This is the fourth installment in the long-running tale (parts one, two & three) of my search for the most appropriate host for this site.
The very fact that you’re reading this means that the site is now live on a server operated by Lightning Base. In the past I’ve used a shared host and couple of different VPS providers. In point of fact the site was at UnmeteredVPS.net for over two years.
I have nothing but nice things to say about UnmeteredVPS.net. That service is excellent, but it wasn’t exactly a perfect fit. It was an unmanaged VPS, which meant that I was responsible for everything.
Every few weeks I would need to update some aspect of the OS or supporting software. Some updates were trivial. Some, like major Apache or MySQL updates, were a bit scary. Despite five years running this site I’m no Linux guru.
Not all progress is obvious without careful examination. Much of my time working on this site has, for the past week, revolved around getting the entire thing moved to a new virtual server…not that you would likely notice.
After some well documented effort (part 1, part 2 & part 3) to move from a shared host to a VPS, it ran well, essentially untouched, for over a year. UnmeteredVPS.net has proven a responsive and reliable hosting provider.
However, over that time there were a great many patches to the software (LAMP) that are the foundation of a WordPress installation. In July I found that something I wanted to do required updating PHP to a much newer version.
There’s nothing like your site going down routinely to lend a sense of urgency to the search for an alternative hosting solution. While my circumstance was not quite as dire as that pictured right, it certainly felt similar.
The newly live server at VPS.NET was crashing at least once every day or two, but it remained live while I poked around the TKL web site investigating the other hosting providers that had partnered with the project. The biggest was Amazon’s EC2, but recent events lead me to shy away from Amazon for my own purposes.