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in defense of hosting matters

Yes, Hosting Matters was down again. Yes, it was part of a prolonged DOS attack that started a few nights ago.

How many of you have hosts who set up a remote message board for times like these, so they can give you up-to-the-second updates on the progress they are making, so you can talk back and forth with others about the situation? Hosting Matters does that, and more.

A DOS attack is not something that a host can predict, nor is it something that is preventable. Many a large site has been the victim of DOS attacks; Microsoft, Yahoo, CNN. It happens, it gets fixed and people forget about it eventually.

There are several whiny, ungrateful people over at the aforementioned message boards, complaining about their site being down, complaining about ďbadĒ service, complaining about everything under the sun.

The ownership and management of HM have been answering the best they can, explaining in plain language what is going on and how AT&T is being unresponsive to the needs of HM and its clients. The HM staff is practically hand-holding these people through this attack, and the most some of them can do is stamp their feet and announce loudly that they are going to move to a different host, even though some of them have been with HM for years and have never experienced any trouble with them at all.

This is directed to those folks, and it something I said over at the boards: There is no host in the world that can guarantee you that their servers will never fall victim to a DOS attack. You can switch hosts all you want but the fact remains that no matter where you go, you are still vulnerable. Itís the nature of the internet. Go ahead and move. Take down your site, put it up somewhere else and see how long it takes you to find out that no one at MegaServers Hosting Company is going to hold your hand when things go wrong. No one is going to answer your help desk email within minutes, if not seconds. No one is going to walk you through things that you donít understand. Maybe theyíll ply you with dreams of 100% uptime, but you can bet your ass you will not be paying what you pay at HM. And I would also venture a bet that your site will go down at some point. And then you will wait hours, maybe a day or longer, for someone at the help center to answer your email.

The bottom line is that this is not the fault of HM. Perhaps all your bitching and whining is making you feel better but, in essence, itís making you look like an unappreciative jerk. I give Annette and company (especially Stacy) a lot of credit for their patience in explaining the same thing to you over and over again, even though you donít seem to be listening or at least comprehending what they are telling you.

Also, as someone on the board said, you should not judge a hosting company by the problems it faces, but by how they respond to those problems. By that standard, HM happens to be a gold mine of a hosting company.

A DOS attack of this nature is a form of terrorism. If you leave HM, then the terrorists have won! You deserters are in serious trouble with Ashcroft and Rumsfeld!

[As for the specific site that was the target of the attack and what that site does, well....that's for another day]

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a day's worth of blogging to catch up on.

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After the Hosting Matters Denial of service attack, my site came back up yesterday around 4:00pm CDT and you have been able to view my site however e-mail was just resumed a short time ago and FTP is still down so no webcams for awhile. Anyway, if you ... [Read More]

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Comments

I'm just glad you're back up and running.

D

You said it, sistah! And I say that with my own site still down...

Goddamn skippy!

I couldn't believe the whining. They don't even bother to blame the perps, just HM.

What? You were down?

Oh, by the way, you'll be happy to know my salvo backfired. I've had friggin' Terry Jacks stuck in my head all damned day. I hope you're happy.

Bite me.

Yea, My site was down to, but HM has the best support team around, I'm staying here.

I couldn't be more pleased with the way HM is handling this whole thing....and my site's been up and down through this whole thing. In my semi-learned opinion, I think they've gone way above what other ISPs would've done.

I am pleased with the way they are handling it, but at the same time I have absolutely zero money riding on it - once a month I toss $11 into the hole that is the World Wide Rant, never expecting to see it again. So, a day here, a day there, I'm an easy going sort of guy.

Now, make me a reseller with 100 clients who basically help me pay my way, and you can bet I'd be a bit more nervous. I wouldn't be rude about it, as some have, but I can certainly understand their concerns.

Having done a fair bit of consulting in customer service, I can fairly safely say, though, that the reply of "leave if you must" that I seem to have noticed from HM isn't the best answer either. My last job was in a place where if our servers went down, or if we were attacked, people could lose their shirts and quickly - "Hey, we're working on it" wasn't a good enough answer. We would have to share or absorb the loss - I'd recommend that in some cases, HM do the same.

I compare this to the situation of airlines who had their planes grounded after the 9/11 attacks. Clearly, it wasn't their fault that the attacks happened.

I wonder if controversial websites would/should be forced to move to more expensive servers that can handle a DOS attack easier.

Hosting is already two-tiered between adult/porn servers and everything else. The adult servers more expensive because of the extra security from hackers.

Note, I'm not saying that any particular blog deserves to be DOS attacked and forced to a more expensive server. It's just that a linux box under somebody's desk is better for websites of kittens.