Tag: hosting

Hosting365 back up again?

Irish hosting company Hosting365 went dark this morning at around 10:30am according to reports I am receiving. The last time this occurred was last July when there was a fire in a nearby ESB substation if memory serves.

I contacted Hosting365’s Marketing Director, Ed Byrne, about this incident and Ed informed me that:

We are back now. I need to get a full report but we did have a serious issue while electrical engineers we working on the UPS. Human error, incredibly annoying. Will tell all openly when I know.

As I write this, Hosting365’s main site is still offline and not answering pings.

UPDATE – Ed contacted me again to say that he is updating the blog on hosting365status.com with info as he gets it.

[Disclosure – I am a director of CIX – a company building a data centre in Cork]

Views from the CIX mast

We are erecting a 24 metre mast outside our CIX data centre in Cork.

I was curious to know what the visibility would be like for our mast’s customers (we will be renting out space on the mast) so yesterday when we had a cherry picker onsite I had the driver lift me 10 metres and I took some photos.

I posted the photos on the mast’s page but, for example, looking East-South-East from 10m above the mast’s site you can see the former IFI plant on Great Island (8 miles as the crow flies)!:
View from CIX Mast

Remember these photos were taken from a height of 10m and the mast, when erected later this month, will be a full 24m!

[Disclosure] – I am a director of CIX

BarCamp Dublin on Saturday

BarCamp Dublin is on this Saturday (21st April 2007) in the Digital Hub.

Registration starts at 09:15 with the talks kicking off at 10:00.

There are lots of great speakers lined up to talk on topics as diverse as “Web Usability 101” right through to “Law of Blogs; Blogs of Law”.

I’ll be giving a talk on CIX’s data centre and how we hope to be carbon neutral.

I’m really looking forward to the day. It will be a fantastic opportunity to catch up with lots of old friends, make lots of new ones and hear fantastic talks into the bargain.

Oh, did I mention that entry is free?

See you there.

CIX project

The CIX project is hurtling along (CIX is a project to build Cork’s first professional data centre).

I have posted photos over on the CIX blog of the mast foundation (160 tonnes of concrete and 5km of rebar steel!), the burying of our data cable ducts and of the installation of our suspended ceiling.

If you are interested in hearing more, I’m giving a talk at BarCamp Dublin about the CIX data centre and our plans around extreme energy efficiency on this coming Saturday.

[Disclosure – I am a director of CIX]

A carbon neutral data centre?

I honestly don’t know if this is possible or if it has been done anywhere but our aim in CIX is to try to build a carbon neutral data centre.

Carbon neutral means that the data centre doesn’t create greenhouse gases and add to the climate change problems the planet is experiencing.

Data centres are notorious for requiring vast amounts of electricity and as we are based in a nuclear-free country, it is difficult to use lots of electricity without producing significant quantities of CO2.

We have a strategy document on how we can achieve this but to get there we need other partners to buy into the idea.

How revolutionary do you think this idea is? Would you put your racks/servers into a carbon neutral data centre over and above a carbon producing one?

Site moved to new server

I moved this site onto a new server last night (since my former hosting company told me they no longer wanted my business).

I have to say, it seems to be far faster as a result (not really surprising – there are far fewer sites on this server). Let me know if you come across any problems.

The server is in the new CIX data centre in Cork. CIX is not finished yet but when it is, it will be Ireland’s first fully redundant data centre outside of Dublin

[Disclosure – I am a director or CIX Ltd.]

Just to clarify

I have heard it back that the reason for my recent posts about Blacknight is nothing to do with my poor customer service experience but rather because I am trying to bully Blacknight into becoming a customer of CIX!!!

In case anyone else has heard this ridiculous rumour and has put any stock in it let me address it quickly.

First off, anyone who knows Michele (MD of Blacknight), knows that any attempt to bully him into doing anything is definitely not going to work!

Secondly, how does this work anyway? Bully someone into buying something? Surely if I was chasing Michele as a customer for CIX, I would have been singing Blacknight and Michele’s praises on the blog. Not picking up on the failings of Blacknight’s customer service.

Finally, as far as I recall, I only spoke to Michele once about hosting in CIX. This was when I called him to inform him of our intention to build an N+1 data centre in Cork way back in July or August of last year. At the time Michele didn’t express much interest and said he wouldn’t commit to anything but that he may take a rack in the data centre when it had been in operation a year or so and had proven itself. I asked him to forward on any requirements he’d have from a data centre. He never did.

Not exactly a hot prospect so I didn’t think about him much more in relation to CIX as we had far larger prospects to chase.

Hosting 365 and customer service

I haven’t written about Hosting365‘s customer service before now as I have no direct experience of it. I don’t host with Hosting365. However their reputation for customer service has been far from stellar. Almost as bad as Irish Broadband’s, I’m told.

Recently appointed marketing director of Hosting365, Ed Byrne is determined to change that.

In a comment on a recent post on this site, Paul Walsh of Segala said

Hosting 365 probably have the worst customer services I’ve come across. Not only are they ignorant, they’re technically crap.

Now, instead of attacking Paul, or throwing him off their servers, Ed contacted Paul privately by email and said:

I read your comment on Tom Raftery’s blog about Hosting365’s service.

First of all I am very sorry you have that opinion of us. 2005 was a tough year for Hosting365 – we’ll be putting up a long blog post about that soon – we went from 16 to over 30 staff and built 2 new support teams. I hope that customers now start seeing positive results from this.

I’m not going to try and pretend we had a perfect customer experience in 2005 – we didn’t – and we’re working to build back customer trust and deliver BETTER support – as we see it as our core driver of growth…

I would like to extend an invitation for you to come in and have a quick chat – show you around the facility. For our business – any business – reputation is absolutely key, so I’d really like to show you the investment we’ve made and get feedback as a customer, on what we should be focussing on.

When I spoke to Ed after my falling out with Blacknight, Ed very generously offered to help move all my sites and host them until I got sorted with a more permanent host, free of charge.

I told Ed that I really appreciated his offer but that if I did ask for his help I would insist on paying.

Now that is customer service – keep it up Ed.

UPDATE: – Just to clarify, I have no intention of moving to Hosting365, I just thought Ed’s attitude to customer service should be highlighted.

Blacknight Solutions don't tolerate criticism

Blacknight Solutions contacted me this afternoon and asked me to move all my sites off their servers. They no longer want my business. Why? Because I criticised their customer service after they lost all my podcasts, didn’t tell me about it until I discovered it a couple of weeks later, and when I did report it to them, they blamed me for asking for a temporary home for my podcasts (untrue).

In the comments of that post, Blacknight MD Michele Neylon admitted:

our handling of the “podcast situation� could have been better

I decided to do a quick search through all my posts relating to Blacknight on this blog. I found fifteen posts referencing Blacknight. Of those fifteen posts (below) ten were positive or at worst neutral about Blacknight (mentioning them as my hoster in passing). In many cases I linked to them using the word “host” or “hoster” which can only have been good for their SEO.

Recently I have noted a decline in the standards of their customer service and my most recent five posts were negative about them.

I will always highlight good service when I receive it and poor service too.

It appears that Blacknight are incapable of taking criticism. If you criticise them, they ask you to take your business elsewhere.

Way to build a customer base guys.

For anyone thinking of hosting with Blacknight, beware what you say about them or you may find yourself out on your ear too.

Here are all the posts I found on this blog referencing Blacknight: