I seem to have drummed up a little passion from people still suffering over at my former web host PowWeb. Check here for referrals to my current hosts.
PowWeb used to be a good host, then they started to fall apart with email services. Then other services faltered. Then they were taken over by a corporate entity called Endurance and everything went downhill. I still had our PW account until today "just in case" when I finally called today to have them cancel it. Right after that I checked their web forum to find people were screaming about the exact same things that they were last year! I really feel for those people. In some personal exchanges I’ve been told most of the long-timers are gone and the forum is a shell of what it used to be.
These days we’re hosted at Dreamhost.com – it occurs to me that since I’m referring these guys I shouldn’t be shy about taking advantage of their referral program, so if you click that link and then register with them, please do note that I get some credit, though at the moment I have no idea what it is. If you do happen to register with them, please come back here to go to their registration page.
They have a very renegade approach to services, not professional at all at times, very liberal in what they allow on their servers – but the services are generally very good so I don’t care what they do in their free time or what their other customers do for a living. Every provider is going to fall over at some point. I cut these people a lot of slack, and when things go down temporarily (and it’s rare) I don’t scream. They have public forums for questions, rants, etc. The forum interface is awful but the community is helpful.
I recommend you check out the forum, ask your questions, ask other users what they think, and check out their server status pages to see how they deal with outtages.
For email it’s different. We live on email here and absolutely need a stable provider. This is where PW first started to fail me and then the rest was just insult to injury. We went with Everyone.net which costs a little bit but they are rock solid and I really appreciate that.
Anyway, there you have it. There are thousands of hosts out there. None are perfect, some people swear by their host and others swear at them. Maybe I’ve just been lucky with DH so far. I sometimes continue looking for hosts that will satisfy various needs I have, like cheap and feature-rich Windows hosts. But for our purposes here at Nebula R&D, the Linux servers are fast and stable, and if that is important to you I recommend you check them out.