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Looking for input on Cloud hosting

I've used EC2 and Rackspace for hosting in the past. Both offer great products and services. Recently I came upon Digital Ocean and their pricing looks very compelling. Looking to hear what you're all using for Rails stack hosting and if any of you have experience with other services that I've not used and what they've been (positive and negative).

6 Replies

Keven Ages
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Keven Ages Entrepreneur
Technology leader, RESTful advocate, design pattern enthusiast, joker and husband.
I've been using Digital Ocean for both personal use and client work for the past year. They have tools which make it easy to setup LAMP, Node and Rails.
They have great support, pricing which is hard to beat and they use SSD drives which makes a huge difference in load time.
Keep in mind that they are a VPS and not elastic hosting, so if you need to scale, you'll need some extra server skills.

Overall, I've had a great experience with them.
Bill Snapper
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Bill Snapper Entrepreneur
Owner Principal at SammyCO, LLC
Thanks Kevin. I've seen Digital Ocean showing up in different articles and ads as well and just recently looked at them. I am going to setup an account and move one of my low volume servers off another host that's costing me $80 / month for the Digital Ocean similar instance of $10 / month. That alone got my attention from the developer instance and small scale site.
Keven Ages
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Keven Ages Entrepreneur
Technology leader, RESTful advocate, design pattern enthusiast, joker and husband.
No problem. A couple of tips for you: They often give credit to new users, so make sure you inquire. If you follow them on Twitter and they tweet about credit for new users (or almost anything), you can claim it on an existing account also, you just have to contact support with the promo code and they'll apply the credit.
Kate Hiscox
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Kate Hiscox Entrepreneur • Advisor
Boss at Venzee
Another Digital Ocean user - can't recommend them enough. With that said, we're probably going to go with AWS for this project (very large storage needs) so it depends what fits your needs.
Corey Butler
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Corey Butler Advisor
Entrepreneur, Consultant, & Web/Data Engineer
I use DO as well for a number of different things, both production and development. It's worth noting that they just received a $34.5M round to grow. I've had a few support issues, mostly migrating servers to another account (for clients), and the team has always been very quick to respond.

I've tried other services too for low end servers, all for testing. I tried RamNode and a couple of other low end providers... RamNode was incredibly flakey and the others ran out of space. DO is the only provider I've found that scales to a comparable level of an EC2-like provider.

One downside is private networking. Right now it is limited to DO's NY datacenter, and technically it makes your server available to any other server on the network (something they're working on). With a little creativity (in firewalls), it is still possible to setup a private cloud without using up ridiculous bandwidth, but you're restricted to one data center. So, for really large globally distributed systems, I don't think DO is a good fit - but for small to mid size stuff I choose it every time.
Bill Snapper
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Bill Snapper Entrepreneur
Owner Principal at SammyCO, LLC
Thanks everyone for your feedback. @Kate, I use EC2 and they're great and for large storage needs and scale I don't think you can go wrong.

I contacted DO and asked about a credit to get started and test it out and they were incredibly quick to respond with a credit as well as very helpful in general answering some questions I had.

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