Is FREE, Unlimited, or Cheap Webhosting a good idea?

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Whilst FREE UNLIMITED Webhosting sounds great, using it may be the biggest mistake of your life.

Having been involved with many different websites over the years ( About me ),and after looking after many thousands of websites I would like to share some of my experiences with FREE and Unlimited Webhosting.

If you aren't too bothered about your site and if you aren't bothered if it will be up tomorrow, then use FREE and Unlimited hosting. Often these accounts are on a virtual server where the resources can be shared between thousand or tens of thousands of websites. What is even worse is that these sites are then used to offer more unlimited sites..... who in turn offer more unlimited sites etc.

Watch out for:

Unlimited Space - Unlimited Bandwidth: This is a simple one. Bandwidth is expensive and I have yet to find an unlimited hard-drive for disk space. It just can't exist!! Whatever resource that IS on the server is shared between all users. The more cheap accounts the less to go around. Don't be surprised if somebody takes space to run a streaming video site (Your site would have very limited bandwidth then), or they might have a proxy server (Say bye-bye to your security.)

Spammers and Hackers: Free or unlimited Webspace is perfect for Spammers. One small payment and they can start causing havoc. If you are a spammer then a free site should suit you. For the rest of us a small monthly payment is good insurance against the Spammers. - Why would they pay when they aren't bothered if they bring the site down or not.

IP addresses and e-mail blocking: If Spammers are at work on the server then the IP address will soon be blocked by many of the providers. This means that your emails will not get through.

Life Time hosting for £25?: Wow! - Is the spotty geek who has just taken your £25 really going to keep adding to the server and keep it running for the next 50 years? The chances are that he will be paying £20 or £30 per month for a virtual server. (Often sharing resources with tens of thousands of sites) Sooner or later the server will collapsee under the strain and he is nowhere to be seen.

Backups: Make sure that the server is backed up but also back up your own site. Usually the entire server can be recovered from a backup but an individual site is unusual.

What checks can you make?: Can the provider afford to run a help desk? - If not then look elsewhere. Look for testimonials - What are other people saying? If you buy from ebay check "Feedback" and make sure that the provider has been around for a while. If the servers have been up for a few years then it's obviously a good sign. Also check out any domain names that they are using. - If they have recently been registered then watch out.

Danger signs: The seller is hiding his identity using a Whois srevice. If you can't find out the true identity of the seller then run.

 "About me" :make sure you check out the "About me"  pages - They should have complete details about the seller. Is there a landline telephone number and Contact address?

Beware of FREE domain names with your account. Often these are locked so that they can't be moved. You can be held to ransom. Also make sure that there are no charges if you want to move. You might get an unexpected bill of anything from £15 to £50 to move!!

For a range of accounts including accounts for a number of websites visit my "ebay store". Do comparisons with other sites even if you don't buy from the store.

IF IT SOUNDS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE THEN IT PROBABLY IS!

Finally - Don't pay too much: Make sure that you don't have to pay extra for each email address, SQL database etc.I bought cheap space from FASTHOSTS at £50 per month - What a nightmare!! Whilst they are a very large Company every extra cost another £10 here or there and they make it VERY difficult to move. If your credit card expires they will not even let you log on to your account (Even if you owe them nothing at all and have paid 12 months in advance!!) Twice I tried to close accounts and ended up getting charged over £1000 on resources that I never got to use.

For a good range of tailored, inexpensive accounts visit my "ebay store". 

I hope that you have found this guide useful. If you have then please vote below. It helps get my guides seen - and helps stop unsuspecting ebayers being conned out of their hard earned money.

Thanks for reading,

Brian.

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