For a number of reasons this blog was originally hosted by 1&1. I started working with 1&1 around 2007, and much has changed since then. In my opinion the majority of those changes have not been for the better. I could articulate a long list of complaints, but long story short; I have recently been very dissatisfied with 1&1’s services.

I have used GoDaddy‘s services over the years as well, and have dealt with GoDaddy a number of times on behalf of clients and employers. Unfortunately I have a hard time supporting GoDaddy. The company’s questionable practices as a registrar1,2,3,4 and their sleazy advertising campaigns4,5 make it hard for me to have respect for them to start with. Their decision to back SOPA6, however, cemented their place in the list of organizations that will not receive my business.

As I considered hosting alternatives, I found myself looking more and more at Amazon Web Services. The more research I did, the more I liked the idea of using AWS. The biggest hurdle I ran into was actually their pricing model. Given enough study it is easy enough to understand, but at first glance their pricing scheme is rather daunting. After running the numbers I found that my expected monthly cost using amazon EC2 varied between about $2.50 less to about $0.60 more than my monthly cost using 1&1, depending on instance type used. For anybody evaluating the viability of using AWS, I found their Simple Monthly Calculator to be a great starting point for price comparisons.

One of the things that sealed the deal for me was the AWS Free Tier. It is, in my opinion, a very generous offer. The reason this was such a motivator was because it left me with no excuse not to try the AWS products. After I signed up and started playing around with their services, it did not take long to sell me. One of the things that really impressed me, both in the initial research stage and as I started to actually use the products, was the documentation. Everything is documented, and well. Their documents are concise(with the exception of the pricing), yet they always seem to contain exactly the information needed.

The next driver in my decision was what the product actually is. What you get with EC2 is a hosted server for the cost of simple web hosting. There is something supremely satisfying about SSHing into your server and knowing that server is costing you less than two cheeseburgers a month. If you factor in all of the traditionally enterprise class capabilities, the value for money really is rather incredible. The scale of what AWS enables is truly impressive, and I intend to use it for much more than just web hosting.

In fact, I have already started on the next undertaking involving AWS. That effort and it’s results will be discussed in future posts. I have also thought of a few things I would like to try with AWS, but given all that I have to keep myself occupied at the moment, it may be some time before I post anything on those topics.



1 Perry, R. S. “GoDaddy’s New “Selective DNS Blackouts” Policy.” rscott.org. N.p., 1 Sept. 2011. Web. 15 Apr. 2011. <http://rscott.org/dns/GoDaddy_Selective_DNS_Blackouts.htm>.

2 Allemann, Andrew. “GoDaddy Deletes Domain Name for Inaccurate Email Address.” domainnamewire.com. Domain Name Wire, 27 Feb. 2007. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <http://domainnamewire.com/2007/02/27/godaddy-deletes-domain-name-for-inaccurate-email-address/>.

3 Lyon, Gordon. “Exposing the Many Reasons Not to Trust GoDaddy with Your Domain Names.” nodaddy.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <http://web.archive.org/web/20110627205958/http://nodaddy.com/#horror>.

4 Raymond, Scott. “GoDaddy Still Violates ICANN Policy–and Still Sleazy.” zdnet.com. ZDNet, 7 Sept. 2011. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <http://www.zdnet.com/article/godaddy-still-violates-icann-policy-and-still-sleazy/>.

5 VN, Sreeja. “Super Bowl 2012: GoDaddy’s Naked Lady and Scantly Clad Pussycat Ads Irk Viewers.” ibtimes.com. International Business Times, 03 Feb. 2012. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <http://www.ibtimes.com/super-bowl-2012-godaddys-naked-lady-scantly-clad-pussycat-ads-irk-viewers-video-405086>.

6 Smith, Dave. “SOPA Bill 2012: GoDaddy Reveals Support.” ibtimes.com. International Business Times, 22 Dec. 2011. Web. 15 Apr. 2015. <http://www.ibtimes.com/sopa-bill-2012-godaddy-reveals-support-386714>.

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