12 month review of HostHatch.com

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It’s actually more then a year since I saw a good offer on LEB from HostHatch, for a smaller SSD OpenVZ server. I took the offer, and have used the server actively since that.

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Product/hardware/price

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HostHatch offers servers in three different locations, LA, USA – Dronten, Netherlands, and Stockholm, Sweden. That will cover most of US, and all locations in Europe. They have really good connections, and their servers function very well.

They have four main product line as you can see over. Their OpenVZ and KVM series has all SSD disks. They have a High storage line if you need to store large backup files, and they have their 10Gbps VPS line (in the Netherlands) for any that need really fast connection out/in from their server.

Their lowest OpenVZ plan starts at $8/quarter and their next plan, with 512 MB RAM, 50 GB disk and 2 TB bandwidth, starts at $4/mo. Their KVM line starts at $5/mo, the same with their storage serie. Their 10Gbit plans is more expencive, starts at $35/mo for the smallest plan (1 GB RAM, 75 GB HDD, 5 TB BW).

They are using Intel Xeon E5 3.5Ghz+ CPUs on their OpenVZ and KVM line. And they are using Intel Xeon E3 on their 10Gbit line. So it’s good hardware, the servers is fast, their network is good, and the uptime is great.

Service/Support

Only used their support twice, and both time I got the first reply (not auto) within 10 minutes. First ticket was solved on under 10 minutes also. The second ticket took little longer to solve.

But my impression is that they have pretty fast support, and they do help you. Of course, remember that this is an unmanaged host, so don’t expect the world and that they always replies within minutes, and solve any issue you have.

Benchmark

This is from their $4/mo 512 MB RAM, 2vCores, 50 GB SSD disk and 2 TB BW. Not a high number on the benchmark, but still, it’s only $4/mo so I did not expect the highest result here.

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As you can see the DD speed goes over 580 MB/s, but maybe they are using some cache or something, since the first command only gave 296 MB/s.

Network/uptime

I have 99.896% uptime on my first server there the last 12 months. Some of the downtime has been me doing some work on the server. But not a complete 10/10 on the uptime there. Still, very close to 99.9% that is the “standard” in the LET marked.

Conclusion

HostHatch is a solid provider, has been that for over 12 months for me. And it’s a bonus for me that they have a DC in Sweden, since I live in Norway. So I can etc. use the VPS for VPN or to fast upload and download files. For users in Europe, a 10Gbit server can give you really good speeds. (but the price is little to high on the 10Gbit line, but still, it’s 10Gbit connection to the world). I would recommend HostHatch to all LET/LEB members and other users that need cheap, but good servers, in the US, Netherlands or in Sweden.

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4 month review of Ramnode

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The first time I used Ramnode is around 1.5 years ago (July 2012). They was a new company then, only around 2 months old. But still, they had really good servers with really good disk speeds, and a high Benchmark result. But back in 2012 I did not continue with their service, because they only had US servers then.

4 months ago, I did signup for two Netherlands servers with Ramnode, and have used them since that.

Product/hardware/price

Since they started back in 2012, Ramnode.com has always used really good hardware. When they started with their SSD-cached nodes, and then their pure SSD nodes, almost no other companies could compete on IO speeds.

Ramnode offer OpenVZ and KVM servers, both plans comes with pure SSD and SSD-cached options. Ramnode offer so many different plans on three locations, as you can see on the screenshot below, their prices starts so low as $2/mo. On top of that they often have coupons out there (just now they have a 25% off coupon) so you can get the price even lower.

I’m using a OpenVZ SSD-Cached VPS (CVZ-E5) – Netherlands – 512MB CVZ-E5 server with a Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2630 0 @ 2.30GHz CPU, 512 MB RAM, 120 GB SSD-cached disk, 2 TB BW and I’m paying $4.87/mo for this after a LEB special.

I’m using my Ramnode server to store Virtualmin backup files, that I also have used several times to restore sites on test servers around EU/US, and their servers works really good.

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Service/Support

I have not used their support yet, or they contacted me because of really high CPU load on one of my servers. I got an e-mail telling me that the VPS was suspended since it used a mining script. They gave me the option to start the server, and find out what the issue was. I quickly found out that one of my sites (using Status2k) was hacked, and someone had uploaded a bitcoin mining script and started it.

The day after the first “attack” my CPU load on my other Ramnode server was going into the roof, and I found out that I had only deleted the script, but not removed it from RAM, so it still could be started and used. They shutdown the server, and notified me. Also this time with details the script that was abusing my CPU.

They also advised me to maybe rebuild me servers, since they had been compromised. And that started the process there I got rid of almost all my old servers, changed hosts, and got a completely new setup for both my main servers and my backup servers.

Under the whole situation Nick was very professional and I never got accused for abusing their service on purpose. And of course, it was my fault that my servers got hacked, and the best advice was to rebuild my servers to be 100% sure.

Benchmark

Since my plan just comes with 2 cores, my UnixBench score is 1256.8. Have not used UnixBench on small VPS plan before, so don’t know if the result is over or under the average for a such plan.040214ramnode4

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Good/decent network speeds from most locations. Of course, best results from the other NL locations.

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I just using a really cheap OpenVZ SSD-cached node, but still I get decent disk speeds with a avrage of 468 MB/s.

Network/uptime

My monitoring services tells me that I have a 99.942% uptime the last 4 months with 1 minute monitors. Ramnode has a 99.9% uptime guarantee so no problem there.

Conclusion

Ramnode is not a just 4 month old company that I first used back in 2012. They have become one of the most liked companies on both WHT and LET/LEB. they have won the Q3 2013 and Q4 2013 poll of the Top Providers on LEB.

They have really good hardware, good network, really good disk setup, good offers, good prices, three locations (EU/US) etc etc.

And @Nick_A use lots of time both on WHT and LET to satisfy his customers. They are a unmanaged host, but you still get the feeling they are something more then that.

60 days review of INIZ.com

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I have used INIZ for 60 days now, after I got a good deal on LEB. My first plan was to use the server for my DNS failover service, but I later on decided that I would only use one host for that, reducing the number of hosts and servers I use. So I paid for a year. 😀

Product/hardware/price

INIZ provides unmanaged service in three locations: Los Angeles, New York and Amsterdam, Netherlands. They offer OpenVZ plans, pure SSD plans and KVM plans. They have plans from $4.93/mo (256 MB) to $19.72/mo (2 GB)

I’m using a LEB special and have a OpenVZ, 4vCores (Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2650 0 @ 2.00GHz), 2 GB RAM, 100 GB disk, 2 TB bw plan that I’m paying $46.50/year for ($3.85/mo). I’m using their Netherlands node.

Their prices is not very low, almost $15/mo for a 1 GB OpenVZ server with no SSD is actually some expensive. But, INIZ is a active member on LEB, and often has very good offers, like what I’m using. So always take a look at LEB and the VPS offer section of WHT before you order from them.

I have seen some high load on the node from time to time, but I’m sure INIZ has it all under control, since the load is not seen for any long time.

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Service/Support

Not much to say about their support, have not tried it all the last 60 days. But since they made it to place number 3 on the Q4-2013 (and Q3-2013) poll on LEB, and they must have a good support team.

I have not used the server for any live site. I used it for a month or so as a backup server on my DNS failover service. So I replicated my sites every hour to my INIZ server.

Benchmark:

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My plan is “only” a RAID-10 plan, but I get some good disk speeds here. I must say that I have also seen speeds down to 250 MB/s, but I get speeds over 500 MB/s most of the time.

Network/uptime

My monitoring services tells me that I have a 99.949% uptime the last 2 months with 1 minute monitors.

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Conclusion

INIZ.com is a good provider with good hardware and network, with great offers from time to time. I have got really much value for my money with them. They do not have much downtime and they are holding their promise of 99.9% uptime.

I have changed my rating system, and INIZ gets 8 of 10 points in this review.

 

18 month review of Soladrive.com

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SolaDrive.com it’s my second fully managed services, and one of the host I normally recommend. I have been using them for over 18 months now. Read more in my review.

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Product/hardware/price

SolaDrive.com has really good hardware. They still are number 1 on my Top20 benchmarking list. You get at least a 16 core server (fair share), but they also have 24 cores servers. I’m currently on a Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2620 @ 2.00GHz server
on their UK node using their OpenVZ business plan with 1 GB of RAM and 40 GB RAID-10 HDD.

SolaDrive has three fully managed OpenVZ VPS plan to offer from 1 GB to 4 GB of RAM and three XEN plans, see the above picture for specs and prices. For a fully managed service, their prices is pretty good.

They also offer three locations, Los Angeles, Scranton and the UK.

Service/Support

SolaDrive has excellent service, and are know for it on forums like Webhostingtalk.com. They really takes cares of their customers. They say on their page that support tickets normally is replied on after 10 minutes, but no longer then 60 minutes. I have checked my  last three tickets, and the response time was: 23 minutes, 3 minutes and 4 minutes. Thats a average of 10 minutes, so they don’t lie on their site.

Benchmark:

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Network/uptime

My monitoring services tells me that I have a 99.796% uptime the last 12 months with 1 minute monitors. Most of my downtime has been a result of DDoS attacks on the node or DC. They do promise a uptime of 99.9%, so in this case they have not held their guarantee. 13 hours and 53 minutes of downtime is allot in a year.

Edit: They have changed their UK Data Center around 7 months ago, and after that they have only had 1 hour with downtime. Just wanted you to know that.

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Conclusion

The only negative thing about SolaDrive is that they have had allot of downtime on their UK node the last year. (they have later on changed DC, and there has been only one hour downtime since that) But their service is still excellent and their support is really fast. and they have a great product. So I have no problems at all recommending SolaDrive to people needing a fully managed host in the US or in the UK. So I give them four+ stars (of 6) this time.

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.

70 day review – Ramnode.com

I have got a new five star host..Ramnode.com. Read my 70 day review here.

Product/hardware/price

Ramnode.com has expanded a lot the last 70 days. They have added new powerful hardware, several new VPS lines, including pure SSD and SSD cached VPS plans. They have added KVM. They have a new DC in Atlanta etc etc. I have tested most of their new servers and Ramnode.com gets high results, and currently has four places on my Top 20 list.

Their plans goes from 512 MB RAM up to 4 GB of RAM, and the price starts at $7.50/mo up to $60/mo. They do also have a small 256 MB RAM plan for $15/Quarterly.

Service/Support

Their service is really good. They are active on WHT, they do send out info mails about scheduled maintenance or other things. One day I got an mail about a DDoS attack on the node I used, but I had not seen any issue, and did not know about the attack. So good info from Ramnode.

I have not opened one support ticket since I signup, so I can’t say anything about their response times etc.

Network/uptime

Their network seems very good, fast speeds and my server have 100% uptime. It can’t be any better.

Benchmark

Read my latest Benchmark – Ramnode.com – KVM SSD-Cached VPS

Read my Benchmark – Ramnode.com – Atlanta 1024MB plan (pure SSD)

Conclusion

Ramnode.com has got a new DC, new servers, new technology (KVM) and SSD Cached plans. You get allot for your money. You have the choice between really fast pure SSD plans with up to 966 MB/S disk speeds (DD) and slightly slower SSD cached plans with lot more disk space and disk speeds around 7-800 MB/s.

Benchmark – Ramnode.com – Atlanta KVM 1 GB

Ramnode.com is still expanding their line of products, and this time they have added KVM plans. And with all Ramnode plans you get some kind of SSD. The plan I tested uses pure SSD RAID setup, but they will also offer SSD-Cached KVM plans soon. With 804 MB/s in disk speed (DD command) this is the second best KVM node ever tested.

Thank you for providing me with this VPS for my test.

Server location: Atlanta, USA
*1024MB SKVM* –$30 / mo
Plan info:
KVM – 1024 MB RAM, 20 GB SSD , 2000 GB BW
Disk info: RAID10 SSD HDD Space

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Benchmark – Ramnode – SSD Cached VPS

Ramnode continue their server upgrading, and do now offers a SSD Cached VPS line. Here is what Ramnode is writing about their SSD cached servers: “These VPSs run on RAID10 arrays of HDDs behind a RAID10 array of SSDs that act as a cache for “hot” data. That means data frequently called for by the server stays on the SSD space. These VPSs provide similar performance to our all-SSD VPSs but with more than twice the space available! ” When I tested the VPS I got a disk speed of 583 MB/s, that a very good speed, but their pure SSD nodes is faster with 966 MB/s. But you get lots more disk space with their SSD cached plans.

Thank you for providing me with this VPS for my test.

Server location: Atlanta, USA
*1024MB VPS* –$15 / mo
Plan info:
OpenVZ – 1024 MB RAM, 50 GB , 2000 GB BW, Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E3-1230 V2
Disk info: RAID10 SSD-Cached HDD Space

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