Sunday, January 23, 2005

Web Hosts from 1999 to 2005

A Short List of Memorable Hosts
(The good and the bad)
You must be wondering why I’m doing this. Heh. Well, I guess I just wanted to list down hosts that I should be remembering in case I run into them again. (I mean, what if they go under a different name this time?) And I’d also like to recommend some of the good ones.
In truth, I actually had my own small webhosting business before. But then when the volume got bigger, I found myself lacking sleep and having my fiancé (back then) man the LiveChat while I was asleep. He wasn’t exactly Mr. Congeniality. In the end, I had to ask for other hosts to take over my clients. Now I just handle a few web development clients and friends. Life is easier that way, with me developing their websites and just coordinating with their hosts. Each of them has different needs and budget, which is why I always find myself "shopping" for new hosts at Webhostingtalk.Com (WHT) and collecting quotations for my clients and friends to compare. Anyway, on with the mini-reviews.
  • AMS Computer Services
    Disc13 (1st?)
    My first experience with paid hosting. I never had any problems with them. I actually resold for them at first. Their support is always fast and their network is always up (and paranoid about security, which is always good). I don’t know how they are now, though, since it was 1999 when I last had contact with them.

  • Aussie Hosts Disc13 (Last)
    And other clients

    I always recommend Aussie Host to anyone who can pay for their services. Gary Meadows, their owner, is easy to talk to and he’s always very helpful. Before Disc13 was hosted there, my sister had her site Chocobuckle.com serviced by Aussie Hosts. Unfortunately, both sites are now dead. ^^;; I met Gary Meadows when we were both being hosted by Tacid Blue. He introduced me to WHT and in turn, it was in WHT where I learned more about his stuff. We had our own hosting business up by then, but it seems Gary’s the one who has the knack for it. AFAIK, this host is an award-winning provider.

    Btw, Disc13 was under their American Hosting wing, Enhancedhosts.com.

  • Championhost

    Hentai Neko (3rd)
    They should rename their company to Loserhost. Wouldn’t answer my email until I made such a fuss in a public forum. Then when they did set up my account—after 72 hours of waiting, I might add—the control panel was a mess and only gave me 1GB transfer when I signed up for a 30GB account. Can’t say I really stayed with them. Maybe for just 48 hours? And that also includes 72 hours of non-stop spamming from their stupid control panel.
    Stay very very far away from this company if you value your nervous system.

  • Ecommerce Discovery
    Hentai Neko (5th)

    My review on my 2nd month: "Isn’t it fortunate that I’m always on the lookout for a new host at webhostingtalk.com even when I don’t need one? I always find the gems there. I wonder why I didn’t listen to those people who were bashing Championhost and Kikko Networks left and right. This time I listened. Been with Ecommerce Discovery for less than a month and so far I have no complaints. The owner is also a very amiable person and easy to contact. He’s practically everywhere!"

    …At first.

    Thing is, I signed up on one of their promos and I was treated very poorly later on. I’d know the difference because everytime they moved servers, I had to transfer all my files by myself while a friend of mine, who pays their standard rate, has all her files transferred. It wouldn’t have bothered me, but then their support became lousy. I left after a year and a half of service. My first experience with the H-SPHERE control panel was with Ecommercediscovery, but it wasn’t nearly anything like what my next host, Unacom.net, had to offer. I sure hope Ecommercediscovery offered those options because their support really sucked at the time I needed them most. Anyway, it seems they’ve improved now. They even offer bigger bandwidth packages now.

  • ICUServices
    Disc13 (2nd)
    And other clients


    They are super reliable! The sites are never down (not that I know of). In fact, when I had to close my hosting business, they were happy to host the clients that I had to turn over and I never regreted it. It’s been years and many of friends and clients I referred to them are
    still hosted with them. Some of my clients agree that their support is top-notch. Another gem I found at WHT.

  • Kikko Networks Hentai Neko (4th)

    They should be renamed Liar Networks. They said they supported so many things that they actually didn’t. I was so disappointed because there were so many scripts I wanted to install and test drive. Add the fact that Hentai Neko needed .htaccess support because of HN’s massive nature and they miraculously didn’t support that too (when they previously said they did). Very swift pre-sale response. Non-existent after-sales service. Y’know, the usual. It didn’t matter that I paid an arm and a limb for 50GB bandwidth as long as my site was up. And it was. The servers were fast and my site was always up. Until one day, I discovered that my site has been down for 3 days and nobody was answering at the other end. They probably weren’t able to charge my credit card for the 2nd month’s renewal and just shut down my site without so much as a by-your-leave. Well, at least they weren’t able to renew the billing. Whew!

  • Netacore
    Clients hosted here
    Found this at WHT. I can’t really say I’ve been using their support and the only time I’ve had to contact them was when I had to ask my client to give them a new credit card. They also use CPANEL, but my client doesn’t really have many requirements. They’ve had some downtimes, but fortunately these don’t take too long. Actually, I think they’re very lenient, considering they usually have difficulty charging my client’s credit card for some reason. (Dunno what it’s all about though, there are certain cards, even mine, that they couldn’t charge.)

  • Square Network Anime Okashi (2nd Paid)
    Well, the owner is Community Liaison for WHT, so I don’t suppose you could go wrong with this. He actually rescued my cousin, Firesenshi, who then owned Anime Okashi, from the clutches of a supposedly free host *cough*AMZ*cough* that wanted to charge her $700 for bandwidth she didn’t use. I could smell *cough*AMZ*cough* were lying through their teeth and Square Network was quick to tell my cousin the same thing. They had very reliable service, with extremely rare downtimes, and speedy support. It’s also good that they had AWSTATS, which told Firesenshi how much bandwidth she was actually using. She went on free trial, then eventually signed up. Unfortunately, she had to resign from her job and had to let go of her site. In their benevolence, Square Network let her stay for three months more, for free, but Firesenshi thought that she didn’t want to impose on them much further. I suggested she transfer to Unacom since the site’s bandwidth was growing, while her funds were diminishing…until she eventually had to really give up the site.

  • Secured-Net.Net
    Hentai Neko (2nd)
    I got them because they were pretty cheap. Only $2.95 for the Starter account. The service was also cheap. My site was always down. I didn’t mind, though, because I was only paying $2.95 for it, and the support staff were very responsive. When Smartweb LLC bought this company the servers suddenly became top-notch with features that I’ve always relished! I never experienced any downtimes and Hentai Neko got stronger. The new support staff were lousy and obnoxious but at least my site was up. I left them after 8 months because I saw that my bandwidth transfer added up to 30GB per month. I couldn’t afford their services anymore…

  • Sexy-Hosting.Com
    Hentai Neko (7th)
    Hentai Neko Net (2nd)
    Otaku Fridge (1st Paid)
    Coolay (1st Paid)
    Skysenshi (1st Paid) Thundersenshi (1st Paid)

    After tearfully (LOL!) leaving Unacom, I thought I’d never find a host that would match it. Well, Sexy-Hosting uses CPANEL, which I hate, but they offered a lot that more than made up for the choice in control panel.

    I found this host via WHT also, and I got one of their promo accounts. At first, I panicked because everything wasn’t going well for me when I started (hotlinking not working, add-on domains not working, email box being spammed, DNS problems etc…I really blamed CPANEL for all those things). I mean, I paid for a whole year of stay.

    It was a good thing that their support responds fast. Even though I seemed to be bombarding them with questions on a daily basis, they never failed to deliver — even when I specified on one ticket that my question was just a minor little detail and was of medium priority.

    Well, now that I’m settled, I don’t really have any questions. Let’s just see how my year turns out. I have 5 domains hosted here, and the 6th is my sister’s. You can basically understand why it’s hard to get settled, considering each site has different needs/requirements.

  • Tacid Blue
    Hentai Neko (1st)

    My first adult host for $60/year. Stayed there for two months before I learned that the reason why I’m getting poor service is because the owner is a 13-year-old kid whose lies finally caught up with him. I think he’s a good kid, though a little misguided. I just hope he learned from his mistakes. I could actually enumerate all the hosts he’s resold for (starting with Hostyard), but that’s not my problem. At least I got my $60 back.

  • Tera-Byte.Com
    Anime Okashi (1st)
    Otakuboard (1st) And other clients

    I found Tera-Byte through WHT, too, and had been one of the hosts I recommend my clients. Which is why, when my cousin Firesenshi put up her own anime site, I suggested she try their services first. Tera-Byte is also one reliable host. I don’t think they’ve ever been down, because if they did, I wasn’t there to see it. The support response is also fast. The only thing I don’t quite feel is the control panel, Ensim, which is probably one of the unfriendliest CP to ever have been invented. I also didn’t trust their bandwidth monitoring system back then. I just don’t know if that improved now. Other than that, I don’t really see any problems, unless you have a site as active as Hentai Neko. The only thing that had Firesenshi veering away from it was the fact that she got lured in (kinda my fault) by a free host *cough*AMZ*cough*.

    As for Otakuboard, well, the reason why I had to move away from Tera-Byte was because at that time, ikonboard was hogging up a lot of resources. I’ve switched to Invisionpower boards and hosting since. I think it was only reasonable.

  • Unacom.Net
    Hentai Neko (6th)

    Hentai Neko Net (1st)
    Anime Okashi (3rd Paid)
    If there’s one host I’d give a perfect 100% rating to, this is it. They were newbies at WHT but I gave them a chance despite the lack of reviews on the boards. Didn’t regret every single day that I was with them. Sure they had downtimes, which sometimes caused me panic, but that happened like once or twice a year. I never had to use their support because everything can be found in their control panel (H-SPHERE). If you want to upgrade, cancel your account, add extra stuff, you can do everything in there. I stayed with them for nearly two years.
    Unfortunately some good things never last. They were great till the very end, but problems came into my personal life and my lifestyle drastically changed. I needed a host that allowed multiple domains and while Unacom could offer that, it had to come at a cost I couldn’t afford to pay. Still, Unacom is pretty inexpensive, considering the kind of services they offer.



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