Top 13 VPS Business Hosting Providers
A lot of VPS reviews out there praise Bluehost as one of the top virtual server providers. The host and its parent company EIG sponsor many such reviews, so make sure to trust proven facts only. And facts are that Bluehost might work for starters, but resource-hungry projects are likely to overbear its frail, overcrowded virtual servers.Read Full Review >
InMotion deservedly tops the list of the best VPS hosting providers with its balanced yet robust plans. Any small- and mid-scale project can benefit from powerful and affordable virtual servers that guarantee long-term scalability. Regular backups, superb knowledge base, expert support, stellar performance, and tailor-made solutions create a hosting environment that is second to none.Read Full Review >
This is a VPS and cloud hosting provider worth considering for projects of any scale. Anyone, from a small startup to a large enterprise, can find a server, configure it, and deploy it in no time. The company knows the ins-and-outs of professional web hosting. Kamatera is positioning among the leaders of VPS and cloud services thanks to its numerous data centers all around the globe and advanced products.
HostGator is an extremely reliable host, with a good knowledge base, great user interface, and a broad selection of hosting solutions. The support team is knowledgeable, albeit somewhat slow on occasion.Read Full Review >
Hostinger offers reliable VPS services that can help most small and medium businesses flourish. All server configurations are feature-packed, but if your project gets too big, it might outgrow even the most powerful solution. And while other providers might offer similar options or level of support, but in terms of price, you will struggle to find anyone better than Hostinger.Read Full Review >
An impressive all-around performer, this is a hosting provider with great care for the little details and outstanding support team. While the company doesn’t have the most affordable VPS plans out there, it delivers outstanding value with superior quality of service. The stellar WordPress services are just the cherry on top of lightning fast servers with unique architecture and rock-solid security.Read Full Review >
It’s very easy to recommend a company like Liquid Web — quality is of the highest standards, and you have plenty of room to grow. Throw that outstanding support in the bundle, together with the practically limitless customization options, and you get an irresistible VPS platform. Price is the only obvious dent to this otherwise superb hosting deal, so if you are on a tight budget, you might want to consider another option.
While there are more affordable VPS services out there, A2 is a worthy consideration because of its excellent support. It is a company that takes a remarkable care of non-clients goes to great extents for its trusted users. Its VPS solutions tick all boxes by offering root access, fully managed, and full unmanaged virtual servers for businesses of any size and technical acumen.Read Full Review >
FastComet is ideal for smaller and low-scale projects, but its VPS plans are powerful enough to handle even more resource-hungry websites. The support team know their trade well, so you can always expect timely assistance. With eight data centers around the globe, you can set up a server at any location your heart desires.Read Full Review >
Focused on a broad scope of service offerings, Media temple neglects a bit client support. On a managed virtual server, you are strongly reliant on the expertise of your host, and this is something that Media Temple must improve. That being said, if you are experienced enough to handle the setup yourself, you will enjoy a wealth of resources at your disposal.
An excellent choice for long-term projects, Hostwinds has server options for websites of any type and size already prepared. Linux and Windows hosting solutions can run on servers of various sizes. The support is quite good as well. Keep in mind that the low-tier servers are cheap but rather barebone.
A longstanding company which won’t disappear overnight, and the low-level offers can safely accommodate projects of a smaller scale. Just keep in mind that you are on your own, even on a managed VPS service, as I wouldn’t rely too much on GoDaddy’s live assistance for anything. Indeed, the company knows how to cut a deal, but it knows equally well how to cut corners.Read Full Review >
InterServer tries valiantly but it is far from the best VPS hosting providers. It lacks expert live assistance and charges extra for essential features. There is no money back guarantee either. On the plus side, the virtual servers offered by InterServer are cheap and scalable but, all things considered, they are not that great a choice, especially for beginners.Read Full Review >
So you already have a website up and running. Step 1 of your online journey is complete.
As your site grows, you will soon find that it can make use of some extra resources to run smoothly. The shared hosting environment is perfect for most small-scale projects, but should they start to expand, that’s when the problems start.
What to do?
You set your sight on the next logical solution — virtual private servers (or VPS). To get a better idea of what is VPS, check out the different types of hosting in my Game of Thrones-style review.
Our objective in this page is to compare best VPS hosting providers based on a comprehensive methodology that includes evaluation of performance, features, and support, as well as their pricing structure.
Let’s start with the main characteristics of VPS hosting.
Being one of only a few customers on a web server allows you to utilize a large chunk of its resources. This includes a set amount of CPU, RAM, and hard disk space allocated for your needs alone.
Scalability is undoubtedly a focal point of the VPS infrastructure. The ability to add/remove resources on-the-go makes virtual servers a perfect solution for growing projects or handling sudden traffic spikes.
Did I mention such setup means your website benefits from better security as well?
No? Well, now you know.
In short, virtual servers are harder, better, faster, stronger. (Oh, hey there, Daft Punk fans!)
So that is how I rank the VPS host providers every month.
Let’s look at the rankings for September 2019
Best VPS Hosting Service Providers For 2019
- Inmotion – Best VPS provider in terms of Performance ($27.99/mo)
- Kamatera – Unmatched scalability and cheap prices ($4/mo)
- Hostinger – Reliable VPS provider with best features ($3.95/mo)
- Siteground – Costly but an all-round performer ($64/mo)
- Liquid Web – Limitless VPS customization options at ($19.99/mo)
- A2 Hosting – A well-known VPS host with good support ($22.51/mo)
- Fast Comet – Best VPS for resource-intense sites ($59.95/mo)
- Media Temple – An highly configurable VPS provider ($30/mo)
- Hostwinds – Decent support at affordable VPS prices ($5.17)
- Godaddy – A VPS for small projects ($19.99/mo)
- Bluehost – Best VPS Host for beginners ($18.99/mo)
- Interserver – Cheap but not a good choice for beginners ($6/mo)
- Dream VPS – Decent features but confusing pricing ($10/mo)If you are wondering how I came up with this table, here is the methodology I follow to rank the best virtual private servers.
During my evaluation process, I tried to go in every nook and cranny to sift out only the most deserving candidates. This included separating my findings into three distinct groups, answering three essential questions:
What’s the situation under the hood?
- CPU – CPU represents the processing power of your server and is especially crucial for VPS services. It directly affects the speed and overall performance of your website. CPU is an upgradeable resource, so I have put extra focus on the account max caps.
- RAM – along with the CPU, this is your most important server metric. The Random Access Memory determines how much data you can store on the memory card. The more RAM on your VPS means it can process more requests without losing speed and uptime.
- Bandwidth – each user request takes a bit of web traffic to execute. As your website gets more popular, you will have more visitors clicking around. That’s great but it takes its toll on the monthly bandwidth. While some hosts promise Unmetered traffic, users often encounter other limitations along the way. This is why most VPS providers on the below list have clearly-defined bandwidth caps.
- Disk space – it’s important to ensure your website has enough room to grow and flourish, but there is more to it. Some providers still rely on the rudimentary HDD technology, while many have made the switch to the much faster SSD. How is your potential candidate dealing with the growing client requirements?
What’s included apart from the server?
- Root Access – unmanaged VPS services always come with root access as the client needs a panel to manage their server. It’s a whole different ball game when it comes to managed virtual servers. Root access on such solutions can easily make a mess between site developers and host admins so it’s not really recommended.
- SSL – any reputable online business has to ensure the safety of its clients and their personal details. The SSL certificate encrypts delicate personal and billing data, so it is hidden from prying eyes. Plus, it has a positive effect on your SEO.
- CDN – speed is so crucial for webmasters nowadays, it’s almost like a fixation. Utilizing a CDN’s network of servers means each of your visitors will open a copy of your website closest to their physical location. The less distance from the user – the faster your pages will load.
- Security – imagine putting all that hard work to create and popularize a business, only to have it destroyed because someone breached your hosting server. Reliable VPS hosts understand the need for strong defenses and put extra efforts into DDoS protection, virus and malware monitoring, and account isolation.
- Add-ons – every VPS provider can give you the basics, but how many are prepared to go the extra mile with their offerings? A feature-rich hosting account guarantees you have enough neat options to help your project grow and evolve.
- Upgrades – speaking of growth, you have to ensure your VPS provider is scalable enough to accommodate more visitors, more page clicks, and more traffic overall. Hosts can achieve that by either adding resources on-the-go or offering multiple account upgrade options.
3. Business Values
What’s the company all about?
- Price Comparison – it’s easy to open a VPS host’s website and check out the current deals. But comparing introductory rates doesn’t give you the full picture.
Are the prices different upon renewal?
How can you secure the best discount?
What is the most cost-effective deal long-term?
Keeping everything within budget is detrimental, especially for startup businesses.
- Support – whether you are a complete newbie or a website pro, chances are you will need assistance at some point. A great host will not only provide multiple communication channels for reaching support, but will also train their team to perfection. I have personally tested each contender with both sales and technical queries to see how well-versed they are with their product.
Now let’s look into the details of each of these VPS hosts
InMotion Hosting came into existence in 2001 and quickly grew into one of the largest web hosts in the US. The company offers the full range of hosting services — from shared, all the way up to dedicated servers.
The host operates from three offices, located in Virginia, Colorado, and sunny California.
InMotion strongly believes experience is key when it comes to dealing with hosting clients, so each new staff member undergoes at least 160 hours of training before dealing with their first case.
Sounds promising, but is it all good under the hood?
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Unlimited websites
US servers only Free SSL
Support could be better
Excellent knowledge base
InMotion trusts Dell to supply the hardware, and all Linux web servers are optimized to run CentOS/Nginx configurations quite smoothly.
The company offers managed VPS host services and unmanaged cloud VPS. You can secure 75GB SSD space, 4GB RAM, and 4TB monthly bandwidth even with the lowest package, which is a considerable amount of processing power.
To put it simply, your project gets plenty of room to grow and accommodate more visitors with no service downtimes.
InMotion supports a broad set of features for all VPS accounts, especially considering the relatively low price tag. You get to choose server technology, and the provider adds a free cPanel license to the deal.
The cherry on top is the 2-hour free consultation you get to have with an experienced sysadmin.
Some professional help always feels great, especially starting off a new venture.
What’s more, you can host as many domain names as you wish on these VPS web hosting plans, and you can sleep safe and sound knowing that your website is…well…safe and sound.
One extra service I found particularly intriguing was the web design feature that you could purchase with each plan.
You skip the whole site-building process with all related headaches and trust a professional to do the job for you. It’s a clear and straightforward 4-step procedure:
- An interview to outline your needs
- Send your page content to the design team
- Previews and corrections
- Your new website is ready to launch
The service comes at an extra cost, depending on the scope of your needs. However, if you don’t have the time or desire to delve into site building, that’s an excellent alternative.
Any reputable VPS hosting provider would want its clients to be well taken care of, and InMotion makes no exception. Existing clients can reach the support team 24/7 via chat, mail, phone, ticket, even Skype. Additionally, every curious bypasser can benefit from the extensive tutorial base and community forums.
Talk about across-the-board services.
I tested the chat with some pre-sales questions and got connected in a second. Although the operator was always responding promptly, I have to say the overall conversation felt a bit awkward and templated from his side.
There is a 2-hour free consultation with a server admin which you can request within the first four weeks of your InMotion contract. That one is performed by a more competent and tech-oriented representative, so I recommend you take full advantage of that feature.
InMotion deservedly makes the list for best VPS hosting 2019 with their balanced yet robust plans. Any small and mid-scale project can benefit from their virtual servers and ensure its long-term scalability.
Here is one name you don’t hear very often but definitely should.
Kamatera is in business since 1995. The company ensures fast connection to all clients, regardless of their location, thanks to its 13 data centers, spread across key points in North America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.
Kamatera is best-known for having extensive experience in cloud computing, which plays a major part in its VPS server infrastructure.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Multiple server locations Pricing model a bit confusing Unmatched scalability Dedicated resources
The host takes freedom of choice to the next level – you can choose between 33 Linux and Windows operating systems or bring your own licensed OS for a fully custom experience.
The same goes for adding more resources to your VPS server.
You can tinker with and enhance each one of your server components – CPU cores, RAM, storage space, monthly bandwidth. In fact, the heights that you can reach resource-wise with Kamatera are beyond comparison.
Up to 72 CPU cores and up to 384 GB RAM – I can’t even comprehend the scale of those numbers.
Once you land on Kamatera’s VPS page, you immediately stumble upon a very convenient price calculator that lets you adjust each server stat to see how it affects the monthly price. You can even break that down to hourly costs.
A couple of handy features you can add are the fully managed support and external daily backups.
Here is where things get a bit complicated.
Some features are paid monthly, some are prepaid for three months, and there are others that you settle for the year ahead. Each of those has a different billing and refund policy so you can see how that can turn into an inconvenience.
Kamatera is so versatile that you can easily deploy and host a website, CRM, ERP, IoT project, or VoIP server.
You are bound only by your imagination.
What can a host do to round off powerful hardware and a rich feature set?
Add some magnificent support, of course.
Kamatera proudly offers 24/7 communication via live chat, phone, and mail, which should be expected from any reliable VPS providers.
I got connected to the chat almost immediately and had a pleasant sales conversation with a support operator who really sounded like he knew his stuff. I never felt pushed towards a sale or like I was getting templated responses.
If their technical expertise is just as good with support issues, I’d certainly feel safe with Kamatera.
The pleasant surprise on that list, Kamatera is worth considering for projects of any scale. Anyone, from a small startup to a large enterprise, can find a server, choose its configuration, and deploy it in no time.
The company definitely knows the ins-and-outs of web hosting, so keep in mind the name next time you need VPS or Cloud services.
Hostinger is a Lithuania-based hosting provider with 150+ subsidiaries all over the world. The host establishes local companies and targets emerging markets with free and low-cost services.
That’s how Hostinger got to 29+ million clients worldwide.
In June 2019 the host reported a 2x growth for the last three years. The number of employees worldwide has reached the 400-people milestone.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Amazing prices Not very scalable Great server coverage Dedicated IP address SSD drives
You can host your web project with Hostinger in one of seven locations — the US, the UK, Netherlands, Lithuania, Singapore, Indonesia, and Brazil.
The web servers have Intel Xeon Silver processors @2.20Ghz, with 256GB+ RAM and SSD drives to ensure flawless performance for every VPS client.
Scaling your resources is not really possible with Hostinger, though. If you run out of space or processing memory, your only choice is to upgrade to the next plan.
As compensation, they have a wide range of VPS hosting plans — anything from 1GB to 8GB RAM or 20GB to 160GB storage is possible.
Hostinger offers both Linux and Windows hosting plans, as well as a number of operating systems for its servers — CentOS, Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, Suse, and more.
If you know your way around web servers, you will enjoy the full root access, which gives you complete control over your VPS.
Among the premium features, you can find a dedicated IP. Those are great if you want a faster and more secure connection. Hostinger supports not only the standard IPv4 protocol but also the more recent IPv6.
Clients who are unsure if this is the host for them can benefit from the 30-day money-back policy and tweak around without binding contractual obligations.
But undoubtedly, the best selling point for the Hostinger VPS services are their price tags. Starting at just $3.95/month, it just sounds too good to be true.
Or is it?
Such low prices often come with other disadvantages — either low resource allocation, tight server limits, or poor support.
After all, the host needs to make a profit to survive.
In the case of Hostinger, live chat and phone support are the victims.
Maintaining so many communication channels requires time and manpower, and the Lithuanian provider prefers to focus on quality services at the best possible price.
Still, I posted a ticket to see what I can expect from the support team.
I got a reply within 15 minutes. The operator answered my queries about server power and scalability and even pointed out some options I had previously missed.
I’d take that over useless chat and phone assistants any day.
Hostinger offers reliable VPS services, which can provide shelter for most small and medium businesses. The different server solutions are feature-packed, but if your project gets too big, it might outgrow even the most powerful solution. Other providers might offer similar options or level of support, but in terms of price, you will struggle to find anyone better than Hostinger.
Back in 2001, system administrator Bryan Muthig started a hobby company called Iniquinet which he later renamed to A2 Hosting. Its mission was to provide a full spectrum of hosting services with a strong technical focus.
A2 aims to keep the burden off inexperienced clients while providing great developer tools for the pros.
A noble mission, but let’s see how well they do in accomplishing it.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Endless money-back guarantee No free domain name Great customer service Limited resources Free site transfer SSD speed boost
Powerful Intel Xeon servers take the load with the A2 VPS services. While the tier 1 resource allocation could be better, you can still secure a formidable 150GB RAID-10 storage space, 4TB monthly transfer, and 8GB RAM on the most powerful VPS.
Not too shabby.
A2 Hosting is among the few hosts that offer both Linux and Windows servers which makes it a contender for best Windows VPS host as well.
A2 Hosting has divided their VPS offerings into three categories — core VPS (with root access), managed VPS (without root access), and unmanaged VPS. As this review compares only managed VPS hosting deals, let’s see how those packages stack up against the competition.
No VPS feature list will be complete without a bunch of free goodies, so let’s see what A2 has in store:
- Free site transfer
- Free cPanel license
- 2 dedicated IPs
- Free SSL
- Free CDN
And that’s just for the cheapest package, coming at $32.95 with a discount for new clients.
Overall, A2 hosting supports a rich set of features, but other providers often outmatch that with an even lower price.
If there is an area that A2 excels in, it’s definitely the hosting expertise.
My first encounter with the support team did not leave a great impression…in that it didn’t happen at all. I was hanging around, #1 in the chat queue for a couple of minutes before I had to leave.
Still, I decided later to give them a second chance, and I’m glad I did!
This time, the agent picked the chat immediately and answered all my queries. I didn’t get that robotic feel which big companies tend to encourage in their support efforts. Everything was clear and to-the-point.
I tested the live chat a couple more times, which only solidified my positive experience of courteous and knowledgeable support that seems to care a great deal about the customer.
While there are more affordable VPS services out there, A2 is a worthy consideration mainly due to the excellent support. A company that takes such good care of non-clients is sure to go to great extents for its trusted followers.
Residing in Bulgaria, the SG team is clear proof that there are no geographical boundaries for a quality hosting service. With servers spread across three continents, all new SiteGround clients can choose a location closest to their audience.
Over 400 employees take care of more than 1500 tickets, 1000 phone calls, and 3000 chat requests per day.
Per day! Some companies can’t do that in a year’s time.
The numbers speak for themselves.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Superfast servers A bit pricey Great support Perfectly optimized for WordPress SSD speed boost
The SiteGround team ensures your new VPS account will come with everything pre-equipped for a smoothly running project. This includes WHM & cPanel, mail server, firewall, software auto-installer, private DNS, SSL certificate… Well, you get the picture.
Speed is a key priority for SiteGround, and their server setup duly reflects that. All their machines run on Nginx technology and pack SSD hard drives, CDN, and the proprietary SuperCacher.
Finally, they’re a host that understands the utmost importance of website speed.
Feature-wise things can’t get much better than what SiteGround has to offer. Their VPS deals are in fact cloud server packages so you can enjoy full resource scalability as your project grows.
If you are among the millions of WordPress fans out there, look no further for your top host choice.
SiteGround and WP have a long and warm relationship, with the provider actively contributing to the WordPress project for years.
This reflects on the VPS services as well — 1-click auto-installer, automatic updates, staging environment, SuperCacher, SSH access, integrated GIT for developers — everything possible to lift the load off your shoulders.
Hands down one of the best VPS hosting for WordPress out there!
Looking at the number of cases the SG team deals with every day, they must be one busy swarm of bees. Hopefully, this doesn’t reflect on the quality of service each client receives.
I headed to the live chat and waited no more than 10-20 seconds before a representative picked it up.
I had an enjoyable conversation where the operator gave me much more than the short, templated responses you can often get with big hosts.
Yet another excellent selling point for SiteGround.
An impressive all-around performance from SiteGround. Great care for the little details and outstanding support team. While the company doesn’t offer the most affordable VPS plans out there, it compensates for that with superior quality of service.
The stellar WordPress services are just the cherry on top.
Liquid Web is among the few companies that used its long years of experience to actually improve and evolve. Launched back in 1997, the host maintains a client-centric mission, even after housing over 500,000 online projects.
Liquid Web is held in high regard in the VPS field, bringing home some prestigious awards for client loyalty and outstanding services.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Powerful plans Quite expensive Scalability Full server customization Stellar support
Most hosts focus on perfecting the Linux environment because of its low costs and vast opportunities. Liquid Web aims to cater to everyone, so it also includes some Windows Cloud VPS offerings, as well as Plesk Onyx control panel.
You certainly can’t blame the host for not trying.
Even with their entry deal, Liquid Web suggests they can pack a lot of power. You can choose between 5 data center locations and get a server with at least 2GB RAM, 40GB SSD storage space, and 10TB bandwidth.
All that beauty comes at a price, though, and even the most basic setup will cost at least $59/mo.
A rich feature list is something not all hosts can afford. Luckily, Liquid Web is not one of those hosts.
Their experience comes in handy right from the get-go. The server setup includes advanced security and DDoS protection measures, a free CDN for faster website load time, and built-in backups.
This whole setup rightfully earns Liquid Web one of the top spots in terms of server speed. What’s more, they’re not afraid to boast about the results.
The thing with extra features is they often include additional costs. Liquid Web accounts are not very cheap to begin with, so when you opt-in for a few add-ons, you are already looking at a hefty monthly bill.
Time to test the loudly advertised Liquid Web support services:
“The most helpful humans in hosting –
59 seconds initial phone response, 59 seconds initial chat response, 59 minutes initial ticket response guarantee.”
These are the numbers on their website, and they sound impressive indeed.
My live chat request took no more than a few seconds for an agent to greet me, so that is one promise kept. So far, so good.
Chatting with the Liquid Web employee, I quickly realized how refreshing it is to speak with a real human who actually listens to your needs. The agent provided clear and polite answers, and she took some time to find extra help when she needed clarification.
I was thoroughly impressed — certainly one of the best VPS services in terms of support.
It’s very easy to recommend a company like Liquid Web — quality is of the highest standards, and you have plenty of room to grow. Throw that outstanding support in the bundle and you get an irresistible hosting deal.
Price is the only obvious downside here, so if you are on a tight budget, you might want to consider another option.
FastComet is one of the few privately-owned, independent global web hosting companies out there. A relatively new provider, founded in 2013, they now accommodate over 50,000 small and midsized web projects.
FastComet has eight data center locations around the globe, so your website is as close to its visitors as possible. You can find servers in:
- Newark (US East)
- Atlanta (US South)
- Dallas (US Central)
- Fremont (US West)
- Frankfurt (Central Europe)
- London (Western Europe)
- Singapore (Asia-Pacific)
- Tokyo (Asia-Pacific)
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Multiple server locations A bit pricey Many resources 7-day money-back guarantee Helpful support Optimization reports
All VPS packages come with SSD drives in RAID-10 configuration (four hard drives working in pairs to ensure faster read and write processes and great redundancy). This setup completely eliminates the risk of data loss due to a failed hard drive.
The servers? They sure pack a lot of heat. Just look at this baby:
CPU Xeon CPU E5-2680 V3
CPU — 1 to 6 cores at 2.50GHz
RAM — 2GB to 16GB DDR4 RAM
Hard drive space — 50GB to 320GB SSD drives
Transfer cap — 2TB to 8TB
The best thing is:
There is dedicated processing power for each user, and the host doesn’t throttle your CPU to conserve server resources.
Anyone can provide managed virtual server hosting, but few understand how to configure those services properly.
Luckily, FastComet is among those few.
The company touts an in-house monitoring system on all levels — server, website, and infrastructure. The collected statistics make their way into helpful daily reports, along with optimization tips for your website.
Every newly-created VPS account comes with a free cPanel license, a web hosting manager (WHM), and a Softaculous 1-click installer to get you started.
FastComet also throws automated daily and weekly backups in the mix, so your website data can always be safe and sound.
All that adds up to your monthly bill, though, and FC can appear a bit expensive, even at the lowest tier.
I was impressed with the FastComet support right from the get-go. They provisioned and set up my new server in less than 15 minutes, faster than I could finish my morning coffee.
I noticed the provider advertises 24/7 support via chat, mail, phone, and tickets, which is somewhat typical for all the providers in our VPS hosting comparison list.
Do they make good on that promise, though?
I sent them a couple of tickets at different times of the day, and both support replies arrived within 10-15 minutes. And they were actually helpful, not just links to some barely useful tutorials.
A really pleasant experience overall.
FastComet might accommodate mainly smaller and low-scale projects, but its VPS plans are powerful enough to handle even more resource-hungry websites. The support team seems well-versed in what they are doing, so you can always expect timely assistance.
Just imagine how different the Web was back then.
The company currently hosts over 1.5 million clients in over 100 countries. Their state-of-the-art data centers reside on the two US coasts, adjoined with a redundant, low-latency fiber connection.
But do Media Temple put their experience to good use?
Let’s take a look.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Loads of resources Poor support Affordable low end Expensive high end Wide range of plans
Intel Xeon servers are well-known in the industry for reliability and high performance, and Media Temple is well aware of that fact. Its managed premium VPS servers pack E5-2620 v4 processors, 2.10GHz with 20M cache.
What does that mean for you?
Your account can take advantage of 8 cores of processing power, 2GB RAM, and 30GB SSD storage even with the lowest VPS plan. MediaTemple benefits from a wide range of servers, so you can gradually upgrade as your project grows.
One of the relatively new features in the Media Temple portfolio is the inclusion of Plesk Onyx, which is an alternative to the cPanel in terms of hosting management. A bit of extra choice always earns good points in my book.
Deconstructing the list of pre-installed software, you will find all the needed technology to get you started — PHP, MySQL, Perl, Python, Ruby, plus the YUM package management.
Sounds YUMmy, indeed!
Daily backups and 24/7 monitoring are included, in case you were wondering.
The top-tier VPS packages of Media Temple look particularly impressive feature-wise, but the price tags are not for the faint-hearted. The most robust plan is a whopping $1500/mo, which can buy you a couple of massive dedicated servers elsewhere.
Even with a discount for a new client, Media Temple’s VPS hosting prices are on the steep side.
I was anxious to check out how the support team of a 20+ year-old company stacks up against the competition. I mean, that is plenty of time to refine how you communicate with your clients, right?
Not really, as it seems.
My first try with the live chat started with a message:
“You’re now #2 in line. Your estimated wait is 0 minutes.”
Cool, that doesn’t sound a lot…
…10 minutes later I was done waiting.
I decided to give them some time and went for it a second time:
“You’re now #1 in line. Your estimated wait is 8 minutes.”
Wait, what? Now I am first in line but have to wait for eight minutes? That might be hours in Media Temple time…
…luckily an operator put an end to my misery after 3-4 minutes, and I finally got to ask my questions. It was actually a single question, and the sales rep took another 5 minutes to find a solution. In the form of a link, of course.
I was certainly not impressed with the support assistance, but I guess that’s always a risk with big companies.
MediaTemple seems to focus on a broad scope of service offerings, while client support takes a back seat. On a managed virtual server, you are strongly reliant on the expertise of your host, so things can definitely improve in that direction.
That being said, if you are experienced enough to handle the setup yourself, you will enjoy a wealth of resources at your disposal.
The birthplace of Hostwinds is Seattle, WA. Founded in 2010, this relatively new web host didn’t waste any time before making a name for itself.
The company’s About Us page greets us with a promising “Our customers come first” statement. Honesty, respect, exceptional customer service — those are all pledges I would be happy to get behind.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Wide range of plans Registration before order Very affordable Cheapest plans are rather bare-boned Highly configurable
Hostwinds employs Intel Xeon E3 and E5 servers for their VPS plans and generously offers a plethora of configuration options. Depending on the magnitude of your project, you can start on a machine from 1 all the way up to 16 CPU cores, 1 to 96GB RAM or 30 to 750GB SSD space.
The initial prices for new clients certainly look inviting, but the lowest tier plans have very little to show for that monthly fee. At 53% the discount is quite big, too, so after the trial period, you will be looking at very different price tags.
Both Windows and Linux projects can find a proper home with Hostwinds.
The enhanced scalability of the plans is undoubtedly one of the best selling points for the host. The multi-tiered VPS servers guarantee that your website will find a suitable fit not only for now but for the future as well. Upgrading to a new server is a seamless experience that does not involve any service downtimes.
I wanted to dig up more about the features I can add upon signup, but hitting the Order button merely pushed me to a registration screen, which is an unacceptable setback in my book.
Price-wise things are looking good for Hostwind’s potential clients — the cheapest VPS plans start from $5.17/mo, which is less than most people pay for shared hosting. There is a good reason behind that, though, as the low-tier servers are very limited in processing power and other essential resources.
Hostwinds provides round-the-clock customer assistance via live chat and ticketing system.
It didn’t take long for me to head on to the chat…in the sense that the window was constantly popping on my screen. Alright, let’s try this out.
The operator was kind enough to answer all my queries promptly and showed a respectable level of knowledge. I have previously read some positive VPS hosting reviews about Hostwinds’ support, and it seems they are well-deserved.
My only note for them (and this would be nit-picking here) was that the operator could’ve put more effort into understanding more about my website and needs. We were in a sales chat after all, but there really wasn’t much selling going on.
Hostwinds is an excellent choice for long-term projects, as they are ready with server options for websites of any type and size. I have noticed some dubious practices to watch out for, but nothing too crucial to ruin the deal if all else fits your requirements.
The company was founded back in 1997, the early internet era. It has constantly been surrounded by controversy since then — from sexist ads and censorship allegations, all the way to their CEO’s poaching scandals.
Still, as one of the pioneers in web hosting, GoDaddy has grown so big and rich that a little bad press can’t slow down its expansion.
Now, the hosting behemoth has over 78 million registered domains, with the runner up just under 9 million.
Let the numbers sink in for a minute.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Cheap VPS deals Mediocre servers Proactive monitoring Inadequate support
I strongly believe GoDaddy can do better when it comes to the server machines for its VPS plans.
GD utilizes Intel E5-2620v3 with 15M cache and 2x600GB hard disks, which are inferior compared to those of the competition in this list. To add salt to this wound, there are no SSD hard drives, which are significantly faster and better-performing than the traditional HDD.
Feature-wise, GoDaddy can afford to pamper its clients a little. So, its VPS packages look pretty good on paper, especially considering the feature/cost ratio.
I am saying “on paper” because GoDaddy is notorious for hidden fees and limitations. Point in case, your bandwidth cap might be set at unlimited, but this just means you will be facing other limits far before you accumulate huge traffic.
Still, for what you’re getting, the price is quite affordable.
The lowest offer starts from $19.99, but even that is subject to additional VPS hosting discounts, which can bring the price below $10 if you prepay for a longer period.
I’d love to comment on GoDaddy’s level of support, but for me it’s non-existent.
The supposedly 24/7 live chat actually states “Hours: All day Mon-Fri,” but the connection button just said “Chat Busy” and didn’t even let me in the queue. I tried it at different times but always to no avail.
There is a 24/7 phone line…provided you can get your way around a ton of automated menus.
I received similar feedback from clients moving away from GoDaddy years ago, so I guess some things never change.
Update: I finally managed to connect to the Live Chat on day 3 but my experience was horrendous, to put it mildly. I had two simple sales questions, but the operator did not have any idea what I was talking about. She was pushing me generic links, and when I asked her to consult a technician, she came back a few minutes later…asking me what my username was.
My username? Really? In a sales chat where I clearly stated I was not an existing customer?
At this point, I was too frustrated to continue and simply left the conversation.
GoDaddy is certainly not my cup of tea, but I can’t just tell you to stay away. It is a longstanding company which won’t disappear overnight, and the low-level offers can safely accommodate projects of a smaller scale.
Just keep in mind that you are on your own, even on a managed VPS service, as I wouldn’t rely much on their live assistance if I were you.
Bluehost is one of those hosting companies that have been around for a while. Quite some time actually — since 2003, the host has accumulated over 2 million clients and trained over 750 employees to cater to their every need.
In 2010 they made a crucial decision.
The EIG consortium acquired Bluehost, one of their first big hosting purchases that will mark the whole future of the industry. It didn’t take long for the EIG presence to be felt. Maximizing profits became a top priority, no matter how:
- crammed servers
- steep renewal fees
- no effort for adequate support
Millions of shared clients were affected, but was it the same for VPS clients? Let’s have a look.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES SSD servers Low resource caps Free SSL No scalability Free domain Average support
EIG subsidiaries very rarely aim to wow their clients with top-notch quality. Instead, they put heaps of investor money into marketing and advertising so they can lure as many people as possible.
The same strategy applies to their web servers for VPS accounts. Nothing flashy, nothing unnecessary — just enough to do the job adequately.
Bluehost offers only three VPS plans. The lowest one caps at 2GB RAM, 30GB SSD space, and 1TB bandwidth. You can forget about scalability, as the support team confirmed the only solution is upgrading to the next server option.
Feature-wise, Bluehost maintains the usual passable level of services like many other EIG subsidiaries.
The two apparent positives, for me, are the free domain registration and SSL certificate. Those are a couple of necessary expenses that you can save with Bluehost and invest in your business. Keep in mind the domain registration is valid for the initial year only.
The best VPS discounts come with the longest prepaid plans, so a money-back guarantee is always welcome. With Bluehost, the refund period is 30 days, which should give you enough time to tweak around and cancel if not satisfied.
The EIG team often supports multiple brands and have limited knowledge outside the most frequently asked questions. You can contact Support via phone and live chat — I decided to try the latter.
I got a hold of an agent quite easily, but the chat application was doing its best to work against me — replies were often duplicated and sent with a delay.
Nevertheless, I managed to ask a few sales questions and got the expected templated responses. Nothing out of the ordinary here. For a sales chat, it was alright, but I’d think twice before relying on them for more in-depth technical assistance.
There are a lot of VPS reviews out there that praise Bluehost for its best virtual servers. The host itself sponsors most such reviews, so make sure to trust proven facts only.
And facts are that Bluehost might work for starters, but resource-hungry projects are not exactly a perfect match for their VPS offers.
DreamVPS came to be in 2007 and presents itself as a “boutique provider of dedicated hosting solutions for businesses, entrepreneurs, and brand owners all over the world.”
The core team resides in Haifa, Israel and currently helps over 10,000 websites receive an immaculate hosting service.
Online information about the company is scarce, but from what I could gather from its official page, DreamVPS currently hosts 2,000+ servers in 12 data center locations worldwide.
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Auto-scaling Shady pricing policy Daily backups Lack of support DDoS protection Not that affordable
Intel Xeon v5 3.50GHz processors with NVMe SSD storage power all of DreamVPS’s machines. The provider also claims some of the fastest network speeds, flying with 40Gbit/s per server.
You can choose an operating system upon signup and find a home for both Linux and Windows projects.
This host goes way and beyond when it comes to scalability. You can grow your account to an unprecedented size — 64 CPU cores, 228GB RAM, and 1TB SSD space.
Who would need such immense power, though? NASA?
(If you are indeed from NASA — hey, glad to have you onboard).
DreamVPS offers four fixed VPS hosting deals—well, three are fixed, and the fourth is actually a custom server you can tweak for yourself.
The Starter package comes with 1 CPU core, 2GB RAM, and 30GB disk space. You also have a free dedicated IP, free SSL, and daily backups as a bonus.
So far, so good…
Once I started digging deep, however, things quickly started going downhill. First thing I noticed is, when you go to sign up, you can only choose 2-3 from the promised 12 data center locations.
But ok, let’s say that’s not such a big deal and I’ being a little nitpicky.
How about the same discrepancies, but with prices?
– the VPS page advertises hosting starting at $10.00/mo.
– the cheapest VPS deal seems to come at $17.80/mo.
– when you go to sign up, you get another three prices for different billing periods – $7.99, $16.99, and $29.99.
So now we have five different prices for the same product and no way to tell which is which.
Time to visit the DreamVPS reps and get to the bottom of this.
As you can see, I had a lot of questions for DreamVPS support.
So, what do we have here?
The company advertises 24/7/365 support, although its contact page suggested phone and email are available only during business hours on weekdays.
Still, the beaming green popup on the bottom right corner suggested Live Chat was online.
Alright, let’s give it a go.
There was no chat queue — it seems that I simply needed to type something, and an operator would join the conversation…
…25 minutes and one monologue later I was fed up with it.
Now, I can understand getting conflicting information from a website — you can always miss something when making an update. But if people can’t reach you so you can explain those discrepancies, things start to look very shady.
In an industry where everyone is trying to build an impeccable reputation, DreamVPS doesn’t do much for its online image. On one hand, the hardware looks good, and the host offers robust packages. On the other hand, the confusing pricing and lack of a helping hand are the major hindrances that put the provider behind market competitors.
Two tech enthusiasts started the company, and their goal hasn’t changed for two decades — provide some of the best VPS servers with a focus on affordability.
Not so long ago, the InterServer website used to look quite outdated, and the navigation felt rather clunky. I was happy to see the provider took note, and their latest redesign looks significantly better.
Even though InterServer didn’t go on to expand as other older companies did, this just meant they could focus more on product innovation and improving client relationships (hopefully).
STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES Powerful plans No live chat Very affordably Only US servers Highly scalable No money-back guarantee
What I appreciate in InterServer’s offerings is the willingness to cater to all kinds of projects. That reflects from the variety of VPS plans, which start from a small 1 CPU core, 2GB RAM account, and steadily grow to the most powerful deal — a massive 16-core, 32GB RAM monster, equipped with 480GB storage space.
All hard drives are SSD, which ensures 20x better speeds than a traditional HDD.
At first glance, InterServer seems to pack some lucrative VPS deals, but digging down the feature list, I can see why.
You can add managed support only if you sign up for a tier 4 plan (from $24.00/mo) or above. If you wish to use cPanel, you have to purchase it separately. Backups are also subject to additional fees.
When you draw the line, the low price reflects a small set of features. But that comes with an asterisk as well — InterServer does not offer any free trial or money-back guarantee. So if you don’t like the service — you know where the door is. That being said, the plans are billed monthly, so all losses are cut short.
But what really got me was the forced account creation.
When I tried the order process just so I can get to test the options and check out the billing cycles, I hit another obstacle.
To get more details (the final price, for instance) and purchase, I had to register an account first.
Really? Do I have to leave all my personal information even if I don’t finish my order?
Yeah, as if!
I did more in-depth research and, as it turned out, this change was introduced rather recently. It makes no sense to me why you would deliberately make your service look shady and restrictive.
Up to this point, I was under the impression that every premium host tries to offer 24/7 support on multiple channels (or at least they advertise so).
So imagine my disappointment when I found no live chat options with InterServer. Oftentimes you cannot afford to waste hours going back and forth with a ticketing system and need an issue resolved quickly. Without real-time assistance, the whole support process becomes unnecessarily long and complicated.
A commendable effort, but InterServer is far from the best VPS service provider. The lack of live assistance and additional cost for essential features makes them a pretty risky choice. The data collection practice was the biggest problem for me, and I wouldn’t trust a money-making project with this host.
That concludes our review of the best VPS services out there. Keep in mind the hosting providers are ranked in no particular order, as I was looking mainly for performance and a diversified portfolio. This way, every potential client can decide which host might best fit their specific needs.
How about you?
Found someone you like?
Q: Is VPS better than shared hosting?
A: In many ways — yes. While the setup and infrastructure seem deceptively similar, there are significantly fewer clients on a VPS. The fewer people on a server there are, the more resources and better security for everyone.
Furthermore, there are significantly fewer limitations on a VPS environment, and you can easily add additional processing power as your project grows. There is no scalability in a shared environment — if you hit the limits, you must upgrade.
Q: What is KVM hosting?
A: KVM stands for keyboard-video-mouse and outlines a type of server virtualization and management. KVM makes a standard VPS server feel and operate as a dedicated server. The client is completely isolated from others on the same machine and uses his or her own amount of processing power.
Q: Do I need VPS hosting?
A: If you are just starting out with a new project, a VPS plan might be an overkill. You can try a reliable shared hosting package first and upgrade to VPS when you outgrow its confines. It’s best to check your current resource consumption beforehand and consult with your potential provider about the best plan to start with.
Q: What is the difference between managed and unmanaged VPS hosting?
A: Unmanaged VPS services are all about control. The hosting provider takes care of the initial setup and hardware installations. You’re on your own from there on. You have the freedom to operate your virtual server as you wish, but if you don’t know what you’re doing – you can soon find yourself in a world of trouble.
Suitable for experienced professionals and projects that require a specific setup.
With managed services, your host is at the helm of your server. It takes care of monitoring, backups, and security measures. It can provide additional assistance should anything go wrong. You get less control but have a team of professionals looking after your project.
Suitable for beginners and business owners with no previous server knowledge.
Q: What is Windows VPS hosting?
A: Any VPS server has to have an operating system so you can run your desired software. If your machine operates with a Windows OS, you can create websites using .Net technology. Another option is to utilize Windows-specific tools, such as nopCommerce, DotNetNuke, Sitefinity, and Umbraco.
Still, Microsoft products come with their license fees, so Windows VPS services are generally more expensive than Linux.
Q: What is Linux VPS hosting?
A: Linux is an open-source OS, so it comes with much more freedom and scalability than Windows. Popular CMS applications like WordPress and Joomla also find Linux as the best environment for their services.
Windows might be more popular when it comes to desktop computers, but when we talk about web servers, the open-source OS is a clear market dominator. Linux and all its distributions power over 95% of all websites worldwide.
Q: What is SSD VPS hosting?
A: SSD hosting is a relatively new technology that recently made its mark in VPS services as well. It outlines the way you store data on your server.
Solid state drives (SSD) come as an alternative to traditional hard disks (HDD). The new technology quickly proved to be faster, more durable, and more efficient overall. That was largely due to the lack of mechanical moving parts, which makes the drive lighter and more durable.
Still, HDD drives are cheaper and can provide more storage space than SSD.
Q: There are a bunch of cheap and free VPS hosting providers. Why should I go or not go with them?
A: As with shared hosting, you will not struggle to find free or suspiciously cheap VPS servers. But you know what they say – if it sounds too good to be true, it most probably is.
Cheap VPS servers often come with severe limitations and hidden restrictions. Add that to the fact that many free providers like to run ads on client websites, and you can easily see why this is not a long-term solution for any reputable business.
You can choose free or cheap VPS services if you plan to run a test project or a hobby website that doesn’t require much server resources.
Q: Are there any specific WordPress VPS hosting providers?
A: Many providers offer WordPress hosting services, but very few actually optimize their services for the most popular CMS.
Specific WP services include automatic backups and updates, site staging, essential plugins, app-related support.
If your VPS server is WordPress-optimized, you should have seamless access to install, modify, and update your application at any time. On a managed VPS solution, you have to rely on the host’s WP professionals to handle all technicalities.
Q: How much is VPS hosting?
A: Prices can vary considerably between hosts, but the best VPS hosting providers will keep a good ratio between price and resources. You can easily find offers for less than $10/mo, but if you need something more powerful, be prepared to invest at least $30-$40/mo.