A Newbie's Guide To Hosting From Free To Dedicated


Jan 16, 2010
cheat_master30 submitted a new Article:

A Newbie's Guide To Hosting From Free To Dedicated

So, your last experience with hosting a forum or website was a free board Invisionfree or Proboards hosted for you, and you don't have a clue what the different types of hosting packages are or mean eh? And I guess your budget has a limit, just like usual? Well no fear, I am here to help, with the official Newbie's Guide to Hosting from Free to Dedicated, where all your questions will indeed be answered.

Free Forum Hosting

I really cannot explain what this is in desktop computer terms, but in all, it's absolute junk half the time. But never the less, that's a bit harsh, so here are a few advantages of free forum hosting if you are desperate enough to use it:

1. If something goes wrong, it's somebody else's problem

To put it simply, if you screw up on your own hosting account or VPS or dedicated machine, it's you that normally ends up having to fix it, depending on how much you want to plead to the host's technical support. But on a free forum host, because you have no control to break anything or fix it, you can at least be comfortable in the knowledge that it's not your fault when the forum blows up and some poor tech guy has to pretty much fix about 3000 broken forums as a result. Run out of space? Their problem. Run out of CPU power and the machine crashed? Also the host's problem.

2. It's idiot proof

To put it lightly, free forums have one real advantage in any terms; they cannot go wrong via any real fault of the user. You cannot accidentally nuke the public html directory, you cannot accidentally corrupt the php files, destroy the database or lose your work to an accidental right click. Which means, to put it nicely, those who like clicking shiny red buttons and causing everything to come crashing down should most probably stick to a free forum host, no matter how bad they actually are for you.

With the two advantages out the way, here comes the tough part, the numerous problems a free forum host actually has:

1. You have no control

This of course means you cannot actually add anything or change anything about the core product. You can't directly change the database, you can't directly integrate things with the database/forum and you are limited to the (often custom) admin control panel.

2. No database access

No backups, no data migration. If you want to leave on a free forum host, there are two possibilities. One is that you have no choice, you have no backup and you have to start from scratch, the...

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