Archive for December, 2007

Redhat hires a new CEO…

Monday, December 31st, 2007

We use Linux on all our servers (Currently around 750 servers). All of the servers we use on the shared hosting side of things are CentOS (Redhat Enterprise Linux). We don’t use Redhat’s paid brand of Linux because we simply don’t need it, and frankly their support isn’t that great. Their “custom” enterprise kernel is buggy beyond belief and new features are too slow to be added.

That being said, I do think Redhat has done a lot of positive things to push Linux ahead. There will always be a soft spot in my heart for Redhat because it was the first Linux distro that I really played with seriously (Redhat 5.1).

Now on to why I actually mention Redhat. They have chosen to hire a new CEO. Who did they pick? The previous COO from Delta Airlines? I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read this. The COO of Delta Airlines? Delta Airlines is the WORST company on Earth. Their service is horrible. Operationally they are a joke. They consistently anger the customer in exchange for peanuts in savings (No pun intended). They are a study in what NOT to do. So of course it makes complete sense for Redhat to run out and hire him…

This hire is a mistake, and a big one at that. When there are problems in the future for Redhat remember that you read it here first!

Matt Heaton / Bluehost.com

700,000 Domains and more to come!!!

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

We have just passed the 700,000 domains hosted for our organization. This includes Bluehost, Hostmonster, and Fastdomain. We are now in the top 2, if not number one, fastest growing shared hosting company in the world. We will very soon be hosting more than 1,000,000 domains.

Since the new year is fast approaching, let me give you some predictions for Bluehost and our other brands for 2008.

#1 – We will begin aggressively promoting individual domain name sales, especially through our fastdomain brand. We want to put the HURT on Godaddy. Godaddy’s incessant obstacles to transferring domains and extremely poor customer service will allow us to take a TON of their customers. My personal goal is to take more than 1 million of their customers in the next 24 months – Keep watching! I will make it happen!!

#2 – Fix our “CPU exceeded errors” that many of our customers have been experiencing. The one problem keeps me up at night more than anything else. We are working extensively through software and hardware means to virtually eliminate this problem for the “legitimate” user.

#3 – Finally get together a VPS option to sell to our customers that outgrow our setup. We have wanted to do this for a long time, but have never felt the products were good enough in the VPS space. My opinion of these products has changed as they have worked to make them better. I would like to implement VPS as a full fledged member of our product family.

2008 will be a defining year for us. We will either catapult ourselves to the front of all hosting companies or will falter and grow, but miss our chance to take the lead in this industry. Time will tell where our will and desire will take us during the next twelve months! Thanks for sticking around for the ride!

Matt Heaton / President Bluehost.com

Twas the night before Christmas…

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

Twas the night before Christmas (And incidentally my 36th birthday) and all the through the house, my five kids were sleeping… If you got to the part about the five kids you will know why my blog entry ends here :)

VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE!!!!!!!!

Matt Heaton / Bluehost.com / Hostmonster.com

Firefox, why haven’t you switched yet?

Tuesday, December 4th, 2007

I was just checking out the stats from November 2007 on the main Bluehost.com site. We had just under 1,000,000 unique visitors to our site during that period. That is about our average lately so even though that is an impressive number what was far more interesting to me was the percentage of Mozilla Firefox users.

44.5% of the 1,000,000 unique visitors we had in November used Firefox!! That is amazing! In Europe Firefox usage is skyrocketing with many countries usage over 50%. Firefox usage in the US is less than in Europe, but is still noteworthy as it approaches the 20-25% mark.
Firefox is often associated with users “in the know”. Rarely do I find someone that I respect technically that uses Internet Explorer or Safari. While both of these browsers have improved they still have serious problems. Internet Explorer 7 is a security mess (STILL!!), and Safari simply doesn’t have the feature set to compete seriously with Firefox.

If you aren’t yet using Firefox you really ought to give it a try. The two main reasons that I personally use Firefox are because of its extensibility and its security. The “add ons” or Firefox extensions are GREAT! They allow you to install custom programs that will let you create a browser that is custom for you with just the features that you need. This one feature – the ability to use add ons is in my opinion the primary reason for Firefox’s success. Other browsers have similar functionality but fall short of how well Firefox implements this. My second reason is Firefox’s security record. They aren’t without security problems, but the difference is that they don’t try and hide their problems. They are very transparent and are quick to patch. The same can’t be said for IE which is a security nightmare.

Give Firefox a Try!!! DOWNLOAD FIREFOX

Thanks, Matt Heaton

The most dangerous creature in the world…

Saturday, December 1st, 2007

Whats the most dangerous creature in the world? A lion, a tiger, a grizzly bear? Hardly… Far and away the most dangerous creature in the history of the world has been the mosquito. The mosquito is responsible for more deaths worldwide than any other creature. This tiny bug can and does cause massive damage.

Whats a mosquito got to do with web hosting or the IT industry in general? A lot! Somewhere out there is a teenage kid sitting in his/her basement reading this blog saying to themselves, “I can do a lot better than Bluehost!”. And you know what? They are probably right. Thats exactly how I was when I was a teenager. I KNEW I was going to start companies that were better than what was available at the time. These companies didn’t care a bit about me… I was just an annoying mosquito.

The time will come when we lose our edge, get complacent, or simply don’t watch out for those coming up fast behind us. We will get bit by the mosquito, and when we do it will be time to pass the torch on to the next great company with the vision to satisfy what consumers are demanding.

Hopefully that won’t happen for a long time! I still have some fight left in me and the torch is still firmly in my grasp – for now :)

Thanks,

Matt Heaton / Bluehost.com