14 month review of IwStack.com – the real cloud service.

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Around 14 months ago, I did made a huge decision, I canceled all my Prometeus  servers that I have had for 1.5 years, and moved my servers to iwStack.com. Of course, iwStack is a part of Prometeus, so I did not change host completely, but I changed from normal KVM servers to cloud servers.

As most LET/LEB readers and WHT members already know, Prometeus.com is known to be one of the best host out there, with no bad reviews at all the last years, and thats impressive, especially in the LEB marked. But of course, the LEB marked is only a small part of Prometeus.

Everybody talks about cloud service, and we have huge companies like Digital Ocean and Linode, and newer companies like Vultr.com. But there is a difference between all of them and IwStack.com, and the difference is that IwStack.com offers REAL cloud service.

More about this later on. Here is my review of IwStack.com after 14 months of service.

If you want to support my site, please use my affiliate link if you have plans to sign up at IwStack.com: https://www.prometeus.net/billing/aff.php?aff=168

Product/hardware/price

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Prometeus.com has always had really good hardware, with  good price policy. And there is no difference with iwStack.com. They have managed to create a really good IaaS KVM cloud system, a real cloud (not like DO) with High Availability, Fail-Over, Live migration, Snapshots, Own ISO and Templates, Isolated Network, External Firewall with GUI, Hourly billing and Variable size. When you sign up for iwStack.com you have to pay €30, that you can use in full on the cloud service. The reason for the entrance fee, is to stop abusers. Since you can create lots of VPS servers (at least 20) when you first get access, they have to protect the service from abusers, looking for free/very cheap servers.

iwStack.com has some really good prices, when they launched their service back in 2013, nobody could beat them on price. Not for a real cloud service. Still, I don’t know about any cheaper real cloud service in Europe, but there is so many now, so maybe. Still you only pay for what you use, per hour. You always pay for disk and IP, but if you turn off your server, you don’t pay for RAM and CPU. Most other cloud service charge you for all the resources when the VM is turned off, but not IwStack.com

They have now added more locations to the cloud. You can create KVM servers in Milano, Italy and Dallas, USA and you can add XEN servers in their second Milano DC.

The prices starts at €2.16/mo for a 512 MB RAM instance, then you have to add €0.72/mo per 10 GB of system disk you need.You can add instances from 512 MB RAM to 16 GB RAM. They have a really good price calculator that shows you how much your setup will cost.

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You can easily create (and destroy) new instances in the control panel. (cloudstack) (see my guide here), but they have also added many of the features in their client portal.

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Service/Support

We are talking about Prometeus here, so of course, the service is good. They are unmanaged, so you can’t expect any other support then hardware/network failures, but if they have time, they can help you with allot. But don’t demand it, then you have to go with a managed host (and pay lots more).

Still, in my opinion the service has gone down little since the start. Maybe because they have lots more customers, or because “Uncle Sal” is not so active as he was. I don’t know. Before IwStack was a clear 10/10 host, but now, not a 10 or a 9.

They have also had some trouble with their cloud. And stuff I was told before I sign up would never happen on their cloud service (downtime etc) did happen more the one time. They had a big issue with HA (High availability) that shutdown all the servers, and they did not come on before after some hours. Then the next day or so, they had the same issue, or part of the same issue, and I got more downtime.

I also have to say that it takes very long time to start up a instance or shutdown. Maybe it has something with them being a real cloud service, but when you have to wait 5-10 minutes to start an instance, then it’s no fun. This issue have been there since the start.

Benchmark

This is on their highest plan (16 GB) and the result is good. But on their smaller instances, the result is not so good. Around 1500 on a 4 vcore instance with 2 GB RAM:060214iwstack4

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IwStack is not using any SSD or SSD-cached disk, but they are using a Hitachi HUS 150 SAN. As you can see I get a average speed of 450 MB/s.

Network/uptime

On my 1.5 years with Prometeus before I changed to IwStack, I had almost 100% uptime on all servers. They had a little issue, and then I was told that it would never happen on IwStack. Still, the last 12 month I have just 99.90% uptime on my three IwStack servers.

Not bad, but not 99.99% either.

Conclusion

Despide the small issues I have had, I still think IwStack.com gives you lots for your money. And you can setup really complex setups there if you need to, with failover, firewall, HA etc etc. They have expanded to the US and added a second DC in Milano with XEN servers.

IwStack.com offers real cloud, and if you don’t know what real cloud service is after reading this review, you don’t need it. The people that know what it is, they are the customers that should take a extra look at IwStack.com

After 14 months of service, I can’t give them 10 of 10 points more. I have to give them 8 of 10. I will also take a break from them (as some maybe have seen, all my servers is off just now). I still have almost €200 in credit, so I will use them again, but for now, I will try out my own dedicated server, and see how that goes.

This is my honest review of one of my favorite hosts out there.

If you want to support my site, please use my affiliate link if you have plans to sign up at IwStack.com: https://www.prometeus.net/billing/aff.php?aff=168

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

40 day review of iwStack.com (Prometeus)

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Around 40 days ago, I did made a huge decision, I canceled all my Prometeus  servers that I have had for 1.5 years, and moved my servers to iwStack.com. Of course, iwStack is a part of Prometeus, so I did not change host completely, but I changed from normal KVM servers to cloud servers.

As most LET/LEB readers and WHT members already know, Prometeus.com is known to be one of the best host out there, with no bad reviews at all the last years, and thats impressive, especially in the LEB marked. But of course, the LEB marked is only a small part of Prometeus.

Product/hardware/price

Prometeus.com has always had really good hardware, with  good price policy. And there is no difference with iwStack.com. They have managed to create a really good IaaS KVM cloud system, a real cloud (not like DO) with High Availability, Fail-Over, Live migration, Snapshots, Own ISO and Templates, Isolated Network, External Firewall with GUI, Hourly billing and Variable size. When you sign up for iwStack.com you have to pay €30, that you can use in full on the cloud service. The reason for the entrance fee, is to stop abusers. Since you can create lots of VPS servers (at least 20) when you first get access, they have to protect the service from abusers, looking for free/very cheap servers.

iwStack.com has some really good prices, in fact, I dear you to find any real Cloud service that can compete with iwStack pricing. I have really searched, both in Europe and in the US, and I have not found any host with so low cloud prices, not with all the features of iwStack. You only pay for what you use, per hour. You always pay for disk and IP, but if you turn off your server, you don’t pay for RAM and CPU.

The prices starts at €1.44/mo for a 384 MB RAM instance, then you have to add €1.08/mo per 10 GB of system disk you need.You can add instances from 384 MB RAM to 16 GB RAM. They have a really good price calculator that shows you how much your setup will cost.

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Service/Support

You can’t beat Prometeus (iwStack) on service. They are really the best. But, remember, they are a unmanaged host, so don’t expect 5 minute response time on support tickets, or that they will fix issues that has nothing to do with their hardware/network.

But I’m pretty sure that most people using Prometeus know how much extra you get, all the time. From good offers, prices, and support, when you don’t expect it. Thats really give Prometeus the little extra that keep their customers happy, and loyal.

When I moved my servers from Prometeus to iwStack, I had four servers there, and 1 server on iperWeb. Mr Salvatore did transfer all my remaining credit from all servers to my new iwStack account. He did not have to do that, but he did. And thats why I love Prometeus and their brands, you always gets more then you expect.

Benchmark

I used their biggest instance for this test, their Basic-16 GB, 12 vCore plan. The result is 3612 points in UnixBench. Thats around 1600 points better then their 2 GB plan with 4 vCores. It’s also the first time I have a Prometeus (iwStack) server on my Top20 list.060214iwstack4

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iwStack is not using any SSD or SSD-cached disk, but they are using a Hitachi HUS 150 SAN. As you can see I get a average speed of 450 MB/s.

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Decent network speeds, but not top notch on this test. I’m using a second line test, with all my Europe based servers, and it gets much better speeds then this. All my customers are from Norway, so speed from the US is not so important for me.

Network/uptime

My monitoring services tells me that I have a 100% uptime the last 40 days with 1 minute monitors. Uptime has always been one of Prometeus strongest sides, and I do actually expect more uptime from iwStack Cloud service then I did from Prometeus normal servers.

Conclusion

What can I say, if you looking for really good cloud service in Europe, don’t look at any other host. iwStack.com is really the best option out there, and nobody can match their prices. The next on the list (with the same cloud features) takes almost 4 times per month.

Prometeus is a really well know company by now, and you really get the best from them. With iwStack they have outclassed their cloud competition.

So I highly recommend iwStack.

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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Iwstack – creating a new VPS in the cloud.

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I have started using iwStack cloud from Prometeus, and here is how fast you can create a new VPS within your cloud account.

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You can select a Template (iwStack templates, or your own) or using .iso files (you can also upload any .iso file you want into the cloud)

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I’m using my own CentOS 6.5 32bit template that I have created.

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Then you select how much RAM and CPU cores you need, from 384 MB (1 core) to 16 GB. (12 cores)

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If you using a Template, it’s has the ROOT disk size fixed. iwStack offer a 10 GB centOS template and a 40 GB template (and many other OS types). My template uses 20 GB primary disk.

If you are using a .iso file, you can select how big the ROOT (primary) disk should be. In this step, you can select if you want a secondary storage disk attached to your server.

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Here you can select what network you want your VPS using. iwStack offer both normal networks and a DDoS protected network. You can also create your own private isolated network, with load balancing, firewall, fail over service, and more.

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And then you’re new VPS is online within minutes after pressing Launch VM.

 

1.5 year review of Prometeus.com

The 15.January was the 558 day with Prometeus.com. And it has been great. In fact, it could not be any better. My four VPS servers has almost been up since I got them. ** Three of my VPS servers has been up for over 250 days.

** There has been some kernel updates, and a couple of the nodes has been taken down, but all servers has around 99.8% uptime in 2013.

I have two monitoring services that monitors all my VPS servers every 60 seconds, and there has been no downtime at all on the network.

When I wrote my 150 days review I had three servers with Prometeus.com, but now I have four. All has 6 months payments on them, and I do not worry at all.

I have had some unusual request to Mr. Salvatore about payments options, renewing etc, and I always get a fast reply, and they always gives me a good answerer and solutions. I’m sure that I’m one of the first asking to pay for two servers almost two months ahead of the expiration date.

Prometeus is one of the best hosting provider I have ever used. No little problems with four VPS servers is unbelievable. Their hardware is top notch. 😀

Prometeus.com is not on my Top20 Benchmark list, but thats not a problem. In my book good servers has very good uptime, just works, and do not require any attention from my side. And it’s always good to know that you get a good and pretty fast reply if you contact support. Still, I know they are unmanaged, so I understand if I don’t get a reply after 10 minutes.

Nothing else to say about Prometeus.com 10 of 10 points in my book.

9 months+ mini review of Prometeus, Urpad.net, SolaDrive and KnownHost.

It’s over 9 months since I based my VPS setup on cheaper VPS hosts. Increasing the numbers of servers, using a good DNS Fail over service, servers in different locations etc etc.

I have gone from two servers (that I paid almost $100/month) to 15 servers that I pay around $600/year for. Thats half the price what I paid for two servers before.

My old servers was fully managed, but still, I had so much problems with the servers that I used lots of time on them, time that I did not like to use on them.

Now I have 15 servers, almost everyone of the unmanaged, still, I have less problems with all my servers now, then I had with only two fully managed servers.

Prometeus.com is the best host I ever have had. They have a really good product. Their uptime on my 4 servers I have with them is 100% the last 6 months. One server that I have had no need to reboot, had a uptime of 268 days yesterday.
All my servers with Prometeus is really fast, their network speeds i great and you could not ask for a better host.
They are unmanaged, but really do help out if you need something.

I’m sure I could have canceled all my other servers and only used Prometeus as my only host without any risk of any problems.

Prometeus.com has all of my main servers.

15.01.2014: Urpad.net is not one of my favorite hosts any more. They was sold, and all went downhill, and they closed down all EU servers and moved all to the US.

Urpad.net have one thing Prometeus don’t have: servers in many different locations, both here in Europe and the US.
They have good servers, good network and really good prices. And many locations.

Of course, Urpad.net also have lots of DDoS attacks against their UK node, so I have stopped using that server and taken it out of my DNS Fail Over service. Last week I have had more then 22 hours downtime on that server, and the last 6 months I have had more then 5 days downtime total.

But if I look at my 4 other servers (Iceland x 2, Luxemburg, Florida) I’m really happy. The uptime is great, the network is great, the servers is great.

So in total I’m pretty happy with Urpad.net. But I hope I can move my server from UK to another location soon, for I really hate getting downtime messages.

Urpad.net is my 1. backup host


SolaDrive.com has a great product, fully managed servers for a really good price. But as Urpad.net they also have had lots of problems, most DDoS issues on their UK node.
It has been better, but I still get outages report, and seeing very high load on the server.

So I have taken them out of my DNS Fail Over service, but are using the server as a backup server, that I can put in production within 20 minutes.


My only server with Plesk, my old favorite control panel, is with KnownHost.com.
I have a personal backup server for my online photo album, and some backup files in the US.

The server is really great, fast, good network and no downtime. They do really deliver a good product.
The only drawback for me is that they only offer servers in the US, no I can not use them for any of my customers sites.

150 days with Prometeus.com

The 5.December was the 150 day with Prometeus.com. And it has been great. In fact, it could not be any better. My three VPS servers has been up since I got them. ** The first VPS has been up for 153 days today, my second VPS 150 days and my third VPS 140 days.

** Or, I had a DDoS attack on one of my servers after around 10 days, and it was turned off. After that day it has been up.

I have two monitoring services that monitors all my VPS servers every 60 seconds, and there has been no downtime at all on the network.

When I wrote my 90 days review I had three servers with Prometeus.com, and I still has three servers. All has 6 months payments on them, and I do not worry at all.

I have had some unusual request to Mr. Salvatore about payments options, renewing etc, and I always get a fast reply, and they always gives me a good answerer and solutions. I’m sure that I’m one of the first asking to pay for two servers almost two months ahead of the expiration date.

Prometeus.com is not on my Top20 Benchmark list, but thats not a problem. In my book good servers has very good uptime, just works, and do not require any attention from my side. And it’s always good to know that you get a good and pretty fast reply if you contact support. Still, I know they are unmanaged, so I understand if I don’t get a reply after 10 minutes.

Nothing else to say about Prometeus.com, still 9 of 10 points in my book.

90 days with Prometeus

It’s now 90 days since I switched my main VPS over to Prometeus.com. Since my first impression review and my 43 day review, there is nothing new that has happened. I have reduced my servers from 4 to three, because I did not need the last server that I only was using for testing. But I have changed my last server from month to month payment over to 6 months payment. It’s a huge peace in the mind that I know all my servers just works and that there is no issues.

I have 100% uptime on all three servers the last 47 days, in fact I have 100% uptime since my first impression review.

No reason to contact support, no reason what so ever to contact them. It’s really nice when things only works, and you don’t have to use any time on problems.

So keep up the good work Mr. Salvatore and Prometeus.com

They still keep their 9 of 10 points in my book.

43 days with Prometeus

It’s now 43 days since I switched my main VPS over to Prometeus.com. Since my first impression review, there is nothing new that has happened. I still have 4 servers with them, and they are all working 100% with no downtime at all.

No reason to contact support, no reason what so ever to contact them. It’s really nice when things only works, and you don’t have to use any time on problems.

So keep up the good work Mr. Salvatore and Prometeus.com

They still keep their 9 of 10 points in my book

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