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Ever tried a free host?

Discussion in 'Web Development' started by athena02, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. athena02 New Member

    athena02

    I tried a few of these in the past when I was thinking of having a couple of simple blogs up simply for the sake of promoting my main ones. As you can guess however, they were mostly disappointing and that didn't last.

    My best experience was probably with 247Zilla, where I had no issue over the first few months. Then things started going wrong, and the blogs would often stay down for hours. I eventually dropped them and let the domains expire.

    There are also other options like Blogger or Wordpress.com, but they just don't feel the same as a true website host.

     
    logitech74 likes this.
  2. Converse Active Member

    Converse

    This forum was put together as a means of recovering from a miserably horrid experience with ProBoards as a free forum host, but really the problems didn't begin until I signed onto Forums.net, their paid hosting plan.

    Other than that, it has been years since I have used free hosting services and, with the comparative low cost of paid hosting these days, I am not sure why anyone would build their site on a free hosting plan. Early on, like more than a decade ago, I used Geocities and another one called Virtual something or another, I forget now. Even then, I used their paid hosting plans though.

    As for blog hosting, I can understand why someone might want to use WordPress hosting since some web hosting companies (Dreamhost) are terrible when it comes to hosting sites built on a dynamic platform. Dynamic sites crash regularly at Dreamhost, and WebHosting Hub builds in such tight security that I find myself locked out of my own site half the time.

     
  3. Shan Barton New Member

    Shan Barton

    Unlike some years ago when we had limited optons when it came to getting reliable and affordable hosting, I also don't see any reason why someone in this age would opt for free hosting. I have personally used blogger in the past but realized that I was limiting myself to a lot of things. Wordpress is much better because of the many options they offer in their unique platform. Free hosting can be very unreliable so paid hosting is the best way to go for anyone serious online.

     
  4. Billy New Member

    Billy

    I had a blogger blog when I first started out, didn't have any issues with hosting, but it only costs $10 a month for hosting a ton of websites.

     
  5. oldwriter New Member

    oldwriter

    Yes, I have tried them. To be honest the experience hasn't been horrible. It hasn't been exceptionally good either. It has been mostly OK since I haven't demanded nor expected too much out of it.

    The times I tried free hosting packages obeyed to a simple reason: preview and development. Those were quick and dirty temporary trials. Only once have a I used a free web hosting package for a mid-sized production site, soon to be moved to a paid plan (VPS if I recall right).

    I can see how free web hosting plans offer a good alternative/solution for fellows starting-up with this; nonetheless, I wouldn't recommend running medium-to-large production websites on free plans.

    With paid shared hosting you have support maintaining the server, caring for it, pondering what to install for keeping it in good health; -better yet- with a VPS account for your hosting needs, you are the one in charge and can tweak your server's features to your heart's content. Budget permitting, this is the option I recommend.

     
    Converse likes this.
  6. SimplySidy Member

    SimplySidy

    When I started out, I literally had no idea of anything related to websites. I was amazed when I used my computer for sending and email and it was real fast - I had a yahoo email back then and Google was something no one had heard about (ah, that era and me being an ancient :p)

    I set up a free account and web page at Triond - Yahoo owned it back then - and despite it being filled up with adverts, it was a good experience - to test what you read on books and put it up as practice or test.

    Eventually, I moved on to set up my first blog on Blogspot (the blogger was called Blogspot back those days and I wonder why they changed such a name). Then, I also set up a forum for my students (on a free host what provided phpBB - and I remember it was one of the few options that was available). I set up that forum so that I could induce a "sharing of skills and mutual problem solving" amongst my students.

    I also had a few blogs on wordpress.

    Unfortunately, as the blogs grew, they shut down those for reasons best known to them (today, I understand that as these blogs were all registered via the same email ID, this might have been a reason - keeping in sync with updates from Google etc).

    But yes, this risk - of getting deleted without any prior notice is one of the worst nightmares for any one who plans to make it big on the Internet - and as such, professionals should avoid getting to the free hosts.

     
    Converse likes this.
  7. jdroc New Member

    jdroc

    Yeah I'm a newbie and learned very quickly that free hosting sucks. The websites that are on free hosting sites all looked like crap to me. I wanted to put out quality work so I never fell for that free hosting game. I had a friend use 1on1 and I ended up having to redo things over from him with my very limited knowledge. It still turned out better than what he had at first.

     
  8. Survivor29 New Member

    Survivor29

    I did try a couple of free hosts when I was initially starting out with web development. To be honest, the limitations that I ran into were too much to deal with. The hosting market isn't what it used to be and there are plenty of inexpensive web hosting providers nowadays that are surprisingly good.

    The main issue I encountered was that the free hosts were offering old versions of PHP, if at all, and as I was working with state-of-the-art releases, I couldn't really use what I was learning because the required version of PHP wasn't installed on the server.

     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2014
  9. logitech74 New Member

    logitech74

    This is a good thread actually, we can exchange experience. I used freehostia. Check them out here: freehostia.com/index2.html
    They offer Chocolate plan which is free for everyone. I used them a while back, with my first website that I had and they actually worked great. Cpanel is a bit slower, but it works and the design is great there. If you're looking for a free webhost, you should check them out. Also, the support is great there, even though you're using free plan. :)

     
  10. Claraviolet New Member

    Claraviolet

    I've used webs.com. After an year or so..my site disappeared into thin air! They didn't even bother to give me an explanation!

    After that I've switched to co.nf. It seems like they will delete our sites,if there isn't any activity(at least 25 unique visits) for 3 months.
    Now I am using go daddy hosting(for another forum).But most of the time my site is down because of capacity issues.

    So,no one can provide satisfactory hosting.
    That's what I've learned from my experiences.
    P.S.I can't possibly go for dedicated hosting for just 100 users now.Can I? :(

     
  11. Converse Active Member

    Converse

    A lot of very good websites began on Geocities but, with $4-5 a month paid hosting available, I wouldn't bother with free hosting. While I don't know for sure that Google will discount your site because it's on a free host, I suspect that it will, and I am pretty darned sure that you'll have trouble getting people to link to it.

     
  12. SimplySidy Member

    SimplySidy

    In that scenario try some of these -

    Google too offers free website hosting - though this is similar to blogger - in terms of building a website - they have a decent interface. Unfortunately, it is all plain HTML and CSS. There is no Database and no server side coding available. This service is called Google Sites.

    Then, there are some more in use specially by people from the eastern (or should I say Asian side of the world) - Weebly and Wix. They both come as free and paid services - as such I believe that they will stay for a longer period of time.

    And yes, when you say -
    P.S.I can't possibly go for dedicated hosting for just 100 users now.Can I?

    Consider this -
    I have a website hosted for 5 years now and that website has never got me any direct client. Still, it is hosted on my own domain and I have rented out my own space. I think it is the purpose of your website that determines whether you should have a paid hosting service or even a free one - Till now, I have been use my website just to prove my existence on the Internet. I do not have a blog attached to it. And very soon, I will migrate to WordPress - right now I am getting the paging and content ready.

    As mentioned by @Converse - "... with $4-5 a month paid hosting available, I wouldn't bother with free hosting..." hosting has really become cheap and affordable. And dedicated servers are not the only options. You can also look at cloud and VPN services if you really are thinking about Dedicated Hosting. They can be better alternatives in the interim period.

     
  13. Converse Active Member

    Converse

    I have come across some Weebly sites that had good information, even finding a few town and organizational sites built on a Weebly platform.

     
  14. Billy New Member

    Billy

    Weebly can look pretty good if you do some experimenting, so I'm not surprised. A lot of the time, people will only use the default options of a site, and it will look crappy, but I've actually come across a few Bloggers and Weebly sites and been really surprised to find out that they were free sites.

     
  15. jade870 New Member

    jade870

    Personally I’m just starting out as a new hosting advertiser. I recently discovered a site called weebly my side has probably been up for a few hours. Everyone on my social media network is talking about it. So I decided to give it a try, I guess we’ll see how things go from there. From the looks of these recent post that I have read many people have not had very good luck with free hosting. I guess for now all I can do is hope and keep my fingers crossed.

     
  16. Billy New Member

    Billy

    There not much difference between ranking a Weebly to a domain that you own, is some cases it's easier, but you need to know what you're doing, in terms of SEO. The big drawback of using a free site like Weebly is the fact that you can spend months or years building links to the domain, and if Weebly one day decided to delete your site, all of that hard work would go down the toilet.

     
  17. toradrake Member

    toradrake

    I haven't used free hosting in a long time but my past experience was good. My sites got into the search engines and even in the first two pages. I always got the free hosting with a purchased domain name. I don't know if that made a difference or not, probably did, but either way... it was quite some time ago so things may have changed since.

     
  18. Shamzblueworld New Member

    Shamzblueworld

    I have used quite a few free hosts in the past, 000 are a good if you are just starting, they are stable and without much hassle your can host your webpages there, then there was sitefrost, which arguably were the best post to host service, but they closed the service a few years back. There are many others too which I have used, but not that reliable I'd say, and also the features are very limited.

     
  19. Sparkster New Member

    Sparkster

    I had an email earlier today from 000webhost to inform me of a new offer from Hostinger, who are offering a free web hosting service with 2GB storage, 100GB bandwidth, PHP & MySQL, a free site builder and they do not display any ads on your website. They also have paid options and a referral scheme. Personally I have used 000webhost for many of my websites in the past and have never really had any major problems or significant issues with them. They actually offer one of the best free hosting services on the internet in my opinion. They do claim 99% uptime though which was not the case in my experience. I'm tempted to take up the Hostinger offer.

     
  20. chasedood New Member

    chasedood

    I stay away from the free hosting. In my book... You Get What You Pay For. Which is crap if you don't pay for your hosting. There are so many providers out there these days that it is very simple to get hosting from top hosting company's for under $5 a month!

     

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