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I'm not looking for people to tell me what the best web hosting companies are - I know that's verboten. But a lot of people need to choose one, and it's a real challenge. Many of the "review" sites are biased, many of the forum comments are anecdotal (with upset users more likely to post than satisfied ones), etc. Besides trial and error, what steps do/would you take if you were in the market for a new host?

My needs are dirt simple right now - just html/css, eventually some javascript - I'm not looking for much. But feel free to leave suggestions for qualifying any kind of web host - others may benefit even if I don't.

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Perhaps something for webmasters.stackexchange.com ? –  andol Jul 22 '10 at 15:44

4 Answers 4

Ask people who you trust who they use. They've got a better idea of how to recommend to you than anyone else. Don't have enough of those people? Make some friends :)

Seriously though, ask around forums you frequent or something, or IRC channels of projects you use, or something. You might even find that some project you care about has a referral program with some hosting company, and it'll throw them a couple of bucks.

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The review sites are typically people farming affiliate links. Affiliate programs for the big shared hosting company pay out up to $80 per signup. So its natural for sleezy people to try and SEO the crap out of there site and drive traffic so they can get a bunch of affiliate money.

You're looking for a smaller hosting company, someone who cares about their customer not their daily income.

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I had the same needs, but found a provider which gave me a Debian user account for about 3,20€ per month. Maybe a bit big, but nowadays I use it for cronjobs, downloads from slow servers, etc.

I chose the offer from a private guy which rented a server for himself and only wants some money back (not illegal, it's a GbR)

My cents ;)

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Well I can highly recommend you two websites. You can either go with https://www.nearlyfreespeech.net which is if you play your cards right will cost you less that $1 month (pay for what you use). Or if you want a little more horse power I cannot recommend enough is http://www.webfaction.com, shared hosting but you also get SSH so you can run your own programs as well.

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protected by Michael Hampton Nov 24 '12 at 14:09

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