidges. For any site with less than 100 visitors a day, this is perfect, because there's no monthly charge. I've maintained my church's website for 6 months there, and haven't exceeded $.15 yet. [] is cheaper, but they don't allow ssh (or telnet) access. This is a big downside for those of us who enjoy unix because of it's user interface ;)

    Unfortunately, I can't help you if you need more bandwith than those guys can give. Good luck!

  • Reseller accounts! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by WPIDalamar ( 122110 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:10PM (#4821708) Homepage
    I have a reseller account with nocster, and it works out pretty cheap. I split it with one other person, we each pay $15/month. But the best thing is WE CAN HOST AS MANY DOMAINS AS WE LIKE. So I got 1 domain, he has a domain, and we share another one. Plus my little brother has been wanting to make a website, so a $8 DNS registration and bamn, he gets some space too.

    We get 1gb of disk, and 20gb transfer. This is the lowest option, you can get a lot more.

    Checkit out. - Personal web site

    Our joint-venture: - public web site, like slashdot, but anyone can post, and then people can subscribe to various authors to determine what news they get.

    I had hosted for free in my last two jobs, but my new company is so small that they won't let me plug my bsd box into the network (I am employee #12 and they did not want it to look like it was favoritism). So time to go and actually pay for hosting, ouch.

    I was ready to bite the bullet and pick a cheapo unix shop, but I was so addicted to having full control of my free bsd server that I kept looking around and found JohnCompanies. $65 for a virtual colo, so the physical server is running multiple virtual partitions that to the user look like a full system. I said screw it, if it does not work I lose $65 and I can look elsewhere.

    So far everything they have promised has been right on the money. The support is AWESOME. Email them at the weirdest hours and a real person replies within minutes. They don't charge for backups (my company has a colo that wants $200/month extra to do backups for us). The server runs pretty damn fast, and it is triple-homed.

    When you receive the server it is freeBSD4.6 and stripped to the bone. The only thing running is sendmail and ssh, plus a fresh ports tree. Anything else you want, you install yourself exactly how you want it. Don't know how to do something? Email support and they will walk you thru it.

    I am hosting 5 websites and running mail feeds for 2 and so far no outages and no complaints.

    By the way, if you are an open source developer they will give you a price break, and they also have deals for Linux instead of freeBSD and also for actual rack space if you want to provide your hardware.
  • by fence ( 70444 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @06:14PM (#4821755) Homepage
    I've used several ISP/CoLo sites over the past six years and have been with PogoLinux [] for the past two.

    I'm very happy with them, $149 a month for their hardware at their site (15 GB xfer/month). I've paid more to CoLo my own boxes.

    You have root access on your box.

    Had no service interruptions or power outages since I've been with them. I just checked my uptime and it was 292 days, I bounced it earlier this year after patching something.

    Anyways, I'm not affiliated, etc, but I've been very happy with PogoLinux.
  • by Incongruity ( 70416 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @07:27PM (#4822430)
    Okay, so my website is hosted by the university that I attend, so I suppose the package deal (including room and board) isn't that bad...I mean, I get a BA out of it in the end as well! -tcp
  • by markwelch ( 553433 ) <> on Thursday December 05, 2002 @08:53PM (#4822991) Homepage Journal
    I was paying $200 per month to colocate a server for 11 months, ending in September. I was quite happy, but decided that the server's low usage (way below 128K at the 95th percentile) and dwindling revenue (now under $500 per month and still declining) could be served with a DSL connection. (With my web revenue shriveling, I decided to replace the combined cost of colo plus cable modem, $250, with a single business-DSL line (with dedicated IP address) for $68 per month.

    When I first signed up with, the $200 rate was for 1U or 2U of rack space, but I'm quite sure they sent me a card more recently quoting the same rate for 4U of space. I think they offered a half-rack for a really good price (maybe $400 per month?). Their rates might be cheaper now, or they may have different specials. You didn't say what size or shape your three servers are, so I have no idea whether your equipment could fit in 3U of space, or might need 12U or even as much as 21U. (A rack unit, or RU, is 1.75 inches vertically, by something like 26x39 width and depth, sorry I don't have the actual dimensions handy.)

    They provide all the features of a good colo facility: enclosed, locked racks (so someone servicing a machine in another rack can't knock out your cables, as sometimes happened with other colo providers I used); 24/7 staffing and access if needed; UPS and air conditioning; staff that will power-cycle your server at no charge, and they even hooked up a monitor and keyboard to see what was wrong when my server's power supply failed, and they didn't charge extra for that. I think they also have the fancy oxygen-reducing and fire-suppressing equipment.

    I was extremely happy with Hurricane Electric, by far the best of my three experiences with colocating a server in the area. They have facilities in San Jose and Fremont, California.

    Beware: When I was shopping for colo services, I often found that the salesman's claims were not honored in the contract or in practice. One colo provider told me for THREE months that my outages were not their fault, then when I spent money and proved they were at fault, they agreed and allowed me to terminate my contract, but wouldn't make good on any promises (thankfully I did not sue, since they filed for bankruptcy several months later).

    In some cases, you may be promised 24/7 access, but when you need access at 2am you find out that there is no staff from midnight to 8am and the on-call tech just refuses to come out because he's really tired and you're not an important customer. Or they promise redundant internet connections from multiple backbone providers, but they are connected to those providers through a single Pacific Bell T1 line (e.g. they had one T1 line that connected to a facility served by multiple backbone providers, but if the T1 line is lost, your connection is lost). And of course, with the domino of bankruptcies of colo providers, many facilities close with only a week's warning, and sometimes a facility may be closed and your equipment disconnected and shipped to another facility without your knowledge -- so your server is offline for several days, and then when you want to pick it up from San Jose, you find out it was shipped to Virginia.

    Read the fine print in your contract.

  • by Call Me Black Cloud ( 616282 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @11:03PM (#4823910)
    Pair rocks. I've used it for years. They're rock solid, great customer support, and cheap. I recommend Pair to everyone looking for a domain. I also use Fatcow for one domain. Nice perks for $99/year, but the servers could be faster. Sometimes web response is slow, as is checking mail.
  • by Deal-a-Neil ( 166508 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @11:32PM (#4824056) Homepage Journal
    Remember, if you host a bandwidth intensive site (not even necessarily tons of visitors, but huge pages -- such as all busy threads on slashdot) use mod_gzip or something similar to it. Slashdot supposedly has mod_gzip installed, but they did not seem to have it configured correctly in the past -- not sure if they do now.

    Anyhow, we use it on our properties that have message forums, and we easily take 120K threads down to around 10K per page impression. This could definitely help you save on your bandwidth spikes if you run a burstable or 95th percentile billing with your ISP.

    mod_gzip here []
  • T1: A Slow Beast? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by suwain_2 ( 260792 ) on Thursday December 05, 2002 @11:42PM (#4824132) Journal
    A lot of people seem to be of the mind that they can run a T1 to their house and start a massive hosting company, serving countless websites.

    While 1.5 Mbps is a substantial amount of bandwidth, DSL/cable modems are becoming increasingly common. I maintain a server hosted on a T1 that's mainly used for web browsing during the day, and when I do bandwidth-intensive file transfer from my cable modem, I'm able to come very close to filling the T1. While serving normal webpages does work flawlessly, I just wanted to point out that if you offer downloads -- or even just use lots of images/Flash -- your bandwidth will disappear surprisingly quickly. A single user with a cable modem can be eating up all your bandwidth. (Again, I'm not suggesting that a T1 is now worthless, just advising people -- if the T1 is shared with numerous other sites, if a single one is somewhat active, you may have precious little bandwidth.)

"Conversion, fastidious Goddess, loves blood better than brick, and feasts most subtly on the human will." -- Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway"