For some time (2 weeks to be exact), I’ve been experiencing difficulties with my current hosting provider (which is Hostgator). Sadly, for those who visited my blog in last 2 weeks will know that how much time it was taking to load a single webpage and some of you even sent me an email (thanks, guys!).
I did everything I could to improve the loading speed but it didn’t turned out well and HG ended up disabling my account.
For last 2 years, all of my sites have been hosted with Hostgator. I tested several hosting companies including BlueHost, JustHost, DreamHost and few small ones before settling with Hostgator. I used their business plan and it cost me around $10 per month. I paid straight for 2 years and for one & a half year they provided great service.
The Real cause of my hosting problem wasn’t something that I did. It was because EIG, the parent company of Hostgator decided to move their data centers from softlayers to their own. After, EIG acquired hostgator in June 2012, it was unclear how things will go and if they will be moving the dataservers.
On 14 July, HG finally pulled the trigger and moved their dataservers to EIG (BlueHost, HostMonster, JustHost, Fat Cow, NetFirms etc). It was a good business move, as this will help them to maintain all their servers from one place. The new servers are running on SSD and have less CPU limit, which increased the loading speed of sites running on shared hosting.
I waited for almost two weeks to see if it could return to its original speed, before I started looking for other hosting providers. After doing some research, I ended up with three companies to choose from – WPEngine, SiteGround and Bluehost. There are a ton of hosting providers that promise the same thing (99.9% uptime, quality support, etc. etc.), so it was really hard to know which one is better.
Making the Move to WPEngine
I signed up for the account and within a few hours I was running on WPEngine. The process was pretty much straight forward – Export and Import database, transfer the wp-content/ folder, edit the hosts file and update the DNS record. The whole process took me one hour to get my site over to WPEngine.
There’s one thing that I missed – email client. WPEngine doesn’t have any email client, so I had to set up the MX record with outlook. To know more about their hosting service, you should check out the detailed WPEngine review that Sourav did a while back.
In the coming weeks, I will be writing a ton of tutorials and articles on managed WordPress hosting and web hosting, in general.