SimpleScripts is HERE!

I have numerous blog entries about how competitive I am when it comes to web hosting. I hate to lose! Losing means a new customer didn’t choose our hosting when presented with all the options, or any existing customer left because they weren’t satisfied. I want our users to stay and I try and make the experience as good as it can be so they won’t even think of leaving.

Something we have done to try and make our hosting as “sticky” as possible is to launch a new service called SimpleScripts.com. This service is simply fantastic. It is a “one click” auto-installer for many of the most popular free scripts on the internet. Some examples are WordPress, PHP BB 3, Drupal, Joomla, and many more. We have tightly integrated it so that our users don’t have to do anything but click the SimpleScripts icon from the control panel to get started.

Although this service originally launched on Bluehost and Hostmonster, it is not exclusive to our hosting service only (Although it is as at the time of this writing). SimpleScripts itself is a hosted application so web hosting companies can license it and integrate into their own control panels for the benefit of their users. It isn’t even tied to Cpanel only. It will work with VPS and dedicated servers, as well as other control panels such as Plesk.

Installing and upgrading scripts is one of the most frustrating and taxing (April 15th is just 4 days away!!) experiences for our users. We have tried to take away that pain. Its not only great for our users but good for our company as well. Tech support is greatly reduced for script related questions and our users are happier customers.

For Bluehost and Hostmonster users it is best if you click to SimpleScripts within the control panel as it won’t require you to create an additional account, but for those that are not yet customers you can try it out by going directly to the URL at -

http://www.simplescripts.com

Thanks,
Matt Heaton / President Bluehost.com

23 Responses to “SimpleScripts is HERE!”

  1. Gregory says:

    How is this different from Fantastico? Will Fantastico be replaced?

  2. adam says:

    It will work with VPS and dedicated servers

    I’m excited about this. fantastico is daunting to install on our test server, but i like the thought of being able to manage our wordpress installs from a graphic interface.

  3. Bill Shirley says:

    I’ve never thought of WordPress as a script, but I sure hope this makes it easier to manage updates to my blogs (how quickly will they trail the releases?)

    Hmmm, BugZilla? Can I have Bugzilla as a “script”?

  4. Matt says:

    I’ve already converted over from Fantastico for all of my installations except one that I will finish up this weekend. Simplescripts is 1000% times better than Fantastico and is so much more up to date with current versions. Great job Bluehost! I just renewed my service for two years…not just because of this, but it sure doesn’t hurt.

    As Bill asks, can we make suggestions for installers to add? Where do we do that?

  5. David Mackey says:

    Matt – I’m afraid I’m about to move away from Bluehost. In general I love your guys services, but as far as I know, you offer no migration path to fuller hosting services and I’m tapping out my shared account – the site just doesn’t load snappy. I’d also like to see monitoring within bluehost cp which allows me to measure my relative cpu/ram usage compared to my “cap.”

  6. Robert says:

    Hey thanks for all the support you guys give and all these new updates. Really appreciate Bluehost. In all honesty, it’s the best I’ve ever used (even though I’ve only used 3).

  7. Don Jenner says:

    This is the kind of customer orientation (as well as good business sense…) — the best application of the kinds of things the ‘net promised but one seldom sees delivered — that brought me over from my previous hosting company. I now use Bluehost as a positive example in my marketing classes.

  8. Jacob C says:

    Woot! Seems like Simple scripts updates more often than fantastico. This is going to be a good thing. thanks for being on the cutting edge.

  9. [...] Matt Heaton announcing the Simple Scripts several days ago, had mentioned that although application is originally launched on Blulehost it is a self hosted application and that any web hosting provider can license it and use it for the benefits of their users. [...]

  10. Wes says:

    I think this is great. This could make me install some stuff that I would like to try out but couldn’t be bothered installing and configuring it because I didn’t have the time.

  11. Vlad says:

    Matt,

    I have already written about this new product on my blog. I do wish there was an explanation of how to migrate to SimpleScrpits…

    I host several websites with Bluehost, but most of the installations were done via Fantastico, it would be great if you could come up with a tutorial of how to upgrade a Fantastico installation.

    Otherwise existing users may have difficult time of figuring this out on their own.

  12. Jesse says:

    Hi Matt,

    First, let me say that Bluehost rocks, and secondly that I appreciate the transparency you have with your customers – it’s something that isn’t seen today from most companies.

    Having said that however, I have recently discovered ads on a 404 page of mine. Perhaps I could see this on a purchased domain if it was parked but had no content. However, on a paid, live site, having ads on 404 pages is absolutely unacceptable. Please *STRONGLY* consider not making this the default. I shouldn’t have to opt out of it. I PAID for my hosting. If you were hosting sites for free, then sure, by all means, its understandable you have to make up the difference. However, paid sites – no advertising! Please let me know when you revisit this policy. I had another host pull this crap before and I told them I’d switch hosting companies over it and I did. I don’t want to do that again. Don’t make me. I like you guys. But the ads MUST go. Thanks.

    PS: Matt@bluehost.com isn’t reachable.

    Jesse

  13. I used it and it works pretty slick. I love it.

  14. Wade says:

    Vlad,

    There actually is an article in Simple Scripts for migrating from Fantastico. It is one of the articles that loads in the small banner above the “My Installs” section. Just for the benefit of everyone, I’ll include the link here though.

    http://www.simplescripts.com/?p=articles/migrating_from_fantastico

    Simple Scripts is a great utility. I hope it takes the place of Fantastico in the near future.

  15. MichaelT says:

    Simple scripts or not – all hosting is becoming a commodity product and all about marketing of big numbers for transfer and putting the word “Unlimited” everywhere – but the fact is who cares about simple scripts?
    My sites have never been slower to load. I have to believe that the servers are becoming oversold.

    I’m afraid I am making the transition away from Bluehost and to virtual Private hosting – I’m getting a slice.

    Bluehost is fine for the small site, but nowhere to grow.

    BTW –
    Why did you delete my previous comment? It was there one day and gone the next?

  16. Way to go, Matt. I think this is a fantastic feature!

    I would appreciate it if you could add textpattern to the list of available scripts. Its a simple, sweet CMS for small/medium sized websites.

  17. Wayne says:

    Simple scripts is great for upgrading existing wordpress blogs. It has turned a 1 hr task with often problems into a simple 1 minute task.

    But it doens’t work for existing fantastico installs. Here’ show to upgrade them using simple scripts. Basically you trick simple scripts into thinking it did install them.

    1. Make a note of what version of wordpress you are running (eg 2.3.2)
    2. Rename your wordpress folder to anything.
    3. Go to simpelscripts installer and install the same version of wordpress (eg 2.3.2) that you are upgrading from. (deselect create new database) into where your wordpress directory used to be.
    4. Go to the new install and copy a file called ss_files.txt to your computer.
    5. Delete the entire directory you just installed and rename your wordpress directory back to waht it was called!
    7. Copy the ss_files.txt file into your wordpress folder.

    That’s it. Simple scripts now thinks it installed your wordpress, and you can go into simple scripts and upgrade it automatically!

    Wayne
    http://macintoshhowto.com

  18. Barry says:

    Hi Matt

    Really great job on Simple scripts – one small security issue you should plug urgently.

    Directories that are not meant to be accessed directly (ex: wp-content/plugins) can be browsed by default. The way Fantastico fixed the issue was to put an almost empty index.htm file in each directory so that people can’t go looking at things and figuring out the easiest way to exploit the code/security on the server.

    Other than that little issue, I like your script much better than Fantastico, and you seem to be more on the ball with providing the latest and most up to date scripts.

    You guys really have a great offering – lots of power and flexibility and a very fair price. Keep up the good work.

    Regards… Barry
    Customer for 2 years.

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  20. Barry says:

    I like where you are going with Simple Scripts – take a bit more time with the testing and make sure you get the kinks out. I think your developers are great at fast, but you need to find some people who are good at testing to make sure they work!

    One small suggestion on Simplescripts – have the backups put in the home directory in a directory ../simplescripsbackup (or something similar instead of just dumping them in public_html – that’s really sloppy and makes housekeeping difficult.

    All in all, keep up the good work!

  21. Barry says:

    … one more thing… on the Drupal installs from Simple Scripts, it should also install the htaccess file so that you can turn on clean URLs… this is really tricky since there are some issues with this, and it wastes your tech support people’s time having to help those of us who are not apache gurus!

  22. Just sent some very important feedback to SimpleScripts, via SimpleScripts.com website. More information to follow at an appropriate date.

  23. Sometimes the updates on SimpleScripts are very, very slow compared to the new releases.

    For instance SugerCRM is lagging way behind on Simple Scripts.

    PS. I love the concept of Simple Scripts, but when the upgrading is too slow I can be forced to leave it.

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