I have recently moved my business hosting to Knownhost from Bluehost, who have had far too much downtime for my liking during the last eight months, the latest outage taking my business websites offline for almost 28 hours on top of previous extended outages in August and New Years Eve 2013.
First thing I like about Knownhost is that they put their money where their mouth is; they offer a SLA (service level agreement); which guarantee’s 99.9% uptime on their network. For every 0.1% below 99.9%, they refund 10% of their fees, which means should uptime drop to 99.0%, you will get a month of free hosting. This is impressive at this price-point; I opted for the VPS-4 (cPanel) package, which costs $65 per month; which currently can be reduced by 15% by using these specials.
Moving onto my initial impressions of the service. I’ll start with the provisioning time; which was slower than other hosts I have used over the years. Knownhost guarantee your VPS will be online within 24 hours; but claim it usually takes less than three hours for your server to be available.
I signed up just before midnight on Thursday and come 11am Friday morning, despite being able to log into the Knownhost website which showed my account as “On”, I still hadn’t been assigned an IP address to be able to log into WHM and create a cPanel account. I emailed support about this and suddenly I started to receive Emails saying that my server was being provisioned and soon after I got my login details and IP assignation. Support was prompt in response; less than five minutes, which was a nice surprise; I’m used to having to wait 8 – 12 or more hours for a response.
Server speed is excellent; according to Monitis.com; the average response time over 24 hours is 84.25ms with 100% uptime, which is significantly up on Bluehost’s stats; 117ms & 99.3% uptime.
I had a few issues with migrating my websites because of some coding, allow_url_include is disabled on Knownhost; so I had to make changes to the code which was an easy fix. The reason I had HTTP includes was because there was common code that was located on a different server. Now all the code is on the same server, so I can use absolute paths for the includes. Just something to consider if you host websites on different servers and pull code using PHP HTTP requests.
Based upon my initial impressions; I would recommend Knownhost, great value reliable hosting it would seem. There are multiple options for control panels, offering cPanel, Plesk and DirectAdmin as well as no control panel should you want to save $5 p/m and/or make your life more complicated.
If you already have cPanel hosting like Bluehost; you can transfer your entire cPanel including files, databases and Email over to KnownHost incredibly easily. Although I was a dumbass and realized this after I had manually transferred my files, databases and Email across; live and learn I guess!
Additionally, KnownHost also offer a free migration service; you just need to contact support with current host/login details and new (KnownHost) login details and like magic your website will be transferred. I didn’t use this service personally so I can’t speak to the speed of the migration!
Should any of this review turn out to be untrue in time, I will be updating accordingly.