I just bought another full year hosting, with a different host, with a new account, with a 25% discount for life and I really don't know what to use it for. Say what? It only cost 70SEK (that's about $10) a year, so I didn't really have much choice. :) Even without the discount that price was highly competitive!
Last year I signed up with a different host for a full year and I haven't even used the account, at all! It expired yesterday. It was a reseller; I had big plans for it, but it turned out the host wasn't as good as I expected so I feel worse paying for it than I do not actually using the account. Their control panel is so slow you have to literally wait a minute while a page loads, and in modern day that just doesn't cut it. This years discount host seems better, despite their calling themselves Reliable Host. I mean, any real host would choose a less reliable if they really were reliable and not just wanted to sound it. The name almost made me not buy hosting at all, but at that price, it's worth the risk anyway.
Reliable Host are new (thus cheap - for life - to the selected few who buy plans now) with great hopes and dreams and I hope as much as them that they won't die or start overselling their servers when their financial situation gets tough. Signing up with a new host is always a risk, but then again, if nobody signs up with new hosts there won't ever be any old hosts will there?
So, apart from the reseller I signed up for last year and never used (which I would still have had 70% off for life on had I not not renewed it a couple of days back) I bought a domain name for 10 cents last year as well. Don't know if I mentioned it, but that's a cheap domain! I put up a splash page saying I'd have a site up for the domain, but never made it, there's just too much to do and I don't have time for new projects if I don't let some old ones go. I mentioned the VPS I bought too, right? That was two years ago, and that didn't work out because the host died on me, disappeared; took the money with them. I didn't lose faith in new web-hosts though, as you should've understood by now if you read the above. ;)
So, for the sake of memory practice and to those who are interested in the world of webhosting and need a few names to blame... I won't link them because they really aren't places that need to be linked to. Here's the list:
The VPS that disappeared on me was The VPS Gods (.info).
I paid for a full year too and though it was cheaper than most hosts a VPS is never cheap. Their disappearance left a big hole in my pocket.
The host that now have incredibly slow servers are Desire Host (.net).
"All our packages include low server load" my ass... they have good plans just not good servers/personal/hosting/etc.
The domain I bought for 10 cents was bought at Binero (.se).
A free hosting account came with it for a full year, too! When they don't have special prices their prices are above average though, but on the bright side - they have both good service and good servers. It's one of those 'normal' hosts you can actually rely on, but they rarely give discounts, and when they do it's never for life. If they did (and it was big enough to bring the price below normal prices) I'd have bought an account with them immediately. Same thing goes for Loopia (.se) and One (.com). Though I had problems with mod rewrite on the latter. I told them and they gave me a refund. As for Loopia, I haven't tried their hosting yet, but they're good with domains.
Another host (like Desire Host) that offer great plans and pricing is Magma Host (.com).
I'm still signed up with a reseller there because it is insanely cheap (for life) but they truly suck. I hate to just flame them but I haven't had good experience with their services, their servers... not with anything. On the bright side I have a free dedicated IP for life along with my account - no extra cost (which is probably the reason I still have an account there in the first place). But that bright side is quickly darkened by the fact that they put my name on a client testimony and said good things about themselves. If they just start taking care of their business like they should I'll forgive them though.
Now that I'm on the subject. Hotfile. They suddenly decided to sharpen their policies and delete unwanted files like crazy. They deleted everything, e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g, that had been made public (not my files, the files of people I wanted to download from... I didn't have any uploads). I bought an account there for a year and little more and halfway through there was suddenly nothing left to download. Well, obviously there must have been something, but I couldn't find it. There was this one day when my download speeds crept down to 2KB (holy low shit) as well and stayed that way for a few days. I contacted support, got no answer. I looked on their site, they mentioned nothing.
They may be giving unlimited b/w and easy access to anything you want to upload, but if you're thinking of using them for anything not private (like backing up all your files) I don't recommend them. Frankly, I wouldn't trust my personal files with them either, they don't strike me as reliable at all after all I went through with them. But speaking about file hosts...
RapidShare. I signed up for a one month (or wait, was it one day?) account and enjoyed every second of it. Only problem was that downloads were actually limited, unlike the crappy host above, but you get what you pay for. Good support. Good service.
FileFactory. I signed up for a one day account here as well to download a batch of files, and all went good. Only thing I didn't really like was the fact that one day cost almost the same as a full week. I feel like I should've signed for a full week, but I only needed a day, but still... to sum it up that sales trick of theirs sorta cut down my respect for them a little. They have a download limit too btw. If I chose between this and the above, the above gets full attention I should mention.
There's also MediaFire and MegaUpload (been thinking of buing an account for life there, just one fee and it lasts as long as you live) but I haven't used them yet so I won't mention them. Oh whoops I just did... but seriously though, they seem like the top two candidates in the file hosting (a)biz right now.
And while I'm still talking about hosts and what not, the first host I ever signed up with, Canaca, are specialized in KVM hosting now (not that it's relevant. They had (still have) plans with insanely high amounts of space and bandwidth (at least they don't offer unlimited, many thanks for that) that you won't ever be able to use. We're speaking around 400GB, and that together with an acceptable usage policy and no hosting download sites allowed on their servers (all 'normal' hosts have that in their ToS, no shame there). What makes it stupid though is that I signed up with the Silver plan when they had a Bronze plan for half the price, and I still never used up more resources than the Bronze plan offered. Actually, at the start I think I would have been better off with just a free web-host and a domain name. A few 100MB would have been more than enough.
So I guess that's what they call experience. I eventually moved from Canaca not because the price was too high but because their servers were getting rather slow and they kept giving me trouble suspending my account for too many processes running amok or stupid things like that. Maybe not so stupid in retrospect, but back then I just didn't like my account getting suspended. Still don't, but I'm not stupid enough to let scripts go wild and eat up memory any longer. Or maybe the scripts I use are just a bit better than they were back then...
I know I've tried maybe a couple of other paid hosts as well, but I can't remember them... maybe I haven't. Free hosts are a different story though, if you're a 'professional' website owner (who uses FTP, SQL databases, Mod Rewrite, etcetc) - never get free hosting. The sites that offer free hosting on the scale you need will die down very quickly. I know. I've been signed up with ten or twenty and they're all gone now. The ones who still exist are the ones who won't let me upload files larger than 2MB or mod rewrite links or even give me access to a database. In other words hosts that aren't suitable for me any longer. So... moral of this story is... the world of hosting is vast and wild so....
Actually all I wanted to say was that I just bought a new hosting account and this time (third time right right?) I plan on using it for every cent of its worth! :) Later.