Webhosting for WPMU

I've been told on several occasions that shared hosting is not recommended for WPMU -- especially when trying to use the multi-db code that you guys provide.

My question is: What is the best (and cheapest) option for hosting that you would recommend?

I see that you recommend psek.com and they have a hosting package for $7/month. Would that work?

  • nickd32
    • The Incredible Code Injector

    Bluehost advertises unlimited storage and bandwidth for ~$7USD per month. That's one prime example of "dodgy" :wink:

    ...and yet Bluehost is the #1 recommended hosting provider at wordpress.org. If they were dodgy, would Matt still recommend them?

    With any of these companies, I'm still unsure which buzzwords to look for when it comes to a WPMU install that supports (1) the multi-db code, and (2) all the other goodies to make WPMU sing, (3) for the best price.

    Should I look for "VPS" or "virtualization" or "private datacenters" or something else?

    I have used shared hosting in the past (1&1.com), but was limited to 100MB per MySql database and didn't have access to the Datacenter IPs (only the hostnames). Grrrr.

    Psek seems expensive and very limiting compared to the others mentioned on this thread. $7/month gets me only 200 MB disk space and only 5 GB of bandwidth?

  • Andrew
    • Champion of Loops

    ...and yet Bluehost is the #1 recommended hosting provider at wordpress.org. If they were dodgy, would Matt still recommend them?

    I guarantee that if you actually try to use an enormous amount of storage or bandwidth they'll kick your account. If you don't plan on having a very active site they might be ok for a single WP install. Otherwise I'd steer clear. I've personally used bluehost (before they started overselling to no end) and can't recommend them.

    Psek seems expensive and very limiting compared to the others mentioned on this thread. $7/month gets me only 200 MB disk space and only 5 GB of bandwidth?

    The phrase 'you get what you pay for' definitely applies to hosting. We have an enormous amount of experience with pSek and they are definitely familiar with wpmu installs.

    As a quick addendum, Patrick at Boggles.info writes that a company called Westhost offers VPS hosting for ~$10/month with dedicated IP.

    For a VPS I would recommend Future Hosting.


  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    Just for reference, those sites on wp.org are paid adverts at usually a $100 or so for a signup. (They average between $85 and $125 on cj.com) That's why they're recommended by wp.

    If you search the wp.org forums, you'll discover a lot of folks complaining about all of them.

    I put our mu installs on shared hosting but we only run a max of 225 clients on each box. It's not like our boxes (Duel Intel 2.8-3.0s w/HT and 12w gig of memory) are straining though. That's not typical for most shared hosts.

    If they were dodgy, would Matt still recommend them?

    I forget which datacenters he uses for wp.com but one of them is well known for ignoring spam and abuse complaints. He was called on it a number of times when they were first starting out and he ignored all complaints. (Trying to remember which dc is it....)

    edit: I usually suggest VPS but that's more from a control stance. YOu uhave complete control over your portion of the box and can make the changes that you need but, if you screw up something, you can get help from the hosting admin. Most dedicated servers, you're on your own.

  • wpmuidiot
    • WPMU DEV Initiate

    Psek's highest hosting account is $25/month... I'm hoping to have 2,000-3,000 users on my MU installation, many using Domain Mapping.

    Does anyone using Psek have a large amount of users like that currently? SliceHost seems like it's more attractive on the "scaleability" side, but this thread is saying they're now owned by Rackspace...

    I want to pick a hosting company for my MU install that can handle growth in the future; Can Psek do that, or are there other recommendations?

  • christofire
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    I've been using asmallorange.com for years for all sorts of stuff and I can't recommend them highly enough for shared hosting ($5-60/mo). They are wonderful at support and have assisted me at some crazy hours. While they don't support 3rd party software (eg wordpress), I find that the problems I've had have been more server config/permissions/htaccess sorts of things anyway that they most certainly DO help with. I pay an extra $5/mo for a reseller account with WHM (they are fanatical about not letting their resellers oversell) and $2/mo for a dedicated IP for SSL. I get an SSL cert from godaddy.com for $30/yr.

    I'm quickly getting to a point where a VPS is starting to look like a reasonable option. asmallorange offers them, of course, but I must say I'm very tempted by futurehosting's price/spec offering and especially their multi-city internal network with failover. Thanks for the tip, Andrew.

  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    Just for reference, there's a couple of rather lengthly threads on the topic. Here's one for example:


    I just throw this in since it mentions ASO and as example.

    Two things I point out and suggest:

    - Get at least a reseller account if you plan on offering sites. That way you say legal with their ToS.

    - make sure the host you use allows "free reselling" if you plan on offering free sites to anonymous people. A number of hosts don't since it opens up for abuse and spammers. (And yes, there's such a thing as "free reselling.":wink:

  • wpmuidiot
    • WPMU DEV Initiate

    Thanks for mentioning the reseller plan for TOS, Mike...

    You guys talk Psek up so much, it sounds like a good choice. Only downside is there's no phone support if there's a big crisis... Hostgator has similar pricing and offerings, they're a larger co. and provide phone support, I think.

    Are they both good choices, or is there a preference for Psek over Hostgator for MU enthusiasts? (And for people wanting to use Domain Mapping)


    I really appreciate the quick feedback, thanks.

  • christofire
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Holy moly! These discussions go on and on and on.... and like a bad accident, I can't turn away. Thanks for the link drmike.

    I felt increasingly certain of my upgrade path as I read through all that, until I read that andrea_r was moving to serverbeach, after apparently becoming increasingly disappointed with futurehosting's support. I've gained a great respect for her after following her *many* contributions all over the net. Mom invisibility cloak aside, I still think she is a wpmu goddess. :wink: Nevertheless, I've got nowhere near the skills required to follow her to a place without great hardware AND managed server support.

  • James Farmer
    • CEO (of WPMU DEV, honest)

    Phone support is an interesting one - I've had it before (at Peer1) and it's kinda reassuring but at the same time I can tell you that not one thing more was achieved via it that couldn't have been achieved in the same time via tickets.

    Still, if you're paying a lot then that's it's nice to have.

    Edublogs.org is actually hosted at serverbeach, because we don't need managed servers (we employ our own sysadmin).

    I'm now going to completely hijack this thread and ask you for your thoughts / initial impressions of our Affiliate program: https://premium.wpmudev.org/forums/topic/become-a-wpmu-dev-affiliate-partner

    The most honest feedback you can provide would be the absolute best!

  • Qlof
    • The Crimson Coder

    I use SYN Hosting and it works great. My WPMU sites had a high CPU usage and I had trouble with WP Super Cache so they went ahead and installed it for me, lol. The server my sites are on hasn't been down since I signed up there, either.

  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    I'm not a big fan of phone support. I prefer to have everything in writing. Folks also don't realize that it's a huge cost as well to do it right. I'm amazed to see these cup of coffee hosts offer phone support until I hear folks call and it's a 2 hour wait. With email, you're usually being read by someone with at least some experience. With phone, it's a $6 an hour with a script.

    The folks who do my tech support offer it but it's an extra $6 a month, would double what I have to charge.

    One of my mu clients did it for a while as a $30 a year upgrade. I believe she stopped though per her husband.

  • wpmuidiot
    • WPMU DEV Initiate

    Point taken about phone support, Drmike.

    I've searched for psek.com hosting reviews and there's not much out there.
    The link to dedicated hosting from http://psek.com/wpmu/ is a dead link so I can't get info on that.

    Since there's so much promo for psek here, I don't know why they don't have a rep answering questions here. It just feels a little anonymous so far to me. I'll wait for their email response to my questions, thanks for the info here guys.

  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    Moved this to the Basic discussion subforum. Not sure why it;s under the multidb one. Not a biggie but....

    The link comes up for me. To be honest, you're on that page for the coupon code, WPMUpromo.

    The dedicated page doesn;t work for me: http://www.psek.com/dedicated

    And just to stay ethical, I believe James and Andrew do get something back for signups with that coupon. No idea what though. (edit: Oops, just found the psek affiliate page.)

  • wpmuidiot
    • WPMU DEV Initiate

    "The link to dedicated hosting from http://psek.com/wpmu/ is a dead link so I can't get info on that"

    ...Sorry I wasn't more clear, that page links to
    http://www.psek.com/dedicated which is a dead link. Their main psek.com page doesn't have a "Dedicated Server" link, which is why I pointed to the /wpmu link.

    Anyway, I should have waited 10 minutes to make my last post, I got this reply from them soon after, I can't imagine them having a problem with posting part of their response:

    "You're making a great choice, we host thousands of wpmu sites and really specialize in this field of hosting. And we're truly a quality host and since we don't advertise, as we get all of our new clients based on referrals, we really keep costs down for our clients. You can start on any Reseller Plan and then upgrade as you need to. I've listed our fully managed dedicated server packages below, we have one of the best networks in the US and the highest quality Tier 1 bandwidth providers:"

    ...And they listed Dedicated Server packages starting in the +$200 range.

    I'm going to start with one of their reseller packages, sounds good to me.

  • squibm
    • Site Builder, Child of Zeus

    Hi All:
    This thread was a good start for me. Thanks.
    When I saw how many other folks were wrestling with the performance thing - and all the great help I've gotten here, it seemed I should pitch in.

    I started a thread relating to my continuing experience with wpmu and buddpress hosting performance challenges. Godaddy vs Hostgator and W3 Total Cache vs WP SuperCache.

    As of now, the jury is out. I await my chance to benchmark the new ISP. We shall see.

  • dianeinatlanta
    • New Recruit

    What a great thread! I have been running simple Wordpress sites for ages but now that I have started a social community for gardeners I have quickly realized my current provider isn't going to hack it.

    This has been great info and psek looks good to me. Although, I did see one negative comment about it.

  • khawaja1971
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Hostgator: I had a business account with them for years and 100% satisfied with their service. A few times a server admin would take care of things directly when the regular techs didn`t have the access to do what I was asking. Only moved for 1 reason 64MB memory limit. Transferred to BlueHost.

    BlueHost: Not as advertised. . .. very disappointed. In the process of moving all of the websites to two other hosting providers. Out of four companies this was the only place where all of my websites on the same account got infected with malware. In my opinion they are actively trying to get me to leave. . ...

    GoDaddy: I only have one website with them because I used a coupon while registering a bunch of websites. Never again. Not even for registrations.

    MDD Hosting: Service has been good. . ... They are not quite giving me 100% satisfactory answers about technical questions. A few days ago my IP was blocked, for an unknown to me reason, from accessing cPanel but I could log on via Anonymizer. They said they didnt see anything in the logs. Their pricing is good and theLightSpeed` servers do help with page speed. Concurrent connections limited to 10 on shared plans so the jury is still out on MU install if the websites ever get busier.

    Some of the others look interesting especially the cloud hosting paln from asmallorange. Everywhere I go I miss the Live Chat option of Hostgator.

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