18 month review (updated) of Hetzner

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18 months ago I decided that I would go away from cloud hosting for my main sites, and some of my backup sites, and got two servers @ Hetzner

WHAT?? are you thinking, but I wanted more control over my servers, and wanted to have more services on fewer hosts and servers.++

I found out about their server bidding, you can get decent servers there for cheap money, and there is no setup fee or contract. I’m using Windows Server 2012 R2 DC on my servers and use Hyper-V to run my VMs.

And this had now worked 100% for the last 18 months.

Product/hardware/price

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At Hetzner you can get it all, from several thousand euro per month servers, to €26/mo servers. And since I’m on a low budget I did find their serverbidding site, and found me a couple of good servers.

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The servers sold on their serverbidding is mostly 2-3 years old. Core i7 2600/3770/3930 and Xeon E3/E5 is mostly what you find there. The auction works like this, the price drop on different servers at different times, if somebody grab the server before you, the price goes up again, and it will take hours up to days before the price is so good again. I had two servers, a Core i7 2600 with 16 GB RAM and a Core i7 3770 32 GB RAM both with 2 x 3 TB HDDs and 20 TB bandwidth @ 1 Gbps, then 10mbps the rest of the time (if you use up 20 TB with BW) And I paid only €26/mo for each server.

I have changed one server, mostly because people recommended it, but I think I regret it, but still, my setup now is:

  • Server1:
  • XEON E3-1245v2, 32 GB EEC RAM, 2 x 3 TB Enterprise HDD, 20 TB BW, 9 extra IPs. Price: €50/mo
  • Server2:
  • Core i7 2600, 16 GB RAM, 4 x 4 TB HDD, 30 TB BW, 3 extra IPs: Price: €42.00/mo

One good thing since my last review is the Flexi Pack. Before you needed it if you wanted sub nets (IPs) on your server, and it was quite expensive at €12.5 + the price of the subnet. Now you can have sub nets without Flexi Pack.

Another change is that you can have 6 extra IPs (without subnet) with each server. Before you could only have three. The price is still the same €0,84 per IP/mo.

Some times you are lucky with the disks you get. On my i7 3770 server, the disks was brand new when I got the server. On my XEON server my disks is around two years old.

Still, you get allot for your money. If you are lucky to get a server at the right time, you can get a very good price, and lots of disk space etc.

Service/Support

Hetzner are a unmanaged host. They fix network and hardware issues, but that’s it. All other support cost money. Still, I sent in some tickets in the start, just to see if they helped or not, and at the first I got fast and good help, but then they started to say that they only support Network and Hardware, and that you have to pay for all other support.

They also charge you for the most. Like the flexi pack, if you need to boot from a USB, you have ONE hard reset per month, then you have to pay (so don’t turn the server off)

Still, what can you expect from a company that sells you a Core i7 3770 32 GB RAM, 6 TB HDD, and 20 TB BW on 1 Gbps port for €26/mo?

Have not had any hardware issues at all the last 6 months, so I have not tested their real network/hardware support.

Benchmark

I have taken benchmark from one Linux server on each server, both using 4 cores, and 3 GB of RAM and here is the result:

First the Xeon E3-1245v2:

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I tested with 8 cores on the server, but since the 4 last core is just threads, the result was only 5.550 points, around 500 points higher.

Then the Core i7 3770, actually this one got a little better result then the XEON.

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Network/uptime

100% uptime on the network on both Data centers (16 and 19) I have my servers the last 18 months.

Conclusion

I did go from a real cloud service @ Iwstack.com to a dedicated server. Was sure that was a bad idea, but since I have my own fail over service, servers in two different DC, backups on Vultr and a good host like Hetzner, my switch was not so bad. My servers is much faster then the Iwstack system, and I can start, stop, create etc server much faster on my servers then at Iwstack. I can use Hyper-V so I can Live export my servers how often I want, no snapshot that only works in this and that way. Full snapshot, that can be imported back on the same server, or on another server with Hyper-V. Just change the IP, and you are up and running again.

No abuse on the server, just me. The network can be from 200 mbps to 1 gbps. I think that will have something to do with other servers on the same rack using BW.

Still, after 18 months, I don’t regret that I changed from Iwstack to my own dedicated servers. But of course, it cost more money. Before I paid less then I do today, but I have put several of my services in the two servers, saving money here and there. Still, it cost more then the cloud. Since I used so little RAM, HDD and CPU cores.

What do you think? Please comment on LET after I have posted the review there also.

6 months review of Hetzner – cheap dedicated servers.

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6 months ago I decided that I would go away from cloud hosting for my main sites, and some of my backup sites, and got two servers @ Hetzner

WHAT?? are you thinking, but I wanted more control over my servers, and wanted to have more services on fewer hosts and servers.++

I found out about their server bidding, you can get decent servers there for cheap money, and there is no setup fee or contract. I’m using Windows Server 2012 R2 DC on my servers and use Hyper-V to run my VMs.

And this had now worked 100% for the last 6 months.

Product/hardware/price

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At Hetzner you can get it all, from several thousand euro per month servers, to €26/mo servers. And since I’m on a low budget I did find their serverbidding site, and found me a couple of good servers.

hetzner002

The servers sold on their serverbidding is mostly 2-3 years old. Core i7 2600/3770/3930 and Xeon E3/E5 is mostly what you find there. The auction works like this, the price drop on different servers at different times, if somebody grab the server before you, the price goes up again, and it will take hours up to days before the price is so good again. I had two servers, a Core i7 2600 with 16 GB RAM and a Core i7 3770 32 GB RAM both with 2 x 3 TB HDDs and 20 TB bandwidth @ 1 Gbps, then 10mbps the rest of the time (if you use up 20 TB with BW) And I paid only €26/mo for each server.

I have changed one server, mostly because people recommended it, but I think I regret it, but still, my setup now is:

  • Server1:
  • XEON E3-1245v2, 32 GB EEC RAM, 2 x 3 TB Enterprise HDD, 20 TB BW, 9 extra IPs. Price: €59/mo
  • Server2:
  • Core i7 3770, 16 GB RAM, 2 x 3 TB HDD, 20 TB BW, 3 extra IPs: Price: €28.52/mo

The reason why Server1 cost so much more then Server2 is because of two things: The CPU was €11/mo more expensive then a i7 3770. And then the IPs. I have three extra IPs (0.84 each) and a /29 subnet. (€6.72) And Hetzner force you to have something called a flexi pack when you want /29 /28 /27 subnets. At that costs €12.61 extra per month. Not happy for that, had gladly paid €6 extra for the IPs, but have to pay twice that just to add a subnet is not a good thing.

Some times you are lucky with the disks you get. On my i7 3770 server, the disks was brand new when I got the server. On my XEON server my disks is around two years old.

Still, you get allot for your money. If you are lucky to get a server at the right time, you can get a very good price, and lots of disk space etc.

Service/Support

Hetzer are a unmanaged host. They fix network and hardware issues, but thats it. All other support cost money. Still, I sent in some tickets in the start, just to see if they helped or not, and at the first I got fast and good help, but then they started to say that they only support Network and Hardware, and that you have to pay for all other support.

They also charge you for the most. Like the flexi pack, if you need to boot from a USB, you have ONE hard reset per month, then you have to pay (so don’t turn the server off)

Still, what can you expect from a company that sells you a Core i7 3770 32 GB RAM, 6 TB HDD, and 20 TB BW on 1 Gbps port for €26/mo?

Have not had any hardware issues at all the last 6 months, so I have not tested their real network/hardware support.

Benchmark

I have taken benchmark from one Linux server on each server, both using 4 cores, and 3 GB of RAM and here is the result:

First the Xeon E3-1245v2:

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I tested with 8 cores on the server, but since the 4 last core is just threads, the result was only 5.550 points, around 500 points higher.

Then the Core i7 3770, actually this one got a little better result then the XEON.

hetzner004

Network/uptime

100% uptime on the network on both Data centers (16 and 19) I have my servers the last 6 months.

Conclusion

I did go from a real cloud service @ Iwstack.com to a dedicated server. Was sure that was a bad idea, but since I have my own fail over service, servers in two different DC, backups on Vultr and a good host like Hetzner, my switch was not so bad. My servers is much faster then the Iwstack system, and I can start, stop, create etc server much faster on my servers then at Iwstack. I can use Hyper-V so I can Live export my servers how often I want, no snapshot that only works in this and that way. Full snapshot, that can be imported back on the same server, or on another server with Hyper-V. Just change the IP, and you are up and running again.

No abuse on the server, just me. The network can be from 200 mbps to 1 gbps. I think that will have something to do with other servers on the same rack using BW.

Still, after 6 months, I don’t regret that I changed from Iwstack to my own dedicated servers. But of course, it cost more money. Before I paid less then I do today, but I have put several of my services in the two servers, saving money here and there. Still, it cost more then the cloud. Since I used so little RAM, HDD and CPU cores.

What do you think? Please comment on LET after I have posted the review there also.

7 month review of DigitalOcean

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It’s now 7 months since I signup with DigitalOcean, and I have to say that I do not regret at all. Their service has been really great, their servers works perfect (I’m using their AMS1 and NY2 DC), their network has 99.989% uptime last 7 months, so everything is just perfect.

In my last review I mention that DO maybe would launch a UK datacenter, and now they have. They have also added a new DC in the Netherlands, AMS3. So two new data centers the last 4 months.

If you like to sign up, you can use my affiliate link here ( https://www.digitalocean.com/?refcode=6baa1cd0214b   ). If you sign up with this link, you will get $10 in free credit so you can play around, and get two months of free hosting with their lowest plan.

Reed my complete review here.

Product/hardware/price

DigitalOcean is not really a cloud host, but they offer cloud features like pay by the hour, snapshots, templates, quick deployment, use your credit to create lots of servers, backups, several locations etc. But still, you get a “normal” KVM server. They have no High Availability, no Fail-Over, no Own ISO, no External Firewall with GUI etc like iwStack do.

But still, they have a really good product. It’s super simple to create new droplets, it takes only around 55 seconds before it is online (you get the root password on e-mail). In fact, it only takes around 55 seconds to create a 64 GB RAM, 640 GB SSD disk, 20vCore KVM server! What other host let you do that?

Their prices starts at $5/mo or $0.007/hour. You pay for what you use, and they do only bill by the hour. But they do charge you 100% regardless of your servers is turned on or off. Still, you can create a template, and delete your server, then recreate it later on when you need it, without paying for it. Unlike iwStack.com, they do not charge for template disk space.

I’m normally using a 512 MB RAM , 20 GB disk. 1 TB BW, 1vCore server on their AMS1 DC, paying $5/mo for it. So most of my review is based on this server, with the uptime. But I have done my benchmark test on a 64 GB droplet.

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Service/Support

The first (and only) time I used their support so far, it was a mixed experience. I asked them some really short and clear questions, and got BS replies back. But I had stumbled on a little “trade” secret, that the normal support guy did not know (or wanted to reply on). I did not understand why I could not get any reply, after I had repeated my self for the third time. I then tweeted about this issue, and then it took under 10 minutes before I got a reply, both on twitter and on my support ticket. This time from a Support Specialist. I got a really good explanation on my question, and as a really nice thing I got a credit on my account.

I think this is a excellent proof of a good host. I could easily been a situation there I had been very unhappy, just getting strange replies on my ticket, but it was solved very fast. And with a very good outcome for me. 😀

Their response time on “normal” support tickets is around 14 minutes average from my tickets.

Benchmark

I have done one test on Serverbear.com, but it was not done on the same droplets as my own benchmark. On the Serverbear test I got a really low disk speed of 160 MB/s.

I did then run a test on a 64 GB 20vCore server, and the result was: 4927 points. It currently holds the 4.place on my Top20 list.

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I get an average of 445 MB/S on my DD test, and thats not so impressive since they offer pure SSD disks on the nodes. Still, 445 MB/s is not bad, but it’s not Ramnode speeds either. I have seen DO speeds up to over 700 MB/s but I’m sure that was on low load nodes.

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Network/uptime

My monitoring services tells me that I have a 99.914% uptime the last 30 days with 1 minute monitors. I’m using their AMS1 location for my test server. They had some hardware issue with the node I’m on, thats the reason for the downtime this month.

Conclusion

DigitalOcean is not a complete cloud host, it lack some cloud features like HA, fail-over, firewall etc, but it still is a really good host. Servers is deployed within one minute, you can choose from several locations, templates etc. You can create templates and backups that you can transfer from EU to US and vica versa.

Their servers is really good, you can resize your servers with one click, and their uptime is really good. (the best).

They expands, and thats a good thing. Their new London location and their new AMS3 location in the Netherlands is up an running.

If you like to sign up, you can use my affiliate link here ( https://www.digitalocean.com/?refcode=6baa1cd0214b   ). If you sign up with this link, you will get $10 in free credit so you can play around, and get two months of free hosting with their lowest plan.

 

3 month update on DigitalOcean

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It’s now 3 months since I signup with DigitalOcean, and I have to say that I do not regret at all. Their service has been really great, their servers works perfect (I’m using their AMS1 and NY2 DC), their network has 100% uptime last 3 months, so everything is just perfect.

DO is now talking about that their next data center will maybe be in the UK. So thats good new for people that need EU servers.

For you that don’t know what DigitalOcean is, please read my 30 day review here…

In short, they offer “cloud” KVM servers, deployd in a minute, in 6 different data centers around the world. Their prices starts at $5/mo for a 512 MB RAM, 20 GB SSD disk, 1 TB BW KVM server. they do charge hour by hour, so if you destroy a “droplet” you don’t pay for it.

“Benchmark”

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Beside from that there is no much other news from DO. No new features, no more DC, all is the same. Or, they have got a new website then, and here is their first page:

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If you click on this link and signup, you will get $10 in free credit. Thats two months of free hosting. Click here for going to DigitalOcean webpages.

First impression of Digital Ocean

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I just started playing with cloud hosting, and after I moved all my main sites to iwStack.com, I wanted to see if there was any other good cloud host out there, that don’t charge you lots of money. After reading on LET, I quickly found out that DigitalOcean was next in line for me.

DigitalOcean is not really a cloud service like iwStack.com, but they charge by the hour and you can create “droplets” in several location, and it only takes around 60 seconds to create a VPS server. They uses KVM.

You can create VPS servers from 512 MB RAM up to 96 GB of RAM.

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You pay hour by hour, and you can see both the hourly price and the monthly price when you create a new droplet (VPS).

You can then select location of your new server, currently DigitalOcean has 5 locations to choose from, three in the US and two locations in the Netherlands.

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After you have chosen a location, you can select what kind of OS you want on your server. You can also create a new server from templates you have creates, backups or destroyed servers.

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Then you click on Create Droplet, and 60 seconds later your server is online. You get your root password on e-mail.

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Their billing system is simple. You pay by the hour for any droplets (VPS) servers you have created. You pay full price if the server is on, or off. The only way to not pay is to destroy your server, or/and make a template of it, and then destroy it. (you will get a new IP if you restore it).

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The uptime has been 100% so far, after I started monitoring the uptime. I played with the server at the beginning, so I rebooted it some times, before I started monitoring it.

I have done some easy benchmarking, checking connection speeds and IO:

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I have not tried their support yet (but it’s a unmanaged host) so I can’t tell how good they are.

I still like iwStack.com better then DigitalOcean, but it’s not a bad choice. At iwStack you have to pay €30 to get access. At DO you only have to pay $5 to create your first server.

Take a look for your self, and find out how DigitalOcean can make your hosting more easy.

 

Entering cloud hosting – with iwStack.com (Prometeus)

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I have finally moved my main sites from “old” KVM based servers to the cloud, and luckily I did not have to leave my favorite VPS provider, Prometeus.

I have used Prometeus.com as my main host for almost 1.5 years now. And I have to say it, they are really good. Their hardware and network is very good and stable, so I have almost had no downtime at all past 1.5 years.

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Some days ago I decided to try out Prometeus cloud service, iwStack. And I have to say it, I love it. You get a “pay as you go” account, and can start creating VPS servers, private networks, firewalls, load balancing, snapshots (both manual and automatic) etc etc right away. And you only pay for what you use. They charge for the hour, so if you only use a VPS server for an hour, thats whats you charged for. I really like that I can create new VPS servers within minutes, and using them for whatever I want, then close them down (or destroy) them and not paying for them. And also the option to create a new Linux or Windows VPS at anytime I want, not having to order something a wait for it.

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You can get a price estimate using this price calculator…

The price is not to bad, in fact it’s one of the cheapest I have seen. Before I had four KVM servers with Prometeus. 2 x 512 MB (25 GB) servers, 1 x 1 GB (35 GB) server and 1 x 1.5 GB (35 GB) server. The total price without any discount was €30.5/month

With iwStack I have created three servers that do the same. 1 x 512 MB (40 GB), 1 x 1 GB (10 GB) and 1 x 2 GB (20 GB), with a CentOS 6.5 template (20GB), and two snapshots (2x20GB) I pay €0.777600 per day = €23.4 per month. So I save €6.5 per month.

I also have a Windows 2012 R2 server that I only start when I need it, and then stop it again. The only cost on it when it not run is for the storage, and thats €0.057600 per day, thats righ €0.05 per day. When I run it it costs me €0.006000 per hour = €0.144000 per day. (€4.32/month)

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The price is not the most important thing for me (but it’s not bad either), the best thing with iwStack is the endless opportunities, the freedom of creating as many VPS servers you like, whenever you wants. And of course, the possible to upgrade (and downgrade) servers as I need. And of course, the fact that you only pay for used resources is really nice.

Iwstack – creating a new VPS in the cloud. (my guide)

I will make a review sometime after 30 days but here some disk and network speeds from one of my cloud KVM servers:

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Benchmark- Prometeus.com – KVM5 plan

Here is my benchmark test of my KVM5 plan at Prometeus.com

VPS19 – KVM – RAID5 – KVM5 plan Server location: Italy.
Plan info: KVM -512 MB RAM, 25 GB RAID5 HDD, 2 TB BW.
Disk info: raid5 with 6 x 600GB SAS2 10K Continue reading

Benchmark – Prometeus.com – BIZ XEN5 plan

Here is my benchmark test of my BIZ XEN5 plan at Prometeus.com

VPS17 – XEN – RAID5 – BIZ XEN5 plan

Server location: Italy.
Plan info: KVM – 512 MB RAM, 20 GB HDD, 2 TB BW.
Disk info: RAID5 with  6 x 300GB SAS 3/Gs disks

Continue reading

Benchmark – Prometeus.com – KVM7 plan.

Here is my benchmark test of my KVM7 plan at Prometeus.com

VPS18 – KVM – RAID5 – KVM7 plan

Server location: Italy.
Plan info: KVM – 1 GB RAM, 35 GB RAID5 HDD, 3 TB BW.
Disk info: raid5 with 6 x 600GB SAS2 10K

Continue reading

Benchmark – Prometeus.com – BIZ KS5 Plan

Here is my benchmark test of my BIZ KS5 plan at Prometeus.com

VPS26 – KVM – SSD (BIZ KS5 Plan)

Server location: Italy.
Plan info: KVM – 512 MB RAM, 6 GB SSD HDD, 3 TB BW.
Disk info: SSD disk space

Continue reading