When we first started D9 Hosting back in 2007 we wanted to be different to other hosts, with greater transparency and accountability to our customers. Fast forward 6 years and we still strive to be fully transparent and accountable to you guys.  If you ask us a question, then we'll give you a straight answer! As such, here is a no holds barred account of why all Shared and Reseller hosting customers will soon be receiving a data center migration notice.

Over the years we have used numerous data centers to house our servers, some more successful than others! But the very first data center we used back in 2007 when we started D9 Hosting has always been the home to our Shared and Reseller Servers. In 2009 (roughly) the provider was taken over by a larger competitor but the service levels remained acceptable.

Unfortunately, we have witnessed a rapid decline in the service we are receiving from this provider in the past 6 months or so, which we feel is reflecting badly on ourselves and also impacting our customers.

As long as we (anyone employed directly by D9 Hosting) have access to our servers then we can fix any problems quickly and efficiently, but if a server goes unresponsive then we are in trouble as we have to rely on the upstream providers' onsite technicians to get servers back online, since the provider isn't able to configure KVM or Remote Reboot for us (which in 2013 is pretty much unheard of).

In the past, this hasn't been a problem, as issues were handled quickly. Recently, however, the provider has discontinued telephone and live chat support, leaving support tickets with the only means of contact when a server goes down. We understand that in this industry that's not unusual, but when it takes hours to get a response from them it becomes unacceptable.

The final nail in the coffin (the migration plans were already in place well before this occurred but this confirmed we made the correct decision to leave) came at the end of July (26th July 2013 to be exact) when one of our UK based Servers, Nash, went unresponsive. The onsite techs managed to eventually get the server back online and when we got access we pointed out to them that from the logs we could see possible hardware issues with the PSU. 

A few hours later the server died again so we contacted them to replace the faulty hardware, they replied that they didn't have any spare parts in stock!!! Yes, you read that correctly; a Data Center with no spare parts in stock!! Not only did they not have any spare parts in stock, they also didn't have a single box that they could hook our disks up to so we could at least access the data. All of this despite us having a 2 hour hardware replacement SLA with them.

So with the multitude of issues already mentioned, coupled with the flaky network performance we have been seeing recently, we have taken the decision to migrate all services away from this provider before the situation becomes unbearable for both you and us.

We've been aware of the issues with the current provider for a while now and the migration has been in the planning stages for a couple of months, and we now have servers up in the new US data center ready to go.

The new US data center we are migrating services over to is located in New Jersey, and is one of only a handful of Tier 4 data centers in the country. We've been using this provider to house our own VPS nodes as well as our Enterprise Dedicated Server range since 2012. So we know that the network is rock solid and the onsite technicians are available at the drop of a hat should we need them. We also have full 24/7 KVM access to all Servers in the new data center which will allow us to troubleshoot any downtime issues MUCH quicker than previously.

Customers with accounts on a US based server can view more details of the new Data Center your service will be migrated to on the following page:


Once we have completed the migration of the US based servers over to the new provider (there are just short of 20,000 websites to move) we will start on the UK migrations, which will consist of a further 4,000 sites (give or take). Customers with accounts on a UK based server can view more details of the new Data Center your service will be migrated to on the following page:


We will be sending out migration notices via email when the server your account(s) resides on is ready to be migrated. Don't worry if your friend receives a migration notice and you don't. As there are so many servers and accounts to move we will be doing them in batches so sit tight and keep an eye out for our emails! 

No downtime is expected during the migration, so it should be a painless experience for you guys....even if it means a few sleepless nights for us!

But hopefully, this post will answer any questions you have as to why we are taking on such a large scale move. It's very much about us being proactive to prevent any more disasters that we can foresee happening if we stick with the same provider and it will also allow us to bring our level of service back where it should be.

Thanks for reading, and please do leave us any comments or questions you may have regarding the migration.

Monday, July 29, 2013

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