vBulletin import and possible move to shared hosting, comments please

carsafety

New member
I currently have a vB 4.2.4 forum with over 2M posts. Vanilla forum only, no CMS/blog or other major addons. Only a handful of plugins remain, including Post Thank you Hack, Tapatalk and a few advertising and anti-spam ones. None are essential to keep and hopefully I can get rid of Tapatalk with the more robust Xenforo mobile design. Currently still on PHP and MySQL 5.6 but want to switch to a forum software updated for recent server software, ideally one with fast mobile design and less of a resource hog on traffic spikes. Database is over 4GB and total disk space almost 40GB with file system attachments and some backups. Traffic is usually 200GB/mo or less but can spike to well above in November/December. Averaging about 200 visitors in last 60 min, but can be up to 300 or more at peak times. Server load averages are always very low and memory use is under 3GB but that includes another account with a very low traffic website mainly used for email.

So, main issue is upgrading to Xenforo or other forum software, which is only a question of when. Second issue is if I can move to a less expensive semi-dedicated or premium shared server as current revenues may not support VPS for much longer. A few questions-

1) Can a premium shared litespeed plan like A2hosting Turbo or Veerotech Business handle a Xenforo forum of this size? Other recommendations for host and plan would be great. Must be considerably less than $50 to warrant a move and needs to be managed with great tech support, preferably with cPanel and a dedicated IP like I have now. Ideally ~$30 or less per month.

2) Anyone have recommendations for migration/import services? Cost is a factor. Already in contact with one that I will likely use but other suggestions appreciated just in case timing doesn't work out or something unforseen.

3) Currently thinking I will upgrade on my current VPS and see how things go with resource use, then move to new server later if absolutely necessary. Current VPS does not have litespeed or nginx at this time but is otherwise a decent SSD setup with I believe 6 cores and 5GB. Is there any major advantage to migrating to new host server first, then updating to Xenforo? Or, having both servers available for a few weeks during the update?

4) If I remain on current VPS for a while after Xenforo update, what server improvements would be ideal? PHP 7.3/7.4 I know. Perhaps SQL 5.7 or 8? Is there a free nginx or similar cpanel plugin that works well? I've used these in the past with vB but the free ones became problematic with SSL/https and I haven't tried since.

5) Is there a good post or manual entry on setting up ad script locations like Adsense or Doubleclick? I have some contractual obligations and am using vB4 ad templates now, and basically need to have something similar after switching. Preferably something not completely custom so it won't affect forum software updates in the future. I am not familiar with the Xenforo admin options at all but will pick it up quickly I'm sure, but getting the sponsor stuff running is a top priority.

6) Any other suggestions? Any other essential server or Xenforo addons?

Thank you in advance!
 

Claudio

Well-known member
I currently have a vB 4.2.4 forum with over 2M posts. Vanilla forum only, no CMS/blog or other major addons. Only a handful of plugins remain, including Post Thank you Hack, Tapatalk and a few advertising and anti-spam ones. None are essential to keep and hopefully I can get rid of Tapatalk with the more robust Xenforo mobile design. Currently still on PHP and MySQL 5.6 but want to switch to a forum software updated for recent server software, ideally one with fast mobile design and less of a resource hog on traffic spikes. Database is over 4GB and total disk space almost 40GB with file system attachments and some backups. Traffic is usually 200GB/mo or less but can spike to well above in November/December. Averaging about 200 visitors in last 60 min, but can be up to 300 or more at peak times. Server load averages are always very low and memory use is under 3GB but that includes another account with a very low traffic website mainly used for email.

So, main issue is upgrading to Xenforo or other forum software, which is only a question of when. Second issue is if I can move to a less expensive semi-dedicated or premium shared server as current revenues may not support VPS for much longer. A few questions-

1) Can a premium shared litespeed plan like A2hosting Turbo or Veerotech Business handle a Xenforo forum of this size? Other recommendations for host and plan would be great. Must be considerably less than $50 to warrant a move and needs to be managed with great tech support, preferably with cPanel and a dedicated IP like I have now. Ideally ~$30 or less per month.

2) Anyone have recommendations for migration/import services? Cost is a factor. Already in contact with one that I will likely use but other suggestions appreciated just in case timing doesn't work out or something unforseen.

3) Currently thinking I will upgrade on my current VPS and see how things go with resource use, then move to new server later if absolutely necessary. Current VPS does not have litespeed or nginx at this time but is otherwise a decent SSD setup with I believe 6 cores and 5GB. Is there any major advantage to migrating to new host server first, then updating to Xenforo? Or, having both servers available for a few weeks during the update?

4) If I remain on current VPS for a while after Xenforo update, what server improvements would be ideal? PHP 7.3/7.4 I know. Perhaps SQL 5.7 or 8? Is there a free nginx or similar cpanel plugin that works well? I've used these in the past with vB but the free ones became problematic with SSL/https and I haven't tried since.

5) Is there a good post or manual entry on setting up ad script locations like Adsense or Doubleclick? I have some contractual obligations and am using vB4 ad templates now, and basically need to have something similar after switching. Preferably something not completely custom so it won't affect forum software updates in the future. I am not familiar with the Xenforo admin options at all but will pick it up quickly I'm sure, but getting the sponsor stuff running is a top priority.

6) Any other suggestions? Any other essential server or Xenforo addons?

Thank you in advance!
Hi,

I'm sending you a private message answering all your questions and offering you our services 🙂
 

carsafety

New member
Hi,

I'm sending you a private message answering all your questions and offering you our services 🙂

Thank you- looks great but sadly my disk usage puts the cost beyond what I am paying now and well out of reach for now. Spending more than $50/mo is not an option right now and to make it worth the hassle of moving I'd like to be closer to $30 a month or less if I can find a shared or semi-dedicated package that will work. Do you offer your Xenforo migration and other services on outside servers or only for those hosted on your own?

Any other input also appreciated if anyone else has ideas, even if just for technical questions beyond hosting options.
 

Dragonfruit

Active member
You don't mention activity, but the VPS at KnownHost seems to fit your budget, at $28 USD per month:
  • 2 Core CPU Processor
  • 2 GB Guaranteed RAM
  • 50 GB RAID-10 SSD Storage
  • 2 TB Premium Bandwidth
  • 2 IP Addresses
  • DirectAdmin or cPanel/WHM
If those specs suit you, it could work.
 

carsafety

New member
I detailed this on the private message. Point 2.

Thanks I wasn't clear if it was only on your hosting or on any host! I'll send you a message shortly, also I needed a 2nd post to use the conversations system lol.

You don't mention activity, but the VPS at KnownHost seems to fit your budget, at $28 USD per month:
  • 2 Core CPU Processor
  • 2 GB Guaranteed RAM
  • 50 GB RAID-10 SSD Storage
  • 2 TB Premium Bandwidth
  • 2 IP Addresses
  • DirectAdmin or cPanel/WHM
If those specs suit you, it could work.

Thanks! I looked at KnownHost, their shared professional plan- it does not have a dedicated IP option but otherwise seems like a possibility. The VPS renews at $55/month once you add cpanel and $65 if you add litespeed and is otherwise inferior to what I have now. My current VPS is a decent deal, it's just that with current environment I don't know how much longer I can support it so I am considering shared options if they are enough for Xenforo.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
If the traffic is spiking at certain times, you could consider cloud hosting, so you can add extra capacity as and when needed.

As for whether shared hosting will work with the size of your site and traffic, it really depends on which host you go with.

Some shared hosts are great and don't oversell the server, others however are dreadful and cram as many sites as they can onto a server, resulting in a terrible experience for all of the sites on it.
 

Dragonfruit

Active member
Thanks! I looked at KnownHost, their shared professional plan- it does not have a dedicated IP option but otherwise seems like a possibility. The VPS renews at $55/month once you add cpanel and $65 if you add litespeed and is otherwise inferior to what I have now. My current VPS is a decent deal, it's just that with current environment I don't know how much longer I can support it so I am considering shared options if they are enough for Xenforo.

The VPS plan @ $28 USD per month includes 2 static IPs, is that what you mean by a dedicated IP option? The price seems to be well within what you're targeting for in terms of budget.

No Shared Hosting plans include a dedicated IP. That's why they're "shared hosting".
 

carsafety

New member
The VPS plan @ $28 USD per month includes 2 static IPs, is that what you mean by a dedicated IP option? The price seems to be well within what you're targeting for in terms of budget.

No Shared Hosting plans include a dedicated IP. That's why they're "shared hosting".

Best I can tell, both veerotech and a2hosting shared plans offer dedicated ip as an addon. A2h says $1.97 on the web page but $4 extra per month in cart. There may be others, I'm just starting to look.

The $28 price appears to be only for the first payment if you pay for a long term without cpanel or litespeed. If you put it in the cart for monthly with addons it goes up to the numbers I typed in above that are a bit more than I am paying now and that would also be the renewal cost after a year.
 
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Dragonfruit

Active member
Thanks! I looked at KnownHost, their shared professional plan- it does not have a dedicated IP option but otherwise seems like a possibility. The VPS renews at $55/month once you add cpanel and $65 if you add litespeed and is otherwise inferior to what I have now. My current VPS is a decent deal, it's just that with current environment I don't know how much longer I can support it so I am considering shared options if they are enough for Xenforo.

See here:

Looks like you can get a Static/Dedicated IP for a shared account, just open an inquiry with sales.
 

carsafety

New member
See here:

Looks like you can get a Static/Dedicated IP for a shared account, just open an inquiry with sales.

I contacted them earlier, they said they don't offer this anymore with shared plans, only vps. There is some conflicting info on the webpage. It's not a deal breaker, but years ago on shared I had issues with email going on blacklists and such. Plus I know there can be issues with paid SSL certs. I have a paid one now but likely will go free when it expires or if I move.
 

gerryvz

Well-known member
I use Linode’s $20 a month VPS plan. 4TB bandwidth, 2 cores, 80GB storage, 4GB RAM.

cPanel is an option if you use a compatible OS distro. I use Ubuntu and do everything via command line. I have added 75GB block storage for $7.50 a month (scale up or down, any size you want) and $5 a month for automatic daily backup for peace of mind. So, $32.50 a month total. Excellent docs at Linode and instant & knowledgeable support anytime.

They have a $5 a month Nanode and $10 a month plan as well. You can try those and scale up as you need. I’m actually starting. New forum soon on a nanode and will scale up as it grows. $5 a month for a full VPS is a killer deal.
 

Brad Padgett

Well-known member
@carsafety I think my host would be able to offer you the best deal. Personally I'm hosting an 8 GB RAM VPS with 4 cores and 75 gb pure ssd disk for under $80/year.

The host is called Host Rush and has been the most reliable I've ever had. This is my 3rd year hosting with them and I have never experienced any down time not even once except one time when it was my own fault. It's mainly un-managed but if you are good at running your own site like I am this could actually be your calling.

The deal I got was in a web hosting talk thread which I will link you to now in order for you to get the best deal. The 8 GB RAM plan is only $6.99/month. Cpanel would be $15 extra a month. If your budget is around $30/month then this would fit you perfect.

Before I switched to the 8 GB ram plan I was hosting my site with 12 gb ram 4 cores and 100 gb disk space for $110/year on a custom plan I asked for via ticket (since price in WHT thread was similar). I then bought my cpanel license https://www.buycpanel.com which I recommend everyone does so if something goes wrong with the host you at least have your cpanel license. The cpanel license cost me $180/year with softaculous included so on the ideal plan I see you getting with Host Rush you would be paying $290/year for 12 gb ram 4 cores 100 gb disk space and cPanel included. You could also pay semi-anually or every 6 months.

I will link you to both buycpanel and the host rush web hosting talk thread that way the cpanel license is owned by you and not someone else. Some people think when they find out how cheap I pay for hosting that there's some catch or the host isn't professional which isn't true. The main issue is they are just really un-managed and there's only one person working support tickets though I will say that the response time is remarkable for that to be the case and even the one person who does support (Adnan) has never not been able to resolve an issue ever with my site. Any issue I have has been taken care of.

 

Brad Padgett

Well-known member
One last thing is I am currently using the free panel virtualmin/webmin with my plan as I moved away from cPanel because of the price. I'm finding it's not as bad as people think. It takes some getting used to but it gets the job done quite fine. You just need to install config server firewall and mod security from the command line. After that your good to go.
 

carsafety

New member
Thank you everyone for all the suggestions- I will look into these options this week as well. I have some time to decide on a possible server move, but am going to move forward with the Xenforo update sooner than later, regardless. I'm sure I could deal with an un-managed server and varying control panels, but in the event I am on vacation or otherwise unavailable, I do need fully managed and competent tech support to help my non-technical colleagues resolve any issues. This is why fully managed cPanel is preferable, but it isn't 100% required.
 

VeeroTechHosting

New member
Hi @carsafety - VeeroTech here. Thanks for considering us.

Do you have a ticket ID if you've already reached out to us that I can review?

Based on your description, our SSD Business plan should work OK - we do have other options, but I would not recommend that you use an unmanaged server. Upgrades can be done between the plans, so starting out with a smaller plan that closely fits the requirements can be upgraded on the fly.

In terms of cPanel pricing mentioned a few posts back, this really doesn't affect customers that do not have large amounts of cPanel accounts or licenses.

Regarding a dedicated IP, we do offer these on all plans however, all IP space requires proper justification.

If you have any other questions, please fee free to reach out.
 

carsafety

New member
Hi @carsafety - VeeroTech here. Thanks for considering us.

Do you have a ticket ID if you've already reached out to us that I can review?

Based on your description, our SSD Business plan should work OK - we do have other options, but I would not recommend that you use an unmanaged server. Upgrades can be done between the plans, so starting out with a smaller plan that closely fits the requirements can be upgraded on the fly.

In terms of cPanel pricing mentioned a few posts back, this really doesn't affect customers that do not have large amounts of cPanel accounts or licenses.

Regarding a dedicated IP, we do offer these on all plans however, all IP space requires proper justification.

If you have any other questions, please fee free to reach out.

Sure, I will send you the ticket link. The dedicated IP was a substantial cost but still within budget and similar to the other comparable plans. It just wasn't clear if I could actually have one provisioned when I ordered. At this point I anticipate I will not be moving to a new server prior to the Xenforo update, so at the earliest it would not be for a month or two once everything is stable and I can monitor resource usage, traffic and revenues after the update. Thank you for the reply!
 

VeeroTechHosting

New member
Sure, I will send you the ticket link. The dedicated IP was a substantial cost but still within budget and similar to the other comparable plans. It just wasn't clear if I could actually have one provisioned when I ordered. At this point I anticipate I will not be moving to a new server prior to the Xenforo update, so at the earliest it would not be for a month or two once everything is stable and I can monitor resource usage, traffic and revenues after the update. Thank you for the reply!

Hi - thanks for the info there. Sure, understood. The IP cost is due to IPV4 exhaustion - we have to ensure our IP space is properly utilized to ensure future operations. Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions about anything.
 

Rhody

Active member
I have a Xenforo forum with about 1.2 million posts and a vbulletin 4.x both on mddhosting and couldn't be happier with the provider. They answer support tickets in about 5 minutes, and the service is very fast - even on their shared and reseller servers. Using mariadb with litespeed, php 7.4, ssd, storpool based, unlimited bw, and cpanel.

If still shopping, you may want to consider them too. They have a bunch of Xenforo customers, according to the tech I spoke with.

Mike
 
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