Website hosting emergency...can you believe it?

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by dmcgphoto, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. Okay, here it is the end of the wedding season and I've been smacked upside the head with a hosting dilemma.
    I'm uploading images to my online least I think that's what I'm doing...and I get a disk quota error, ie, I've run out of space on my server, WHATT?? okay, I currently have approximately 260k files on the server, doesn't matter what the total space occupied by these files (which is less than 10% of my allotted space) However I have reached my file alotment limit. So it's not that I've run out of space, but run afoul of whatever rule that limits me to 260K files
    **keep in mind that a file which is essentially a 1bit jpeg can be one of the 260K files allowed**
    Currently I use 1and1 to host my website. I offer an online gallery of the images for one year from their wedding date. I have no particular problem with them, the website is always up, never runs down...what do I know?
    Before I go any further, let me divulge that my technical expertise with things related to servers, types of servers, all that jazz is severely limited. So questions like.."What kind of server" will get a shoulder shrug, "Windows or Linux" same blank stare followed by the question that says (I'm trying to be funny sarcastic here, not nasty please, don't take offense) Why would it matter when it comes to total number of files, not file size.
    So here's what I need **sidebar, I deleted about 30k worth of files from expired galleries so I have a little breathing room**
    I need suggestions from working wedding photographers for hosting companies that they use successfully , (please don't say smug mug or flikr) where this kind of file situation won't be such an issue. I think my base # of files before I add images from clients in is about 215-220K worth of files (its a blu domain template, but they don't host my many horror stories)
    Apologies for such a rambling, probably nonsensical account of what is going on, I'd be happy to illuminate to specific questions about the dilemma I face, but again, I'm hamstrung by knowing next to nothing about server technology and specifics.
    So would any of you who understand what I am asking, please, please, please tell me who you use, how long your clients files are up, and roughly the total number of files per client you put on your website........hmm, that seems like the most straightforward question I can ask...should have done that first...apologies again.
    Thanks all
  2. If you really are storing hundreds of thousands of files on a single web site, you might want to consider spreading it out a little bit. If everything else about your web site is fine, and you're not getting killed on the price, just open up a second one with the same folks. Instead of "www", have them add a "www2," just like you'd add a wing on your house, or buy the office space next door. Links to galleries from your main site can just head visitors over to the secondary site. They can look the same, act the same, and link back and forth, and you get around the need to get to know a new hosting company.

    Or... just ask the support monkeys at the company you're using if they can bump up your quota.
  3. Thanks Matt, I was actually thinking
    1. Can my quota be raised? Not without operating your own, .......yeah
    2. Try the "wing on the house" but everything the support monkey, actually he was pretty patient so I shouldn't hate, was that if I did this I was going to need my own...mon-er, IT person, to do it.
    Thing is, I am thinking that the majority of those files are little tiny things, like 1byte spacer gifs contained in the blu domain template, or registry entries from clients and friends, php stuff and all that. It isn't that I have hundreds of thousands of files up that are images, I'm just not sure how to make it work, or more to the point, how to pose the question to any other company so I don't get this popped on me again..
    Such a pain.
    thanks though!
  4. Daniel, I use 1and1 myself. Never had any problems, although I'm aware of the disk quota issue you mention. All you need to do is upgrade your hosting package to one more suited to your current needs. There's a control applet in the admin panel that lets you upgrade. You don't need to move anything or make any changes - you'll go onto a different billing plan and you'll get more disk space and increased system resources. You should be looking at one of the business pro accounts - I'm guessing you're probably on a more restricted account at the moment.
  5. Actually Neil according to the Tech rep I am bumping into an absolute limit. It's a business account, but from what I can determine, there is no type of account other than actually operating my own server that will allow more quota.
    I don't have the technical know how to setup or operate a server, with writing php and server protocols etc.
  6. Daniel: Having them move your content onto a dedicated server shouldn't make working with your content any different than it is now. Maybe an hour of paid support time, from them, while they port your content over to that newer environment... but you wouldn't be doing anything different day-to-day.
  7. Currently I use 1and1 to host my website.​
    I used to use 1and1.
    They shut down my website's database because it was too busy (no warning, they just pulled the plug) - and left it offline - despite increasingly desperate emails and phone calls for FOUR WHOLE DAYS. so not only could I not take any orders during that period I couldn't even access the data to transfer it to a new host.
    The reason the db was busy is because I was taking a lot of orders, so you can imagine how pleased I was to be locked out of my own website by them!
    I moved to a new host the day after they locked me out, but because of their attitude had to rebuild the entire website and database from scratch (no possibility of tranferring over old order information etc because they weren't answering calls or emails) on a dedicated server where now I rent the hardware and install it myself from the OS upwards.
    I will never again recommend 1and1 for anything that is either important or business-related.
    Find a company that actually cares, seriously.
  8. Personaly I wonder if you may be better off having someone take a look at your site to see why it needs so many files to work in the first place. If the base site is over 200k files before adding client photos that is alot of files and many of them could be duplicates.
  9. I'll spare you the horror stories.
    Two years, not a problem. Best customer service I have ever found, they even helped me learn how to fix the problems I created.
    I use to host large galleries, I kept the site on my computer and that way I could instantly update.
  10. Thanks folks, Jim I'll look into them.
    Alec, which company did you use.
    Matt, I asked they said, at least this tech rep said they didn't do that...who knows, people have no real incentive to understand the products they work with, just enough to not be fired and answer 90% of the calls.
    Stuart, not an option, much of the website (the bulk I figure) is a blu domain template site, locked down to outside interference. The rest would probably be related to my photocart, if you think about every contact and transaction creating a file imprint of some kind and I do a lot of work, you can see where I would need someone looking at redundant files every day, that's not to practical a solution from where I'm sitting.
  11. After some horrible experiences with hosting companies, I moved to a company in Chicago called eBoundHost . Their support has been absolutely outstanding. Highly recommended.
    I just checked my account, and I only have 106k files (a total of a few Gb), so I don't know if they can accommodate your mix. One thing I'm certain about, if you ask them you will get a quick and accurate response.
    The link above is directly to their web-site. If you trust my objectivity, here's my affiliate link:
  12. Try another web hoster who does not have such limits, such as :
    Before switching anywhere, always do your research and ask them your questions and explain your delima and intent with your site, they will advise you what kind of issues you may or may not have with them.
  13. Despite your disparaging remarks about monkeys, can you really afford a total lack of expertise in an area which is so critical to your business? It sounds like you need to obtain the services of an expert you can trust, if you are not in a position to gain that expertise yourself.
    Of course since you are a photographer, you have already dodged the #1 problem people have with website hosting companies, which is to fail to own the copyright in the website itself. Don't laugh, that's quite a common mistake for companies which aren't themselves in creative industries.
  14. Which company do I use? Rapidswitch - they're in the UK. (I don't know what country you're in, Daniel.) Rapidswitch hit the tech headlines recently after some bad downtime caused by problems with the software in their switching hardware. But they took it very seriously and worked hard to get it sorted. Everyone's entitled to have problems and their attitude was very good.
    I do think James is right - that you need to find professional help with the technical aspects - but I acknowledge that can be a tricky relationship to manage. However having your own dedicated hardware means that a lot of the "soft" limits that hosting companies impose after you've paid, like restrictions on file space, number, number of files that can be opened at once, processor utilization - things they definitely don't tell you about until it's too late - disappear from your worry list.
  15. I've learned over the years that all the jargon about data transfer, gigs of storage, percentages of uptime is used to make you feel stupid and intimidate you into signing up for something that really isn't as complicated as it seems. if someone took the time to explain to you.
    So...IMHO the customer service is the only think to look for. No place that has a reputation for good support is going to have a bad hosting package.
    But these things aren't cheap. I run a blog and a busy message board (I know, not exactly the source of advice you wanted) and store a lot of my photos on my host as back-up. You really do get what you pay for. I pay $25/month from a small Canadian company called MonteCarloHosting. Now, like a lot of small places they are re-sellers or "co-locators" (more jargon). But they provide the service. I need something, I e-mail, they do it. Transfer the site? They do it. Install software, fix broken installations, they do it. And it still costs $25/month.
    Best of luck. I know finding a web host can be painful at best.
  16. Simple solution that will make money for you. I have a basic website that has nothing but information and pricing. All my client galleries are hosted in a nother site by that offers unlimited storage and file size for a very small fee per year. You can save $5 off your smugmug site using my coupon code tzuOgkf1Q1pBk.
    Your can be made to look exactly like your regular site and you can link back and forth. Also you can of course set prices and various gallery options so people can order prints, digital downloads and merchandise off your gallery. All you do is have the money deposited into your checking account. Pretty simple.

    Ian is my main site and my galleries at
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  17. Have a look at these guys, I have been with them for a while and so far so good, they offer all sorts , it might just suit your requirements.
    Regards Aad
  18. Are all of these files in the same directory?
    There is a limitation on windows based servers with how many files can be stored in a single directory. On Linux based servers it is just a bad idea.

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