Hosting Traps to be Aware of

One of my students sent me a link to an excellent article on things to be aware of when purchasing a web hosting server package. Here are some highlights from Jason Faulkner’s article:

  • Be cautious on paying for your own dedicated server
  • Be skeptical of the claim “Our Data Center Is Top Notch”
    • Cisco router and firewall (I have a Linksys – a division of Cisco – home router with a built in firewall).
    • 100 mb backbone (all my equipment and NICs are 100 mb capable), but you would probably see gigabit backbone instead.
    • Backup power supply (pick any consumer level battery backup).
    • Climate controlled environment (we have heating and air conditioning).
    • [insert a stock photo of row of server racks here which I paid $20 for the rights to use.]
      Granted this is a very absurd example, but you get the idea of how easy it is to stretch the truth.
  • Avoid The “Free” Domain Registration With Hosting Package
    If there is nothing else you take from this article, remember this: Never let your hosting provider register your domain name for you as part of a hosting deal. Often times you can purchase a hosting package which includes free domain name registration and renewal as long as you remain a customer. While this may seem appealing, it is the worst thing you can do because your hosting provider, not you, owns the domain. This may not sound like a big deal, but as soon as you want to move hosting providers, guess who controls your domain? Not you. Worse yet, there is absolutely nothing you can do to get control over your domain unless the current owner (the hosting provider) transfers it to you.
  • Be Aware of “Unlimited Bandwidth and Storage”
  • Less Than $5 Per Month Hosting: As the adage goes… you always get what you pay for. Putting it bluntly, if you are paying $3 per month for hosting, you are only going to get $3 worth.
  • Beware of the claim ” 99.99% Up-Time Guarantee”
    If you do the math, 99.99% up-time means the server is only unavailable 4 minutes and 22 seconds per month (53 minutes an entire year).
  • Don’t trust the offer of “100% Free Hosting”
    bandwidth is not free. Make sure you read the fine print in any agreement claiming this as most likely there are ads embedded somewhere in your site, or the hosting package is so limited that it is virtually worthless.
    1. Go out to Jason Faulkner’s article for all the details.

      Thanks Pat for the great tip.