servers.jpgIt looks like I’m having some hosting problems with my current web host. And not only are there problems, but they seem unwilling to help me solve them – even though the great majority of the problems point to their servers.

I’m not going to name their name them just yet – just in case they change their tune. I feel I owe them that after three and half years of petty good service.

But, if they can’t resolve the problems I’m having in a satisfactorily way, I will look for hosting elsewhere.

So, I need some web hosting recommendations. I can tell you that iPowerWeb and WestHost are out. Here are the few I’ve looked at. If you host with any of them, I’d love to know your thoughts. And if you’ve had a bad experience, I’d like to know that as well.

  • MidPhase
  • BlueHost
  • HostGator
  • LunarPages
  • Host Nine
  • Third Sphere

In case you’re wondering, I’m looking for shared hosting for unlimited domains and subdomains with lots of disk space and huge bandwidth. Phone support would be a bonus. Certainly Linux – no Windows. And all the other open source goodies.
So let’s talk about hosting…

Reader Interactions


  1. Chris Stark says

    I’ve used both Midphase and BlueHost and I wouldn’t recommend either of them. My biggest problem was that they charged for silly features (like SSH access) and in the case of Midphase, my site would crash at exactly 1:30pm every day. When I brought that to their attention, they just completely blew me off…

    I’ve been using Site5 for a while now, and I really recommend them. Other then the fact that they have a little problem with sites that go big on Digg (too much traffic quickly) they have been really reliable and affordable.

  2. Char says

    I use both Host Gator and Jumpline. I have had sites on Jumpline since 1998 and have been very happy with the uptime and customer support.

    I also have a reseller account through Host Gator that allows me to have unlimited domains and a boat load of space. I love their Fantastico option at the control panel – it is loaded with great stuff like WordPress that you can install from there with a single click.

    I have only had a few minor and some what self imposed issues with them – all of which were resolved quickly. I do recommend Host Gator.

  3. Dawud Miracle says


    Thanks for the feedback. I’ll take a look at Site5.

    I’d love to hear more about your poor experiences with Midphase. The reason…Brian Clark from copyblogger uses tham and seems to love ’em. Yet I wonder if it’s because his site is so high-profile.


    Thanks Char. I don’t know Jumpline, but I will look into them. It sounds like Host Gator has worked well for you. What are you hosting on them? They get great reviews. What type of ‘self imposed issues’ have you had with Host Gator?

  4. Charles says

    I’ve used Lunarpages for about 2 years now. I haven’t had to deal that much with them, but when I’ve emailed a support question to them (labeled non-urgent), I’ve always received a response back within 24 hours.

  5. David Airey :: Creative Design :: says

    Hi Dawud,

    I’ve not used any of the host companies you list, so can’t help in that respect.

    However, ICD Soft have been doing a sterling job with my websites for over two years now. Their online support is almost immediate, everytime, no matter what time of day, and they offer great discounts when you host more than one website.

  6. Chris Stark says

    Well, I was with midphase just over a year ago now, so maybe they have changed a bit.

    My 2 biggest problems with them were that they charged extra for small things that I think should be standard, like SSH access for example, and they also had very poor service.

    For example, I had this crazy problem where every day, my sites would all go down at 1:30pm and stay down for 15-20 mins each time. I contacted them at least a dozen times to explain the problem.

    Every time, they basically laughed at me and said that was impossible, and never really looked into it at all. I even requested a server transfer, and they wouldn’t do it for me.

    It got to the point where they just were refusing to take the issue seriously, so I left…

  7. Tris Hussey says

    Jim Turner and I have used both WiredHub and Dreamhost. I like Dreamhost for it’s open source goodies and ability to host unlimited domains. Oh and their backup system is awesome.

  8. Joey says

    I am currently shopping around too. I was happy until the third time since March Midphase has had a power outage or a heat problem. Two of the three times it was back up within the hour. Bandwidth and space are great I’m just concerned about the power outages.

  9. LaurenMarie says

    I’ve used Dotster, IX WebHosting and HyTek Hosting. I know they weren’t on your list, but I’ve had a good experience with all three. I think their pricing is reasonable, but you should of course see if they offer what you are looking for.

    The only one I would beg you to stay away from is, previously Interland (I know you’re not considering it as per the post, but just in case…)

  10. DaveOlson says


    I’ve used dot5hosting for the last couple of years and been extremely happy with the value and the service. Haven’t tried phone support but their 24hour live chat has resolved any problems I had immediately.
    I’m currently hosting 4 sites with them.

    I’ve also had good success with Hostek. Phone support has been really helpful even when it wasn’t their issue.

  11. Dawud Miracle says


    1and1?? I’ve heard mixed reviews. I will look at them, though.


    That’s actually good to hear you haven’t had to deal with them. LunarPages…


    I’ll definitely check out ICD Soft. Thanks for the lead.


    Funny, that’s the same problem I’m having with my current host – just at 4:30 eastern and for as much as an hour. They won’t admit to any problems either.


    DreamHost, I’ll take a look. Thanks.


    Interesting. I may pass a message to Brian Clark and see what he knows.


    Thanks for the heads up on I’ve heard of IX and Dotster and will take a look at all three.


    dot5hosting and Hostek. I will check them out, too.

  12. Dawud Miracle says


    Thank you for your suggestions. I really want to find the right host. So please keep them coming. I don’t want to have to move again after this. I’d really like to find a host that I can build a long-term relationship with that will be mutually beneficial.

    Please, keep your suggestions coming

  13. Adam Kayce : Monk At Work says

    I’m with HostMonster, as you know… no problems. Their tech support guys don’t know as much as you do, but if I keep calling back, someone seems to know the answer!

    They’re the same company as BlueHost (or they have the same address at least), but unlike Chris, they didn’t charge me anything extra for SSH access. (I needed it to move over a database, and they even walked me through it over the phone; a testament to their patience, since I’m on dial-up…)

    No downtime, no crashing, good stuff all around. (And I went with them because of the unlimited features you mentioned you wanted, and more)

  14. Opal: Vegan Momma says

    I’ve used LunarPages for five years. They give the customer’s extras (increased bandwidth/storage) a few times each year also their customer service has been excellent. They treat me as I treat my customers. I like that.

    I’ve emailed & called them and always received the assistance I needed in a timely fashion. I’ve blogged about their excellent service a few times.

  15. Chris Brown says

    I agree with you on IPowerWeb. Had them for several years but had to make a switch about a year ago.

    I’m now using out of Akron. It’s a real person and I like that.


  16. Dawud Miracle says


    Great. I’ll take a look at them as well. Do you know if they have a multiple domain hosting package? I actually have 4 websites.

  17. Maki says


    I’ve tried Hostgator and I’m pretty happy with them. Almost no downtime at all. Live support via IM and email support is very responsive every time I’ve tried.

    They do offer unlimited domains for their shared hosting plan which is at a rather affordable $9.95/month.

    Hope this helps!

  18. Kim Dushinski says

    I have used Bluehost for a couple years now and really like them. Good support. Never have any downtime. Unlimited domains.

    They have my highest recommendation.

  19. Armen says

    I’m with IX Webhosting Dawud, and I’ve been happy with them. I’ve had a few issues, but they have always been very courteous, and fast to respond and help. You should consider them, especially as they have Live Chat 27/7 for free.

  20. Dawud Miracle says


    HostGator is becoming a front-runner. Thanks for your input.


    Bluehost, great. It seems like I’m building a nice little list of hosts to look at. Again, thank you.

  21. Dawud Miracle says


    I will take a look. Though this posts is now approaching a week old, I’m still gathering information to find the right host.

    And, my current host has come around and seems to have fixed the issues I was having. Now to get them to take better care of my clients.

  22. Jeff Simon says

    I’m eagerly awaiting your conclusion, Dawud. I’m looking for someone who can host both my blog and website (as you suggested on Barry Morris’s forum. My site host is GoDaddy. Incorporating the blog has been just waaayyy to complicated. And I’m not that dense with the technical (I’m a “shade-tree mechanic” when it comes to web maintenance. It won’t win design awards, but it runs. 🙂 ).

  23. Charles says

    I commented earlier on Lunarpages, who I’ve been with for 2 years, but didn’t mention the reason I chose them. I read all the rankings of hosts I could find, and although they were not ranked #1 overall, they were always given high marks, often #1, for service. Not knowing a lot about the tech side, that’s what I wanted.

  24. Dawud Miracle says


    Good choice to go with #1 service. You rarely need your web host’s service line (hopefully). But if you do, it’s usually important and needs a timely response. That’s been the issue with my current host.

  25. David Airey :: Creative Design :: says

    Hi Dawud,

    Yesterday I experienced some problems when a fair bit of traffic arrived at my site.

    I too am going to change host provider, even though my current choice has been doing a great job for two years.

    My reason for changing isn’t through a bad experience, just due to the problem of increased traffic. Whilst I don’t expect to hit Digg’s frontpage again (although it is becoming easier to get there), I don’t want my new and existing readers to be hit with a server error upon visiting.

    I’ve been recommended Dreamhost and am going to give them a shot.

  26. Douglas Karr says

    I absolutely love my host and have been with them for over 5 years. They are I found them by analyzing Netcraft and finding the host with the least client turnover and least downtime. They were number one.

    I’m also an affiliate of theirs now. If you’d like, you can subscribe to my RSS feed and there’s an advertisement for 1 year of free hosting. Trust me, you won’t regret it!


  27. Dawud Miracle says


    DreamHost is actually who I had the problem with. They’ve fixed the issues I was having…but not without making me jump through quite a few hoops.

    The sticking point was that I have a package that doesn’t offer phone support. Yet they have been unable to fix my problem for well over a month. When I requested a phone call, I got a huge wall put up. While my package didn’t include phone support, I have sent them more than 50 clients in the past couple of years. And many of them have periodic problems connecting through FTP or having their site down – especially database sites – for short periods. I simply wanted to talk about these issues with someone in person and didn’t feel as though my request was unwarranted seeing as how I’ve sent them so much business.

    But they wouldn’t budge. The funny thing is is if I would pay $5 more per month for hosting, I could get phone support (call back support). And that’s what didn’t make sense to me. They make hundreds of dollars per month from the referrals I sent. But they didn’t seem to care. Nor were they interested in helping my clients. Only me. And only me, it seems, because I made such a stink.

    My experience with DreamHost before this was all positive. A bit of downtime here and there – much of which was caused by a bad database server. Fixed now.

    So I’m still looking. I have four websites and 8 subdomains with 9 databases on DreamHost and am not looking forward to porting somewhere else. And I likely will.

    Reason: I so seldom need support from my host. But when I do, I expect to be cared for in a timely manner with no hassles. The time I needed them, all I got was hassles and blame (they insisted that my problems had to do with plugins – when ultimately it was their servers).

    So while I like DreamHost, I’m going to move on. I wonder if they’ve just grown too fast. Right now, I’m leaning toward HostGator or LunarPages. And if you have only one site, I’ve got a couple of blogging friends who are on ThirdSphere and rave about it.

    Let me know what you end up doing.

  28. Dawud Miracle says


    Great. And thanks. I get your feed already (and made your link live above). I will certainly take a look. Thanks for your recommendation.

  29. David Airey :: Creative Design :: says

    Hi Dawud,

    Thanks very much for letting me know about your Dreamhost experiences. That’s definitely made me think twice.

    I don’t want to use a dedicated server at this time, and I’ve been recommended with Media Temple’s grid service (what appears to be the next generation of hosting after shared). I’ve contacted MT to see how fast they respond.

    Here’s a question you might have the answer to: when it comes to updating versions of WordPress, are there any one-click companies? I’ve read how there are one-click installs, but not upgrades.

  30. Dawud Miracle says


    You’re welcome. I still recommend DreamHost, but with less vigor as before.

    I’ve heard mixed reviews on Media Temple from people who are actually using it. Yet, some of the designers I follow regularly like Dan Cederholm use Media Temple.

    One click…DreamHost has a one-click install/upgrade option. With WordPress they seem to lag a couple weeks behind the release. But that’s no biggie. Many cpanel controlled sites have one-click also. It’s an important feature, so I’d ask when you’re considering hosts. Me, personally, I have so much vested in my blog that I don’t mind doing in manually. Takes about 30 minutes – most of which is back up time for my wp-content folder and a few other files. That way, I have a backup of all the files that make up my blog.

  31. David Airey :: Creative Design :: says

    I’d still recommend if you don’t plan on high traffic levels. Their support has been superb actually. It’s unfortunate that they can’t offer any form of upgrade from the shared server.

    That’s what I like about the grid service I’ve read about on MT’s site. I’m looking for other web hosts who use a similar system as opposed to shared hosting.

    Just about to look at Blue Host.

  32. Hilary says

    Hi Dawud,

    How did you resolve this in the end? It’s looking as though I may need to change host (to one where MySql doesn’t fail on Saturday mornings…), and I’m anxious not to jump from frying pan to fire. Who did you end up with, and how’s it going?

  33. Dawud Miracle says

    I ended up staying with DreamHost. They fixed my issues a while back and I’ve had no problems since. Part of my issues were around the amount of traffic my blog was drawing and the system resources that was taking.

    I’ve seen some great support from BlueHost with clients as well. They have 24-hour phone support too.

  34. Hilary says

    Thanks! My hosts say they’ll keep a careful eye to prevent it from happening again, so maybe I can stay put. But it’s good to have an idea of where to go if I can’t.

  35. Hussein | Random Blog says

    Don’t waste time searching.. HostGator is the best for me. Though their support is not that good, but their uptime is really awesome. My site never experienced any downtime in HostGator 😀

  36. Dawud Miracle says

    I choose Mosso as my host and I absolutely love ’em. Excellent package and amazing service. They’ve even helped me work out some scripting issues that weren’t their fault and they don’t support. Phone support 24/7 and the support reps have always been helpful and very friendly. I absolutely recommend Mosso.

    And if you choose Moss, please use my referral code: REF-dmiracle. I’d appreciate it and thanks in advance.

    comments are now closed


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