back to article Heart Internet stops beating, starts Monday with big portion of FAIL

Webs will wobble and frequently fall down, but it is the way that cloud or hosting providers manage this that sets them apart. On this Monday morning, Heart Internet isn't distinguishing itself from the great and good in a positive way. Services from the web hosting biz, the fifth largest in the UK, fell over in the wee hours …

  1. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Part of the Go Daddy Group

      Ummmm, someone has beef with Rackspace ;-)

      Heart Internet are a joke - part of the Go Daddy group of jokes.

  2. Dwarf Silver badge
    Joke

    Quick, break out the defibrillator

  3. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

    I'm the one who wrote '"This shower of a hosting company have had at least one long outage a month every month for the last year,"' - it's now 1115 and we haven't had an update for almost two hours!

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      And with that kind of "service", you haven't changed hosting provider already ?

      It's not that difficult, you know.

      1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

        It is when you've got 100 microsoft exchange users, half of them remote users.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          change then get them to turn it off and on again.

          1. Billa Bong

            SLA, anyone?

            See my previous comments on Heart. My beef isn't with outages (though one has to wonder if they've heard of resiliency and failover at this point) but with the way they handle complaints on the topic. I'll give you a clue - the SLA on their web site isn't honoured by Support. Save yourself some hassle, and when it comes back up bypass Support and go straight to their retention team who will do the honourable thing to retain your business and offer you something.

            I've been steadily moving my stuff to AWS since last months outage, it's just a minor kick in the teeth that *one* DNS server is still at heart, so I've had a couple of spurious calls this morning easily rectified with "refresh until it works".

            1. The Pi Man

              Re: SLA, anyone?

              Sorry, but I don’t care how cheap they are. Paying less after an outage and expecting more isn’t going to work out long term. Less revenue equals fewer staff and lower quality of service. It will nor end well. I was with one of their resellers until about 6 months back, I’ve no idea if my new hosting company has good customer services as I’ve never needed to contact them. And that’s the way it should be.

      2. TheWeddingPhotographer

        Moving ISP is something you plan to do

        It's easy to sit on the sideline and hypothecate about this...

        But in our case (small business), we are working day and night on customers work (its peak wedding season). Dealing with web hosts was not on our radar for this quarter. We planned to swap ISP in our winter trough. We have fortunately already started to prepare for this, and at least our emails are now managed elsewhere

        For bigger companies, there are layers of governance, business cases and due diligence to trawl through that takes months and months to do

  4. Chris G Silver badge

    Maybe

    They need a 5Kg percussive maintenance application directed at the PHB.

    1. Fatman Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Maybe

      Your suggestion is somewhat incomplete. Here is a more complete version:

      <quote>They need a 5Kg percussive maintenance application directed at the PHB's balls.</quote>

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Maybe

        Cuius Testiculos Habes, Habeas Cardia Et Cerebellum

        -- Small Gods, Terry Pratchett

  5. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

    And this is where "cloud services" fall flat on its face.

    Face it, you're at the mercy of your ISP once you've outsourced every.single.server (including Exchange and file storage) to the cloud - and if your ISP should go TITSUP* there's nothing you can do.

    Except wait for services to be restored.

    Should your services be on-prem, your users can still work on their spreadsheets, documents and so on, but emails (should you also be wise and have an on-prem Exchange/Linux email server) will simply spool and wait for a chance to escape the server's clutches.

    However, in both cases with emails, you won't be able to receive - unless your workforce is equipped with mobile phones, which (hopefully) is working and you can get access to emails that way.

    Next time some beancountery type suggests going cloud-based, have them factor in a two-three day full internet outage into their calculations.

    1. TheWeddingPhotographer

      Your thoughts make sense, but not for an SMB

      The costs and implications for on-premise hosting are in a different league to what most SMB's can cope with.

      Heart Internet predominantly deal with the dreamer / startup / sole trader / SMB sector

      As SMB's we do what we specialise in, and we expect our vendors to keep up to their end of the bargain too. We are paying someone else to do this because we are not server tech's, or security experts we don't have a leased line. We don't ask them to have a race to the bottom or cost cut.

      I have experienced this at all levels... Sole trader, SMB, large enterprise & Government... what really strikes me is that the bottom line is that there really isn't a middle ground. You can pay for extortionate servers that are G-cloud approved, that are managed by muppets, and at the other end you can pay a small price for a lousy service from a regular host, and they are still managed by muppets. The alternative is that your in-house team deals with it, and they get caught out with the nuance because realistically they are not expert enough when things get tricky

  6. NerryTutkins

    fed up

    Used heart for around 10 years, and generally had three or four servers with them at any time. Was very happy in general up to about a month or two ago. Since then, this is the third (and biggest) network connectivity issue. You'd think that after the second, they'd have been pulling out the stops to make sure it doesn't happen again.

    Sad to see another hosting outfit lose the plot. With three big total outages that all seem to be network related (i.e. probably same thing) and they seem to be getting worse rather than better and taking longer to fix, it's really time to find somewhere else now unfortunately.

    Not really angry, just fed up as lots of work to start moving sites to other servers and seems a shame to bail after 10 years when we were very happy, but the frequency and length of the outages is a problem we need to tell customers we're doing something more than just hoping it doesn't happen again.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: fed up

      Does that correlate to when they become part of Go Daddy? :-(

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  7. DJV Silver badge

    Interesting...

    I once used them for hosting but wasn't that impressed by the lack of value for money. However, I have been using them for some of my domain names for a few years now. The general resilience of DNS appears to prevented any problems with my sites today but, given that they are now part of GoDaddy (who I've clashed with and abandoned before), I'm now wondering if it's time to start moving my domain names elsewhere. Any recommendations?

    1. Nigey

      Re: Interesting...

      ICUK

      1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

        Re: Interesting...

        @Nigey absolutely with you on that one. ICUK rarely have downtime and when they do they remember to put honest, up to date, relevant and timely messages on their status page, and they don't delete them five minutes after the problem's fixed.

        Only thing is they don't do hosted exchange, but not a biggy.

        They're a very good reseller provider.

  8. WibbleMe

    If you don't like heart, then leave.

    I did and never looked back with a reveller Cpanel hosting.

    Just remember, you next service provider may give you free SSL's / from Let's Encrypt so you wont have to buy them.

  9. Stuart 22

    I moved to dedicated servers and VPSs many years ago with various suppliers who have a reputation for reliability but were not charging a premium for it.

    Result - if I'd had more than one break a year on any server I'd been surprised. Most have uptimes in years. Usually a break is not a server but a router problem. Reload or replace it isn't difficult and downtime should be no more than an hour or two.

    I can only recall once which was a disk crash so it was a rebuild for me. That was a day lost but my clients were running off a backup server in the time it takes to clear DNS caches.

    Am I very lucky or Heart Internet very unlucky. But then its clear HI have a single point of failure. That's unforgiveable these days.

  10. FractalFragger2018

    Heart Internet - Shower of TRIPE!

    this comes as no surprise to me as I had constant issues with them a year or so back and ended up leaving. Glad i did now.

  11. Adam JC

    Re: The Need For Speed

    I remember 4-5 years ago when Heart were at their peak. Super snappy response times, answered the phone quickly with any issues. Then things started slipping a few years later... slower responses to support tickets, promises of LetsEncrypt implementation... more promises... and more.. then the speed of our sites started to plummet and silly things like IMAP mailboxes were all optional added £££ extras.

    I'm not going to name them for fear of being called a shill, but I moved to a company founded by the guys who originally started Heart Internet and.. guess what.. LetsEncrypt capable and their domains are 1/2 the price of 123-Reg and Heart Internet.

    Also just noticed, it's 18:01 here in the UK and... I'm getting a HTTP503 on https//heartinternet.uk and some of my old old clients are still pointing to Heart for their DNS, which doesn't bode well..

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Need For Speed

      The founders of 20i are to blame for the majority of issues that have affected Heart Internet and 123-Reg over the years. They are big fans of "pile it high, sell it cheap" web hosting and 20i will go exactly the same way as everything else they have touched over the years. They will build up the customer base and piling people onto as many second-hand Dell servers as possible until a bigger company comes along and offers to buy them out. They've done it 3 times already, they will certainly do it a 4th time.

      1. Adam JC

        Re: The Need For Speed

        Heh, yeah - Seems they've found a sound business model if they've done it 3 times over. It's clear the people who took over Heart didn't keep up with the times, I'm keeping a very close eye on 20i to ensure they don't do the same!

        Also... as an IT Service Provider, I distribute our clients over many, many geographic locations and providers (Some on AWS, some on Azure, some on OVH, some hosted privately, etc) and have our own site and DNS/nameservers spread over several providers so that in the event of an outage, we're not sat flat on our backside and clients are none the wiser!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The Need For Speed

        The founders of 20i are to blame for ...

        Excuse ... ha ha ... me ... ha ha ... while ... I ... ha ha ... try to stop laughing long enough to type. At my last place they moved everything to Heart like they'd just discovered sliced bread. When I started there, they sold hosting on the basis of "we host it here, so you can come and see the blinking lights on the server and shout at us if something isn't working".

        Not too unreasonably they decided that small scale hosting just wasn't worth it, forced us to shift everything (doing the usual PHB thing of demanding the impossible in an impossible timescale and offering sod-all support), and outsourced to Heart - before making us redundant.

        At one point they were talking about moving everything to 20i

        But how I chuckled when shortly after I'd left, the [deleted expletive] who got rid of us managed to screw up DNS for about 100 domains and email for around 500 users by turning stuff off without thinking about what might break. Well actually he turned stuff off with a "don't care, will fix things as we find them" attitude to planning.

        So between pushing people to Office 365 with it's security implications and outages, and moving their sites to Heart with their outages, it's been fun watching from the outside :D

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The Need For Speed

        Rubbish

        When they were there, I had no issues but as soon as they left it all started going down here.

        I moved to 20i and it's a lot better. Maybe I might have to move again in a few years if they sell to a big guy again but who can blame them for that?!?

  12. Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge

    The blitz was worse

    Parts of the Internet are still working - even the Register website is accessible from Europe.

  13. OliP

    Heart dont deserve your business, however small you are

    They are the ultimate buy it in, whack 30% on it and ship it type company.

    I spent 2 weeks trying to explain to them why they were installing drupal and wordpress incorrectly from their scripted platform (which they bought in and dont understand) - using the wrong database settings - even with logs, screenshots and live test sites they couldn't get their heads around what i was explaining.

    Ended up with a full refund 3 weeks into a years renewed contract.

    Don't go near them....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Heart dont deserve your business, however small you are

      mmmm, I think you may be lying

  14. bigtreeman

    failover

    Years ago I setup a client with failover connections with the two major ISPs. I don't trust either, but between them never failed.

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