April 28th, 2012

beartato phd

(no subject)

So I'm considering a different web hosting service, on the recommendation of someone at work, (jaguarpc.com) and I'm amused by how different the experience of web hosting is/would be depending on how much you actually know about how internets work.

For instance, I notice they have a nice little live chat thingy to talk to people over tech support (which, btw, is the best thing; im/irc/other realtime text chat is basically my by far preferred medium for getting answers to technical questions from strangers. Voice is too awkward, and email is alright but slower) so I ask them "hey I assume that I can still just go straight to whatever ip address you give me to test stuff before I switch my dns stuff over, right?" and they're like "yeah of course" and I'm like "sweet, thanks, I figured".

But what they didn't tell me --- and what I expect would be a rather frustrating mystery if I didn't expect it --- is that of course their apache is paying attention to the Host: http header to multiplex between many hosted web sites, and nothing's gonna work right if I just go to the bare ip address. And so naturally I find a firefox extension that lets me modify the outgoing http headers (I found a chrome one, too, but it didn't seem to work, and I had as a backup plan looking up appropriate flags on wget or curl, or if worse came to worse, writing the appropriate perl script) and confirmed that yeah with the right Host:, things work fine.

All in all it makes me kind of grumpy to let someone else run the actual server and not be able to diddle the apache configs myself, but (a) let's face it I don't really do anything fancy with them, and (b) it's like half as expensive as my current host, and (c) they dont' seem to have any disk quotas on this cheap ~$5-9/mo (depending on how long a commitment you get) plan. This (c) fact blows my mind a little --- and I'm just waiting to find out there's a more serious catch --- because disk limits have always been the psychological bottleneck thing for finding a good and cheap hosting provider for me in the past, not bandwidth or cpu beefiness or whatev. I don't know if I actually have that much data, but typical 5-25G limits just sound small, you know? I know I've got a 100G hard drive sitting here at least half full of random stuff I'd like to have another backup copy of somewhere.