North Hosts are a UK based hosting company offering VPS, Dedicated Servers, Colocation and shared hosting. They are a registered UK business under the company number 8808995.
North Hosts have been in the hosting business for many years now and will likely be around for many more, we have had the server we are testing for nearly 2 months which should be enough time to get a decent picture of how well a host performs.
The location of the servers that North Hosts provide are Wigan in the United Kingdom which is a pretty unique location. They also use the AS42831 and AS61163 networks.
Before I purchased a server from North Hosts I opened a ticket with their support to get an estimate on how fast their support and sales team reply to requests.
I opened a ticket asking about the acceptable use policy for North Hosts at 2AM UK time, I received a reply at 6AM. Considering that North Hosts support team are based in the UK this is quite good for a sales ticket considering the times.
The plan that we have purchased is from one of their recent posts on LowEndTalk for their 512MB Yearly Special, this plan costs either £5 per 6 months or £10 yearly.
The specs of the server are:
2 CPU Cores
1GB Burst RAM
30GB RAID 10
The amount that we paid for this deal is awesome considering the resources you get, you can get a link to this offer here.
Performance & Benchmarks
You can see a freevps.us/bench.sh and Speedtest-CLI test below
Benchmark started on Sun Jan 22 19:11:47 EST 2017 Full benchmark log: /root/bench.log System Info ----------- Processor : Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5540 @ 2.53GHz CPU Cores : 2 Frequency : 2526.929 MHz Memory : 512 MB Swap : 1536 MB Uptime : 21 days, 8:14, OS : Ubuntu 14.04.5 LTS Arch : x86_64 (64 Bit) Kernel : 2.6.32-042stab111.12 Hostname : northhosts Speedtest (IPv4 only) --------------------- Your public IPv4 is REDACTED Location Provider Speed CDN Cachefly 30.0MB/s Atlanta, GA, US Coloat 3.22MB/s Dallas, TX, US Softlayer 8.66MB/s Seattle, WA, US Softlayer 7.82MB/s San Jose, CA, US Softlayer 4.45MB/s Washington, DC, US Softlayer 10.4MB/s Tokyo, Japan Linode 4.39MB/s Singapore Softlayer 3.08MB/s Rotterdam, Netherlands id3.net 21.9MB/s Haarlem, Netherlands Leaseweb 26.9MB/s Disk Speed ---------- I/O (1st run) : 321 MB/s I/O (2nd run) : 552 MB/s I/O (3rd run) : 591 MB/s Average I/O : 488 MB/s
While I’ve seen better benchmarks for the network it is still great for the cost of the VPS.
North Hosts Technical Support
I’m not sure what I think about the technical support as of now, I have opened a few tickets but honestly the responses feel as if they were rushed and were of pretty low quality.
I asked whether BitTorrent was an okay use of a VPS which would be hosted with North Hosts (with completely legal torrents) which the support ticket mistook with Tor (not sure how they did that, but oh well.)
They also have a problem with the SSL certificate on their SolusVM control panel, a few people have mentioned this on their offer threads and also in their support system to which the support said they were going to fix however nothing has been done in over a month. The issue is that they are using a self signed certificate on the control panel from the server they are using to host it which throws untrusted errors in the clients web browser, because you need the control panel to reinstall the VPS initially this can be quite a big problem.
The response times of the support team is pretty good, usually under an hour or two but until the SSL error is fixed (as it should only take a few minutes and won’t cost anything with the use of a Let’s Encrypt certificate) I would say that the quality of the answers and resolutions could be improved a fair amount.
I can’t find anything specific about North Hosts that makes them stand out from the crowd other than that they offer a location that not many other providers, if any at all have (Wigan) and that they offer extremely good specifications for the price that you pay.
While the amount you pay for the server is very good for the specifications that you receive, don’t expect much from the support as the replies are not always of the best quality and they may leave you waiting for a resolution for the problem, even if it affects all of their VPS users.
If you don’t need the support team to walk you through anything and you don’t mind using a control panel with an invalid SSL certificate North Hosts may be a good place for you to buy a uniquely located UK VPS with some decent specifications.
Personally I’m going to use this VPS to run a small VPN to protect my traffic when I am away from home.
Leave your own experiences with North Hosts in the comments below