Selecting a Web Host for your SQL Server Database Driven Web Site Part

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  • Nice Article Jon!

    We do web development and db work for clients and have been using a fairly good host - but my gripe with their company is that they have a ton of other db instances on the server along with ours.  This is a concern for obvious reasons.  So I add that when shopping for a host it would be helpful to determine the # of instances that the host limits each server to.  I'd be interested in hearing suggestions from other members if anyone has a great host that keeps the # of instances down to a fair amount.

  • Jon,

    Great article!

    Now that you've done all that work, would you mind sharing your top 5 choices?


  • I'm curious as to how many folks use public web and sql hosts rather than hosting their own.  Our choice, and I would think many folks's choice would be to host their own web and sql services if they are running a site of any size at all.


    Student of SQL and Golf, Master of Neither

  • Jim,

    Thank you! I did consider sharing my choices at some length when writing the article, however, I decided not to in the end, because there are so many variables involved, it's really a matter of picking the right host for your needs, and a host that performs well from where I'm based may not be so good for where you are, depending on internet traffic and support requirements. But if you or anyone else reading this runs a relatively small db(up to ~100Mb)/site, let me know, and I'd gladly send you a private post detailing who we use at present.

    The problem is that if I recommend anyone in a public forum, I have to emphasise exactly what my own requirements were at the time I chose them.

    Also, I would automatically exclude good, higher end business providers such as Cable & Wireless, simply because they provide facilities beyond what was required at a budget which exceeded what we had available. I'm also aware that these articles are on the SSC website for some years, so I'm reluctant to say a host is great now, because in a year they may not be (and we've been in that situation several times).

    Bob, with regard to the web hosts, the article was mainly targetted at start-ups, and small to medium sized businesses. I agree with your point and given a limitless budget and time, I'd do it all myself too (call me a control freak!). I've worked in very large businesses and corporations where they obviously have enough cash and resource to throw at the solution in-house, but as a smaller enterprise, you need to have the site and database regularly backed up, have a high speed line into the site from the net, and have support staff to keep it running. The cost of setting up the infrastructure and the ongoing costs of doing it properly can be prohibitive to a smaller company. This is probably even more so the case in more rural areas, and in the developed world outside of Japan and North America, where bandwidth doesn't come cheap and telco's can be (ex-)state monopolies which still have a stranglehold on the pricing of telecomms connections. You may be talking about an order or two of magnitude in costs difference in these places.


  • Part of the reliability question has to do with how insulated is the primary host site to outage due to loss of power or natural disaster.  Do they have a backup site and if so, where is it located in relation to the primary site?  I ask this question from personal experience with a provider whose secondary site was several miles from their primary site but, as it turned out, on the same power grid.  When the primary site was without power, so was the first and neither site had backup generators!

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