Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!


How to Compare Shared Hosting Plans?
New on LowEndTalk? Please Register and read our Community Rules.

How to Compare Shared Hosting Plans?

You all have been super helpful with my hosting questions, I really appreciate it. So, I have another! One of my personal websites is on the "Unlimited Platinum" shared hosting plan on Stablehost, and though I do have a great recurring coupon for it, and the site has no issues with uptime and performance, it feels like they never upgrade anything running on the server, so slowly but surely I keep running into issues with not being able to install upgrades and am getting concerned about potential security issues. For example, the site is running PHP 7.2.x, which from a quick google has been end of life for over 2 years. The cPanel theme is stuck on paper lantern and won't let me upgrade the new jupiter theme, etc.

I'm anticipating that in 2023 the site will start to have a decent uptick in traffic and usage, so I figure now is the time to get things upgraded and the security hardened. But before messing around on the software side, I want to make sure I'm on a good hosting plan. This one needs to be at least somewhat managed, because while I have no issues messing around in the command line or configuring stuff for fun, this one site needs to be reliable enough that I don't trust myself managing it, since it actually has some traffic and income. I'm paying $72/year for this shared hosting (the "list price" is $34.95/mo, though it was notably lower when I first signed up), and while it's a great coupon compared to full price, a quick comparison to the $15.89 BF RackNerd special that I picked up makes me feel like for $72/year or so, I should be getting more. For example, within the cPanel for my StableHost, it has 50 entry processes (not actually sure what those are), 1024 IOPS, 10 MB/s I/O Usage, and 100 Processes. The very-cheaper RackNerd plan (both being BF prices from different years) shows 200 Entry processes, 15000 IOPS, 80 MB/s I/O Usage, and 220 Processes. All much higher than the current plan I'm on. The one area the Stablehost seems to have much higher is the physical memory, having 5GB vs the 1GB on the Racknerd plan.

But that's about as far as my experience takes me, comparing stats in the admin panels and googling when I don't understand them. I tried to compare the yabs script I see used around here a lot, but it wouldn't run on the Stablehost plan (something about folder not found when it grepped something before the disk speed tests, and the network tests all showed busy). So how do I compare the CPU or other aspects, and how do I know if this RackNerd plan is enough for that site, or if I should find one at a similar budget but even better specs? The site has a forum, wordpress, and streaming audio (a weekly podcast), and ideally needs to be hosted in Europe (France preferably, but EU in general is fine). I'm even fine increasing the budget a bit if needed, but of course if the $15.89/year plan is good enough, I'd love to save the money, lol.

So, uh, where do I start? Suggestions appreciated!

Thanked by 3kidrock markz mikei

Comments

  • Yes, I would like to know the same. For VPS, there is YABS but for shared hosting, is there any way to compare performance of different providers that will help to choose provider and hosting plan?

  • dustincdustinc Member, Patron Provider, Top Host

    @JasonM is well versed in this area :)

  • JasonMJasonM Member
    edited December 2022

    @dustinc thanks for tagging

    @SocksAreComfortable said: I'm paying $72/year for this shared hosting (the "list price" is $34.95/mo, though it was notably lower when I first signed up), and while it's a great coupon compared to full price, a quick comparison to the $15.89 BF RackNerd special that I picked up makes me feel like for $72/year or so, I should be getting more. For example, within the cPanel for my StableHost, it has 50 entry processes (not actually sure what those are), 1024 IOPS, 10 MB/s I/O Usage, and 100 Processes. The very-cheaper RackNerd plan (both being BF prices from different years) shows 200 Entry processes, 15000 IOPS, 80 MB/s I/O Usage, and 220 Processes. All much higher than the current plan I'm on. The one area the Stablehost seems to have much higher is the physical memory, having 5GB vs the 1GB on the Racknerd plan.

    Well I can explain how to compare shared hosting.
    Memory (RAM) is must for dynamic, wordpress, or forum sites. A minimum of 1GB RAM is okay for serving 25K wordpress posts to 18K-20K daily site visitors, IF you have page-caching enabled, and have object-cache, database cache (Wordpress 6.1+) is having this by default now, and ample disk I/O to read the database, write the database, and 1CPU to compile that PHP processes, etc. For a growing site beyond 25K daily visitors without caching you may need 1.5 GB RAM but not much, as the memory is used for few milliseconds and then emptied.

    What I will suggest is get opcache (plugin or script from github) and enable it within your cPanel php manager. This will use 128MB RAM to store pre-compiled php scripts of all of your theme files, wordpress admin files, any other forum files, etc. RAM is most fastest storage and so your sites will load faster.

    Here's my opcache status:
    total keys cached: 11087
    Hits: 79.72%
    Memory: 128.00MB of 128.00MB
    What are keys? Here is one example: /home/example/domains/example.com/public_html/news/wp-admin/includes/admin-filters.php
    so each php script is 1 key, and it has cached in RAM
    

    RAM:
    Stablehost offers 5GB RAM, but the other features are too restrictive/tiny like only offering 50 entry processes (Entry processes are the number of PHP scripts, cron jobs, and shell sessions running at a single time.) v/s Racknerd's 200 EP. That means, that 5GB of RAM in real world is un-usable as only 50 php scripts will enter/get served at single time on Stablehost. For Racknerd, you have limit of 200EP which is more than enough.

    I/O
    is another major factor in compiling dynamic pages, serving them. 10MB/s is quite less. I've seen hosts offering 1MB/s. But with SSD/Nvme SSD its now beyond 50MB/s. Racknerd offers 80MB/s and that quite fast. This helps where: while updating your plugin files, downloading content, backups, and serving dynamic pages to the visitors. Same with IOPS, which is read-write operations per second. The higher you have the faster the database queries will run, backups and downloads. simple.

    Processes
    that is total processes is also sum of all open processes your site is handling per visitor hit. in short it is total number of connections at a single time your site can handle. Now stablehost has 100, racknerd has 220. So racknerd wins when your site gets much more visitors in less time.

    Regarding CPU
    2 CPU is sufficient of very high traffic site. If you have enabled cache, 1CPU is also sufficient. Also, you can get reseller plan, which has 1CPU for every account and host database on one account, and site on one account so you get to use 2CPU, 2GB RAM. I've done this for a very high traffic wordpress site. After all those resources are per account and shared among the node. So you can try this hack! Else, for growing site, like I've one for my client where I'm using cloudflare full page cache, cpanel litespeed page cache, opcache, object cache, the CPU usage is 14 to 15% average (out of 100% 1CPU) per day on site which get 18K unique visitors a day. IDK what stablehost offers about CPU, but most standard, LE, or premium hosts offer 1CPU only. There are few host that offer 2CPU on shared hosting.

    How will you measure how fast is CPU, compling php and read-write operation on any shared host?

    Simple, just install wordpress, add 20-25 posts, disable cache, and browse those from another pc/device and see how fast pages render. OR, just install any free plugin called wp benchmark plugin (available on wordpress.org or inside your wp installation plugin directory), install it, on two hosts, and run them at least 3 times, and during 3 different timing in the day/night, and you'll find out how the server/node is performing under the hood.

    the name of testing wordpress plugins are:
    1. WordPress Hosting Benchmark tool
    2. WPPerformanceTester (for php, mysql, cpu performance)
    3. PHP/MySQL CPU performance statistics

    Here's sample test from another host I've wp site hosted with from plugin PHP/MySQL CPU performance statistics:
    MySQL test:
    Time to perform: Query test (200 times) : 0.15 seconds (1333/sec)
    MySQL tests:
    Total time (all MySQL tests) : 6.53 seconds
    PHP test:
    Time to perform: Math test : 0.05 seconds
    Time to perform: StringManipulation test : 0.17 seconds
    Time to perform: test Loop test : 0.07 seconds
    Time to perform: test IfElse : 0.08 seconds
    Total time (all PHP tests) : 0.37 seconds
    Network test:
    Network test 1: Fetch data from nearest google CDN point : 30.10 Mbps
    All tests:
    Total time (all MySQL + PHP tests) : 6.90 seconds

    lower seconds is better.
    @SocksAreComfortable you can install and run above plugin on wordpress site hosted with stablehost and racknerd, and post the result here or DM me. I can analyze which one is more suitable for your use-case

  • $72/year ?! I've seen shared hosting here cost only $6/year, well you're getting ripped off big time.

    Thanked by 2vyas11 greentea
  • vyas11vyas11 Member
    edited December 2022

    Good explanation by @JasonM and I can suggest reaching out to @dustinc and check if you can get an extra gig or two allocated to your plan for (your) peace of mind.

    If justified by the customer, and is practically and technically possible, most reasonable hosts might consider such a request. In most cases for a reasonable additional amount

    Best wishes

    p.s @Ympker has a spreadsheet that compares different web hosting providers check that one also

    Thanked by 1JasonM
  • Avoid EIG.

    The first thing I do when shopping for shared hosting is to make sure that the shared hosting company is not owned by EIG (Endurance International Group).

    EIG owns over 80 different hosting company brands. All are very bad. Do a web search for "EIG owned hosting companies" and many websites will appear. Those websites are there for a reason - to help people like you and me who want to avoid EIG.

    I have prior experience helping others deal with EIG hosting company nightmares. I also have the unenviable experience of being the customer of a great hosting provider when they were bought and absorbed by EIG. The disaster started to unfold immediately. There was no "honeymoon." In case anyone cares, my provider was Arvixe, but I have also dealt with HostGator, A Small Orange, and others. It doesn't matter. If it is owned by EIG, it is bad.

    P.S. EIG is "in bed" with PCMag. Within a few months after the Arvixe takeover, PCMag published a glowing review of Arvixe. The review bore no resemblance to the company or its awful services in any way. I can't explain the disconnect between the glowing review and hellish reality other than what I assume are financial connections or incentives.

  • @emg said:
    Avoid EIG.

    The first thing I do when shopping for shared hosting is to make sure that the shared hosting company is not owned by EIG (Endurance International Group).

    EIG owns over 80 different hosting company brands. All are very bad. Do a web search for "EIG owned hosting companies" and many websites will appear. Those websites are there for a reason - to help people like you and me who want to avoid EIG.

    I have prior experience helping others deal with EIG hosting company nightmares. I also have the unenviable experience of being the customer of a great hosting provider when they were bought and absorbed by EIG. The disaster started to unfold immediately. There was no "honeymoon." In case anyone cares, my provider was Arvixe, but I have also dealt with HostGator, A Small Orange, and others. It doesn't matter. If it is owned by EIG, it is bad.

    P.S. EIG is "in bed" with PCMag. Within a few months after the Arvixe takeover, PCMag published a glowing review of Arvixe. The review bore no resemblance to the company or its awful services in any way. I can't explain the disconnect between the glowing review and hellish reality other than what I assume are financial connections or incentives.

    Asmallorange was great web hosting co. before Eig buyout 😥

  • edited December 2022

    @JasonM Really appreciate the detailed reply and explanations! Aspects like the other stats limiting the actual usefulness of additional memory is something that I had not considered, and definitely something I will keep in mind. Have read through what you wrote probably 4 times now, trying to make sure I absorb it all.

    As for those plugins for testing, I don't have a WP install on RackNerd atm, I'm just wondering if I should move my main one over to them since it seems to be a much lower price and much better specs (a combination which usually is a bit of a red flag, without other info), but it seems like the face-value of the situation is real. I installed the three plugins on my StableHost WP install, and here are the results:

    WordPress Hosting Benchmark Tool:

    CPU & Memory
    Operations with large text data 5.98
    Random binary data operations 6.31
    Filesystem
    Filesystem write ability 7.5
    Local file copy and access speed 7.82
    Small file IO test 2.89
    Database
    Importing large amount of data to database 1.51
    Simple queries on single table 7
    Complex database queries on multiple tables 6.12
    Object cache
    Persistent object cache enabled 0
    Network
    Network download speed test 7.51
    Your server score 5.3

    WPPerformanceTester:

    Server Performance Benchmarks
    Test Execution Time (seconds)
    Math 0.074
    String Manipulation 0.145
    Loops 0.012
    Conditionals 0.022
    Mysql Connect 0.001
    Mysql Query Version 0.001
    Mysql Query Benchmark 12.437
    Total Time (seconds) 12.690
    WordPress Performance Benchmark
    Execution Time (seconds) Queries Per Second
    0.993 1007.0493454179

    PHP/MySQL Performance statistics:

    MySQL test:
    Time to perform: 0.26 seconds (769/sec)
    MySQL tests:
    Time to perform: 9.31 seconds
    Time to perform: 1.76 seconds
    Time to perform: 0.67 seconds
    Total time (all MySQL tests) : 12.00 seconds
    PHP test:
    Math test : 0.09 seconds
    StringManipulation test : 0.29 seconds
    test Loop test : 0.11 seconds
    test IfElse : 0.20 seconds
    Total time (all PHP tests) : 0.69 seconds
    Network test:
    Network test 1: Fetch data from nearest google CDN point : 4.26 Mbps
    All tests:
    Total time (all MySQL + PHP tests) : 12.69 seconds

    Also, while the yabs script does not produce much, it can show some basic cpu info before it errors out in case that is useful:

    Basic System Information:

    Uptime : 1099 days, 13 hours, 28 minutes
    Processor : Intel Core Processor (Haswell, no TSX, IBRS)
    CPU cores : 2 @ 2399.996 MHz
    AES-NI : ✔ Enabled
    VM-x/AMD-V : ❌ Disabled
    RAM : 45.0 GiB
    Swap : 10.0 GiB
    Disk :
    grep: /etc/os-release: No such file or directory
    Distro :
    Kernel : 2.6.32-954.3.5.lve1.4.74.el6.x86_64
    df: Warning: cannot read table of mounted file systems: No such file or directory

    Thanked by 1JasonM
  • @emg said:
    Avoid EIG.

    The first thing I do when shopping for shared hosting is to make sure that the shared hosting company is not owned by EIG (Endurance International Group).

    Apparently, from what I've read on various threads here and on WHT, StableHost was bought out a few years ago by "Miss Hosting" which a lot of people seem to dislike. I've been using StableHost since a few years before that, roughly since 2012 I think, but it seems they have gotten bought out by a similar style company.

    Also, may or may not be related to shady business deals, but I saw that thread here about fake cpanel licenses and a site to check them out -- the one I have through SstableHost may have expired in 2018 per what I saw? Not sure how accurate that is, but I do know my cpanel feels super outdated...

    Thanked by 1greentea
  • @vyas11 said:
    Good explanation by @JasonM and I can suggest reaching out to @dustinc and check if you can get an extra gig or two allocated to your plan for (your) peace of mind.

    If justified by the customer, and is practically and technically possible, most reasonable hosts might consider such a request. In most cases for a reasonable additional amount

    Best wishes

    p.s @Ympker has a spreadsheet that compares different web hosting providers check that one also

    I'll be sure to look at that spreadsheet! If I do end up switching over hosts I'll monitor the memory usage and check for add-ons if needed, but who knows, maybe the 1GB will be plenty.

  • @SocksAreComfortable said:

    Apparently, from what I've read on various threads here and on WHT, StableHost was bought out a few years ago by "Miss Hosting" which a lot of people seem to dislike. I've been using StableHost since a few years before that, roughly since 2012 I think, but it seems they have gotten bought out by a similar style company.

    Also, may or may not be related to shady business deals, but I saw that thread here about fake cpanel licenses and a site to check them out -- the one I have through SstableHost may have expired in 2018 per what I saw? Not sure how accurate that is, but I do know my cpanel feels super outdated...

    You may be lucky. I am using a licensed version of cPanel from a hosting provider, and recently the user interface changed. The UI changes were not an improvement. In fact, the new user interface design is awful. Worse yet, it broke in my preferred browser.

    I complained to the provider, who indicated that they had no choice. The cPanel interface changes were pushed on them from the cPanel company along with regular updates. The provider held back from installing the new interface until they had no choice (the old interface was no longer provided as an option). They also told me that they have been fielding many complaints from customers about it.

  • JasonMJasonM Member
    edited December 2022

    @SocksAreComfortable said: I installed the three plugins on my StableHost WP install, and here are the results:

    yup, I've gone through the results of stablehost. Those are twice as high as my low end host. Indeed at stablehost you're paying too much for too little of the resources/benefits. I would suggest you try same plugin on racknerd or other LE host of your choice. I'm sure they'll be far better than stablehost. Also, yes, if you are planning to expand your site and expect more visitors, I'll suggest to move it away from stablehost.

    Also the YABS score you've posted is showing CPU less powerful, that is, just 2.4GHz (2399.99 MHz) where as at racknerd the CPU is much faster 3.4 GHz so this helps to open, complie, and process your files, scripts, database queries, caches, quite faster as compare to stablehost.

  • @SocksAreComfortable said:
    WordPress Hosting Benchmark Tool:

    CPU & Memory
    Operations with large text data 5.98
    Random binary data operations 6.31
    Filesystem
    Filesystem write ability 7.5
    Local file copy and access speed 7.82
    Small file IO test 2.89
    Database
    Importing large amount of data to database 1.51
    Simple queries on single table 7
    Complex database queries on multiple tables 6.12
    Object cache
    Persistent object cache enabled 0
    Network
    Network download speed test 7.51
    Your server score 5.3

    PHP/MySQL Performance statistics:

    MySQL test:
    Time to perform: 0.26 seconds (769/sec)
    MySQL tests:
    Time to perform: 9.31 seconds
    Time to perform: 1.76 seconds
    Time to perform: 0.67 seconds
    Total time (all MySQL tests) : 12.00 seconds
    PHP test:
    Math test : 0.09 seconds
    StringManipulation test : 0.29 seconds
    test Loop test : 0.11 seconds
    test IfElse : 0.20 seconds
    Total time (all PHP tests) : 0.69 seconds
    Network test:
    Network test 1: Fetch data from nearest google CDN point : 4.26 Mbps
    All tests:
    Total time (all MySQL + PHP tests) : 12.69 seconds

    You are overpaying at Stable. This is the test result for my $10 hosting.

    WordPress Hosting Benchmarking Tool

    CPU & Memory
    Operations with large text data 10
    Random binary data operations 10

    Filesystem
    Filesystem write ability 9.79
    Local file copy and access speed 9.98
    Small file IO test 10

    Database
    Importing large amount of data to database 6.46
    Simple queries on single table 10
    Complex database queries on multiple tables 10

    Object cache
    Persistent object cache enabled 0

    Network
    Network download speed test 9.84

    Your server score 8.6

    PHP/MySQL Performance statistics

    MySQL test:
    Time to perform: Query test (200 times) : 0.22 seconds (909/sec)

    MySQL tests:
    Time to perform: 3.98 seconds
    Time to perform: 0.27 seconds
    Time to perform: 0.32 seconds
    Total time (all MySQL tests) : 4.79 seconds

    PHP test:
    Math test : 0.03 seconds
    StringManipulation test : 0.10 seconds
    test Loop test : 0.04 seconds
    test IfElse : 0.06 seconds
    Total time (all PHP tests) : 0.23 seconds

    Network test:
    Network test 1: Fetch data from nearest google CDN point : 9.72 Mbps

    All tests:
    Total time (all MySQL + PHP tests) : 5.02 seconds

  • @kidrock said: This is the test result for my $10 hosting

    gr8. which CPU?

  • @JasonM said:

    @kidrock said: This is the test result for my $10 hosting

    gr8. which CPU?

    Ryzen 5800X, high endurance NVMe SSDs in RAID, and ECC RAM

  • edited December 2022

    Really appreciate all the feedback. Will be getting all the subdomains transferred off the StableHost plan (all of which are tiny and mostly static pages), then will figure out the actual transfer of the main site. Hopefully it isn't too bad, have never transferred a functional site with any databases before! I have until early March before the annual rebilling, so should be plenty time to make sure I do it right.

Sign In or Register to comment.