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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Google Web Hosting alternatives

Google is one of the “big three” integrated web hubs on the internet offering many services in one place, most of them free. Of course everything has it price (nothing is truly free) and these offerings being free means that they don’t guarantee a very end-user friendly SLA. For example they recently retired Google Pages and now offer Google Sites. While the services are similar (and Google tried to automatically migrate as much of the content as possible), there are some corner cases which were served by the former but not by the later (for example it is my understanding that you can’t create custom HTML / CSS / JS – or upload arbitrary files for that matter - on Google Sites).

The following blog post offers alternatives to the google web hosting (which would be going with a hosting company – either shared, VPS or dedicated; buying your own domain name and installing your CMS – or having someone install it for you). Why I still lean towards the Google offering:

  • their SLA is still better than most of the industry’s (and certainly better than you can achieve by running your own server!)
  • the limited feature set means that they can optimize the heck out of it by adding redundancy and load balancing, even across data centers – if your server/datacenter fails, you will have downtime. In contrast hardware failure for Google is a daily thing and the services are built to work around it
  • they gave lots of advance warnings that the change was going to happen

Full disclosure: this is a paid review from ReviewMe. Under the terms of the understanding I was not obligated to skew my viewpoint in any way (ie. only post positive facts).


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