Thursday, September 23, 2010

[Rant] When Good Hosts Go Bad

I've run across the below situation more requently recently .... maybe it has something to do with the state of the economy.

Anyway .... it's not about me. But this "rant" could very well describe a similar situation many of you may have ... or are now facing. If anyone has any suggestions feel free to leave a comment.

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It really, really pisses me off when a hosting company that has been an excellent partner for years suddenly does a 180 and becomes flaky and a nightmare to deal with.

My principal provider has had an outage that started Sunday morning that is affecting www and sql for sites hosted on specific machines (which of course has to include a site for my biggest customer). Their promised redundancy did not kick in. They have been real slow at posting status updates. When they realized they had a major issue on their hands, rather than offer customers the option of moving their sites to unaffected boxen, they are sitting on their hands. And, if being down for going onto a third day now wasn't bad enough, they are hinting at the possibility that the affected sites may lose their SQL Server databases and site content.

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

What's clear to me is there has been a regime change. When I rang yesterday, the guy I've dealt with "is no longer with the company" and "priority support for resellers was discontinued in February." The guy I spoke with claimed they had sent out an email and posted on the website about the change. He then got snitty with me for pressing him about *where* on the website this announcement was, since there's nothing in the announcements or company news sections, and it still clearly states on all the package descriptions and order pages that resellers get priority. He then goes on to tell me that not only do we not have priority support, resellers can only receive telephone support for dedicated or co-lo issues, not for any issues involving our shared customers.

Needless to say, I'm shopping around for a replacement. Good luck with this, right?

Are there any hosts out there that are completely US-based, aren't part of some big corporate conglomerate or mass-market concern, are focused on working with developer-resellers (as opposed to end-users), and understand that if they're marketing to SMBs that they are committing to specific obligations and expectations that are nothing like selling space to people just wanting to host pictures of puppies and kittens?

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