Hosting Options

If you watched the Super Bowl you are aware that hosting is big business.  However, like all business not all competitors are equal and for quite a few different reasons.

Money: Show me the money.  The first thing that pretty much all of us look at is the price tag.  To a degree money does talk, as with most things you get what you pay for, and fortunately there are ways around that.  There will be two things that you pay for, hosting and a domain.  Never, ever, ever, pay more than 9.95/year for a domain.  When you buy a domain you are buying the fees for a company to work with ICANN (the supersecret people who run the internet) to register and maintain the name for you.  The hosting that you will pay for is for the portion of a server to actually hold the files.

Hosting: There are nearly an infinite number of variables for this so I will relate it to something that you are all familiar with; cell phone plans.  Both numbers are basically like minutes on your cell plan.  You have X amount, don’t go over.  There are two numbers you will see most frequently are bandwidth and storage.  The bandwidth is how much data you may move per a period of time.  Normally in our modern times, bandwidth is measured in GB (gigabytes) per month.  The bigger this number the better, but realistically anything over 4GB/month should be more than sufficient for a basic photographic site and blog.  Storage is slightly more finicky.  Make sure that you read the contract, as nearly all of them will stipulate no file storage that is not related to the website.  For instance, they could cancel your website for hosting an unrelated song or movie.  Also, much like a phone bill you will get SLAMMED for going over your allotted amount at most hosts.

Hosts: As far as I am concerned there are three categories of hosts.  Those that I recommend, don’t recommend, and know nothing of.

Recommended: Dreamhost…

Don’t Recommend: GoDaddy, A-plus, any company that seems a LOT cheaper than anyone else, ANY host running ANY iteration of windows server.

Know Nothing of: Anything not listed above.

After all is said and done 1 year of hosting with a domain should cost about $100.  Make sure that you search for coupon codes, sometimes 20 seconds of searching can save you over $50!

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