Originally Posted by Artashes
What is the correlation between resource limitations imposed by a provider and the size of the company (be it small, medium or large)?
That's a really interesting question! A bit of random sharing from a newbie to this forum who's been around for a while.
Firstly, there's the established companies that promise a lot of space, but then you read the fine conditions and they exclude everything that would take up space (videos, large files etc). They will then suspend or terminate you if you use too much based on the fine print.
Then, there's the over-optimistic newbies. They offer the world but after about 12 months they discover they can't actually do that long term, and then they crash and vanish, often suddenly as the owner has a nervous breakdown. Our first host, 10 years ago, was a little like this and I've actually seen this happen quite a few time times to guys I know. Always sad. The reason it happens after 12 months is that they overfill the servers with new accounts. New accounts are not used at all for quite some time, often up to 6 months. Then the email and web load starts and the server dies under the load, and the host dies under the support load.
Then there are many, many good middle of the road hosts. I could write a lot about this, but service is only one of the things you look for:
- ability to solve in-depth technical problems
- able to run server that is security hardened to make it harder for your sites to be hacked
- actually run reliable servers long term - this requires sysadmin knowledge and expertise, often in how things are setup rather than how they are maintained
- Do things like, RAID on main disk, rotating backups with some history (ie not just daily, weekly and monthly)
Here's a classical example - the symlink hack out there at the moment which is being used to hack hundreds of thousands of sites. Still, many hosts have no idea about this. A user's site being hacked is a big deal and makes it very tough for them, and can be expensive if they don't know about www.sucuri.net
or other similar services. This
The moral of the story here? Be prepared to try a few hosts. Sometimes a smaller host can provide better, more personalized, service than the big guys. Just make good backups, regularly, and ensure you have control of your domains. Then worst comes to worst, you can pick up and move. You can even automate backups with something like siteautobackup.com.
Worth considering that cPanel is the most widely used control panel at this point. So if you go with one cPanel host and they don't work out, the new host can pull over your hosting in one command (well, one WHM screen).