Here at Top Web Host, we’re obsessedwith staying on top of the web host game. Which is the very best web host? Well, in the land of the free, we’re all about competition, and compete they do! Sometimes, the top host doesn’t stay there even a month. That’s why we just had to tell you about Hivelocity, one of the latest contenders throwing its hat in the proverbial Webring.
What Is Hivelocity?
Hivelocity is grabbing the attention of webmasters and IT managers across the world because it offers you your very own bare-metal server rack with free cloud capacity also included. You get the benefits of having your own server, except its dedicated team of engineers are always less than a short walk away. Their deployment of your new server is rapidfire, in most cases being able to get your new server up and running in just seven short minutes.
You read that correctly. From the moment you pay for your new server, in seven minutes’ time, you can have your server configured. Or, if you want to have your hands and eyes on every step of your server’s installation, you can opt to watch the building and setup of your server live. Watch as the technicians who will be responding to all of your server needs with one of many maintenance plans available assemble and deploy your server.
Even if you custom-design your server and opt not to go with the seven-minute instant deployment, they’ll have you up and running within less than 24 hours. Hivelocity is one place you’ll appreciate their superior networking redundance across their many data centers. Again, Hivelocity is one place you’ll appreciate their superior networking redundance across their many data centers.
Did we mention Hivelocity’s superior redundance? A little grammar tech humor there for you! But seriously, Hivelocity’s network consists of over 500 peers. That’s a lot of possibilities for routing, re-routing, and again re-routing any data you need across the free internet. Maybe that’s why they’ve achieved 100% uptime for years on end.
You fully define the specifications, and Hivelocity designs the server you need to meet your custom specs. Naturally, you’re also welcome to use Hivelocity’s expertly designed Web site to pick the parameters you need.
Your monthly rate begins at just $99 per month for the most economical server available and ready to instantly provision in seven minutes from the time you pay. 10 GB of cloud storage is included in all servers, with low rates if you need more than that. It’s totally scalable to your needs. If you negotiate with the staff, you may be able to eke out a price of $89/mo; it’s been done before. However, we’re not sure if Hivelocity is still offering that rate.
How It Compares
We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare. Our price comparisons are based on current dedicated server rates.
Ease Of Use
You’re getting your very own server, so let that sink in. So while you may get a little caught up in the terminology of “rapid deployment” and “server hardening” and the like, keep in mind that this is your most powerful option among the best we’ve picked to compare it to here.
Our featured hosting service always safely over-delivers on uptime. It boasts over 99.999% reliability; however, in reality, you’re looking at something closer to 100% uptime—at least, if their track record with existing clients is any indication of their future performance, as we expect it is.
Hivelocity’s stunning, featured array of advanced Web hosting specs make Bluehost, SiteGround, and A Small Orange look like kindergarten. From support of Perl, Java, MongoDB, and so many other features that you can really only enjoy when you have the entire server to yourself, it’s clearly set apart from the others considered here. Not to mention, it’s inherently more secure by virtue of the fact that having your own dedicated server on a rack you can monitor and control is perhaps the greatest feature here of all. Your server is not some obscure “service running in the crowd.” It’s got physical boundaries and a firewall unto itself, so good luck to anyone trying to hack it.
Their featured hosting service’s customer support responds within minutes of your inquiries via tickets opened using any available method. They’re available 24-7.
Offering cut-throat rates compared to hosting sites where you get a dedicated server, you also get your own domain wrapped up in your introductory rate. The benefit over our featured provider for first-time web-builders without a whole web development team is, of course, the price. However, you face a myriad of security risks when you have your site essentially only on its own “virtual server” where your data is electronically bundled, encrypted, and thrown into one or more main servers with a bunch of other Bluehost accounts that you don’t have control over.
You’re definitely not going to be able to, say, view your Bluehost techies deploying your server live as you do with our featured hosting service. Bluehost can keep your data wherever they please at any given time—and this is the cost you pay for the lower price as compared with Hivelocity.
You can get your own dedicated server; however, it’s going to be more expensive than Hivelocity’s lowest dedicated server rates.
Price: $$ of $$$ (Based on Dedicated Server Rates)
For the cheaper, non-dedicated-server packages, the price starts at $2.95 per month then jumps up to $7.99 at the end of the promotional period for basic. Plus plan intros at $5.45 before jumping to $10.99; Choice Plus begins at $5.45 before jumping to $14.99. You are able to get your own dedicated server starting at $79.99 as an introductory rate, but that jumps to $119.99 after the intro period.
Ease Of Use
Free from greater IT concerns like the components of a physical server which you have little to no control over, you can focus on the more software-oriented aspects of building your site. For example, you can install a myriad of easy-to-manipulate features from your Bluehost control panel, your starting point for installing WordPress, or your email application of choice.
Opt for one of their standard dedicated servers like the kind you get from our featured host, and you’re still looking mostly at pre-configured packages. While if you call them up you can probably arrange something where you can watch them set up your server as you can with Hivelocity, they may find the request strange. So if you want the kind of control you want over your Hivelocity dedicated server, save yourself the time and cash and just go with Hivelocity, which seems to be targeted at the professional user.
Bluehost’s uptime is impressive. It’s definitely not 100% as our featured hosting provider has been able to boast, but like most Web hosts, it’s roughly 99.99% at the minimum.
Bluehost boasts both unlimited disk space, domain hosting, and a neat little site-building interface that makes it easy for non-IT people to make a website. While the site-builder still involves a bit of a learning curve, it’s the difference between the original Apple OS and DOS. It can make the difference between someone new to websites giving up and being able to manage fairly comfortably without hiring someone to set up your website for you.
Phone and chat support is available 24-7, although Bluehost is notoriously among the most complained about web hosts in the consumer-grade web hosting market. One of the things potentially holding back the customer service quality is Bluehost’s serving the two vastly different markets of first-time web builders as well as web development veterans, although some customers swear by it.
SiteGround’s featured pitch prides the web host upon being trusted by the owners of almost 2 million domains, which in itself arouses suspicion in the eyes of the serious web developer. Clearly, most of these sites, which aren’t listed by name in the pitch, are not all well-known, successful online firms or websites of successful firms. It’s apparent after looking at more of the touted services of SiteGround that we’re looking at another consumer- to prosumer-grade web hosting site whose main business is not dedicated server-based.
It’s going to spend the majority of your dollars not on bolstering resources, but paying its staff to help the first-time web site operator get through the basics. If you’re a first-time website operator, this could be a plus for you. Siteground mentions one “enterprise support” client, Greenpeace, and apparently that was just for one campaign.
Price: $$ of $$$ (Based on Dedicated Server Rates)
SiteGround’s dedicated servers cost over twice as much per month as our featured brand and don’t offer any value proposition justifying this extra spending. Again, it’s designed primarily for the newbie to the web game, and so the only reason people would pay such rates is that they’ve been longtime customers at the non-dedicated server level, and so they get sold into upgrading onto a dedicated server for much more than the competition charges, like Hivelocity.
Ease Of Use
SiteGround is another service that, unlike our featured reviewed provider, is really targeted at the beginning website builder who apparently has not price shopped at all when it comes to dedicated servers. Managed WordPress blogs are one of the many user friendly features offered.
Uptime is guaranteed at 99.99%—not bad and pretty standard among entry-level-targeted web designer sites.
SiteGround says their services are “highly available and scalable.” Perhaps among the greatest advantages here is not necessarily the customer service—which is not bad—but rather their enterprise support feature. This isn’t something that your full-fledged web hosting department would necessarily benefit from. If you’re willing to shell out the big bucks to have your site managed by them rather than just be hosted by them, they boast tremendous versatility in the way of the day-to-day operations of running your site, but be prepared to pay for that level of support, maintenance, and management.
SiteGround’s customer support reps stand their ground, taking your calls and emails and getting back to you relatively quickly, and even answering questions that the bigger, corporate-only web hosting companies don’t generally have time for.