A couple of weeks ago I moved Singularity Weblog to ZippyKid.com. Since my previous experience with VPS.net was so nightmarishly traumatic, I felt compelled to share a few thoughts on the companies and the process that I have had to deal with during the past year or two.
My first blog host was BlueHost. Overall, I would say they did a very decent job while my blog was starting up and had little traffic. The problems started when traffic grew bigger than what their shared hosting could handle and the BlueHost technical support was simply beating around the bush rather than admitting they couldn’t handle it anymore. Eventually, I figured out that I need to get a virtual private server and, following the recomendations of several high-profile bloggers, I signed up with VPS.net.
I spent roughly about a year on the VPS.net cloud servers. During that time I have had about a dozen outages spanning from several hours to about a day and a half each. On almost every occasion, the problem was discovered by me (or a reader like you) and not by VPS. Thus, if I didn’t realize SingularityWeblog.com was down, then, it seemed that noone would have noticed, and it would not have come up online at all. I tried to communicate numerous times with technical support about this problem and every time I was told that for some reason the server failed to reboot properly on its own and that they are working on it.
The final straw came about 3 weeks ago with 3-4 day long outage, followed by a couple of days of now-up and now-down roller coaster server time. During the whole period VPS gave us a couple of sentences of vague information at best. Even when officially the outage was over my blog and my wife’s website were still down and noone seemed to care to address this apparent paradox. Needless to say, during that period my traffic got annihilated. None of the marketing BS bullet points on the VPS home page seemed to hold true: self-healing “smart hosting” – clearly neither; “100% uptime” – more like 90% (if you’re lucky); server redundancy – really, how is it that not only my sites but the whole cloud keeps going down?; hosting for the future – by God, save me from such nightmare…
Since I paid for services they failed to deliver, I thought it is not unreasonable to ask VPS.net for a refund, which was a meager fraction of the cost of damage that they have caused. I was told that no refunds will be issued but I may get a credit on my account. (This is like saying to someone “I don’t like your cake” to which she generously replies “Here, have more of it!”)
Enough is enough, I knew if I want to have a site that stays up rather than down, I have to move. So, I decided to crowd-source the solution to my hosting problem. I sent a query on both Twitter and Facebook and got a number of suggestions. While I cannot exaggerate how much I appreciate each person who took the time and put an effort to help, in the end, I decided to follow Szabolcs Kósa’s advice and try ZippyKid.com. (Thank you Szabolcs!)
So if there is any place where I stop complaining and start singing someone’s praise, then, this is it! (For the record, I am not an affiliate of ZippyKid and make no financial or other profit by my recommendation!)
My positive experience with ZippyKid started from the very beginning – when I called their phone number. No only do they have a direct phone line where you can talk to a living human being but, at least on that occasion, I happened to talk to the founder of the company himself. Add up the facts that I am getting a fully managed WordPress hosting, with Content Delivery Network and 24 hours technical support that is second to none (while paying a fraction of what I used to pay with VPS.net), and you may begin to understand why I am so happy. On top of that, the ZippyKid support team did all the migration work for me from the old to the new servers and even took time to reconfigure and optimize my WordPress plugins. They regularly go above and beyond what one could reasonably expect from exemplary customer service and never turn down my requests for help with any technical issue.
So, if you are ever looking for a place to host your WordPress site – search no further. I have confirmed that ZippyKid is indeed all of what they promise (and even more):
Fast, Secure, Managed, Scalable and Stable – all at rock-bottom prices with outstanding customer service.
It is the above web hosting trials, tribulations and eventual epiphany that make me feel like shouting:
VPS.net is Dead! Long live ZippyKid.com!!!
I spent well over 1 year using ZippyKid as my web host. During that period their services deteriorated substantially while their prices went up 400%. After multiple crashes the latest one of which was over 12 hours long I had enough and moved SingularityWeblog.com to WP Engine. Since then my blog loads 40% faster and for the past 6 months or so I have not had a single problem.