This is a pre-review of WebhostingBuzz hosting.
A final review will be found in The Digital FAQ reviews section, after all testing has been completed, and we've had time to monitor the server.
Posts like this are also a "brain dump" or "notes for later" regarding the host.
My initial impression of WebhostingBuzz
is probably one of the best ones I've ever had, at any host, in the past ~15 years.
Easy Sign-Up Process!
I rarely comment on the sign-up at a host (because it's silly/ridiculous/stupid), unless it either (A) has flaws, or (B) is unusually excellent. This one is the latter.
The entire sign-up "process" was a single page.
Just enter your hostname, add any plan options you'd like (more RAM, cPanel, etc), your billing address, your credit card details, and you're done! I've never, ever seen a one-page signup+billing page that I can remember anywhere, even as far back as 1999.
Most hosts make you click through a half dozen pages, sometimes with upsells along the way (especially at budget hosts, like the EIG brands). Beyond that, many use template billing systems that tend to be written in slight Engrish or use stilted language. Things don't quite make sense. Even internet-savvy individuals are sometimes confused.
The only issue is that some of the HTML on the form doesn't display correctly. It's out of alignment. I've brought that to their attention.
The Tech Support = Responsive
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What really impressed me was the level of detail from support tickets.
At most hosts, when you order a dedicated server or VPS, you don't hear back until it's ready. Dedicated servers, and the better VPS (KVM, Xen, VMware, etc), take the host time to create. It's not shared hosting, or OpenVZ VPS, where they can simply add an account in 5 minutes and it's done.
But at WebhostingBuzz, they never leave you in the dark. Every time something is done, they let you know. Within a few hours of placing the order, I got message for:
- order received, provisioning the server -- including a checklist of what that entails
- hardware being assembled
- installing the OS (CentOS)
- installing cPanel
- auditing the security
- and finally, here's the your login information
I would imagine that having an issue later on would be answered with that same level of detail. It the simple (weeny! crappy!) "it's fixed, try again" type of response you'd get elsewhere.
The server was setup that same day, which is excellent time-wise.
Most hosts would have given me a blank server with SSH enabled on port 22. And it'd have a weak auto-generated default password. Before I'd even have a chance to login myself, the system would be getting attacked by bots and would-be hackers.
But that's not what WebhostingBuzz does.
One of the things done during the security auditing phase is to change the default port, and use a very long passphrase-like password. It's still not Fort Knox, but it has a bit of "security by obscurity" that honestly should be in place as soon as servers are deployed.
IPMI -- the Intelligent Platform Management Interface used for dedicated server -- is also behind a VPN, which both adds security and helps with IPv4 depletion. With the server login details are the IPMI VPN login details.
Like the sign-up process, this is something I've never experienced anywhere else.
Unmanaged != No Support at WHB
At most hosts, unmanaged means they do nothing. "Here's your blank server. Good luck!"
But again, that's not what WebhostingBuzz does. And aside from EuroVPS
, I've never had an unmanaged dedicated server come this tweaked and ready to go.
- cPanel was installed and updated.
- the OS was patched and updated.
Sure, these are all small tasks ... but it's now something that I don't have to mess with.
Speed: Pings, Tracert, HDD I/O and more
I'll update this when I get a chance. As other UK'ers would understand .. Doctor Who is coming on! Priorities!
At The Digital FAQ, we take servers very seriously. We're a business and these are one of our most important tools. It's no different from the high-end VCRs, TBCs, proc amps, professional encoders and editors, and similar tools that we use on a regular basis.
For this site, we only use the best. Right now, that means EuroVPS
-- all VPS and dedicated.
After exhaustive testing, I hope to add Webhosting Buzz
to that list. Our not-fast research all checked out, and the initial impression have been ... well, impressive! And that's not easy around here. We've wanted an exceptional UK host for years, and have always been disappointed I think this one will be different.
Now, off to watch The Doctor.