|Ease of Use|
Lunarpages is a popular Web hosting company featuring solutions for everyone from a first-time blogger to those with a need for a dedicated corporate presence. With plans ranging from $3.95 per month for basic shared hosting to $149 per month for managed hosting of your dedicated resources, there’s bound to be a package that fits both your technical requirements and your budget.
Here’s a quick breakdown of some basic, but important, features offered by Lunarpages Web hosting:
Control Panel: The Lunarpages Control Panel (LPCP) is the default control panel installed, but cPanel is also available.
Uptime: Lunarpages claims 99.9% uptime in the “technology” tab of their offer details, but their uptime is not listed as guaranteed.
Support: The hosting company has over 120 support professionals to help you if you need them. However, their website notes that their “24/7/365 award winning support” does not include phone support (see the “cons” below for more information).
|Server Space||Bandwidth per month||Domains Allowed||Price per Month†|
|Starter||5 GB||50 GB||1||Starting at $3.95|
|Basic||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Starting at $4.95|
|Business||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Starting at $19.95|
|Windows||5 GB||400 GB||1 add-on domain||Starting at $9.95|
|Parallels Linux VPS||30 GB||1000 GB||Unlimited+||Starting at $44.95|
|Parallels Windows VPS||30 GB||1000 GB||Unlimited+||Starting at $55.95|
|Xen Cloud Linux Starter||15 GB||500 GB||Unlimited+||Starting at $22.95|
|Xen Cloud Linux Pro||50 GB||1000 GB||Unlimited+||Starting at $57.95|
|Xen Cloud Windows Pro||50 GB||1000 GB||Unlimited+||Starting at $75.95|
|Linux Dedicated I||2 x 80 GB SATA||2000 GB||Unlimited+||$109|
|Linux Dedicated II||2 x 160 GB SATA||3000 GB||Unlimited+||$140|
|Linux Dedicated III||2 x 250G SATA||4000 GB||Unlimited+||$200|
|Linux Dedicated i7||1 TB SATA||5000 GB||Unlimited+||$235|
|Windows Dedicated I||2 x 80 GB SATA||2000 GB||Unlimited+||$130 – $145|
|Windows Dedicated II||2 x 160 GB SATA||3000 GB||Unlimited+||$161 – $175|
|Windows Dedicated III||2 x 250 GB SATA||4000 GB||Unlimited+||$221 – $235|
|Windows Dedicated i7||1 TB SATA||5000 GB||Unlimited+||$256 – $270|
† Prices per month may be based on long-term contracts. Please review the offer details from LunarPages before committing to any purchase to clarify billing and pricing policies for individual Web hosting packages. Additional resource upgrades may be available for an added cost.
+ Your ability to host unlimited domains may be affected by limitations of your control panel.
The biggest upside of Lunarpages Web hosting has to be the diversity of their plans and pricing structures, meaning you’re bound to find a package that suits your needs. The fact that you have the option to use cPanel is a plus although it would be nice if it were the default (and there is no clear information on their offer pages telling you whether or not there is an additional fee to have cPanel installed for your hosting account).
Another feature that is both on the pro and con list is the availability of “unlimited” features. Starter plans are not based on any kind of unlimited resource. You know exactly what you will have allocated to your account. Higher level plans are another story however, and will be discussed below.
There are also some downsides to Lunarpages Web hosting packages. First, some shared plans feature “unlimited” resources. As you probably know, no such thing truly exists. Before you could use any “unlimited” resource at a truly significant level you’re likely to run into other resource limits put in place. So don’t rely on unlimited resource promises if you know you have a high traffic or otherwise resource-intensive website.
Then there’s the issue of Lunarpages using their own control panel. It would be ideal if cPanel were the default as they’re a leading option and one you’re likely to be familiar with already. Again, while you can apparently request cPanel access, it’s unclear from their website whether or not there is an additional charge for this.
I noticed that Lunarpages is also trying to sell domain registrations to their customers at an exorbitant $19.95 fee. I can’t imagine justifying that in today’s domain market, making that a definite downside. You can avoid it by registering your domains elsewhere or taking advantage of hosting packages with Lunarpages that include free domain names (but those are free only during your first year according to the fine print on the offer page).
Another downside to Lunarpages hosting is the very limited nature of their telephone support. Personally I find it misleading as a hosting customer when companies claim 24/7 support but are only available 24/7 via email or support tickets. A claim of 24/7 support, in my opinion, should mean you’re available to answer questions immediately at any time of the day or night when your customers need you — not a few hours later when you happen to respond to their tickets. If you’re content with email and support tickets, you might not consider this a downside. It’s also important to note that while the company takes on U.S. east coast and UK customers, those customers can still only reach them on the phone from 7am – 7pm Pacific time (meaning a problem occurring in the morning may not be addressed until later in the day, which could affect your traffic or income during a busy traffic time for you should your site happen to have problems).
While Lunarpages Web hosting has its benefits, overall I’m not impressed compared to some other options available. The lack of immediate support is a huge downside in my opinion. I also don’t appreciate seeing hosting companies that appear to gouge prices on domain registrations, especially if they target beginner-level customers who may not know better.
However if you already have your own domain name(s), are located near the U.S. west coast, or don’t mind the support limitations over the phone, go ahead and give Lunarpages a shot and you can share your personal feedback here using our rating system and comments.
*Information in this review was valid at the time of writing – June 20, 2011.
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