-I'm a customer for about ~2 years.
-I was "just" using OVH object storage, and was considering other OVH services.
-I'm all about "cheap,cheap,cheap"
-OVH is super-cheap, which is good.
-I want OVH to "win". OVH doesn't want to "win". Because..
-OVH is super-confusing. Interface, website, billing, everything.
-website uses esoteric design conventions. A European thing? I don't know.
-feels as if they went the extra mile to make it confusing. Defies belief!
-they have separate websites for different countries, which use different login credentials.
-they have "OVH credits". Why???
-they use OpenStack (Yay!). Unforuntely, they have a confusing implementation of OpenStack dashboard, AND on a separate site, with separate credentials.
Bottom line: I'm a tech-savvy guy who can absorb some pretty bad UX, but OVH made me cringe. Seriously, I do not exaggerate. Anytime I need to log on to OVH, I get an uneasy feeling. So, I gladly paid extra and switched. I use DigitalOcean now. It's not as cheap. Digital Oceans's UX is good, but not amazing. But believe you me, it is BREATHE OF FRESH AIR compared to OVH. Update: may post a video if you guys want me to. Let me know!
Also, part of the bad interface design seems due to them building public API's first and then the GUIs. This leads to the same kind of "impedance mismatch" problems that many frontend apps suffer where the backend functions aren't well suited to provide good UX. Of course this is also their fault for either not improving the APIs and/or not putting enough effort to work around the limitations in their GUIs. However, it has the upside that you have APIs for everything.
Also... we've been customers for a very long time, mainly of their dedicated server offerings. After dealing with their support a non-trivial number of times, our learned procedure is: just get a new server and migrate, without renewing the old one. Sadly, this also means that we don't trust any managed service from them.
We switched all other services from them pretty instantly. It would not be an option if one of our production servers had a failure and we could not get repair procedure quickly handled. We are willing to pay for this privilege.
BTW - we were their customer for 6 years. It worked smoothly and there were no problems with their service on running machines.
I found that using OpenStack's CLI utilities is sometimes better than any of their UIs. Unfortunately even then I have to switch to their UI to switch a server to monthly billing (transforming it into more of a VPS than a cloud instance). Wish they handled it the same way as Google does with the sustained usage discount.
I could not however continue using them once they asked me to verify my identity after a month of usage.
I was paying $3.50 per month.
No other hosting provider has asked me for that kind of information.
With that stupid move, they lost a customer for life.
No, not a European thing. They are just special.
I was thinking about using Hetzner, but I dread it may be like OVH. Anyone with first-hand experience with Hetzner?
I've tried OVH I think on two or three occasions, mostly VPS which was really sucked. But that was a few years ago maybe they got their s..ervers together.
That said, it depends on the stack, the level of optimizations and how much each websocket requires...
I'd love to know too though (both the # of servers and the other details)
Unfortunately, even though there are some fallbacks and it seems to be pretty reliable, these servers are pets rather than cattle.
Every server has RAID1 by default, plus I keep postrgresql slave on another box and I try to keep up to date backup. I actually never experienced a drive failure there (I currantly have ~10 boxes), but on my dev server at home which runs the same service I got I guess 5 HDDs failures already. Just two of them were server-grade though.
Here some screen shoots from minutes ago:
Exhibit 1: huge yellow sticker to tell me to switch to auto-pay, which I actually don't want to for some of my clients.
Exhibit 2: both bills for servers setup as autopay.
Actually the option to pay in advance is a blessing and as far as I know, only known to me provider that does that. Last December where I was for $35,000 in taxes, I was able to significantly lower that down for purchasing OVH services for 12 months in advance. OVH rocks!!
can you point me at a not-so-confusing implementation of OpenStack?
My own impression as a SysAdmin is that OpenStack is incredibly overcomplex, and that you want Ganeti instead. I mean, this is from the SysAdmin side, setting up and maintaining the cluster. Ganeti clusters are setup by one person. OpenStack clusters are giant IBM-esqe projects where you switch consulting firms at least twice before completion.
Of course, on the end user side, it's a different thing, and having a consistent api to code against has a multitude of benefits.
so I'm super interested in what users who are enthusiastic about (and paying for services from) service providers who provide service using openstack. I'm especially interested in how much of the openstack api is exposed to the user and how.
And true about the random French switching.
Maybe you are using their Quebec DC. (Bill 101)
But that’s kind of OVH’s DNA. It originated as a bunch of servers hosted in a closet, and has been progressively hacking together more features cheaply, it’s kind of the duct tape and shoe string hosting provider, but it has prices in line with that style as well. A much more polished and support-focused provider wouldn’t charge these prices.
It does seem to have got a little better over the last year although their Openstack cloud service is made a little more difficult to manage because of their pre-paid servers discount being tied to a specific instance, it makes auto scaling difficult.
I wanted to store a couple gigs of data online.
A friend told me that OVH had a service for that.
I checked their service and found it; wow it was literally 10x as expensive as competitors.
Turns out there are 2 services to store data online by OVH, the one I am looking for was named differently and hard to find on their website.
After seeing that they both had extremely negative reviews, I did not look further.
However, it’s a better UX and less hassle to just bill customers in actual dollars/euros than in “MyCompany Credits” (that probably map 1:1 or 1:100 or 1:1000 to USD)
> -I'm all about "cheap,cheap,cheap"
Have you looked at wasabi.com? They are much cheaper than just about anyone for object store. OVH is 0.0112/GB/mo and Wasabi is 0.0049/GB/mo.
Wasabi it appears is not suitable when content is downloaded is many times, which is the use case for websites.
This times a hundred. I'd keep running into tasks that DIDN'T WORK on the web UI and was told to use the API, but then the API didn't work because of the region I was in and I had to use an older version or a different command that did seemingly the same thing or...
And what's esoteric design?
I immediately backed up all my data and created ticket. I wait for I day. I wait for 2 days. After three days (all this time my server was offline) I got answer "we can't replace your drives and can't replace your server because we do not have stock. And you can wait for end of the month for new server".
Isn't it brilliant? :(
For some bandwidth heavy use cases, OVH makes a lot more sense than AWS. In my case it was $150/month versus $2000/month (bandwidth + EC2).
People say this about AWS/GCP/Azure. They are so willing to compete on cost on everything else that it seems odd like this would be true, so I have a different theory:
OVH/etc are all able to massively oversell bandwidth. Most customers do not use it. This is fine, and not anything I think they're doing wrong!
But the "Big 3" are all about automatically scaling resources. With my own applications, I find that if I am scaling up/out, my network traffic is growing at a commensurate rate. Whereas back in the day when I was using SoftLayer or other places where I leased dedicated servers, I was not using anywhere near the included bandwidth.
It's easy to sell 1TB at the price of 100GB if people, on average, are only using 100GB. But then you have to sell 1TB at the price of 1TB if people, on average, are using that 1TB.
Current true bandwidth costs about $0.50 (50 USD cents) per Mbps, per month, sometimes even less.
Average 1 month usage of a 1Mbps link that has Internet traffic on it is about 175-210GBytes.
Literally less than 1/3rd of 1 penny, per GB of data.
From eg Hetzner and other less affordable hosts (and from second hand comments here on hn about bandwidth is where amazon has ridiculously high margins) - I'll venture that the "cloud" providers get away with it because on average "actual" bandwidth correlate with "actual" usage: and hence correlate with actual users that pay or are worth paying "for".
I get 30tb/month bw with my 50/month hetzner dedicated server (along with 1gps uplink). And I can actually use that.
I can't even see backing stuff up to a typical "cloud" provider, because testing restore of a single tb of data/month would be too expensive.
* Cloudfront would be great for the North America and Europe they only charged for the bandwidth (those prices are reasonable), but charging for the HTTP request (and the huge premium on HTTPS). The bandwidth prices outside of those areas are absolutely awful though.
* Akamai makes Cloudfront look cheap.
* Cloudflare has ethical concerns that keep me away from them.
* Fastly is susceptible to DDoS's against the origin in some interesting ways.
* Limelight was great but then Goldman Sachs bought and destroyed them.
* EdgeCast was by far my favorite, but then they got bought by Verizon. Assuming Verizon hasn't fucked it up then they're definitely worth checking out, as their reporting tools were amazing and their performance was literally the best (my information is a few years out of date though on this one).
* If you want to serve people in China you will need to pay a China based (government owned) CDN or your traffic will get blocked for no reason once you get large enough. Conveniently enough one of their sales people will reach out to you about a day or two before the block goes into effect.
* MaxCDN isn't bad, but I haven't seen their higher tier prices (above 25TB) so I can't comment on that. Their South America and Asia coverage is pretty bad though- nothing in India, only one datacenter in Brazil for all of South America (with another being built, but also in Brazil), no Africa, no Middle East. If you're starting english only this isn't the worst, but eventually you'll need to go to a multiple CDN solution for broad coverage.
Completely. I can't believe people actually pay Akamai.
> Fastly is susceptible to DDoS's against the origin in some interesting ways.
> Cloudflare has ethical concerns that keep me away from them.
Not to mention their product itself isn't too good. I always get forced to Captcha on some ridiculous cloud flare "protected" site, despite not using a VPN or anything out of the ordinary.
From there you can force requests to hit the origin server by first purging the data from the cache and then requesting it.
Unrelated to DDoS I've also seen issues with the Fastly routing- it doesn't always pick the greatest end node to have a client connect to.
* Cloudflare got some initial fame by keeping Lulzsec up during a massive DDoS. That by itself wasn't bad, but afterwards they embraced a "bulletproof hosting" mindset that involved acting as a shield for malicious activity (specifically, people were abusing their network to host malware and drive by exploits). If you reported an account for pushing malware they'd block the single instance of malware (ie, example.com/malware/djfksdjf.jar) even if the original server was configured to serve it under any random name (example.com/malware/.jar). For awhile they were a huge source of infection for users.
Their CEO directly lied and accused a security company I worked for at the time of blocking their traffic to "suppress free speech", when what we were really trying to block were active drive by exploits. We sent a ton of evidence for this to them in advance- including PCAP files showing the exact network connection required. Instead of dealing with the malware they were hosting they started a PR campaign.
* After I criticized them before on this site several of their security team followed me on twitter for some reason. That's how I learned that they have a lot of "alt-right" type people on their team (or at least did at that time).
Limelight was my favourite before I discovered Edgecast, the only problem is Limelight no longer does business with small companies and no more reseller / PAYG model. Which means basically most of us cant use them. But I didn't know Goldman Sachs bought them? And destroy them?
Their list pricing does but they’ve matched or beat AWS in the past. This is by far my least favorite part of the enterprise sales model but if you can haggle it pays off.
For more traditional options, look at the quiet upstart Stackpath which is built upon the old MaxCDN network, and also CDN77 which is great value.
We have had some issues though. OVH had two major outages in the last two years. Our strategy has been to build a more robust distributed architecture and use these issues to be "antifragile," which improves our product while as still saving money.
Over time I expect OVH to become more solid as they mature.
Every major platform had outages in the last 2 years - Amazon many times, google cloud also.
A github search shows over 1000 code results.
There is literally an entire page explaining that there is no business model other than a donation button. There are shockingly people than run websites either as a hobby or to provide a useful service for others with no expectation of making money from it.
$ curl -s https://wtfismyip.com/text|wc -c
$ curl -s https://wtfismyip.com/text|gzip -|wc -c
I would be very reluctant to do a startup centered on, say, GMail or Amazon Marketplace as a platform. If you get too successful, it's too easy for them to say, "Hey, here's a proven high-value business for us to get into." And then they have my customer right there, so I'm screwed. (An example that comes to mind is Swype. They invented the swipeable virtual keyboard and made a great product. So great that Google added the feature to their own Android keyboard. And then released it for free on iOS, too.)
But I'm not worried at all about using their infrastructure services, because it doesn't give them much in way of competitive advantage. Netflix, for example, has a lot of their stuff running in AWS. Amazon has Prime Movies + TV as a direct competitor, but I don't think Netflix really cares. I as a consumer sure don't; from my perspective Netflix and Amazon are completely separate.
Over the last year I've seen a huge push to move away from AWS from retail clients. Azure is a lot more appealing because Microsoft doesn't compete with them.
Microsoft was famous for doing the same thing: http://www.paulgraham.com/road.html
> There is all the more reason for startups to write Web-based software now, because writing desktop software has become a lot less fun. If you want to write desktop software now you do it on Microsoft's terms, calling their APIs and working around their buggy OS. And if you manage to write something that takes off, you may find that you were merely doing market research for Microsoft.
Spyglass, which licensed its browser to Microsoft in return for a percentage
of each sale; Microsoft turned the browser into Internet Explorer and bundled
it with Windows, giving it away to gain market share but effectively
destroying any chance of Spyglass making money from the deal they had signed
with Microsoft; Spyglass sued for deception and won a $8 million settlement.
Regardless, I think it's inarguable that they would have been worth a lot more had they not been killed off by the platforms they did so much for.
I used Swype for a while. IIRC they were not helping themselves : you had to reinstall the app after a while because it would automatically stop working.
I also personally disliked how the keyboard looked with swype.
When the default keyboard started having this feature, there was no point in installing this bothersome app anymore.
This doesn't seem true, based on all of the things they talked about using at Re:Invent last year.
Their support is beyond useless.
Can't even cancel my servers, but everything else was great.
Ended up having to use their API to cancel the server, since support wouldn't cancel the server for me - here is an actual email they sent me: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DY2rWiLU8AA_mKt.jpg:large
Which is a big plus because when using AWS or DO there is always that small question in the back of my mind "what if somebody gets angry at me and fires abuse reports to shutdown my server"
I don't have that on OVH. Getting good IP reputation is fairly easy too compared to AWS or DO.
Bought a block of extra IP's. IP's assigned would not route to anything
OVH gave me a barrage of tests and kept insisting I'd fucked up
Eventually they asked if they could directly connect to my server (with my consent)
Immediately declared the issue "Closed" because I wasn't using VMware ESXi!
I agree with your general point though, maybe just not the bank part.
Edit1: It's not reg W, damn I cannot remember which section describes this. There's too many bank regs in the US.
Edit2: ok 12 CFR 225.21 &238.51 we're closer: https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/12/225.21
Bank or bank holding can't own anything other than other fin, ag, or family stuff.
I'm still at sure to what extent this would stop Amazon from starting their own bank. (IANAL, but this was explained to me years ago by an expert on us federal banking regulation so I have hazy memories of it)
Aaaand I just wasted 15 minutes of my morning looking through the CFR on banking regulation, time to stop reading hackernews.
I used to work in a securities firm owned by a bank holding company in a role requiring being registered as a securities principal (legally responsible to supervise). It still took me several minutes to remember which regulations to look up.
Amazon doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of working around these regulations with the current administration. Trump hates Bezos. With a moderate Republican in power, they might be able to lobby their way to creating the precise loophole they needed (which would require legislation).
AWS, Azure and GCloud are all so good at Marketing themselves that a lot of people don't even hear about alternatives.
I used a lot OVH both for private reasons and pushed it into my company.
It is by far the cheapest (by a factor of 3-4* in my case), and it is shockingly easy to get to talk to core engineers in case you have any real issue.
The founder Octave Klaba is also a character. A Huge geek, that lives for OVH.
Where would you get that impression? OVH is clearly well known in the tech world of the bay area / SV. They've been regularly discussed on HN for at least ~5+ years that I'm aware of.
One problem has been that they only have one North America location and it's in Canada (not necessarily ideal depending on what you're doing and where you're located in the US).
I'd be afraid to use OVH simply because it's French. What happens if I need serious support on August 15? Is the entire company going to be on vacation?
Also, my fear of needing support on a weekend or a holiday or after 7pm on a weekday or at lunch time.
I don't know if OVH operates like a real French business, but if my experience with Orange, EDF or any other French business is any indication, it would be highly frustrating and risky to build a business around any French company. Then there's the risk of France deciding to heavily tax your business because data might cross through French territory. Suddenly, if you're a non French business but you have a datacenter in France or data transiting through France, now you're going to be subject to the whims of French politicians. Considering how France is suing Apple over the iOS developer program and how they threaten and complain about pretty much any non-EU tech company -- it wouldn't take much for the government to order OVH to shut down your servers or attempt to extort payments.
I'm more afraid of the EU than Amazon.
(I run a bunch of virtual machines, each with a real public IP exposed.)
I had a server go offline last night. A fuse broke. It took support all of 30s to fix it. OVH this would have been at least Monday before someone looked.
AWS hits a "pay what you use" price point for services that previously required the human equivalent of a large capital outlay.
ClickHouse costs us 100K per month, all deployed on OVH.
100-200ms query latency.
Also your other comment mentioned 50TB across 1000 Clickhouse nodes, why so little data per node?
plus storage costs?
OVH aren't about to start selling books or buy supermarket chains? Quelle surprise.
Having AWS in the hosting market means that right now, it's become a cottage industry for anyone else other than the big names in tech. Meanwhile these big names in tech know that they can make money from their platforms.
They simply can't compete on the same level and now they've decided that's what makes them unique in the industry...
What should a hosting business to do in 2018?
I think they're more talking about companies hosting on AWS, e.g. Amazon Video is a competitor to Netflix
On the other hand, Dropbox had to leave AWS because they would never be able to be a storage solution at a lower price and pay AWS fees...
*charge until a point. I don't expect them to go cloudflare.