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Email Web Hosting, Servers & Domains Reviewed

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DW:
This post is severely outdated and many of these hosts are no longer recommended.  Please visit our new page on email hosting for our most recent reviews of web hosts and providers.

This post is meant to become a frequently updated list of web hosts that are reasonably supportive of opt-in email.  We also note hosts that are not recommended due to confirmation of restrictive policies. Please reply to this thread or start a new post with your experience to have it added. This list is maintained and sponsored by ListMailPRO.

Domain Names
You need a domain name and a web host to set up your site and run ListMailPRO.  Here we list some domain name providers that are fairly priced and full featured.

Namecheap - Highly recommended.  Under $10/yr with full DNS services and a very fast control panel great for handling hundreds of domains.

1&1 Domains - $8/yr with free optional private registration and full DNS services, although their control panel is quite slow.

GoDaddy - Not recommended for domain registration due to policing the content of your domain (!).  See this blog entry of the experience of one of my clients!  IMHO policing content should be a host's job, not a registrar's and one shouldn't be forced to pay to continue using their services in case of a suspected violation.

Shared Hosts
Shared hosts are the most common form of hosting.  Costing around $10-$25 per month you share a server with other users.  A single server might host 10 or even 100 or more web sites.  For this reason, "bigger" shared hosts are not always better - in fact, they are more often restrictive.  It is most important, of course, to find a host that is capable of keeping the server running and maintaining deliverability of your email. Should you find a host not recommended below please post your experience!

#1 ThirdSphere - I talked to technical support and they said they recommend ListMailPRO due to it's efficiency.  They allow up to 20,000 emails per day.  They also have an advanced email cluster service that claims to achieve very high deliverability.  Thirdsphere is known to have a high tolerance for (inevitable) complaints against your messages, however they are also on the lookout for obvious spam, so be sure to send professional email.  *Important* Their email policies can be found here

#2 Host4Profit - I talked to David Hasbrouck and he agreed I could suggest 10,000 emails per day, but I have a feeling they would allow more for real professionals.

1&1 Shared Hosting - We have had mixed reports regarding 1&1 and are unsure of their email policies.  If you know more please let us know!  Update: Apparent inability to connect to SMTP server via web server limiting ListMail to slower and more unreliable "internal PHP mail" only.

**Sign up as our referral at ThirdSphere, Host4Profit or DreamHost (Note: 100/hr limit) and contact us for a free installation! ($50 value)

Dedicated Servers
Dedicated servers are a sure way to keep an eye on your email delivery right down to the system level.  You can achieve upwards of 150,000+ messages per day from a properly-configured dedicated server (AND proper 100% opt-in list).  We configure Plesk-based (Fedora Core/Redhat/BSD/etc) servers for $250 and monitor them for $35/mo.  (Note: Tons of extras:) ) Please contact us if you are interested in this service.  In general we recommend ordering the lowest-end processor and at least 1GB RAM.

Layered Tech - Best prices we've seen in some time although at last check, unless we missed it, serial console is not provided by default although you can pay for 24-hour KVM access.  Tech support responds quickly to support tickets and will test your crashed/problematic server, if necessary.  Support & reboots through the ticket system.

The Planet - A solid company with excellent support and response time.  I've had a couple servers with The Planet since 2002 and have never been disappointed in their response time or service.

NOT RECOMMENDED
These (shared, usually) web hosts are not recommended for ListMailPRO.  If you are hosting on one of these sites and want to run ListMailPRO I would bring it to the attention of the host, requesting an increase in their limits for responsible publishers.  Failing that, you would be advised to migrate to a host with a fair email policy.

DreamHost - Originally DreamHost allowed upwards of 5000 messages per day.  Some of our users, however, have found other limits, such as a 100/hour maximum and performance issues.  Due to this we can no longer recommend DreamHost.

HostGator - Not recommended due to restrictive policy.  Cannot set up bounce.cgi or signup-X.cgi scripts due to wget restriction (wget requirement may disappear in future ListMail versions). [Contact]

GoDaddy - Not recommended due to restrictive policy.  Maximum of 200 emails per account per day. [Contact]

1&1 Root Servers - Good price, excellent control panel with remote reboot, serial console, free backup space via FTP, re-imaging, rescue boot and more... is tempting, but human tech support lacks greatly with telephone (to a call-center in India, I think?) being the quickest.  One major disadvantage is the inability to upgrade server hardware in case you outgrow your original purchase. *** I recently had a nightmare with 1&1 not replacing failed hardware for upwards of 4 days (On top of the fact that the department is not 24 hr) and had to move a number of clients to a new server.  I therefore no longer recommend 1&1 servers ***

steve:
Thanks for letting us know about GoDaddy. They were my backup if everything falls apart with my current host.

I have a virtual private server (VPS) with Apollo Hosting and I have been with them for about seven years. Their tech support via online chat is okay - but it goes in spurts - sometimes you get them, sometimes you do not.

The last two e-mails I sent out (only to lists of 1,200 or so) had some issues where it would stop, but I was able to resume. Still not sure what the issue is there.

I have to use the bounce e-mail address to handle all of the bounced e-mails instead of bounce.cgi which is the preferred method. I could not get bounce.cgi to configure properly and since my lists are smaller, it is working out okay.

I'm pretty much committed to Apollo unless something really goes wrong. I would suggest them to others, but would like to know about why the last two e-mails I sent got "stuck." If I was to manage additional sites for customers, they would be placed on my VPS - I would not manage elsewhere.

Steve

leanne:

--- Quote from: "DW" ---HostGator - Not recommended due to restrictive policy.
--- End quote ---


Whew. I went BACK to Hostgator, which was a very good overall, non-pricey hosting, a year ago. I've spent about 10 mos. at another host, because I was doing some high level Flash work for a very well known Internet Marketer (Turbo ring any bells? Check out http://www.thedelaveriancode.com/ and tiny sample of my work (total 22 Flash modules, yikes): http://www.thedelaveriancode.com/puzzle/). I hosted with him for most of 2006.

Anyway, TWO WEEKS IN HELL with Hostgator as of tonight. This host has gone horribly southward, to off the map. Service is terrible but "chummy" in their chat, etc. So those whoe are new to this will get sucked in. Don't believe any of the hype.

Email is limited to 200 per hour, and they will not help with any of the issues. Don't bother asking to upgrade to a more reasonable 500 or whatever.

I am moving at LEAST my domain with LMP on it... thanks Dean, I will mail you.

For financial reasons, I am leaving things at HG for a bit. My 80 domains make it severely hard, and at least a week of work, to move them. Sigh.

But I need this list up and running NOW if not last week.  :shock:

Leanne

steve:

--- Quote from: "leanne" ---My 80 domains make it severely hard, and at least a week of work, to move them. Sigh.
--- End quote ---


Heck, I dread moving six or seven, can't even imaging moving 80...

Steve

leanne:

--- Quote from: "steve" ---
--- Quote from: "leanne" ---My 80 domains make it severely hard, and at least a week of work, to move them. Sigh.
--- End quote ---


Heck, I dread moving six or seven, can't even imaging moving 80...
--- End quote ---


LOL! Well, I've gotten pretty good at this, at least with hosting with Cpanel. Those tools for backing up and reloading are truly very good. And me, the non-techie that everyone thinks I am SO techie... my main skill is absolute research, and Google is on a par with Einstein. SO. I went lookin' awhile back on the ins and outs of restoring dbases with PHPmyAdmin (I have an inate ability with things like PHP and Javascript, and ONE whole course at Masters level in mySQL but I am NOT a programmer). Because of my stint with major Mr. Marketer and his hosting's ANCIENT mySQL scripts. Even my LMP didn't work right because there were issues in their scripts.

The funny/not even funny part was that here they offered all the usual Fantastico stuff, and then you install only to find out that the ancient mySQL scripts wouldn't even allow you to run the thing.

So I put in the exact error in Google and came to forums that allowed me to recode some of that, and 3 of the 5 nonworking dbases then ran okay. The other two, all forums I found outright stated there was no workaround other than to update the mySQL scripts to the latest version.

However.... for this total time, I could NOT export my lists from LMP!!! Not a bit. Came up with mySQL errors all over. The INSTANT I moved from MajorMarketer.net hosting (name changed to protect the idiots) and over to oh yuk, another move coming up... Hostgator.... then all of a sudden I could export my lists again. Most of the rest of it, including Dailymail, ran fine.

What is needed in this industry... Remember the 'clickers' in the original Star Trek, I call them BeamMeUp'ers. As in Beam Me Up Scotty? Okay... visualize one of those scenes and TELL me if there are more than half a dozen buttons on those hummers?

BeamMeUp tech and disintegrating the human or other fleshly form has GOT to be more technical than moving hosts.

We need a clicker with 6 buttons MAX, and the operation must be in the realm of SECONDS as is the BeamMeUp technology.

Off box.

Leanne
 :!:

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