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What do you recommend for hosting?

We currently have a box hosted by Rackspace in London. We’ve had it for two years, and we’re not terribly happy with it, because





  • We’re paying the same monthly fee for the same hardware as we did two years ago, while the price of hardware has dropped. We’ve paid the cost of the hardware at least 5 times over, and continue to do so every few months.

  • We haven’t used their so-called fanatical support.

  • Their backup offer is too expensive, so we’ve rolled our own backup over the network to a couple of hard drives. I’d like a tape backup in addition.

  • They don’t offer Debian, only RHEL.



I don’t care whether we own the hardware or not, so long as the hosting provider will take care of replacing parts for me, within a 12-hour timeframe (so they need to keep spare parts around). I’m willing to pay a low monthly fee, plus a fee per incident for this service.



The network needs to be good. We’re going to be doing SSH and working on an interactive shell on that box from Copenhagen, Buenos Aires, and both coasts of the US, and need decent latency.



Our bandwidth and other “power” requirements aren’t great. We’re going to be running just a handful of low-trafficked sites for now.



We do care about backups. Ideally, they’ll offer a service that lets us simulate a recovery operation, so we know the drill, in case a bad controller damages both mirrored hard drives.



What are your experiences and recommendations? Go with another managed hosting provider like Tilted.com, or buy a box and get it hosted with someone local? In that case, what hardware would you recommend?

4 comments

Jarkko Laine

Managed providers Dreamhost (http://www.dreamhost.com/dedicated/servers.html): They're really highly regarded, although I haven't experience with them myself. Peter uses their shared service. They use Debian. Textdrive (http://www.textdrive.com/plans/): I use their shared plan and am *very* happy with it. They normally use FreeBSD but I think that could be negotiable. Plus, 10% of the gross profits of your plan will go to support Rails if you say so. Textdrive is still small enough to give you fast and personal service. These both offer pretty affordable Dual Xeon + SCSI RAID plans and the level of service depends on your wishes.
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Jarkko Laine

Managed providers I don't know what went wrong with the formatting (it looked fine on the confirm page). <p> <a href="http://www.dreamhost.com/dedicated/servers.html">Dreamhost</a>: They're really highly regarded, although I haven't experience with them myself. Peter uses their shared service. They use Debian. </p><p> <a href="http://www.textdrive.com/plans/">Textdrive</a>: I use their shared plan and am *very* happy with it. They normally use FreeBSD but I think that could be negotiable. Plus, 10% of the gross profits of your plan will go to support Rails if you say so. Textdrive is still small enough to give you fast and personal service. These both offer pretty affordable Dual Xeon + SCSI RAID plans and the level of service depends on your wishes.</p>
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Jarkko Laine

50%, not 10% Oops, the real percentage is 50, not 10. I don't know where I got the first number. Here's more <a href="http://www.rubyonrails.org/show/TextDriveHosting">information</a>.
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James Thornton

The Planet I have just started using The Planet, and I have been pleased with them so far. You can look at their network and data centers at http://www.theplanet.com/datacenter.html. You can colo there for US $150/month, they stock Dell server parts, and will replace parts even if you own the server -- I think pricing is on a per-incident basis. However, Dell offers three year, same day, four hour response, parts and onsite labor, seven days a week, 24 hours a day for only $299 with the purchase of a Dell server.
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