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Most reliable web hosting company for a begineer

  1. Jan 15, 2017 #1
    I would like to start learning PHP and more advanced web development concepts, however I would need a website first. I was thinking of using iPage but there are some bad reviews. Can anybody recommend a good cheap web hosting company?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 15, 2017 #2

    mfb

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    Suggesting individual web hosters could be seen as advertisement. There are various websites listing web hosters and comparing them. There are many free options that should offer more than enough for the first steps.

    http://www.whtop.com/top.10-alexa-ranking/country-at
    http://www.prchecker.info/top-10-web-hosting.php
    http://www.freehosting-list.de/webspace
    ...

    Useful features:
    - PHP (obviously)
    - FTP
    - if you like that: some web interface to manage files
    - if you like that: good support for various website software packages (wordpress and similar tools)
    - SQL databases
    - a reasonable amount of space and traffic. With HTML and PHP you'll never use what they give out for free, if you also want to host many images or videos it gets more interesting
    - maybe email features
    - for more advanced things: SSH access
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2017
  4. Jan 15, 2017 #3
    For cheap hosting I usually went with hostgator.com
     
  5. Jan 15, 2017 #4

    QuantumQuest

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    Although it is surely good to have your own website, this is in no way mandatory in order to learn/practice web development. I would recommend to download and work on an Apache, PHP, MySQL web stack. The one that I tinker with is WampServer on a Windows machine. There are other good alternative WAMPs too. If you work on Linux, you can find one such stack through your package manager. This way you will work and learn on your own machine and you can apply/practice many advanced concepts as well.

    On the other hand, if you want to create a website, then as mfb points out you can do your own (re)search on the net, but be aware that there are many options and you have to be careful about the relationship between features/support by the web host and costs involved (sometimes some of which are implied or hidden). You can surely find some good choices and in my opinion as Greg Bernhardt suggests, check hostgator.com.

     
  6. Jan 15, 2017 #5
    In some of the tutorials on YouTube they say servers on your own computer is too much of a headache, for example if you wanted to send an email it wouldn't work without a lot of coding whereas a web hosting website would make things easier and save you time.
     
  7. Jan 15, 2017 #6

    QuantumQuest

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    Yes, there are such cases but I think that a web stack in general, can get you far enough in your development in every aspect. This is (still) the preferred way for learning, as you can tinker with a lot of things at absolutely no cost and learn almost everything you need to, from the comfort and security of your own machine. But again, if going live is your preferred way, there is no problem either.
     
  8. Jan 15, 2017 #7

    jack action

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    Not true, there are tool's for that. I use Test Mail Server Tool. You click on the icon and it automatically listen to your server for mail sent. I use WampServer as well. Everything is free and offer full access of the server's parameters (which will not be the case with shared hosting).

    The worst is really simulating a secure connection (because you cannot have a Certificate Authority backing up your local server, obviously) and subdomains can be tough to set up too. But that is more advance.

    On the other hand, the advantage of web host will be that it will force you to deal with a web hosting control panel (like cPanel or Plesk). That is, if you don't have enough learning about HTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL, Javascript, ...
     
  9. Jan 15, 2017 #8
    Thanks for the information everyone, I will probably do the server on my computer instead of paying for a domain. Just seems like a waste of money at this point although it will definetly be necessary in the future.
     
  10. Jan 16, 2017 #9

    jtbell

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    For the learning stages, it's definitely better to set up a server on your own computer. There's lots of information available on how to do this. Depending on which OS you're using, Google for "WAMP server", "LAMP server" or "MAMP server" for Windows, Linux or MacOS respectively.

    I keep a complete copy of my web site on my Mac, and do all editing there before uploading new pages to my web host.

    When/if you want to go "public", another place to look for advice about web-hosting is the forum webhostingtalk.com. One thing I quickly learned there was to avoid companies that have been bought up by Endurance International Group (EIG). During the past several years, they've bought many smaller web-hosting companies, consolidated their operations (letting the previous employees go), and degraded their customer service. But they hide the consolidation by maintaining the separate brands and websites so they still look like independent companies. The forum I mentioned is full of complaints about EIG companies. Unfortunately, Hostgator is one of them, since last year. So are other well-known brands like iPage and Bluehost.
     
  11. Jan 16, 2017 #10
    For someone with more limited computing experience and who just wants to get a jump start on some web programming I'd actually disagree. With using a web host you don't need to setup or config the server. That can be a big hurdle for most beginners. With using a web host it's basically upload and go.
     
  12. Jan 16, 2017 #11

    jtbell

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    That's a good point. I was spoiled by using MacOS which comes with Apache already installed. At the time I started (several MacOS versions ago), I could start Apache simply by turning on "Web Sharing" in System Preferences. (Now you have to open the Terminal and do 'apachectl start' at the command line.) Then I just dropped my HTML files into my Sites folder and I could access them in a browser at localhost/~jtbell/ . I think to enable PHP I had to edit one of the Apache config files and un-comment one or two directives.

    It also helped that I had helped run my college's student/faculty/staff web server for several years, so I was somewhat acquainted with Apache administration already...
     
  13. Jan 16, 2017 #12
    I downloaded wamp. I created a folder called project1 and made a simple index.php file with the contents

    <?php
    echo "Hello";
    ?>

    For some reason it doesn't work, and localhost is missing from the address. I looked for a solution on Google but they seem fairly complex.
     

    Attached Files:

  14. Jan 16, 2017 #13
    try http://127.0.0.1/ instead

    for http://project1/ [Broken] to work you need to have a hosts entry saying project1 points to your own system.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  15. Jan 16, 2017 #14

    QuantumQuest

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    Did the installation run successfully i.e do all Wamp Server services run properly when you start it? Clicking on the Wamp Server icon in the system tray, you can start/stop services, put Wamp Server online/offline and see the various components of the stack (I have Wamp Server 2.4 but there are no significant differences in current version 2.5). Now, you must click "Put Online" (or something similar in the current version), so the system will get up and running. Then, go to "http://localhost" and you'll see the page of Wamp Server. If you don't see this page on this address then probably you need to configure Apache listening port. Windows has port 80 occupied in many cases (the most usual being by IIS), so you have to go to Apache "httpd.conf" file. You will find it by clicking WAMP server icon and then Apache > httpd.conf.Open it with an editor (for instance with Notepad) and scroll down until you find the line "Listen 80". Change this to "Listen 8080". (There is nothing special about port 8080 it is just an example. You just want to find an unoccupied port.). Save the file and restart Wamp Server. (By the way if you want to take a look for registered port numbers look at IANA.)
     
  16. Jan 16, 2017 #15
    The localhost page shows up without any problem, only when I click project1 I get the "page cannot be displayed"
     
  17. Jan 16, 2017 #16
    where exactly is the index.php that you made file located? is it in the same folder as the index.html file?
     
  18. Jan 16, 2017 #17
    C:\wamp64\www\project1

    That is the folder of the index.php file
     
  19. Jan 16, 2017 #18

    QuantumQuest

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    In the attached image I see that the address reads "http://project1 [Broken]". If you put "http://localhost" does the Wamp Server welcome page show up? Then, if you click on "Project1" under "Projects" on this page, (and this includes your php file) does it work? Alternatively, give the full address "http://localhost/project1/index.php".
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  20. Jan 16, 2017 #19
    http://localhost/ takes me to the welcome page, and then when I click project1 it takes me to http://project1/ [Broken] after loading for a few seconds and saying "Waiting for local host" in the tab
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  21. Jan 16, 2017 #20

    QuantumQuest

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    When you saved your file did you put the extension ".php"? Also did you save as not text file?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
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