As a web hosting provider focusing on developers, WebFaction offers both shared hosting and cloud hosting. It claims to have had more than 200,000 hosted apps. While the web host supports multiple types of websites, when considering it for hosting Drupal, is it a reliable choice?
Based on real customers’ feedbacks and our own hosting experience, the WebFaction review is made to make it clear whether this company is a good choice for hosting Drupal. In the following parts, we mainly concentrate on the top-concerned aspects as we usually do, covering price, feature, uptime, page loading speed and customer service.
What Hosting Plan Offered
WebFaction launches just one shared hosting package which costs $10/mo. The available billing cycles for that include 1, 12, 24 and 36 month(s). With regard to payments, PayPal, credit card and 2Checkout are supported.
Besides, the company provides a 60-day money back guarantee which allows customers who cancel their orders via the web control panel to receive full refund if the cancellation is made in the initial 60 days.
However, after the period customers will not receive any refund, which is not reasonable when compared to those web hosting providers like BlueHost who offer pro-rated money back guarantee.
Hosting Resources & Features Included in the Plan
The WebFaction shared hosting package comes with the basic hosting resources and features for most types of applications. To be specific, it includes 1 GB RAM, 3.5 GHz shared CPUs, 100 GB SSD storage and 1 TB bandwidth. Customers are allowed to upgrade these hosting resources as long as they pay extra money.
- $5.00/mo for extra 50 GB disk space
- $5.00/mo for extra 300 GB bandwidth
- $7.00/mo for extra 512 MB memory
When it comes to features, the company is a generous provider. The shared hosting service features CentOS 7 operating system, fully managed servers and full shell access. Below displays more detailed features for your reference.
- Server features: Apache and Nginx.
- Programming languages: PHP, Python, Ruby, Node.js, and Git, etc.
- Email features: Secure POP, IMAP & SMTP, Webmail, and spam filtering.
- Databased features: MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite & MongoDB.
For control panel, WebFaction builds its own control panel, with which webmasters have full access to manage their emails, databases, DNS records and more. However, compared with the widely-used cPanel control panel, the custom one is more difficult to operate.
Besides, with the 1-click installer integrated, installing Drupal and other applications like WordPress and Django just requires few seconds.
How’s the Reliability & Performance
WebFaction does not make any guarantee for uptime or speed. This web host uses 3 data centers located in USA, Amsterdam and Singapore, so that customers can choose the nearest one to them. However, instead of owning and operating these data centers itself, the company rents them from SoftLayer.
The highlights are the high performance architecture, redundant network and infrastructures, and around-the-clock monitoring of the servers. To help deliver fast page loading speed, WebFaction also adopts dual quad CPU cores and SSD storage.
For testing purpose, we have hosted a website with WebFaction for almost one year, during which we kept recording its performance on both uptime and server response. According to the statistics, there are occasional frustrating downtime, and the server response time is very disappointing, taking averagely as long as 1000ms.
Below is the detailed report of the uptime and server response captured in recent time.
What About Technical Support
WebFaction claims to offer 24×7 customer service via email and ticket system. In this case, if you have any problems relating to sales, billing and technical support, you can ask for help by sending the staffs an email.
Besides, the web host provides a Q&A community where there are a large number of answers to some common questions posted by users. If you cannot find the answer to your question, you are allowed to summit your question anonymously and then wait for resolution.
However, we have to say, the technical support offered by this company is really not so good. Except for email, there are no contact channels like the most efficient and widely-provided live chat and phone support. In this case, with only email available, leaving aside the fact that the efficiency will be greatly affected, even seeking for immediate help is rarely possible.
Conclusion – Not a Good Choice for Drupal Hosting
According to the in-depth review on the above aspects, we can hardly say WebFaction is a good choice for hosting Drupal. The web host only offers 1 shared hosting plan, uses custom control panel, and fails to do a good job on the affordability, uptime, speed and technical support.
Though we do not recommend WebFaction, we would like to provide you with some better options. The following 3 companies are the top hosting providers and worth a try.