I’ve written before about how good web hosts never last forever, but I didn’t expect that Site5 would decline so rapidly. When I switched to them, a mere three months ago, they seemed to be one of the most respected hosts on some of the sites where people talk about hosts. Now, their reputation is dirt. Thread after thread on WebHostingTalk is about their performance and reliability problems, their lack of response to support tickets, their near disappearance from WHT itself (where they used to participate actively), etc. One thing I haven’t seen mentioned, but which I find annoying, is that my site statistics have gone all wonky. Partly it’s because I seem to be getting many more hits from worms and zombies than had previously been the case, partly it’s because Site5 doesn’t update the stats nightly like I’ve been used to (probably another side effect of servers being overloaded), and partly it’s just random weirdness. The thing that really tipped me over the edge, though, was finding out on WHT that Yahoo had blacklisted Site5 for spamming. So that’s why several of my recent emails never got replies. I’m sorry, but that’s just not something I’m prepared to tolerate. I guess I just managed to catch Site5 at the top of their trajectory, just before their (at the time well deserved) reputation for excellence led to a surge in users, overload, employee burnout, and collapse.

NameZero, JTLNet, FeaturePrice, Burton, TotalChoice, Site5, … now eMax. Some of the content here has lived at seven web hosts, through as many content-management systems (flat files, two home-grown codebases, pMachine, WordPress 1.2 and 1.5 with 2.0 to come soon). You really shouldn’t see any difference other than the little “host du jour” at the top right will flip from “Site5″ to “eMax” at some point over the next few days. If you do notice a difference, please let me know. I’ll still be able to see email and comments at both sites for a while now, because I know all of the magic incantations involved in switching hosts pretty well by now. I don’t expect any host to last forever, but my challenge is to see whether they can outdo the approximately two year run that TotalChoice had.