Overcome Your Fear Of Switching Web Hosts

Overcome Your Fear Of Switching Web Hosts



This is​ intended to​ be a​ hold-your-hand guide, to​ assist even the​ least intrepid website owner to​ get over their needless fear of​ switching to​ another web host or​ web hosting package.

It is​ important to​ realize that by sticking to​ your old web host you may be losing out on better deals, more up time and​ superior back-up and​ support. All that translates into more income and​ after all that is​ why you have a​ website. Surveys conducted among website owners show that website owners are paying up to​ ten times more for​ their current web host than they would for​ a​ cheaper and​ better web host, just because they fear the​ switching over process. They believe that changing web hosts will be complicated, have direct cost implications and​ could even lead to​ the​ loss or​ at​ least the​ corruption of​ their website or​ group of​ sites. This article intends to​ help you get over your baseless worries.

If you, as​ a​ website owner, started out on the​ internet by going to​ a​ famous branded name for​ web hosting and​ you have stuck with it​ because you think that if​ they are big and​ well-known they must give you value for​ money, then you should reconsider. the​ odds are that you are paying a​ premium for​ the​ name without necessarily getting the​ reciprocal service. Do not choose your host because the​ name makes you feel comfortable, or​ for​ that matter because you think it’s a​ good deal. Rather look at​ what you are getting and​ compare the​ offerings from other web hosting companies. Here is​ a​ rule of​ thumb. You can easily find adequate space for​ your site requirements, with all the​ bells and​ whistles, for​ under $10 per month, not taking into account handsome discounts for​ paying quarterly or​ annually. Another point to​ watch is​ the​ free domain name carrot that web hosts love to​ dangle. This is​ not so important, as​ you will learn later in​ this article.

Now that we have established that you should look at​ the​ benefits rather than the​ brand name or​ the​ bottom line cost, the​ rule-of-thumb notwithstanding, let us run through the​ points that you need to​ check out when investigating alternative hosting companies and​ their packages.

First, let’s look at​ capacity. You don’t really need more than 100 megs of​ space even if​ you are planning to​ build a​ large community or​ make uploaded albums part of​ the​ mix. it​ is​ really not necessary to​ opt for​ anything above that for​ the​ average or​ even an​ above-average website. By resisting the​ temptation to​ go for​ more space you could find yourself switching to​ a​ superior host for​ the​ same or​ less money.

Second, I mentioned support earlier and​ that is​ something you should look at​ carefully. You should be able to​ get answers to​ your queries in​ 24 hours or​ less by email. the​ very best hosts have live chat facilities available during business hours. it​ is​ well worth it, for​ your peace of​ mind, especially during the​ switchover process, to​ opt for​ a​ host that has a​ reputation for​ good support. Also check before signing up that the​ web hosting firm has a​ contactable physical address and​ phone numbers. Go ahead and​ test the​ support system by phoning them, live chatting to​ them and​ emailing them.

Thirdly, look at​ the​ number of​ email Pop3 emails your web host can offer. You should be able to​ get at​ least 10 and​ rest assured you will need these in​ time, as​ your business grows. Remember, if​ staff and​ family use email addresses related to​ your site, this is​ a​ form of​ advertising for​ your website. Also your host should offer web-based emails so you can check your email anywhere.

Finally, have a​ good look at​ the​ control panel which the​ new host is​ providing. See if​ there is​ a​ demo so you can try it​ out and​ get the​ feel of​ how user-friendly it​ is. a​ plus factor here is​ FTP access. Ideally you should have 24-hour FTP access so you can make modifications whenever you like. Also look out for​ a​ site builder, bulletin boards or​ chat rooms so you can interact with your visitors using the​ host’s services. Also check to​ see if​ the​ new host will be able to​ handle such popular features as​ PHP, ASP, CGI, Java scripts, Perl scripting or​ whatever else you have.

Once you have decided to​ move to​ a​ new host, timing becomes paramount. Make sure you cancel your subscription to​ your existing host before the​ end of​ the​ billing cycle. if​ you cancel too late you will end up paying for​ a​ month’s hosting you will not be using. Forget about refunds from your old host. You will not get one for​ periods of​ less than a​ month. I also recommend at​ least a​ week’s overlap when you will effectively have two hosts, the​ old and​ the​ new. You will use this time to​ ensure that everything works correctly on the​ new host and​ that all the​ files and​ email accounts are present.

Right, so you have signed up with the​ new host. Now you must save the​ files created for​ the​ site on your computer so they can be stored and​ backed-up. if​ you created the​ site yourself with a​ website builder like FrontPage or​ Dreamweaver you will probably have those files already. If, however, you used a​ web-based builder then you should download every page of​ the​ site along with their dependent files to​ a​ folder on the​ computer. This is​ easier than it​ sounds. You can either use an​ FTP tool to​ accomplish this or​ you can use the​ File>Save as​ method, which works as​ follows. Open your web browser (it can be Netscape Navigator, Internet Explorer or​ Mozilla) then find the​ file button on the​ tool bar. Now go to​ the​ first page of​ the​ website. Once it​ has loaded, click on “File” then “Save As” and​ save this and​ all dependent files to​ a​ folder. Do this with each page until everything is​ saved. Now back this up to​ a​ disk.

The next step is​ to​ see that any other files on the​ outgoing web host are backed up. for​ example, if​ you have been using web-based mail then forward the​ emails to​ an​ “off-network” email address, or​ even archive emails to​ the​ computer’s hard drive. Remember that once you switch to​ your new host, all emails at​ the​ outgoing host will be deleted.

Now that you have control over the​ contents of​ your website, you need to​ upload all of​ the​ files to​ the​ new host’s servers. They will provide you with the​ FTP details required and​ this is​ where online and​ live support is​ invaluable. Once this is​ done you should create an​ email accounts to​ match each email account from the​ outgoing web host. This is​ essential so that there are no bouncing emails later when the​ switch goes through. This is​ the​ point at​ which you can change the​ domain name’s main servers, and​ for​ this the​ new host should supply all the​ information. There will also probably be subsidiary servers.

If you have registered your own domain name then the​ registrar should have a​ management area. if​ your domain name is​ registered through the​ outgoing host then you should ensure you have access to​ change this. it​ will take a​ day or​ two for​ the​ name server change to​ propagate so the​ domain name points to​ the​ new servers. Use the​ week when you have access to​ the​ old host and​ the​ new one to​ make any modifications.




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