Author Topic: Best weather website web host?  (Read 6584 times)

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Offline Dan Clark

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Best weather website web host?
« on: January 18, 2012, 12:03:30 PM »
Hi. I posted this on the Weather Display forum, but decided to post it here to get more feedback...

Although I'm a software developer and have been a non-weather forum Admin, I'm a newb to weather stations and weather websites.  My Davis 6163 VP2 will be here tomorrow or Friday, and I'll start with WD as my console weather software.  My primary goal is to set up a weather website for platform-agnostic weather display (i.e. good on PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, etc.) 

I'm looking around for a web host.  I've had bad luck with 1&1 before and have had good luck with a couple of expensive ones.   So I'm looking...

I've seen posts about several web hosts - some good and some bad.   Some of the more popular ones like GoDaddy, 1&1, and Bluehost seem to have mixed reviews.   Some have good reviews, like InMotion, WebHostingHub, and HostGator, but I don't see many weather websites using them.   

Which one do you like?  Why?  What features do they have that support weather websites? 

Looking at it a different way, which web hosts have features or limitations which are NEGATIVE for weather websites?

Thanks for your advice,

Dan.

Offline neondesert

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2012, 01:52:20 PM »
Hi Dan,

Looking through the posts on this site I'm sure you will find negatives for many hosts that you have mentioned as well as positives. 

Unfortunately, as simple as it may seem there really isn't a one size fits all solution for everyone. 

FWIW, I started with GoDaddy and was with them for several years.
Then, for some reason, decided to switch to their NEW and IMPROVED 4GH service.  Big mistake.  After, it was suggested by a customer service rep that my new FTP issues were
because "oh you probably were just unlucky and where put on a more crowded server" I decided to fire them and go with my current host.  I've also moved my domain registration away
from them as well.  Haven't looked back since. Does my new host cost more?  Yes.  Do I receive excellent support and reliability?  Yes and Yes.
The old adage, "you get what you pay for" applies to internet hosting as well.  Now, that doesn't mean you can't find bargains and low cost solutions.  Just be wary of hosts that push the
term "unlimited".  Trust me on this one, "unlimited" doesn't exist.

An excellent resource for researching a new host is this site: http://www.webhostingtalk.com/
Larry
"But it's a DRY Heat!"


Offline saratogaWX

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2012, 01:59:35 PM »
Hi Dan,

For many folks starting a weather website, e-rice.net is a good starting point.  Very inexpensive (but you'll need to register your domain name with a registrar first).

I host primarily on 1and1, and yes, their tech-support can be labyrinthine to navigate and you only get the first-level folks.  The business Linux package with dual-hosting at about $10/month serves 4 sites I host.  I do like SSH access to the site, and configuring cron jobs in the classic way, but that's because I've used *nix for years.

GoDaddy hosts one site I manage about the same price as 1and1.  Has cPanel for management of the site, and a very good/responsive tech-support first level that can contact the server admins to resolve issues like 'cron has stopped' in a quick manner.

HostGator hosts this site (under the aegis of Chris' capeweather.com).  Chris deals with the tech-support issues, but it seems fairly good.  Pricing is competive.

I manage one site on Lunarpages and it has really had no technical issues to speak of for several years.  

I had a really BAD experience with iPowerWeb hosting in the past and moved a site from them to Lunarpages and never looked back.

Do pick a hoster that has a running/growing business as small start-up shops that just resell webhost services tend to have a short life expectancy, and when they go, your site goes down with it.  This happened in 2006 with the original weatherforum.net leading to the startup of this forum.

Whichever hoster you choose, do insist on a Linux/Apache website .. the Windows/IIS configs can be tricky to get the commonly available weather website scripts to work well.

Hope this helps...

Best regards,
Ken
Ken True/Saratoga, CA, USA main site: saratoga-weather.org
Davis VP1+ FARS, Boltek-PCI/NexStorm, microSferics ToA, Blitzortung RED, GRLevel3, WD, WL, VWS, Cumulus, Meteobridge/hub
Free weather PHP scripts/website templates - update notifications on Twitter saratogaWXPHP

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2012, 03:39:41 PM »
Hi Dan,

Looking through the posts on this site I'm sure you will find negatives for many hosts that you have mentioned as well as positives. 

Unfortunately, as simple as it may seem there really isn't a one size fits all solution for everyone. 

FWIW, I started with GoDaddy and was with them for several years.
Then, for some reason, decided to switch to their NEW and IMPROVED 4GH service.  Big mistake.  After, it was suggested by a customer service rep that my new FTP issues were
because "oh you probably were just unlucky and where put on a more crowded server" I decided to fire them and go with my current host.  I've also moved my domain registration away
from them as well.  Haven't looked back since. Does my new host cost more?  Yes.  Do I receive excellent support and reliability?  Yes and Yes.
The old adage, "you get what you pay for" applies to internet hosting as well.  Now, that doesn't mean you can't find bargains and low cost solutions.  Just be wary of hosts that push the
term "unlimited".  Trust me on this one, "unlimited" doesn't exist.

An excellent resource for researching a new host is this site: http://www.webhostingtalk.com/
Larry,

Hi and thanks.   Good info.  This confirms the impression about GoDaddy that I've gotten from others. 

I just joined Web Hosting Talk.  Thanks for the link. 

Oh, and one other thing...  Who is your new web host? 8-)

Thanks,

Dan.

Offline neondesert

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2012, 04:13:50 PM »
Hi Dan,

Looking through the posts on this site I'm sure you will find negatives for many hosts that you have mentioned as well as positives. 

Unfortunately, as simple as it may seem there really isn't a one size fits all solution for everyone. 

FWIW, I started with GoDaddy and was with them for several years.
Then, for some reason, decided to switch to their NEW and IMPROVED 4GH service.  Big mistake.  After, it was suggested by a customer service rep that my new FTP issues were
because "oh you probably were just unlucky and where put on a more crowded server" I decided to fire them and go with my current host.  I've also moved my domain registration away
from them as well.  Haven't looked back since. Does my new host cost more?  Yes.  Do I receive excellent support and reliability?  Yes and Yes.
The old adage, "you get what you pay for" applies to internet hosting as well.  Now, that doesn't mean you can't find bargains and low cost solutions.  Just be wary of hosts that push the
term "unlimited".  Trust me on this one, "unlimited" doesn't exist.

An excellent resource for researching a new host is this site: http://www.webhostingtalk.com/
Larry,

Hi and thanks.   Good info.  This confirms the impression about GoDaddy that I've gotten from others. 

I just joined Web Hosting Talk.  Thanks for the link. 

Oh, and one other thing...  Who is your new web host? 8-)

Thanks,

Dan.

No problem, Dan.  I currently use MDDHosting.  They use LightSpeed instead of Apache but it's fully compatible.
It's very nice to have a access to cPanel and not some slow proprietary control panel.
They also have their own servers and are not resellers of some other hosting company.
You can search on Web Hosting Talk for a 50% discount coupon if your interested.  ;)

As far as domain registration I highly recommend Hover.com.  They are a division of Tucows.
Very inexpensive and they include whois privacy in their domain registration price.
Larry
"But it's a DRY Heat!"


Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2012, 04:42:38 PM »
Hi Dan,

For many folks starting a weather website, e-rice.net is a good starting point.  Very inexpensive (but you'll need to register your domain name with a registrar first).

I host primarily on 1and1, and yes, their tech-support can be labyrinthine to navigate and you only get the first-level folks.  The business Linux package with dual-hosting at about $10/month serves 4 sites I host.  I do like SSH access to the site, and configuring cron jobs in the classic way, but that's because I've used *nix for years.

GoDaddy hosts one site I manage about the same price as 1and1.  Has cPanel for management of the site, and a very good/responsive tech-support first level that can contact the server admins to resolve issues like 'cron has stopped' in a quick manner.

HostGator hosts this site (under the aegis of Chris' capeweather.com).  Chris deals with the tech-support issues, but it seems fairly good.  Pricing is competive.

I manage one site on Lunarpages and it has really had no technical issues to speak of for several years.  

I had a really BAD experience with iPowerWeb hosting in the past and moved a site from them to Lunarpages and never looked back.

Do pick a hoster that has a running/growing business as small start-up shops that just resell webhost services tend to have a short life expectancy, and when they go, your site goes down with it.  This happened in 2006 with the original weatherforum.net leading to the startup of this forum.

Whichever hoster you choose, do insist on a Linux/Apache website .. the Windows/IIS configs can be tricky to get the commonly available weather website scripts to work well.

Hope this helps...

Best regards,
Ken
Ken,

Thanks for the feedback. 

I'm definitely going to a Linux/Apache host.    I'm not great at it, but I have a little over a year as an admin with another forum (talkfestool.com) which was on that platform.   I wrote scripts for backing up the DB and forum files, cleanup, etc.   And another fellow and I did the migration from one server to another.  So I know a bit about file structures, FTP, SSH, and permissions.   Interesting stuff.

The major issue I had with 1&1 was that they offered lots of "bling" (tools and software) but didn't have the tools I needed as a forum admin.   You're right about tech support.  They seemed OK with most "end-user" issues, but as soon as I started asking about permissions, load, FTP, mySQL DB size, blah, blah, they answers got looser and fuzzier.    I finally gave up and quit.   

We finally chose Media Temple, which caters more to business folks: http://mediatemple.net/.  Their service handled our forum well, but the costs were shared by several people.  I'd love to use their service, but it's a bit expensive for my modest weather website needs.   

Some questions...
 
What are the size of the WD files that are uploaded to the server every few minutes?  What kind of load does that put on the server?

Would a low end plan like the Host Gator, shared "Baby Plan" be adequate for a weather website (http://www.hostgator.com/shared.shtml)?  I chatted with a HostGator rep a minute ago and he suggested a VPS plan (much more expensive); that's why I'm asking.

Do you have backup jobs running on the server or just depend on the workstation files as the master?   Is backup even an issue? 

Thanks  and regards,

Dan.


 

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2012, 05:08:12 PM »
(snip)

No problem, Dan.  I currently use MDDHosting.  They use LightSpeed instead of Apache but it's fully compatible.
It's very nice to have a access to cPanel and not some slow proprietary control panel.
They also have their own servers and are not resellers of some other hosting company.
You can search on Web Hosting Talk for a 50% discount coupon if your interested.  ;)

As far as domain registration I highly recommend Hover.com.  They are a division of Tucows.
Very inexpensive and they include whois privacy in their domain registration price.
Larry,

I'll take a look at MDDHosting.  Regarding Hover.com for registration, 3 years registration of two domains (.com, .net) is $81.   The same thing with GoDaddy is $102.  Both after coupons.   I like that Hover is a simple model without lots of "offers".

Is it more reasonable to get just the first year and then auto-renew?   

The cost of the domain with an email address is significantly higher.    I hadn't thought of an email address with the domain.   Is an email address reasonable or useful?

Thanks,

Dan.

Offline saratogaWX

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2012, 06:06:13 PM »

Ken,

Thanks for the feedback. 

I'm definitely going to a Linux/Apache host.    I'm not great at it, but I have a little over a year as an admin with another forum (talkfestool.com) which was on that platform.   I wrote scripts for backing up the DB and forum files, cleanup, etc.   And another fellow and I did the migration from one server to another.  So I know a bit about file structures, FTP, SSH, and permissions.   Interesting stuff.

The major issue I had with 1&1 was that they offered lots of "bling" (tools and software) but didn't have the tools I needed as a forum admin.   You're right about tech support.  They seemed OK with most "end-user" issues, but as soon as I started asking about permissions, load, FTP, mySQL DB size, blah, blah, they answers got looser and fuzzier.    I finally gave up and quit.   

We finally chose Media Temple, which caters more to business folks: http://mediatemple.net/.  Their service handled our forum well, but the costs were shared by several people.  I'd love to use their service, but it's a bit expensive for my modest weather website needs.   

Some questions...
 
What are the size of the WD files that are uploaded to the server every few minutes?  What kind of load does that put on the server?
I'm not sure I can say what the WD-specific uploads are (since I have 8 other weather/radar/lightning software all uploading at 5 minute intervals).  I do run on the saratoga-weather.org website between 30Gb and 40Gb FTP traffic a month (so maybe a gigabyte+ a day) in uploads for all the packages.  1an1 'unlimited' bandwidth allows that.
The clientraw.txt file is uploaded every 10seconds (about a kilobyte) via the clientrawrealtimeftp.  The bulk of the uploads for WD happen at 5 minute intervals and consist of the testtags.php and the frequently-generated graphics.  Daily files like monthly reports/noaareports are done just after midnight.

Would a low end plan like the Host Gator, shared "Baby Plan" be adequate for a weather website (http://www.hostgator.com/shared.shtml)?  I chatted with a HostGator rep a minute ago and he suggested a VPS plan (much more expensive); that's why I'm asking.
A VPS plan is NOT needed, but I'd consider the starter business plan (one step above the home hosting plan) .. better bandwidth available, and the features are better in the package.

Do you have backup jobs running on the server or just depend on the workstation files as the master?   Is backup even an issue? 

Thanks  and regards,

Dan.

I consider the main content on the website to be mostly 'static' with the master copy stored on my PC (and backed up nightly on a local-network NAS via Norton Ghost), so I don't use backups on the website itself.  I can always re-upload the stuff from my system if need-be.  Your mileage may vary... :)

Best regards,
Ken
Ken True/Saratoga, CA, USA main site: saratoga-weather.org
Davis VP1+ FARS, Boltek-PCI/NexStorm, microSferics ToA, Blitzortung RED, GRLevel3, WD, WL, VWS, Cumulus, Meteobridge/hub
Free weather PHP scripts/website templates - update notifications on Twitter saratogaWXPHP

Offline neondesert

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2012, 06:09:19 PM »
Larry,

I'll take a look at MDDHosting.  Regarding Hover.com for registration, 3 years registration of two domains (.com, .net) is $81.   The same thing with GoDaddy is $102.  Both after coupons.   I like that Hover is a simple model without lots of "offers".

Is it more reasonable to get just the first year and then auto-renew?   

The cost of the domain with an email address is significantly higher.    I hadn't thought of an email address with the domain.   Is an email address reasonable or useful?

Thanks,

Dan.

I like that about Hover myself, Dan.  Very straightforward and with Whois privacy included, definitely cheaper than some other registrars.

I renew yearly, however there is some evidence that registering for longer periods "increases" your Google rankings some.  The logic behind this
apparently is that domains registered for longer than a year at a time are not as likely to be "fly by night" (here today gone tomorrow) sites.  I've
had my domain(s) for quite some time (Google ranks me at number 7 for a search on "Las Vegas Weather"  Ahead of the local NWS office BTW..  ;)) so I'm not too concerned with multi-year
registration myself.

As far as email is concerned my package with MDD and most hosts include free email so I didn't go with an email at Hover when I registered the domain.

Hope this helps.
Larry
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Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2012, 08:42:19 PM »
Ken and Larry,

You fellows are making my life too easy!   I expected to sweat these decisions for weeks! :shock: :grin:

For domain registration, I'm moving ahead with Hover.com, 3 years with no email. 

For a web host, MDDHosting is starting to look good.   Assuming that I got aggressive* and uploaded Ken's volume of 30Gb and 40Gb FTP uploads per month, do you gentlemen think the "Basic" plan shown here: http://www.mddhosting.com/hosting.php# would be adequate?

Larry, if you don't mind me asking, which plan are you using?

Many thanks,

Dan.

p.s. * To a geek like me, Ken's script and template web pages are like Willi Wonka's Chocolate Factory to a chocolate lover!  So I'll probably be using lots of them. Which means more server load.

p.p.s Congrats on the Google ranking Larry!

Offline smorris

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2012, 09:06:48 PM »
Late to the party here, but I'll throw in my two cents.

I have been using HostDime for my shared hosting for the past nine years. My recollection is that the site has only been down twice in that time, and once was when their building and backup was damaged by a hurricane.

Packages start at $108/year for unlimited email, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited web space, unlimited domains, etc. Domain registration is $14.99, and setup is free if you host there, too. I have my main domain there and five other sub-domains. (I bumped up to the sHD2 $156/year package due to more than three sub-domains) They use c-Panel and have all the latest tools.

http://www.hostdime.com/web-hosting/shared/#icoheader

Hope that helps,
Steve
Steve - Avon, Ohio
Davis Vantage Pro2 Plus w/FARS, Leaf & Soil Station

CWOP WU AWEKAS CoCoRaHS Skywarn MWWN UK Met PWS WeatherBug Twitter Facebook

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2012, 09:18:22 PM »
Late to the party here, but I'll throw in my two cents.

I have been using HostDime for my shared hosting for the past nine years. My recollection is that the site has only been down twice in that time, and once was when their building and backup was damaged by a hurricane.

Packages start at $108/year for unlimited email, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited web space, unlimited domains, etc. Domain registration is $14.99, and setup is free if you host there, too. I have my main domain there and five other sub-domains. (I bumped up to the sHD2 $156/year package due to more than three sub-domains) They use c-Panel and have all the latest tools.

http://www.hostdime.com/web-hosting/shared/#icoheader

Hope that helps,
Steve
Steve,

Thanks for the feedback.  I'll look at HostDime too.

Regards,

Dan.

Offline neondesert

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2012, 09:32:57 PM »
Ken and Larry,

You fellows are making my life too easy!   I expected to sweat these decisions for weeks! :shock: :grin:

For domain registration, I'm moving ahead with Hover.com, 3 years with no email. 

For a web host, MDDHosting is starting to look good.   Assuming that I got aggressive* and uploaded Ken's volume of 30Gb and 40Gb FTP uploads per month, do you gentlemen think the "Basic" plan shown here: http://www.mddhosting.com/hosting.php# would be adequate?

Larry, if you don't mind me asking, which plan are you using?

Many thanks,

Dan.

p.s. * To a geek like me, Ken's script and template web pages are like Willi Wonka's Chocolate Factory to a chocolate lover!  So I'll probably be using lots of them. Which means more server load.

I'm using the intermediate plan Dan, as I was planning on hosting another site on the same host but things have changed since then.

The Basic plan should work fine for you, as long as you don't plan on using them as a file server which would be against the TOS.

Right now, my site is using approx. 100MB and on average I'll use from 5 to 15 gigs of bandwidth a month.  It peaks in the summer with everyone
wanting to view the lightning data.  ;) 
That said, you would have plenty of bandwidth (250GB) and storage available (5GB) with the basic plan and you could always upgrade if you outgrow those limitations.

I will say that Michael, the owner, is open to pre-sales questions and concerns.  One thing that comes to mind is when I first started with them I was looking at
my resource usage in cPanel and noticed some periodic spiking.  I asked him about it and questioned if it was going to be an issue going forward.  He took a look at
the process logs and said I wasn't using much. This was at a time when I was running VWS and Cumulus realtime updates in parallel.  He went on to say that CPU usage will spike on the server during activities such as log processing and as long as it wasn't
something that happened 24/7 it wouldn't be an issue. 

Feel free to PM me if you have any concerns that you want to discuss in detail.  :-)

p.p.s Congrats on the Google ranking Larry!

Thanks.  I was pleasantly surprised myself.  8-)



Larry
"But it's a DRY Heat!"


Offline saratogaWX

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2012, 09:41:14 PM »
p.s. * To a geek like me, Ken's script and template web pages are like Willi Wonka's Chocolate Factory to a chocolate lover!  So I'll probably be using lots of them. Which means more server load.

I'm glad you like the 'PHP chocolate' scripts ;)

The PHP scripts/template won't create extra FTP upload bandwidth required, and on the contrary, the website will use less FTP upload bandwidth since the only PHP file routinely uploaded will be the tags file (testtags.php for WD installations) at about 40Kb every 5 minutes.  With the old HTML templates, each HTML file would need to be uploaded through the weather software to have the weather tags processed and so could easily get over 150Kb/upload cycle.

The support scripts (like for forecasts and such) will dynamically fetch content from source websites using PHP on the webserver (no FTP from your station needed), and cache the results for a time to prevent overload of the source websites.

Best regards,
Ken
Ken True/Saratoga, CA, USA main site: saratoga-weather.org
Davis VP1+ FARS, Boltek-PCI/NexStorm, microSferics ToA, Blitzortung RED, GRLevel3, WD, WL, VWS, Cumulus, Meteobridge/hub
Free weather PHP scripts/website templates - update notifications on Twitter saratogaWXPHP

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2012, 09:45:47 PM »
I'm going to wait for some final feedback from Ken and Larry, but it looks like MDDHosting might be a pretty good deal.  After changing the service to the Intermediate Plan and applying a 1/2 price coupon, it looks like the cost would be $172.81 for a three year contract.

Still trying to keep my options open, but...

Regards,

Dan.

Offline smorris

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2012, 10:01:51 PM »
With the old HTML templates, each HTML file would need to be uploaded through the weather software to have the weather tags processed and so could easily get over 150Kb/upload cycle.

That's sure the case for me. The weather software I'm using (LWC2) uploads every html page, chart, webcam shot, etc. every five minutes, as well as two daily time-lapse video. I'm at 17 GB FTP usage so far this month!

Steve
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Davis Vantage Pro2 Plus w/FARS, Leaf & Soil Station

CWOP WU AWEKAS CoCoRaHS Skywarn MWWN UK Met PWS WeatherBug Twitter Facebook

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2012, 10:18:13 PM »
OK... I just pulled the trigger on Hover.com and MDDHosting.   \:D/  I liked Hover and the cost was reasonable.   And the MDDHosting 1/2 price coupon tipped me over the edge.  Even though I'll probably not use the bandwidth in the short run, I used the 1/2 price coupon to buy the intermediate plan.  This brought the price difference between Basic and Intermediate to only a couple bucks per month.

Many thanks for the great feedback that helped me get moving!

Best regards,

Dan.

Offline neondesert

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2012, 01:24:11 AM »
OK... I just pulled the trigger on Hover.com and MDDHosting.   \:D/  I liked Hover and the cost was reasonable.   And the MDDHosting 1/2 price coupon tipped me over the edge.  Even though I'll probably not use the bandwidth in the short run, I used the 1/2 price coupon to buy the intermediate plan.  This brought the price difference between Basic and Intermediate to only a couple bucks per month.

Many thanks for the great feedback that helped me get moving!

Best regards,

Dan.

Good to hear, Dan.  I'm positive you'll be happy with your decision. 
Let me know if I can help any further.

I'm looking forward to your seeing your new site take shape!  8-)
Larry
"But it's a DRY Heat!"


Offline RodW

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2012, 06:56:39 AM »
Probably a but late chiming in now the decision is made but if you have a broadband connection and iPad/iPhone you could consider self hosting.  I recently put in a Synology NAS at home and it is just awesome. So much so I Registered a domain and subscribed to a dynamic DNA service. Mine is the DS1511+ which has 5 drive bays, custom apps for iOS, and android. Kinda nice to be able to map a network drive at work to the home network! And it has even taught my iPad to print! It also has apache, Php and MySQL so it is all set to go.

Offline Dan Clark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2012, 12:07:27 PM »
Probably a but late chiming in now the decision is made but if you have a broadband connection and iPad/iPhone you could consider self hosting.  I recently put in a Synology NAS at home and it is just awesome. So much so I Registered a domain and subscribed to a dynamic DNA service. Mine is the DS1511+ which has 5 drive bays, custom apps for iOS, and android. Kinda nice to be able to map a network drive at work to the home network! And it has even taught my iPad to print! It also has apache, Php and MySQL so it is all set to go.
Rod,

Hi.  At one time several years ago, I considered self-hosting for a website.   I'm happy that you found the option that fits you and I agree with you that there are some distinct benefits to self-hosting.  For me however, there downsides outweighed the upsides... 

First, my home server, and all my workstations and laptops use are Windows 7/64.   Second, while I have some experience using Linux on a web host system and have some experience managing a Windows-based, production server, it would be a steep learning curve for me to get competent enough to manage a non-Windows server.  Third, and the HUGE reason, is that the cost of the MDDHosting service was so low that there's no way the cost/benefit balance works for me.   At $171 total for three years at MDDHosting, it's an incredible deal.   They deal with all of the administrivia to keep the system running and provide me with the tools to achieve my goals.

A fourth and more subtle reason is that I'm fundamentally and professionally a software developer.  In truth, I don't particularly like hardware and networks.  I understand the critical necessity of having good ones and I get some satisfaction of building my own workstations.   But overall, I'm happy to have someone else deal with the infrastructure issues and let me build software.  :grin:

Have fun with your new hardware! 

Best regards,

Dan.

p.s. I'm still trying to get my iPad to print.   My wife and I combined have two iPhone 4's and two iPads (1 and 2).   I think they are great, but in some ways (like printing), they are still stone age.   I have three printers - a Brother fax/copy/print and two Epsons.  Can't print to any of them.  Apple supports only a limited number of HP printers for their "i" hardware while virtually every low end, cheesy PC on the planet can print to almost every printer on the planet.  Grrr.    :-x  Oh well, I'm trying out some new iPad software today.  We'll see how it goes.

Offline RodW

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #20 on: January 22, 2012, 02:17:12 AM »
p.s. I'm still trying to get my iPad to print.   My wife and I combined have two iPhone 4's and two iPads (1 and 2).   I think they are great, but in some ways (like printing), they are still stone age.   I have three printers - a Brother fax/copy/print and two Epsons.  Can't print to any of them.  Apple supports only a limited number of HP printers for their "i" hardware while virtually every low end, cheesy PC on the planet can print to almost every printer on the planet.  Grrr.    :-x  Oh well, I'm trying out some new iPad software today.  We'll see how it goes.

Dan,

Yes I know what you mean about Linux. I have a web site I host on a VPS But I paid someone to configure it all but can do the basic stuff as I am old enough to remember using the DOS command prompt. The other day for fun I installed Linux with a graphics IDE and was pleasntly surprised how easy it was and how user friendly the OS is. I have done a fair bit of programming over the years but try not to do it any longer. But I have my heads round mysql and a little bit of exposure to Php.

Anyway for now I will go the self hosted site for this low volume site but I could get it set up as a virtual host on my VPS if I saw traffic get out of hand.

Funny you have a Brother MFP. I have a Brother 8370dn MFP wired to the network. I noted that the 8300 was listed on the Synology compatibility list so I ran a USB between the NAS and the printer and I have not missed a beat printing from the iPad since.  I am pretty sure any postscript printer will be able to be published by Synology.  I've still left the Brother on the network as well so it is only the iPad that prints via the USB port.

The best app I could find for ipad printing was FingerPrint from http://www.collobos.com/ this $10 windows app lets you publish any connected printer on the windows box to the iPad which was fantastic if you had the PC turned on. But I don't have a PC on 24/7 so really wanted a solution that was part of the network infrastructure so I could print anytime.

One of the reasons I put the NAS in was that it solved a lot of problems for me without days of stuffing round. I think my entry into weather will be the same way,  buy a Davis so it works out of the box but if I had a bit more spare time, building a custom one wire system really sounds interesting.

Offline Gantts08

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2019, 03:32:31 AM »
The brand owners are highly worried about the increased competition and they have been using various online modes so that they can easily beat the competition and increase the sales. I also have been using the Adwords Campaign Management service for running the campaign in a way that we get maximum leads.

Offline Jasiu

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2019, 08:36:05 AM »
It's been a while since I've been on Web Hosting Talk, but if you've looked there you've probably seen advice to avoid any EIG-owned company. I had to abandon Site5 after EIG bought them. They (Site5) were phenomenal when they were independent and went totally to crap after the takeover. I still get emails from them about supposed expiring domains even though I moved those domains years ago.

FWIW like Ken I've had good success with 1&1. Maybe it's just a matter of knowing the warts and how to deal with them.

Offline Aardvark

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2019, 01:05:51 PM »
I used Hostmonster.  Their service was spot on and always someone there either online or phone.
I stopped using them and of course I get , when I aim at my pages, "Account suspended' because I am no longer doing a website after 20 years.   Not worth it as I am lucky, if I subtract the Bejin China hacking and the bots, not many if any.  so for me  not worth the expense even if it is for my ego.

Hostmonster.com  I had unlimited bandwith and space.  Good company
Davis VP2 Plus; 24h  FARS; Extra Temp Humid sensor (2); Extra Temp Station (2); Soil Moisture/Temp  https://www.weatherlink.com/embeddablePage/show/8c26aa9c3fb345109565bab1de27c5a9/signatureStation;Weatherlink IP;USB; MAC Mojave; Webcam;

Offline yamiacaveman

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Re: Best weather website web host?
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2019, 01:29:38 PM »
Hi Dan,

So, here is my 2 cents, really not worth that much, but I'm in the running.

I have had what I will call an expensive account with a company called Acenet inc. I think I have been with them just after they opened up for business back in 2003 or so. Anyway they were so so priced but it was unlimited everything - bandwidth - space - email -- so on so I pay every two years, like 130 a year, I don't think they have ever gone down and for all these years they have had to deal with my stupidity. I am not recommending them, only because over the years they have changed hands and prices and benefits have changed, I have not been affected, I think I have been grandfathered in.

I did use Erice for a while, then something happened to the owner and I decided to switch.

I ended up with I think it was Webhostinghub. com for three years cause I had coupon - everything there worked out fine except when I was going to renew after the three years - the rates went up. Originally when I talked to the sales person they said after 3 years they would give me another coupon, but when the time came, no one would offer me anything. So I left there and since I still kept my original I just went back there.

That's been my experience with hosting companies. I do think Many of these hosting companies are related, basically same products different names but same company.

Oh -- one thing to take a look at for whatever hosting site you pick, is backup -- my Acenet is included in the price, they say daily but??? Webhostinghub I had to pay extra, not much, but I think that was for so much space and only once a month???