ASO – A Small Orange

I’ve been hearing nothing but great feedback from a hosting company called A Small Orange. I’ve been curious about them for a few months now and this morning I created an account. I’m leaving Hostmonster because I noticed my websites have been loading slow. At work (different account), it has been slow as well. It turns out that other users (shared environment) seem to be hogging the resources – which leads to less resources for my websites, thus the slow loading. I have slowly moved my websites over (this one included) and have seen quite a difference. It feels like I just installed WordPress and it has no content yet – at least for me it feels that way. Hopefully it loads fast for you as well, or at least faster.

Once I move, I’ll be closing my account with Hostmonster and hope for a refund of unused services. This is not the first time I’ve moved out from them and they’re easy to work with. They are a great hosting company, it’s just this time I want something faster.

After Dump GoDaddy Day

I finally got confirmation of one domain successfully transferred over to my new registrar. One more domain to go. I’m leaving this domain with GoDaddy for now. I’ve also cancelled my hosting account and moved back to my old host, Hostmonster. They had a good deal during the holidays at $3.95 per month, so I signed up for 2 years. Of course if I cancel early, they will refund the amount for the unused time.

This is the first time I’m transferring domains. It’s easy but in my case I had paid for privacy information. If you have this, there are additional steps you have to take. It was a little headache at first but I just didn’t want to keep most of my stuff with GoDaddy.

My new registrar is Namecheap. We’ll see how they are. I’ve read mixed reviews so I’m not comfortable moving this domain to them yet.

Dump GoDaddy Day

Well, I’ll be participating in Dump GoDaddy Day (December 29, 2011). I will be moving my domains to another registrar and my hosting to another server. It’s ridiculous how they support SOPA. Many will also be dumping Godaddy. So for the next few days I will be moving my domains and hosting. It is possible that there will be down time. Sorry for the inconvenience but I don’t like supporting companies that support things I don’t agree with.

No more Hostasp.net

After a few days of playing around with their server and having some difficulties, I decided to cancel their service. I’m new to Windows hosting since I’ve always used Linux hosting, so I’m not that all familiar with it. A lot of my questions can easily be resolved if they had a better FAQ or knowledge base section on their website.

If they had a local US number I can call, it would make getting support a bit easier and faster. I used to complain that Godaddy has phone support but it was long distance, but it’s still a US number. Besides, long distance is a thing of the past within the US since it’s pretty much a local call with most cell phone plans. I just thought it was weird that they didn’t use an 800 number.

Instead, I had to create a ticket in their system, which isn’t bad but the response time averaged over 6 hours. They also had a chat software installed on their website but being located outside the US, the hours were different and most of the time it’s offline. At that rate, I figured a few weeks before I can get settled in and it’s unreasonable. Only solution I had was to cancel the service and find one closer to home or at least easily accessible within the US.

Don’t get me wrong, the features you get for the price they are charging are great. You get an IP address, unlimited databases (MSSQL 2008 and MySQL), remote connection to the database, web deploy compatibility, and refund any time. If my comfort level and knowledge with Windows hosting environment matched with Linux, I wouldn’t need that much support. I think this company is new and has a potential of becoming better. Once I get more familiar with Windows servers, I may look at them again.

Hostasp.net first thoughts

I’ve been looking around for a cheap host for .NET. It’s more expensive than Linux shared hosting. I didn’t want to spend too much being that I just want to play around with it to familiarize myself with the technology – so I’m not asking for much. What I do need is a plan where I can create more than 1 MSSQL database and support .NET framework version 4.

I found Hostasp.net from http://www.microsoft.com/web/Hosting/Home. This page has a large, extensive list but little feedback. I took a chance with that company for its price and features. It’s been a day and here are my first thoughts.

The company is based out of India. There’s a huge time difference so I was concerned about contacting someone via email and getting a response in a reasonable time frame. I sent a question using their ticketing system and the response took a little over 3 hours, not bad. I also found a 15% off coupon so it even made the already low price more appealing. So I figured it was worth a try. Here are my likes and dislikes based on a 24 hour period.

LIKES:

  • The deluxe hosting plan for Windows is $48 annually. This includes unlimited databases (MSSQL and MySQL), up to 5 domains hosted, a dedicated IP address, and a free domain name.
  • The set up took under an hour. I receive emails for every update on my account during the set up.
  • It supports up to .NET framework 4 (but currently have an open ticket regarding this)
  • You can request a month trial for .99 cents. You just have to submit a ticket.
  • You can request to cancel your account and get a refund, anytime.
  • The test pages I have created seem to load quick. Although I haven’t made complex pages yet, just simple ones for testing.

DISLIKES:

  • They have a phone number you can call but it’s long distance (international). There’s many different ways to provide phone support customers in the US even though a company is based elsewhere. VOIP is the number solution. They could at least use Skype to get a US number, whether 800 or any area code, and it would still be a local call since many cell phone plans include free long distance calls to and from the US.
  • There is a way to chat with someone from their website but during the day (my time) it’s usually unavailable or away.
  • The control panel is a little weird but I’ve been using cPanel and probably expect certain things or used to how things are. This might be a bias dislike.

So far I haven’t been able to test what I need to with this host. I checked out Godaddy’s plans. With any purchase of a domain from them, you can get free hosting, supported by ads. This didn’t work since the free hosting doesn’t support .NET framework version 4. So I ended up getting the low plan just to test things.

I’ll continue to play with Hostasp.net for a few more days and see if I can get it to work. We’ll see whether I keep this host or go with Godaddy.

WordPress [an error occurred while processing this directive]

I’ve been getting the [an error occurred while processing this directive] error every time I go to my website. I googled it and found this http://wordpress.org/support/topic/204631?replies=4. People suggested it was caused by the WP Super Cache plugin. I’m currently running 0.9.7. Well, how could you get to the plugins interface if every page displayed that error?

I ended up using phpMyAdmin that my host has and went in the database to manually disable the plugin. Luckily the tables and data entry values were specific so it wasn’t hard to figure out where to start looking. The table you want to look for is “wpau_active_plugins_info”. This table should have records of plugins that are active – hence the table name. Inside this table, look in “plugin_name” column. This is where I found the WP Super Cache entry. I deleted it and reload the page. It fixed the problem.