Hail, new server!

So, after nearly 5 years with the same VPS host Vix and I have found ourselves looking for a new home.  It all started after an apache fix when the some of the package modules broke, admittedly, by my hand. In all the years that we have been with them, we have never gotten more than 2 hours worth of downtime and when it went down, we went dark for over 2 days! Support ticket responses were delayed and took forever to get assigned a tech. In the past, customer support was efficient and quick, it was when the company outsourced their Support Department that things always took longer to be responded to.

After 2 days of downtime, Support told us that we were back in business … NOT. The domain control panels were screwed up and they weren’t loading associated domain files correctly. Support once again escalated our issue and informed us that our domain panels, DirectAdmin needed to be looked over. So back to nail-biting nervousness. A couple of hours wait and I got a notification that DirectAdmin has been corrected and was upgraded on the server. Happiness … NOT.

When the troubleshooting was done, we found our server running out of memory resources and perpetually on the black zone. Ticket, submitted yet again. Support then tells us that our current server setup (OS and Control Panel) cannot be handled by our current memory provision. This comes as a shock to us considering we’ve gone 4 years without any problems with our memory usage. After further communication with the Support team, we were told that because DirectAdmin was upgraded to the latest version, it is no longer recommended to stay at our current memory plan. A) This was never an issue before, why is this happening now? B) Why weren’t we notified that an upgrade to DirectAdmin would result to this? C) Why was this action not checked against the server’s resource limits?

A suggestion was given to us by the technician involved to upgrade our RAM. He even went on to say that we could use our reward points to purchase the upgrade. The only hiccup to that is their system doesn’t allow the use of reward points to purchase add-ons for an existing account. This was backed up by another technician and even gave me a link to their knowledge base. Certainly, it begs the question, why suggest something that isn’t possible?

We thought of ways to reduce server load and transferred a site that we thought was heavy on the system to another account, yet we were still getting resource problems. It came to a point where we had to literally keep restarting the server every 20 to 30 minutes just so it wouldn’t hang. Finally, Vix and I just got to end of our tether and decided to take our hosting somewhere else. After a few days of research to find a reputable host with good service, value for plans and good plan features, we decided on Future Hosting. Despite having to pay more than our old monthly hosting plan, the service has been efficient, attentive and painless thus far. We also get to experience a different VPS and Domain Control Panel and rub our hands with discovering what else we can break test. Things have been so far, so good.

I’m hoping to have lots of good years with this host … that and I don’t want to keep moving files around. =)

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