DigitalOcean vs DiscourseHosting

(Caue Rego) #1

Hey @michaeld

Other than the obvious: DH is a SaaS and DO is not; DH should not require any shell commands for having it up, running and upgraded and they do help migrating if you need it, I’m also wondering about the server technical stuff. I couldn’t find answers to a few questions which I asked them through email, and I later thought I should have asked here. (I just did it at first at the wrong topic!)

Continuing the discussion from DiscourseHosting migration service for your existing forum:

PS: I think "Digital"Hosting really should copy DO’s referring model, 1 lower level plan free for the referree, 2.5 for the referrer! :wink:

(bubill) #2

Discourse Hosting better than DigtialOcean ???
Reason ?

I think Discourse Hosting have a lot of limited.
such as Basic user can not install customize plugins
Database has only 5GB

(Caue Rego) #3

Well, that’s what I’ve asked! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

How limited is a 5GB in practice?

I don’t want plugins as much as I don’t want maintanence, so that’s kinda a moot point. If you’re looking for ease to use, you already expect no plugins.

(bubill) #4

I like DO. because it can do DIY. customize plugins, have 30G SSD disk


I like both apple and oranges… just depending on where I want to eat them

(Michael - #6

I don’t really think it’s fair to compare us to DO. We offer totally different services. Both services are called ‘hosting’ but they are very different. This is like calling a cab and asking whether it has manual or automatic transmission, and if the car will have a turbo engine or not. I don’t know where you read the comparison between us and the $20 DO plan.

So let’s see what we do for your $20 per month.

We take away the hassle of installing Discourse. I noticed you have started a trial today so you probably saw that your forum was up and running 48 seconds after you entered the details like the desired hostname and admin username.

We host your forum and keep it up and running, up to date and secure. We monitor it for issues and performance. We guarantee a good performance of your forum.

We install plugins for you (on higher plans) and make sure they will keep working (as you might have noticed, Discouse plugins tend to break a lot when updating Discourse to a higher version).

We make backups which we keep offline and in a secure place. (No, they’re not the built-in Discourse backups, we implemented this before Discourse had backups).

We do other kinds of stuff, like migrations, customization, SSL certs etcetera for a fee.

I’ve just checked. The database and files of our largest customer measure 1.4 GB. Database only: 500 MB. That’s 125 times the full text of the bible. So no - in practice it’s not limited.

Let me try to answer your questions:

We offer everything that a ‘normal’ Discourse instance offers. We’re currently working on the task of checking all existing plugins and including all plugins that behave correctly with our hosting for no extra cost. We disallow you to install your own plugins on the Basic plan because we need to be able to take responsibility for keeping your instance up and running.

You will have to configure email replies yourself, but they are fully supported. We might include an incoming mail server in the future.

We haven’t put it up on our site yet, but we offer free and pre-configured Mandrill with all our plans.

We take our own backups. Connecting Dropbox, S3 or Google Drive will be possible in the future.
Yes, you can still take your own backups using the Discourse built-in functionality.

Like I said, I don’t think you can compare our service with a plain VPS host. If you’re a big techie and you like playing around, go with DO. But keep in mind that you won’t be saving money: you’ll need at least two hours of maintenance each month. On the $20 DO plan, you will be doing it for no profit. On the $10 DO plan, you’ll be earning $5 per hour (and you’ll have some performance issues). So if you can earn more than $5/h anywhere else, it’s a wise decision to let us handle your hosting so you can focus on better things :smile:

(Caue Rego) #7

You’re correct sir. I noticed there was a trial and decided to go forward. It had already answered most of my questions, but I wanted to see what you’d come up with (expecting you’d notice I did start it!) Awesome! :smiley:

I didn’t want to compare everything, just the technical aspect. I’ve gone 2 or 3 times with DO, and yeah, it’s a pain to maintain. To use your own analogy, to me it’s more like renting a car for 7 people and asking if it has enough space or if you’ll have to rent 2 cars. Both will get you there, but in quite different ways.

That being said, I think I got the glimpse. The point is, it will be running. If it doesn’t, we complain to you, and you fix it. No matter the technicalities. So, if the 2 cars aren’t working, you’ll replace it by a big one while we’re inside. Analogies… :slight_smile:

I’ll probably bring basically all hosts I ever plan to do (which could be just 1 more), except my own one, to you soon.

(bubill) #8

Hi michaeld.
I like DiscourseHosting service.
I build a website for chinese users. So I top care about connection speed.
and I will supply some service for chinese users. such as wiki, blog(use Ghost ,similar wordpress ).

Can I install other software in DiscourseHosting ???

May I make a test connection speed in DiscourseHosting ? and How ?

Thanks a lot.

(Caue Rego) #9

I’ll take my guess here, from my own experience:

No, you can’t (nor should) install other software in the same host as discourse (unless it’s just static pages, maybe). Discourse is pretty resource hungry and without a good hosting it will be slow. It can’t go in a shared hosting, unless it’s too big and much more expensive than U$20 per month.

And best way to make a test connection speed is making your discourse. If there’s enough people in your community, they’ll test it. By that I mean both you don’t need to worry and there’s really not many good ways to test if the host will cover your needs other than doing it. That being said, @michaeld already gave some input numbers of how much the cheapest plan can handle, from his experience.

(bubill) #10

Thanks @cawas

OK, It can’t install other software .


DiscourseHosting bussines model are suitable have some products company , such as Ubuntu that have website. as ubuntu technical support community, or for some products Q&A community. anyway for prodcut companies.

But for mine. We don’t have any product. It just supply some online services for chinese people. Not only community. But similar with Q&A community(Discourse software) is a maintanence service, and then other service, such as , wiki, blog in the future, that means we have to install them in the same Host or VPS .

If community use DiscourseHosting service, and other service deploy other place. It costs much more. and there are different IP address that means not good for SEO. right ?

If my company have product , I prefer to consider use DiscourseHosting.

I don’t know who Discourse users use DiscourseHosting. them ? Discourse Some of Our Customers

Would please you tell me some your customer website URL ? Let me check something. :wink:

And, Why don’t tell us how much memory and cpu specification of every plan ?

Basic plan : has 2GB memory ? 2 core cpu ?
Professional ??
Business ???

(James Milligan) #11

This isn’t correct, as long as your site is set up correctly with links to/from the different parts of your site, the IP address won’t make a difference. You could in theory host every page on a different box, and it shouldn’t affect your SEO ranking.

Pretty sure this is down to DH using the multisite feature of Discourse, in that you have one box with many users on, but technically only one ‘instance’ of Discourse on each box. I’d imagine it depends on how busy each of the sites are as to how many sites are on each box.

(Michael - #12

No - that’s not right. That doesn’t matter at all.

EDIT oh wait, I think you want to know some of our customers.

Because It Does Not Matter.
We do not sell memory and CPU. We sell managed forum hosting.

Our plans do not even have a memory and CPU specification. We assign whatever is needed to ensure a good performance.

(bubill) #13

Thanks a lot !

I’ll make a change to use DiscourseHosting :smile:

(bubill) #14

Hi @michaeld
I think about it again. I really need custom plugins, such as weibo login plugin, and QQ plugin. Because the community is service for Chinese people . You know that they are so popular in china. I can’t get rid of them.

And Only business plan can install custom plugins, but that community is very small that means Now it doesn’t up to pageviews 500,000 . even less 200,000 . So the $80 per month cost is too much . It’s very sad .

I think that in China there’s the similar with DiscourseHosting Bussiness Model . That time, maybe Basic plan could install custom plugins .

And I think that custom plugins could be a store- plugins store. $0.99 buy 1 custom plugin. Like weibo login plugin. But for me , it’s free :smiley:

(Michael - #15

We are currently investigating if we will be able to include those plugins in the Basic plan for no extra charge. I will keep you posted.

(Brian Adams) #16

I see three different hosting options: basic, business, enterprise. Are plugins’ currently supported on the business tier?

(Michael - #17

Per Pricing « DiscourseHosting
The business plan supports the plugins of your choice.

We are currently selecting a number of plugins that will be supported on the Professional plan as well. Suggestions are welcome.

On November 1st, we will be raising the prices for the Professional plans and above in order to make them more in line with the cost and effort involved. The basic plan will stay on the same level and existing customers will stay on their original subscription fee as well.

(Caue Rego) #18

I just found a great comparison chart which works to explain this very well… It’s basically the same thing as “free” wordpress versus hosted (or squarespace).

Also, I saw your ads on 9gag tv. Quite annoying, they don’t stop showing up in almost every video now! :stuck_out_tongue:

Finally, @Michael, I think that ad is too technical. Same problem with discourse home, as I just found out.

(Jeff Atwood) #19

That is a nice chart from Ghost. Differences with Discourse

  • Install is 30 minutes (I can do it in 15)

  • Backups are automatic

  • Upgrades are one-click

Granted you do need to allocate time to configure Discourse at the start. But we’re going to improve setup time in 2015 by adding wizards, etc to make that easier.

(Brian Adams) #20

Not sure if you have another thread for the suggestions. I know Auth0 is a key plugin for my needs.