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Old 03-03-2001, 07:16 PM   #1
LaNMaN
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 110
Unhappy Don't Use CWIHosting, You Will Live to Regret It!!!

After purchasing their power plan and installing my website on their server, I began the 30 day period in which there is a "money back guarantee." This month went rather smoothly as there were only a couple 1-2 hour outages dispersed throughout the month. For a reasonable cheap ($30/month) webhost, this is to be expected, and I confidently begin my second month with them (that was before I found out they double-billed me by charging me for a full month in January when I had only been with them for two weeks).

Almost the VERY first day that the money back guarantee expired, I started experiencing major problems. The banner exchanges I was using were reporting 0 impressions for hours at a time and my entire website, which had worked perfectly for a month, was returning blank pages for a majority of every day.

I kept sending them support requests, calling their tech support, etc. and the IDIOTS kept responding "we don't see a problem" or "your site is working perfectly" when my eyes and a third party's tracking software were reporting otherwise. After calling and e-mailing support continuously for over two weeks, one support response finally identified the cause of the problem:

"The reason your pages are returning "No Data" responses is because your scripts
that are dynamically generating the pages on your site consume more memory that
a recently imposed cap. The cap stops processes that use more than 20 MB when
they run. I have increased this cap for your site."

This memory cap is not mentioned in their contract (they say that they may suspend your account if you consistantly use more than 25% of the server's resources and the server has over 1GB of RAM--20MB<<250MB) and was instituted only after the trial month. In addition, there is no &*(&ing way that a single instance of one of the scripts I am using is occupying more than 20MB of RAM. Even the script which generates my homepage (and is basically just a long "print" statement) is returning a blank page! This is just a classic bait-and-switch, where they provide good service for the "trial" month only to ***** the customer over as soon as it is difficult and expensive to switch providers, and after the setup fee is paid. As angry as I was at their deception, it seemed that they were making an earnest effort to work with me by raising the memory cap, so I responded asking which scripts are causing the problem and pledging to reduce the memory utilization of those scripts. In fact, I have already modified two of the most memory intensive scripts to use significantly less memory.

To my surprise, I checked my site again this morning and it was STILL returning blank pages. I even deleted the most memory intensive scripts and tried to load the main page and STILL got a blank page. Needless to say, I am livid. After two weeks of almost complete downtime (during which time, I sent almost $500 worth of e-newsletter advertisements, which resulted in no visitors b/c the site was down), they are STILL making no earnest efforts to provide an acceptable quality of service.

Since they have disabled the MySQL dump statement, it would be very difficult for me to back up the database and move to another server. My site users blame me for the outages and I have suffered irreperable harm because of their breach of contract. I am really at a loss for what to do, as I would lose all of my data should I switch providers. This will set my site back over one month and give my users yet another reason to think that I, and not CWIHost, am responsible for the outages. When their service was working, it was working well, and I would forgive their breach of contract if they would stop paralyzing my website and continue offering an acceptable quality of service. Should they not, I am strongly considering filing a claim in NY state small claims court for the hosting fees, the e-zine ads (that was wasted money because the site was down), lost business from the downtime, and the damages my site suffered because of the members it will lose as a result of the downtime. If they choose to delete my databases in response to this testimonial, I will append the value of the customer data to the suit. Has anybody successfully sued a web host for the losses suffered from poor quality of service and breach of a hosting contract?

Just so you know, I CCed a copy of this message to the CEO of CWIHosting along with a list of all sites on which it will appear. This gives them the opportunity to respond to this testimonial in an open forum hosted by a third party.

Lenny Grover
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Old 03-03-2001, 08:59 PM   #2
Steve_S
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Welcome to the Forum and BB http://geekvillage.com/ubb/smile.gif

Some of our members have first hand experience with this host at:
http://geekvillage.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000041.html

I suggest you politely negotiate an "exit strategy" IF this host can not provide suitable/appropriate services for you.

Also the answers to the following questions may help all of us:

1) The site/URL this issue occured on?
2) Your email so concerned parties can reach you?
3) Your bandwidth consumption?

Try and get your data back and then change hosts if you can't make the current arrangement work.

With the following data we can all try and help you find a new host. This is suggested in this Forums rules:

"If you are looking for a new Host for your website please include the following data in your post. This procedure will produce better recommendations."

Your budget:
Storage required:
Bandwidth required:
Do you need Telnet access:
Do you need mySQL:
Do you need php:
Do you need NT hosting:
Do you need CGI/Perl:
Special requirements:

Some of our members also like to hang out at webhostingtalk.com which may serve as yet another source of information for you.

If the host decides to join and answers your concerns, that would be great and is sure to help all of us. After all, we all want to find good hosts which is why I started this Forum. They (the host) will have a single responce along with other members who have first hand knowledge and can help. The thread will be locked if it turns into a flame/attack/grudge match/back and forth kinda vent aka he said she said thing and any members involved in this "abuse" will be immediately banned.

Best of luck.




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Old 03-04-2001, 03:30 AM   #3
demae
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Unhappy

Quote:
Originally posted by LaNMaN:
Since they have disabled the MySQL dump statement, it would be very difficult for me to back up the database and move to another server.
If you can't get CWI to give you your database files:

Write a perl script that does SELECT statements and saves it to a file and stuff. Or there might be some MySQL utility that you can download somewhere. If you can't do it yourself, you could probably hire someone (check the barter forum here) for under $100.
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Old 03-04-2001, 07:27 AM   #4
Tyme
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Posts: 433
Unhappy

In answer to your question about lawsuits, yes there has been lawsuits filed against hosts, and the hosts have won. However, most times they are class action lawsuits. And yes, with this host, in about and hour you could find some very unhappy people.

However, most people shy away from lawsuits because of this statement (right off CWI Hosting TOS):

CWI Hosting will not be responsible for any damages your business may suffer. CWI Hosting makes no warranties of any kind, expressed or implied for services we provide. CWI Hosting disclaims any warranty or merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. This includes loss of data resulting from delays, non-deliveries, wrong delivery, and any and all service interruptions caused by CWI Hosting and its employees. CWI Host reserves the right to revise its policies at any time. All Sub-Networks, resellers and dedicated servers of CWI Hosting must adhere to the above policies.

Failure to follow any term or condition will be grounds for immediate account deactivation.


This basically means you are not going to hold them responsible. You agreed to the terms of service. I am not agreeing that they are right, but you did agree to them.

However, they do owe you some money. If you can prove that your site was down, then they broke the 100% uptime guarantee.

All hosts have a disclaimer like the one I posted above, but a good host is going to go out of their way to help their clients. Unfortunately, you did not pick a host that does that. I dealt with this company personally and I know the run around you are getting.

If they have disabled the mysql dump statement and your site is mysql dependent, you should not host with this company even if they did solve the issue. I understand that you did not realize it at the time, but you know it now.

Move your site.

Also, knowing this host, openly bashing them, without having your site in another area, is not the wisest thing to do. Their TOS also say they can delete your site at any time, and posting to multiple forums will only tick them off. Tick them off AFTER you are gone, not while you are still with them.

If you need help finding another host, I am sure that everyone here that is happy with their host will post their recommendation so you can make an informed choice.

Ler us know what happens.
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Old 03-04-2001, 09:15 AM   #5
LaNMaN
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 110
Unhappy

Quote:
1) The site/URL this issue occured on?
http://www.adswappers.com

Quote:
2) Your email so concerned parties can reach you?
webmaster@adswappers.com OR lgrover2000@hotmail.com

Quote:
3) Your bandwidth consumption?
under 5GB; the power plan promises up to 30GB. I would like to have a buffer in case my site grows. I've heard too many horror stories about $20/GB+ bandwidth overage charges.


Your budget: under $40/month
Storage required: <100MB
Bandwidth required: 15-30GB
Do you need Telnet access: yes
Do you need mySQL: yes (size of databases should be restricted only by disk size quota, not separate database quota)
Do you need php: no
Do you need NT hosting: no
Do you need CGI/Perl: yes
Special requirements: dedicated IP (so I can redirect other domains there), access to perl debugger and top via telnet, to debug scripts


Quote:
Some of our members also like to hang out at webhostingtalk.com which may serve as yet another source of information for you.
Thanks for the tip.

Lenny
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Old 03-04-2001, 09:30 AM   #6
LaNMaN
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 110
Unhappy

Quote:
Originally posted by Tyme:
[b]In answer to your question about lawsuits, yes there has been lawsuits filed against hosts, and the hosts have won. However, most times they are class action lawsuits. And yes, with this host, in about and hour you could find some very unhappy people.

However, most people shy away from lawsuits because of this statement (right off CWI Hosting TOS):

CWI Hosting will not be responsible for any damages your business may suffer. CWI Hosting makes no warranties of any kind, expressed or implied for services we provide. CWI Hosting disclaims any warranty or merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. This includes loss of data resulting from delays, non-deliveries, wrong delivery, and any and all service interruptions caused by CWI Hosting and its employees. CWI Host reserves the right to revise its policies at any time. All Sub-Networks, resellers and dedicated servers of CWI Hosting must adhere to the above policies.

Failure to follow any term or condition will be grounds for immediate account deactivation.
The difference in this case is that the downtime that caused me to suffer the related damages was DELIBERATELY caused by CWIHosting. Between the fact that the outage occurred conveniently after the 30 day money back guarantee, the extended period of deception, where all support requests returned a form letter "everything is OK" when I have third party stats saying it wasn't, and the fact that this "recent" memory cap is unmentioned in any CWI literature, I have reasonable evidence that they entered into the contract without a good faith intent to provide the service they promised. They simply targetted my site as using more resources than average (even though I was WELL below the limits), and attempted to convince me that everything was OK while they deliberately breached the contract and disabled access to my site to conserve resources.

When a party enters into a contract in bad faith, "limited liability" clauses go out the window and punitive damages can be collected.

(For example, software manufacturers are able to include terms in their license agreements that limit liability that results from use of the software. However, a virus writer cannot masquerade his filesystem deleting program as a game and protect himself by inlcuding a clause in a license agreement that he is not responsible if the filesystem is deleted and the virus is e-mailed to the user's mailing list.)

I will not pursue legal action if they make what I believe to be a good faith effort to prevent further downtime and work with me to reduce memory usage or move to a new provider. If they cause any more data loss, deliberate downtime, etc. then I will file suit in NY small claims court.

Lenny
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Old 03-04-2001, 09:46 AM   #7
Steve_S
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Lenny,

I just checked your site and it appears to work fine. Did they resolve this issue to your satisfaction?

If you wish, I can move this thread/topic off the BB which dovetails what Tyme said. Do you want me to do this?

Great point made about access to your MySQL data. If in fact (I'm not sure and no offence meant) you are doing "development" work on a virtual host/domain, I'm pretty sure that mosts responsable hosts will "kill" the process after a given period of time to prevent run away scripts that bring down or slow down all the other sites. If they see to much of this from a given domain they won't be happy.

Good luck and HTH http://geekvillage.com/ubb/smile.gif


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Old 03-04-2001, 11:16 PM   #8
LaNMaN
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 110
Unhappy

Quote:
Originally posted by Steve_S:
Lenny,
I just checked your site and it appears to work fine. Did they resolve this issue to your satisfaction?

If you wish, I can move this thread/topic off the BB which dovetails what Tyme said. Do you want me to do this?

Great point made about access to your MySQL data. If in fact (I'm not sure and no offence meant) you are doing "development" work on a virtual host/domain, I'm pretty sure that mosts responsable hosts will "kill" the process after a given period of time to prevent run away scripts that bring down or slow down all the other sites. If they see to much of this from a given domain they won't be happy.

Good luck and HTH http://geekvillage.com/ubb/smile.gif
I am currently speaking directly with the CEO of CWIHosting and hopefully this issue can be resolved. It seems that they have stopped disabling the site for memory usage but have made it clear that this concession will only be temporary. As I have only received one e-mail, I do not know how earnest he is in putting this matter behind us. Given my previous experiences, however, I am proceeding with care.

Lenny
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Old 03-04-2001, 11:20 PM   #9
LaNMaN
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 110
Unhappy

Quote:
Originally posted by Steve_S:
If you wish, I can move this thread/topic off the BB which dovetails what Tyme said. Do you want me to do this?
If an when this issue is resolved, I will e-mail the admins to remove this thread. As it stands, however, I would like to ensure that users (potentially with popular sites and a lot to lose) do not incur the same type of treatment that I did. If CWIHosting does demonstrate a genuine willingness to resolve this situation, then I will post an account of the resolution and ask that the thread be deleted in a couple of days time.

Lenny

[This message has been edited by LaNMaN (edited 03-04-2001).]
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Old 03-05-2001, 01:36 PM   #10
OC
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Unhappy

Futurequest.com
-Check out their community section

No I'm not related to FQ, but I'm one happy customer.
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