There are many valid reasons to hate GoDaddy web hosting, from their soft-porn advertisements, to their owner’s proclivity to go big game hunting in Africa, to the barrage of pushy marketing of their goods and services (no, I don’t want to add domains today). Today though, I will be complaining about their support and their absolutely shitty hosting platform.
Until Friday, March 22, 2013, the few times I needed support, I received quick, accurate, and insightful help. Leading up to the Friday a website that I run for a local non-profit, Southern Arizona Greyhound Adoption, had been sluggish in loading for a week or so. I noticed it taking a minute to respond to the original URL request. and similarly on the back end (we had a fundraising event on Wednesday, so I was doing daily tweaks to keep the excitement up) it was a pig, taking minutes to load.
But starting Friday morning, it was pretty much unreachable. It would time out, or present the default Apache 500 series error. I could ping the server, I could FTP to it, I could SSH to it, but the Apache/MySql system seemed completely broken. I head on over to the support area, and log a ticket. They estimated that it would take 11 hours to get a response (in the past it had always been less than 2 hours), and the status noted that Friday Evening they would be doing maintenance on their 4GH platform (where my linux hosting is) to fix some resource allocation issues. But no real details.
I also went to their customer forums, and noted that there was a long stream of other people with similar comments/complaints. I posted there as well, and got a prompt response from one of their support droids, telling me that the upgrade/maintenance to the 4GH platform will resolve the issue. But also 4 other people commented on my post that they were experiencing the exact same thing.
Saturday morning, and things are back up, but still sluggish. Feels like there is some delays in their system. 20 hours after opening the ticket, I get an email response. Instead of mentioning anything at all about their problems, I get a list of unhelpful suggestions:
Support Staff Response Dear Geoffrey,Thank you for contacting Online Support. You can make modifications to your site that improve performance. Some of these changes are easy to manage while others might take some time to figure out.
Here are four things you can do to speed up your site:
Smaller pages load faster, regardless of your Internet connection speed. You can make your pages smaller by compressing them with GZIP. (GZIP is only available on our Linux Hosting plans.) For more information about GZIP and our hosting, see Compressing Web Pages for Faster Load Times.
If you use HTML to make large images small, a site visitor still needs to download the larger version. If you need a small image, don’t use HTML to do it—shrink it in an image-editing program instead.
You can edit to say more with less. A good programmer does the same thing with code. If the code on your site is inefficient, it impacts your site’s performance. There isn’t a quick fix for bloated code, but if you’re using GZIP and you’ve reduced your image sizes, analyze your code to make your site even faster. One way to make a database-driven site faster is to use a database index to improve the speed of data retrieval.
Cascading style sheets are great for formatting the look and feel of your website. If your style sheet contains a lot of styles that aren’t being used, you are forcing browsers to download things they don’t need. If you’re trying to maximize performance, trim your CSS files and remove anything that’s unnecessary.
Please let us know if we can assist you in any other way.
For the record, GZIP compression was enabled, I run the site on Joomla, I make sure that all the images are 640 pixels wide or less (and set thumbnails to 200×200 pixel png’s for speed), and really? want me to rewrite the Joomla core to use less PHP scripting? I already have a pretty clean CSS.
So basically, they flipped me the bird, told me that the problem was mine, not theirs, and closed the case. Oh, and in the header of the email they were trying to sell me more domains.
Fucktards. I am now preparing to move the site and domains to my personal hosting provider, the awesome folks over at Media Temple. I will abandon a year of prepaid Go Daddy hosting to get away from those scumbags.