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Had enough of VO, just wanted to share..

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  • Had enough of VO, just wanted to share..

    Everyone here glows over VenturesOnline. I never saw what all the big fuss was about, but hey, they were cheap. After 2 years of dedicated hosting with them, I finally reached wits end.

    Apache would randomly decide to crash at least once a week. Create a help desk ticket, and the clueless techs had the audacity to blame me. Why, because I had heavy traffic? The POS server would buckle under ANY sort of heavy load (100+/- people on forums).

    Their CPanel/WHM auto-updates would inevitably cause something to crash, so I'd turn it off. Then I'd get an email saying I was responsible for a hole in software that I don't even use. Again - it's my fault.

    From tech support, to sales (unanswered emails about server upgrades and add-ons), to billing (they have lied to me countless times about their policies and things I've "agreed" to, and mistakes), they are positively the worst company I've ever had to deal with.

    Again, everyone here loves VO. And if you didn't have to deal with them (ever) or you were able to completely manage your own server without the help of CPanel or WHM, I could see that being the case.

    But I've been with a new hosting company that has been 100x more reliable and better to work with than VO. And the prices are better!!

    To any prospective clients: stay away.

    I'm not going to mention the name of my new host because that's not what my purpose is. I just want to bring to light the fact that VO is NOT all they are cracked up to be.

    -jim

  • #2
    They can be good for a while, but I found it much more cost effective to just figure it all out myself and DIY. I started out with VO on virtual, but never went further - I didn't like how they moderated their support forums and how they dealt with the launch of the VPS service and customers of that, so I went elsewhere for a VPS, and now I'm on to a dedicated that I manage myself.

    I've had zero need for support once the dedicated server was up and running - the only tickets I've filed at this provider was to get IP addresses, reverse DNS entries - and everything else I just read how other people do online and do it for myself. In the long run - this is the best way to do it - I don't mess up, and if I do, I fix it - never ever needed a human to go reboot the box either.
    vB 3.6.4 (No hacks), RedHat Enterprise 3 (+hotfixes), Lighttpd 1.4.13, PHP 5.2.1 (FastCGI, gzip), MySQL 4.1.21, P4 2.0GHz, 512MB RAM, 80GB IDE disk

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    • #3
      Originally posted by adrianchew
      never ever needed a human to go reboot the box either.
      That's the thing - there were times that I had to use the emergency pager to go reboot my machine, and only because there was heavy traffic. I wasn't doing anything to it at the time! In fact, I was out to dinner.

      If you're just starting out, VO might be a good place. But for dedicated servers, I can't recommend that you stay far enough away from them.

      It wasn't until I got a real host that I figured out how terrible VO is.

      -jim

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      • #4
        Sorry I can't agree with you at all Jim. I've had a dedicated server with VO for over two years now and they have been great. Honestly if I had the kind of problems you've reported I would have left them a long time ago (as I did my previous two hosts.)

        I'm sorry to hear your experience was so bad but I really can't vouch for it based on my experiences with them.
        Steve Machol, former vBulletin Customer Support Manager (and NOT retired!)
        Change CKEditor Colors to Match Style (for 4.1.4 and above)

        Steve Machol Photography


        Mankind is the only creature smart enough to know its own history, and dumb enough to ignore it.


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        • #5
          I was with them for over a year, using a variety of hosting products. I had one of their dedicated servers back when they were around $700 a month. I also had a v650 plan and a VPS.

          The dedicated server was good, though overpriced, and the support was great. I had an account on a v650 (no longer available) and was very happy with it, but moved it to a VPS for more room. Unfortunately, my experiences with the VPS were a nightmare. They advertised it as being great for forums, but let's just say they only support small forums. The amount of RAM was way too low, and Apache constantly failed. Their general response to any ticket was a suggestion to upgrade to another dedicated server. I was ready to do it, until...

          The final straw for me was actually the attitude of a particular tech, who shall remain nameless. Said tech was very condescending to a lot of customers and I was always thankful that I was never on the receiving end. When it finally happened to me, I immediately searched out a new host and left VO behind.

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          • #6
            Jim we've also purchased a new server outside of VO at a fraction of the cost and the vbulletin sites should be moving to it fairly soon.
            Scott MacVicar

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Steve Machol
              Sorry I can't agree with you at all Jim. I've had a dedicated server with VO for over two years now and they have been great. Honestly if I had the kind of problems you've reported I would have left them a long time ago (as I did my previous two hosts.)

              I'm sorry to hear your experience was so bad but I really can't vouch for it based on my experiences with them.
              As they say, eventually, even a blind squirrel will find a nut.

              -jim

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              • #8
                Originally posted by redbox
                The final straw for me was actually the attitude of a particular tech, who shall remain nameless. Said tech was very condescending to a lot of customers and I was always thankful that I was never on the receiving end. When it finally happened to me, I immediately searched out a new host and left VO behind.
                It was my experience that every technical support staff member had that kind of condescending attitude.

                As Jim Caple says "They screen for ignorant and hostile applicants. Then they hire them."

                -jim

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Scott MacVicar
                  Jim we've also purchased a new server outside of VO at a fraction of the cost and the vbulletin sites should be moving to it fairly soon.
                  Scott, I'm actually surprised it's taken this long .

                  -jim

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Steve Machol
                    Sorry I can't agree with you at all Jim. I've had a dedicated server with VO for over two years now and they have been great. Honestly if I had the kind of problems you've reported I would have left them a long time ago (as I did my previous two hosts.)

                    I'm sorry to hear your experience was so bad but I really can't vouch for it based on my experiences with them.
                    Same here,
                    Two of my clients have a dedicated server there, and they are a pretty active forum with 125 average at the whois online and we hardly get any errors.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Scott MacVicar
                      Jim we've also purchased a new server outside of VO at a fraction of the cost and the vbulletin sites should be moving to it fairly soon.
                      Ah, Moving again! *soon* ah, ok. So when we find vBulletin.com unreachable, we can assume this could be the reason. After the move, we ofcourse want to get the server & network specifications!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by redbox
                        The final straw for me was actually the attitude of a particular tech, who shall remain nameless.
                        I think I know who this is. I did have one or two unpleasant experiences with one of their Techs. For me, however, this was the exception, not the norm.
                        Steve Machol, former vBulletin Customer Support Manager (and NOT retired!)
                        Change CKEditor Colors to Match Style (for 4.1.4 and above)

                        Steve Machol Photography


                        Mankind is the only creature smart enough to know its own history, and dumb enough to ignore it.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JimF
                          It was my experience that every technical support staff member had that kind of condescending attitude.

                          As Jim Caple says "They screen for ignorant and hostile applicants. Then they hire them."

                          -jim
                          My experiences with the rest of the techs were very pleasant and I always felt that they were working in my best interest. It was just that one tech that caused problems for me and others (and is still there, from what I can tell)

                          Also, the VPS was over-rated and I had a lot of private conversations with others that were frustrated with them. However, the dedicated servers were good products and I still recommend them to those that can afford them, and the extra RAM fees (they never include enough by default)

                          VO had excellent uptime while I was there, I have to give them that. I have a dedicated server elsewhere now, with more resources than what I had at VO, for just a fraction of the price. However, we seem to have network trouble a few times a month! At VO, I don't think I had that many in a year.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by JimF
                            As they say, eventually, even a blind squirrel will find a nut.
                            -jim
                            Very clever! I guess there'as a lot of us 'blind' squirrels then.

                            In all honesty I can only comment on my experiences with VO, which have been almost uniformly good. Sorry this troubles you so much.

                            Frankly I'm a very difficult customer myself and have been known to get rather indignant and intolerant when on the receiving end of shoddy service and support. Thankfully those times have been rare with VO. Believe me if I had the experiences you've had, I'd be doing the same thing. (Although I propably wouldn't post my complaints publicly as a Mod for vB.)
                            Steve Machol, former vBulletin Customer Support Manager (and NOT retired!)
                            Change CKEditor Colors to Match Style (for 4.1.4 and above)

                            Steve Machol Photography


                            Mankind is the only creature smart enough to know its own history, and dumb enough to ignore it.


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                            • #15
                              I never had a problem with VO while I was there until about a year and a half ago. Of course it was largely through mine and other vB peoples efforts that they grew so fast. I don't think I ever got so much as a thank you from them, but oh well.

                              My account was supposed to be automatically paid through a special bank account I had set up for that express purpose. Every month the money would go there from other accounts and VO was supposed to pull it electronically. Well, it worked great at first but then they switched something on their system and all of a sudden it stopped happening. I never paid attention to it, so I wasn't aware that they weren't taking their money. After about 4 months I'm on a business trip to LA and all of a sudden my server just goes down. They shut it off for non-payment, never looking to see that it was their system screwing it up.
                              I will give them this, though. I called John Burns and he did turn the server back on immediately and apologized profusely for the screw-up and said that he had no problem with waiting until I returned to Hawai'i to get his payment.
                              That whole ordeal rather soured the deal for me, not to mention the lack of thanks for helping them in the beginning, so I moved on, too.

                              Overall, I would have to rate them as a good host, though their prices have definitely gone up since the beginning. If I guaged them against my first dedicated host (Interhell), I would rate them as excellent.

                              Since then I have moved over with one of te founders of VO who split off on his own and am very happy there. I won't advertise for him publicly here, but if anyone wants to know, they can PM me.

                              note: When I say "lack of thanks" I wasn't referring to remuneration, just a simple, "Hey, thanks!" yanno?
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