Category Archives: Hosting

Cloud Server Flexibility

Rise about the cloud server hosting restrictions

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

I’ve been in the industry for a long time, so I understand why the big cloud players want to lock users into predefined configurations of compute, memory, and storage. It helps balance and maximize resources, which optimizes their platform density, and of course brings them higher margins.

But this isn’t best for customers. If I have a cloud server with 2 cores, 4 GB of RAM, and 100 GB of disk, I might just want/need to upgrade one of those resources without upgrading the others. Why would I, as a customer, want to pay 2x more and double all of my resources if I just needed a bit more RAM? This lack of flexibility comes at a cost to consumers and I think it’s beyond time to push back a bit. Don’t settle for the predefined packages that some providers are trying to force on you.

There are other options of course. Look at the cloud server hosting options from OrcsWeb – they’re totally flexible and you can adjust any single resource to fit your needs. Or if you prefer to pay post-use, check out the Performance Cloud hosting solution from SherWeb. BTW – another nice things about the SherWeb solution, beyond flexibility, is their transparency in publishing performance metrics and comparisons so you can not only compare price and configurations, but real-world performance expectations of the platform.

Cloud server consumers – it’s time to stand up for your rights. :)

Happy hosting!

Cloud Server Performance Metrics

It’s hard to really know what you get when buying cloud services today. Depending on the vendor they might sell their services with set amounts of “cores”, or “compute units”, or “vCPUs”. Storage might be spinning disks in speeds ranging from 7,200 RPM to 15,000 RPM or the storage might be newer solid state drives which come in MLC, SLC, and a large variety of performance levels. RAM quantities are fairly straight forward (though is that gigabyte 1,000 or 1,024 megabytes?) but the speed levels of RAM vary drastically. Read more »

Starting All Sites in IIS on a Windows Server

So I recently had to do some work on a server that required stopping all sites in IIS but without stopping IIS itself. Here’s the short post on how I did that. Now of course I needed to have all the sites turned back on again. Just restarting IIS wouldn’t do what I needed – it seems to remember what sites were running before the reset. So, here’s a quick little script, which is just the inverse of the previous script, to start all sites.

c:\windows\system32\inetsrv\appcmd.exe list site /xml /state:"$=stopped" | appcmd start site /in

There you go. Simple as could be. This loops through and lists all the sites currently with their running state set to “stopped”, pipes it into the next command, which just starts each of the sites in the list.

By the way this is super fast. Even on a server with hundreds of sites it only took a second or two to run.

Happy IIS hosting! :)

Stopping All Sites on a Windows Server Without Stopping IIS

I had a need recently to stop all the sites running on a Windows server, but I didn’t want to stop IIS. This specific server has hundreds of sites running on it, so stopping each one at a time would have taken an excessive amount of time.

So with a little Google-fu I stumbled across an old post that leverages appcmd

c:\windows\system32\inetsrv\appcmd.exe list site /xml /state:"$=started" | appcmd stop site /in

This single command will pull a list of all the sites that currently have a running state of “started” and then pipe that list into the stop command. This runs super-fast even on a server with hundreds of sites – very impressive and using this saved me tons of time!

Happy IIS hosting! :)

By the way, here’s the inverse of this script to restart all the sites on an IIS server.

SEO Basics for Entrepreneurs

Chances are, if you have a website, you want that website to be found. You want people to search for <something>, see your site in the results, click over to your site and then engage with your product or service (be that a purchase or some other action).

SEO For Entrepreneurs

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

I’m continually surprised and a bit disappointed though when I check out many start-up websites. Upon first glance they might be visually appealing, but oftentimes no effort has been put into attracting visitors – the focus is only on the message once the visitor is already on the site. Don’t get me wrong – that’s important – but there are many layers to the funnel and to have an effective website you need to spend some time thinking about how your visitors are going to get to the site in the first place.

So, here are some thoughts and ideas to consider. Maybe this information is new to you, or maybe it isn’t but you’ve just forgotten or neglected to take action on these items. Either way, I think these are good reminders for many people – especially entrepreneurs who might not have had any sort of SEO primer before. Read more »