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Thread: How To Pick a Good PHP Hosting Company

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2003

    Question How To Pick a Good PHP Hosting Company

    There are many issues you need to consider when choosing a hosting company for your web sites.

    This little guide is designed to help you ask a hosting company the right questions if you want to use PHP on your web sites.

    Questions to ask a hosting company about PHP:
    1. Is PHP available and what version of PHP (anything less than 4.3.0 is very old)?
    2. Can you install your own PHP scripts?
    3. Can PHP scripts send mail?
    4. Do they impose arbitrary rules for scripts to send email? For example, does the email have to be "From" a user in your own domain? Restrictions like this are misguided - they cause you problems but don't prevent spammer activity (there are other and correct ways for hosting providers to prevent spammer activity).
    5. Are PHP scripts on your web site free from any "security" or other restrictions?
    6. Have they installed and configured PHP properly, and, if not, will they resolve the problem? A lot of hosting providers seem to not understand the "/tmp" directory and PHP's requirements for it (or a similar directory).
    7. Can HTML forms use the POST method to submit data to PHP scripts?
    8. Does PHP include full PEAR support?
    9. Will they upgrade PHP, especially as security issues are identified?
    10. Is Zend Optimizer included with PHP or will they install it if you ask?
    11. Can you install CGI binary programs (executables) on the server?
    To use our PHP scripts, you do not need "yes" to all the above questions. The following sections tell you exactly what you do need.

    However, nowadays there is no reason a hosting company cannot say "yes" to all the above questions. We recommend you shop around until you find a company that does say "yes" to all the above (and meets your other requirements too ).

    A good resource for discussing hosting companies with other webmasters is WebHostingTalk.


    To use our PHP FormMail, you need "yes" to questions: 1, 2 and 3. It's also helpful if they say "yes" to questions 4, 5, and 6.


    To use our PHP FormMail's Advanced Error Handler, you need "yes" to questions: 1, 2, 3 and 4.


    In addition to the "yes" answers for FormMail, you will need "yes" to question 11.

    FormMail Modules

    Soon we'll be releasing to production several optional FormMail modules. These will provide various addition powerful features. To run these, you'll need "yes" to question 8.

    Still not sure?

    If a web hosting company has answered your questions, and you're still not sure, please post a question on our support forum and we'll assist you.
    Last edited by russellr; 24-Sep-2007 at 12:20 PM.
    Russell Robinson - Author of Tectite FormMail and FormMailDecoder

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