August 2011 Archives

Changing My Web Host

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After my web host, 100 Megs Web Hosting, once again brought my website down, I'm switching hosting companies for 7dollartools.com. Let me gripe just a little bit and tell you the story.

[Let me be clear that I've been a customer of 100MWH for since early 2003 and I've been greatly satisfied with their exemplary service for most of that time. That's why my conversations with them over the last three days and this post don't convey how ticked off I am at them over these events; I'm attempting to moderate my tone.]

Tuesday afternoon I received a support ticket from a potential customer for Expansion Pack, letting me know that they were getting a SourceGuardian error when they loaded the web page. Indeed, when I checked the server I found that SG—which I use to protect my products and use on this site—wasn't present on the server and thus somewhere around 95% of my site was inaccessible.

This was odd. I asked 100MWH to re-install the extension, just as I had back in November 2010. But this time they refused to install SG. After 11 hours, someone from support told me that they had moved my account to another server (unannounced) and would not be able to reinstall SG.

This was not what I expected. After all, SourceGuardian is a common piece of software; it's similar to Zend Guard and ionCube, and web hosts often install it by default on shared servers. I've only heard of one host that wouldn't install it for my customers upon request. And, of course, they'd already installed previously it at my request.

But, as the owner explained (19 hours after my "That's not acceptable" response)...

"...it's just hard to compile custom things for people in a shared environment. We kind of have to get things standardized here. Otherwise we end up in a situation where we have 30 different clients with 30 different customized items on a server, and it just isn't possible for us to keep track of that sort of thing and keep it all upgraded and in line over the years and upgrade cycles."

I guess I can understand. Except that they had it installed already. Along with ionCube.

Such news, of course, would alone be enough to cause me to move 7dollartools.com to another server. However, I chose to move all four of my accounts with 100MWH and a number of my customers' accounts to a different web host for different reasons.

Did you notice my first statement, that 100MWH brought down my site again? And that the change they made was unannounced? In the last year or so they've made changes to their servers on 5 different occasions that were detrimental to my sites and they failed to warn their customers about the upcoming changes.

That's unforgivable. I understand the need to make changes to hardware and software. Or networks. But to do so without notice to your customers, to prepare them for changes that may affect the software that they're running, is inexcusable.

I can't continue to leave my sites at the mercy of a company doesn't respect their customers enough to give them a "heads up" regarding upcoming changes. 7dollartools.com has already been moved; if you see anything broken as a result, please let me know.

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This page is an archive of entries from August 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

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