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Extrarius

[web] Low-Cost Hosting w/ lots of Storage, Transfer/Mo, and Bandwidth?

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On a site that was quite helpful to me (wc3sear.ch), the owner has stated that he has more content to put up but can't afford more space with his current host. In an attempt to help (and to satisfy my curiosity), I've been looking around for hosts that might meet the site owner's needs. The site is mainly a file host, so the main resources needed are storage, high monthly transfer limits (or unmetered), and a decent amount of bandwidth. The site has a lot of traffic (wc3sear.ch stats), exceeding 1000GB one month in the last year and maintaining an average monthly usage of around 850GB. This means that the ideal hosting solution would be a shared plan, because the actual machine resources won't be fully utilized by the site (unless the machine is relatively low-powered) and other hosting solutions (virtual or dedicated servers) cost far more, especially when you add in buying extra bandwidth (because the amount needed is around 1250GB to support some growth and any usage peaks, which is an odd number). Few hosts offer anywhere near that much transfer, much less on a shared hosting plan. I've found a few that offer amounts in that area, but many of them have silly rules (such as $20/mo for the first 1000GB, then $6 per GB over, which for Aug 2005 would have cost $144 extra) or are unwilling to give details (such as one host that claims unlimited transfer/mo, but won't give any hints as to what kind of bandwidth the machines have besides stating the company, which also does virtual and dedicated servers, has multiple OC-192 lines). So far, the 3 hosts I've found that almost meet the needs are GoDaddy, CHIHost, and 1and1. GoDaddy is the one that charges outrageous amounts for extra bandwidth without providing any other method to increase bandwidth available (such as combining multiple hosting accounts). CHIHost is the one that claims unmetered, but won't give me any hints as to what their servers can handle, so I'm thinking about buying a month myself and doing some stress testing with the help of certain huge communities. Also, half their replies included > instead of > for quoting, but did not set the content type to HTML, which worries me somewhat as to their technical competency (even more so since, after I pointed it out, they said something to the effect of "yes, we use plain text only" yet still included the error). I haven't talked to 1and1 yet, but personally I've had some bad experiences with them so I'm reluctant to suggest them as a possible option or to investigate them further for viability. I've already tried the "Host Quote" on WebHostingTalk, but unfortunately it doesn't go high enough in the drop downs. I put my actual requirements in the comments section, but it seems to be entirely ignored because of all the replies, only CHIHost actually had any plans that came close to what was needed. I made sure to kindly thank each automated reply for wasting my time =-( Does anybody have any ideas? The price the person gave me for what they pay currently was $800/yr, and they have unlimited transfer. I'm not sure how much space he has currently (I've asked, but no reply yet), but he mentions that he needs 4GB more so I figure quite a bit. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, whether they be for actual hosts, ways to find them, or any other options. [Edited by - Extrarius on December 19, 2005 11:10:32 AM]

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For practicality, is it possible to host torrents rather than serving the files directly? It looks like it would save a ton of transfers.


Hosting over a terabyte per month is going to cost a lot, no matter where you look. I'm guessing you want around 6 or 7 Mbps dedicated lines.

When you're looking at that transfer range, web sites are not your best source of information. You need to actually call and discuss various hosting options.

Consider XMission.com

Connectivity is good:
# LEVEL3 - Internet Backbone connection. (155Mb\OC3)
# AT&T - Internet Backbone connection. (155Mb\OC3)
# UUNET - Internet Backbone connection. (45Mb\DS3)
# XO - Internet Backbone connection. (45Mb\DS3)
# PAIX - Internet peering connections in Palo Alto, CA. (45Mb\DS3)
# CommIX - Internet peering connections in Utah. (45Mb\DS3)

Toll-free: 1.877.964.7746
in Salt Lake City: 801.539.0852
sales@xmission.com

If you decide to go with them, send me a PM so I can get a referral kickback.

Or look for something local in your area. I have no idea where The Psionic Ward is located in the world. [grin]

frob.

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You guys are as bad as the hosting companies =-(

I realize this isn't a normal need, but I certainly wouldn't be willing to spend anything like $129/mo just to host files for the public without some incentive to do so.

I'd rather buy the $20/mo 1and1 plan that offers 30GB of space and 1500GB of transfer each month, which seems to be the only reasonable (if it is reasonable) hosting solution that might work, and trust me when I say I don't want to put foward 1and1 as a possibility.

The limit is $800/yr, because that is the amount the owner is already paying, and I'm betting he'd be much happier to spend even less.

Any ideas besides 'buy the expensive plans'?

Quote:
Original post by kanzler
1&1 claims to have 120 GB managed server hosting with 1,500 GB bandwidth for $129/month. That sounds like a pretty good deal.[...]
Not as good as the "1&1 Developer" hosting package that offer 1500GB of transfer and 30GB of space for only $20/mo

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Quote:
Original post by Extrarius
Any ideas besides 'buy the expensive plans'?


For a terabyte of uploads per month? At least a continuous 3.2Mbps upload rate, and probably 7-10Mbps minimum burst rate preferred? For under $67/month?!

Nope.

You get what you pay for.

frob.

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Quote:
Original post by frob
Quote:
Original post by Extrarius
Any ideas besides 'buy the expensive plans'?


For a terabyte of uploads per month? [...]
Each of the hosts I listed offer shared plans with at least 1000GB/mo of transfer for under $20/mo. I'm just looking for additional such plans or other inexpensive options.

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I just browsed through the Terms & Conditions of 1&1. In section 2.1.5 they state: "Bandwidth use, including but not limited to data retrieval from Your Web Site, e-mail traffic, and downloads, shall not exceed six gigabytes per month. Your combined Mailbox use per account shall not exceed twenty-five gigabytes per month." How does that relate to the 1,500 GB bandwidth they offer?

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Looking at the hourly stats of August 2005 (month of most transfer from Jan 2005 to Nov 2005), there was a maximum average hourly transfer of 1592736 KB, which gives 442.43 KB/sec. Presuming that by KB the stats site means 1024 8-bit bytes, a 4Mbps connection would handle peak usage with up to a maximum of 15% overhead, which would require each TCP packet to be 427 bytes long under the worst-case condition of a maximum-sized(64 bytes) TCP header in each packet.

I'm sure you could get slightly higher burst transfer requirements if you took the time to correlated the hourly and daily statistics and build some kind of statistical model, but that's too much much work for me =-)

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As mentioned in the first post, I'd still look at ways to reduce your bandwidth requirements rather than looking for ways to get more bandwidth.

I didn't bother to look at your stats page at first, but now I have.

Based on your stats page, over half your traffic is coming from a single page, your home page, which is over 100KB in size! That's lunacy to have that big of a / page.

I'm going to scream this as loud as I can:


You are wasting a half terabyte of data transfers with your stupid home page design!!




Getting that file down to 20K would have saved 450 GB in August!

Link in your javascript, rather than embedding it in the page
Use style sheets more than you already are
Stop using tables, if you can manage it
Use shorter names. One file name, "1133892430ss1131727905Image2.jpg", is over 60MB when transferred 2219657 times.

class="collapsbarunused" occurs 186 times. It only occurs inside a certain type of table. Moving that style to the table (with an obfuscated name like class="t") would drop another 2 GB of data.

Similarly for your names: id="topdownloadstools_pos15", "gfx/border/bottom_left_s.gif", "gfx/border/bottom_right_s.gif", "style="font-size:8pt;font-family:Arial;", and hundreds of other things spread all over that page.



You don't need 1TB of transfer per month. You don't even need 500GB of transfer per month.

You need to hire a better web programmer.



frob.

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Two things:

1) site design actually matters when it comes to transfer costs

2) if you want premium performance, you have to pay a premium price

If you have so many visitors, Google text ads might pay for hosting for you.

The networking & multiplayer forum FAQ has some suggestions for hosting providers to try, without any specific endorsements. If you want to do 2000 GB/month, you can get that for about $99/month from ServerBeach, which is fairly reputable (but that's more than $800/year).

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