Cheap scalable hosting recommendations?

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Matthew Gerring

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Jul 21, 2011, 11:53:51 AM7/21/11
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Hello all. I was recently put in charge of deciding what hosting infrastructure the Spartan Daily at San Jose State will run on next semester, and I wanted to get some recommendations from you all.

Whatever hosting we get needs to have good support, be scalable, and be relatively cheap. We need to be able to spin servers up and down under load and save as much money as possible.

Last semester our site got slammed when we had a shooting on campus that turned into a national story. We had 8,080 visits and 16,469 pageviews, which was the one time in my entire life I was happy to be on College Publisher. So this level of traffic is basically our doomsday scenario. Average mid-week traffic is closer to 5 to 600-something visits with 2 pageviews per visit.

Of course the hope is to increase the average, but that's where we're at now.

So far people have recommended Slicehost, Web Faction, and Rackspace Cloud. What do you all think?

-Matthew

Miles Skorpen

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Jul 21, 2011, 1:23:10 PM7/21/11
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Matt,

With the traffic you listed, I don't think you need to worry too much about scalability. If you have good caching options enabled on your site (and assuming this isn't video content we're referring to), WebFaction or other relatively cheap hosts could serve your needs just fine.

That said, I'm sure there are people with better experience on the list, but this is my take.

Best of luck,

Miles


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Daniel Bachhuber

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Jul 21, 2011, 1:27:43 PM7/21/11
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Ditto Miles. You should be just fine with Webfaction, although general
WordPress best practices still apply (like making sure you're paying
attention to the performance impact of the plugins you're installing).
Also, a caching plugin like W3 Total Cache will help you handle the
bursts of traffic. You should be able to just turn it on and not have
to worry about any custom configuration or settings.

Cheers,

Daniel

On Jul 21, 1:23 pm, Miles Skorpen <mi...@milesskorpen.com> wrote:
> Matt,
>
> With the traffic you listed, I don't think you need to worry too much about
> scalability. If you have good caching options enabled on your site (and
> assuming this isn't video content we're referring to), WebFaction or other
> relatively cheap hosts could serve your needs just fine.
>
> That said, I'm sure there are people with better experience on the list, but
> this is my take.
>
> Best of luck,
>
> Miles
>
> > - Get connected on Twitterhttp://www.twitter.com/copressor Facebook
> >http://www.facebook.com/copress
>
> >http://www.copress.org/

Andrew Spittle

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Jul 21, 2011, 1:30:34 PM7/21/11
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I agree with Miles. When I was at the Whitman Pioneer we had monthly uniques around 16-20,000 with about 2 pageviews per visitor. We were on super cheap shared hosting but were just careful with caching and storing video on Vimeo.

I'd recommend either WP Super Cache or W3 Total Cache for caching. They're both easy to integrate. Being careful with the plugins you install is also a good way to keep performance fast.

Cheers,
Andrew

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