In this article, we will be doing a review of Linode, the Xen VPS hosting provider that Tutorial Arena has been using since December 2010. Here at Tutorial Arena, we are very satisfied with the level of service that we have gotten from Linode in the just over a year that we have been with them.
On the Linode homepage they say they are "a VPS hosting company built upon one simple premise: provide the best possible tools and services to those that know what they need — better hosting", and we can attest to the accuracy of that statement.
In this review we will be summarizing our experience with Linode by judging them on 5 criteria: uptime, speed, support, cost, and overall satisfaction. Note that this review is based on our own experience.
In the year that Tutorial Arena has been hosted on Linode, we have had no detectable network downtime, and our Linux server has never needed to be restarted once in 365 days.
Uptime is probably the single most important metric when judging the performance of a web hosting provider. Any downtime for a large website can easily cost hundreds or thousands of dollars in revenue. If you need your site to be available for at least 99.9% of the time, then you need to host with a provider like Linode.
Linode delivers on more than 99.9% uptime according to our internal server monitoring figures.
Speed of server and bandwidth coming to server is another important metric to consider. With 6 geographically diverse facilities in Fremont CA, Dallas TX, Atlanta GA, Newark NJ, London UK, and Tokyo JP you can place your already fast Linode Xen VPS closer to your target audience for the ultimate in user satisfaction.
With quad-core Intel Xeon processors, fast hard drive arrays, and premium bandwidth, your server will never seem unresponsive to its administrators or its users. We are always blown away by how fast our servers are when administering them through an SSH terminal. There is no lag during routine operations and installing software packages is quite quick.
Google Webmaster Tools data says that the time GoogleBot spends downloading a page from Tutorial Arena is on average 60ms (milliseconds). Apache benchmark says that we generate an average page in 8ms (milliseconds). This speaks to very powerful server hardware and to some extent a bit of talent in server configuration on our side.
Download to your Linode at 10-100 MB/s (megabytes per second) if the sender can keep up.
The 2 times we had to issue support tickets (they weren't even for problems), the first responses came back in under 7 minutes and we got all the information we wanted just minutes after that. The support agents are helpful, knowledgeable, polite and friendly.
Linode support is very knowledgeable and, in our experience, responds in under 7 minutes regardless of the time of day a ticket is issued.
The smallest VPS package that Linode has costs $19.95USD per month and gets you 512MB RAM, 200GB of outbound transfer (inbound transfer is free), 20GB of storage, and a quad-core processor. This is enough to easily host an average Drupal or Wordpress site with up to 150,000 pageviews per month.
Administering and using a Drupal or Wordpress installation running on a Linode 512 is seamless with no identifiable lag.
Linode is cheaper than most VPS offerings of a similar size but their features and user-experience is among the best.
Overall we give Linode 10/10 for their service. No downtime, fast servers, excellent support, and reasonable cost makes for a good hosting provider. You do get what you pay for when it comes to Linode VPS hosting.
Disclaimer: Note that this is the experience Tutorial Arena has had with our account at Linode and your experience and the experiences of others may vary.