VPS Comparison

In the past, I've used hosting provided by the university for a couple of my projects. With the closure of ACL however, that option is getting more difficult.

In addition, The hosting solution used by OverTheWire is a dedicated server, on which we run our own virtualization platform. The resources on that server are getting exhausted.

So I'm faced with a couple of solutions, the most realistic being to either get another dedicated server or get a bunch of virtual private servers. Since a dedicated server is too expensive to buy at once (I don't have 10 projects ligned up to fill a single dedicated server at once), I decided to go for VPS.

There are a lot of VPS providers out there, and a lot of virtualization platforms. For the OverTheWire projects, I prefer Xen since that allows to run a custom kernel. For other projects, I don't really care that much, but it seems OpenVZ is a standard container-based solution.

So, I set out to find the optimal hosting for my projects. I extracted the list of VPS providers that were listed on LowEndBox and went over them one by one. Most VPS providers have more than one offer and I decided to look at the most common configuration to make it easier to compare.

This is the list of requirements:

The list contains 287 entries of which 57 providers were down/out of business/no longer support VPS.

I thought it would be an interesting excersise, with results that would be interesting to a lot of people. So I made it a community effort by putting up a google spreadsheet where people could help fill in the details.

The result of the survey can be found here: https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0AimYZRRoPGFidFhPTF9TdXRneVFxdkREeG5OcFhFZHc&authkey=CLDn6p8J&hl=en

Although a lot of fields are not filled in, like whether a VPS accepts PayPal, does rDNS or has a console (VPS providers should be more clear about this type of thing on their website), it is clear that there is a wide variety of solutions. Especially in price.

Xen OpenVZ OtherUnknown
Amount 85 81 1054
Cheapest 6 $ 1.66 $ 5.211 $(vServer)5 $
Most expensive 120 $ 60.125 $ 49.95 $ (HyperV)63.46 $