Canadian Web Hosting Blog and News
12Sep/140

Need a web-hosting company? Some key factors to help you choose:

Most businesses have their own website now and it is essential that the web-hosting provider is secure so data and business isn’t lost through malicious hacking or downtime. But how do we choose a reliable web-hosting company? Here are some factors to consider:

1.  Customer support
If any issues arise, whether your site is down or data is missing, it is essential that your web-hosting provider is there to support you. Settle for nothing less than 24/7 customer support so that your issues can be resolved in a timely manner. Make sure you can get help anytime and wherever you are located.

2.  Reliability
Check out the web-hosting provider’s guarantee of uptime. You want a reliable service and your website to have maximum exposure to potential business. Where 100% server uptime does not exist (if a company guarantees that, it is false), there are definitely web-hosting providers that will meet expectations of 99.9% - 99.99999% guaranteed uptime. Also make sure they provide backup services or other options to secure your data.

3.  Guarantee
Just like when we shop for any other product, we want to have the freedom to return something we don’t like or doesn’t fit our needs. Look for web-hosting companies that offer at least a 30-day guarantee or pro-rated money back guarantee. This trial period will let you cancel your service early with less penalty.

4.  Options
Check out the web-hosting provider’s website. A solid company will offer you flexible plans and a variety of packages to suit your needs. Compare the prices and inquire about differences in rate. If you’re looking for a web-hosting plan to resell web space, make sure there are reseller plan options.

5.  Extra charges
Are there limitations in your plan, such as bandwidth? Providers will often charge extra when you exceed your plan restrictions and as a result, your site could go offline. Check and compare that these prices are reasonable and that the company will keep your site online when these charges are paid off.

6.  Discounts
Once you have narrowed down a few choices, chat with the sales representatives to inquire about discounts and special offers. Many providers will offer free software installers or domain names.

7.  Reputation
Finally, check reputability of a company. Instead of using forums or other unreliable sources, consider looking into accredited business directories with ratings, such as the Better Business Bureau.

 

Sheila W.

@CAWebHosting
@CWHUpdates

18Nov/130

Canadian Dedicated Servers and DDR4 RAM

 

Every three to five years, we get a product upgrade that has a significant impact on many products that we use - dedicated servers, desktops, cloud servers, shared hosting that has the potential to change how customers use our Canadian Web Hosting services.  That technology upgrade is RAM.  Specifically at the end of 2013, companies like Crucial, Micro, Samsung and Adata are expected to start rolling out their DDR4 Memory technology.   This new technology is engineered to pack more performance into your system and has the potential to double or triple the available density per module.  This is a continuing theme for dedicated server and technology partners as everyone works to make systems and components more dense, more efficient with less cost for end users. Moreover, DDR4 modules will use up to 20% less power than the previous versions, and will enable data rates that are at least twice as fast as  current DDR3 memory.

So what is DDR4?  The Joint Electron Devices Engineering Council (JEDEC) signed off on a final DDR4 standard this summer. But a draft of the spec and its key attributes was actually issued last year. Those preliminary specs call for DDR4 memory to operate at a maximum of 1.2 volts (20 percent less than current DDR3 memory) and achieve data transfer rates of 3.2 billion transfers per second (double that of the top-end speed of DDR3's memory bus).

Initially, most DDR4 modules from companies like Micron and Crucial will handle transfer speeds of 2.4 billion transfers per second, with later versions ramping up to the 3.2 billion memory transfers per second at the top-end rate.  Right now, that translates to roughly the same number of bits per second in throughput.  However, note that Samsung has advertised a throughput of 2.113 gigabits per second for its DDR4.   The "DDR" in DDR4 is an acronym for "double data rate"—all DDR memory moves data across the memory bus twice for each cycle of the bus' timing clock. That's the most primary bit of architecture that DDR4 shares with its predecessor. Instead of using multiple shared channels to link memory units with the CPU's memory controller, each DDR4 memory module has its own dedicated point-to-point connection. 

Aside from the reduced power consumption, DDR4 RAM also reduces overall power requirements through an improved version of the pseudo-open drain interface (POD) logic, a technology that is also used in DDR3 RAM.  POD logic interfaces draw no current except when they're flipped to their low state.

So, what isn’t there to like about DDR4? It will make my cloud servers, dedicated servers and every other web hosting service perform better.  DDR4's technical advances do come at a price. The first is finding a way to accommodate the additional memory connections. While the point-to-point architecture gives DDR4 the ability to read and write more data per cycle that becomes increasingly challenging to handle the large amounts of memory.  With some of the servers that Canadian Web Hosting is preparing to deploy, these new servers use high-speed digital switches in order to reduce the number of direct memory channels connecting to the CPU's memory controller.

All in all, DDR4 RAM means that you will process your data twice at least twice quick, make your websites or applications much faster and end users will experience improved responsiveness for each interaction for your website or hosted application.   As today’s applications require more and more resources, your preferred tools like Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress will work faster and more efficiently without any added cost.    Crucial created a great graphic demonstrating the performance differences and improvements that DDR4 RAM provides.

   Canadian Web Hosting looks to integrate DDR4 RAM

For more information about DDR4, new web hosting service that integrate the latest ram technology or dedicated servers that will help you improve the performance of your website or application, contact our team at sales@canadianwebhosting.com or by phone at 1.888.821.7888.

4Nov/130

Migrating Your Website to a New Web Host

Many of our prospective and current Canadian Web Hosting clients come to a point where they need to have their website(s) migrated to another server or want to move their hosting over to us from another web hosting provider.  As one might imagine, we do hundreds of migrations a month and through our extensive experience in migrating websites and cloud servers, we have been able to identify several key areas that need to be considered before, during and after the migration.

DECISIONS TO MIGRATE

With anything, the decision to move is never an easy one.  Potential Canadian Web Hosting clients who have requested migrations from remote hosts have more often than not reported the following four (4) reasons as their main purpose for migrating:

  • Pricing is not reflective on the services provided
  • Change of service to: VPS, Dedicated Server, Cloud Hosting, Private Cloud
  • Service level is not acceptable
  • Requirements have outgrown the scale the current provider is operating at
  • Requirement or preference to have company data hosted within Canada
  • The need for additional corporate governance like SSAE 16

After identifying the need to migrate, it is important to consider any third-party dependencies that could also play a role in the migration.

THIRD PARTIES

For those who are not managing their own websites it is crucial you contact the individual(s) who know the dependencies or requirements of each site. Making sure everyone is on the same page internally will go a long way both with the migration and for extended maintenance of the site. For instance, if the DNS service for the website is hosted externally Canadian Web Hosting needs to make the necessary changes with the remote provider to minimize impact during the migration.

EXISTING INFRASTRUCTURE ANALYSIS

Once any 3rd parties have been identified, we will have our support engineers evaluate the existing configuration to ensure there is a clear understanding of where the migration will start.  Including items such as:

  • Identification of applications that are in use
  • Identification of versions of all applications that are in use
  • Use of control panels
  • Ensure there is no evidence of server compromise or malicious activity, if the existing server has been compromised we must ensure a greater degree of independence with the new system, ensure passwords are reset etc
  • Identify any interaction with third party services which may have IP (source or destination) specific requirements or restrictions in place

IDENTIFY SITES/APPLICATIONS BEING MIGRATED

Create a list of the domain names, servers, software, data and other tools which have services that are to be migrated. Where possible, extract lists of the following:

  • Domain names - from web server configuration
  • DNS
  • Mail domains
  • System user accounts
  • Mail accounts
  • FTP accounts
  • SSH accounts
  • Database user accounts and database names
  • Remote access services
  • Local service

IMPLEMENTATION AND TESTING

After the decision to migrate has been reached and the required information has been supplied, and in coordination with you, we would proceed to schedule the migration. Depending on the size of the migration it can be done quite quickly and with minimal delays. In certain cases where a large scale migration is required, a Canadian Web Hosting support engineer will be assigned as the main point of contact during the process. This helps us maintain continuity with the flow of information and updates between us.

In most cases website migrations will involve significant changes to the versions and installations of the programs or applications that support the websites. Even slight changes can cause significant problems. Thorough testing is always absolutely critical to avoid outages and service disruption. Testing will need to be carried out by someone with intricate knowledge of your website or application that is being moved and how it is expected to operation.

If you are interested in migrating an account or have any questions about the services we provide feel free to contact us at 1.888.821.7888 or send us an email at sales@canadianwebhosting.com.  We offer free website migration and up to 6-months of credit for any unused credits.

18Sep/130

Getting Started with Shared Hosting

Shared hosting: Linux or Windows?

One of the most frequent topics that any web hosting encounters are questions related to getting started.  Things like what resources do I require? Will my website be growing soon? What kind of support is there from the web host? Working with a host like Canadian Web Hosting will go a long ways in helping you get your business or website online, but before that there are some basic questions that need to be answered before you take the next step.

The first question you should ask is what language will your website be coded in?

If you require the site to be coded in ASP.NET, or want access to MS SQL databases, MVC, or IIS then you will need to setup a Windows web-hosting plan.  If on the other hand you were looking for applications like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, Tomcat, MySQL or PHP then you would want sign up for a Linux-based web-hosting plan.  In looking at the alternatives, there are hundreds of applications and other types of CMS’ designed to improve your web building experience.  To help simplify your setup, you should also look for auto installation scripts or for tools like Softaculous that come with prebuilt applications that e deliver single-click installations.  Every Canadian Web Hosting shared hosting plan includes easy one-click installation for more than 200 different applications and CMS tools.  Determining if you require a CMS and which one will align with your needs is essential to moving forward with your website.

cPanel Control Panel

For Linux based clients, Canadian Web Hosting includes the industry leading cPanel control panel on all Linux-based shared hosting servers to allow easy management of accounts.   Users of cPanel have access to a user-friendly interface that facilitates management of emails, databases, website files and much more. This control panel gives the end user the ability to manage their account without requiring knowledge of server management scripting.  It also provides advanced tools for more advanced web hosts including tools specifically for website statistics, marketing, SEO and so much more.

Plesk Control Panel

Windows based web hosting clients with Canadian Web Hosting utilize a different control called Plesk from Parallels.  Plesk is a control panel designed the end user in mind and delivers many leading features for Windows-based web hosting. Users are able to manage their websites, emails, domains and more.  Additionally, Plesk delivers support for open source and commercial applications including support for Open-Xchange and APS Mail Aspect.  Being able to login and make changes with the click of a button is what gives our clients an advantage when using Plesk.

Next steps

For clients who are new to web hosting or are having a difficult time getting set up, Canadian Web Hosting delivers 24/7 support and we also have comprehensive tutorial pages to assist in getting more familiar with their web hosting account. The tutorials cover everything from setting up emails for your Apple devices to creating private name servers. Visit the FAQ page or our newly updated Google+ page for the latest videos including our cPanel and Plesk video guides.

In addition to our tutorials page, you can always reach us at sales@canadianwebhosting.com.

5Sep/130

Canadian Web Hosting Annouces Major Shared Hosting Upgrades and 50% Shared Hosting Discount

Canadian Web Hosting (http://www.canadianwebhosting.com), a leading provider of web hosting, cloud hosting and infrastructure services in Canada, today announced that they have completed a significant upgrade project for their shared web hosting servers to take advantage of new technologies including improved read/write SSD caching. As part of this, Canadian Web Hosting has also increased server resources including disk space and RAM, as well as improved support for many leading applications like Drupal, Joomla and WordPress in their shared hosting environment to ensure the highest level of customer satisfaction.

As part of the upgrade, Canadian Web Hosting have increased their shared hosting disk I/O (input/output) rate through expanded use of caching through hardware upgrades and new technologies. With this upgrade, each shared hosting server that hosts a website, static pages, web applications, databases or e-commerce store will benefit from faster data rates and end-users will have improved access and much faster load times. To achieve this, Canadian Web Hosting utilized the latest SSD’s (solid state drive) from Intel and Crucial using latest 520-series and M4 series drives. Each flash memory drive includes 256 GB of storage and offers improved SSD read/write caching and is configured in RAID10. In addition, every server utilizes VMware virtualization and includes at least 32GB of RAM and dual Intel E5 Xeon processors that when combined deliver overall performance improvements by as much as 60% when compared to other Canadian-based shared hosting providers.

"We host many users operating High Performance websites, web applications, databases and indexes, as well as environments in which data is subject to frequent access and requires power and flexibility but don’t have the budget flexibility to move to cloud hosting or a dedicated server," says Canadian Web Hosting Director, Matt McKinney. "During the upgrade, we performed repeated tests and uncovered truly unprecedented performance as well as significantly lower server load that translates to more processing power and elimination of potential bottlenecks for our customers. We are happy to say that our upgraded shared servers offer unparalleled performance and with our new 50% shared hosting promotion we’ve made it easier than ever to move to Canadian Web Hosting."

With the launch of the upgraded shared hosting services, Canadian Web Hosting is offering new customers a 50% discount on new shared hosting plans. With this offer, it is easier than ever to move to Canadian Web Hosting’s enterprise-grade infrastructure, industry-best 24/7 support, and safety and security of Canada’s privacy regulations with a 100% Canadian-owned and –operated service. Potential customers can learn more by visiting their hosting specials or calling 1.888.821.7888 for more information.