This review is written based on my 10 years experience with LunarPages. They are one of the oldest host that I am still using today because of their quality.
LunarPages Coupon Code
AFF15OFF - Get 15% off your hosting! (for 12 months and above only)
What hosting plans are they offering?
As a full service hosting providers, they provide many types of hosting solutions including Unix hosting, Windows hosting, VPS hosting, semi dedicated servers, dedicated servers, etc. But you don't need to confuse about all of them. Because what 99% of us will need is the Basic Plan.
Pricing varied according to the contract length, i.e. $8.95/month for 12-month plan, $6.95/month for 24-month plan and the new $4.95/month for the 60-month plan. The pricing is slightly more expensive than the competitors but their quality is a few times better than them. So it will pay off. Remember you can get 35% off using the new coupon AFF35OFF which brings the price down to only $5.82 for 12-month plan and $4.52 for 24-month plan.
What about the Business Plan? The existence of this plan is actually a joke! It is there already 9 years ago when I first started hosting with LunarPages. It is very useful by then because it is noticeable larger than the 100 MB Basic plan at that time. But the problem is that they keep on upgrading their Basic plan for the last few years until it is so LARGE that they can't make the Business plan any larger than it. Tell me, how do you make something larger than UNLIMITED?
The price is also very ridiculous. $19.95 for the same thing?! It does include a free dedicated IP but you can get that too in Basic plan for just $4.95/month! I believe everyone will find its existence ridiculous but the question is why it is still there? I believe that is because some fools who sign up for that plan 9 years ago is still paying $19.95 for it because they are lazy to downgrade to the basic plan. :D
LunarPages Stater Plan is not recommended because it offer only 1 MySQL database.
How large is UNLIMITED disk space and UNLIMITED bandwith?
This is an interesting question. I used to write very detail explanation of disk space and bandwidth here and how you can calculate the usage yourself. But how should I explain UNLIMITED?! Before they upgrade to unlimited, they are offering 1,500 GB disk space and 15,000 GB disk space. Those were the last figures before it is converted to unlimited. Why not just used those number for explanation?
Click on the small picture to view the original wallpaper of Saguaro National Park, Arizona. The size of the large and high quality picture is 228 KB (kilobytes). With 1,500 GB of disk space, you can store more than 6.5 million copies of this picture! And with 15,000 GB/month bandwidth, this picture can be viewed more than 65,700,000 times a month (That's 65.7 million)! The most suitable words to describe 1,500 GB of disk space and 15,000 GB of bandwidth are "More Than Enough!". :)
There are many web hosts that offer large disk space and bandwidth, but keep in mind that these web hosts might have funny restrictions such as file size limit, daily bandwidth limit, or even binary files bandwidth limit (pictures, MP3s, Flash ...). LunarPages does not have such restrictions with your disk space and bandwidth usage. You can upload a single 1,500 GB file if you want and you can use 15,000 GB bandwidth in 1 day. As LunarPages founder and CEO, Ron Riddle told me, "We actually allow people to use everything and we have no problem offering them what we are currently offering."
How is the customer support?
It is not the large disk space or bandwidth that make me rank LunarPages so high but its superior customer support! They spend a great deal of money hiring a lot of support staff to take care of their customers. All of them are very friendly and knowledgeable. With their effort on customer support, you can expect the best attention from them.
1. Email support - Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org and you will always get a good reply, no matter if you are a current customer or you just need to ask some presale questions. Good replies are replies with the exact answer you need. I suggest that you send them an email right now to see how effective they are. All email will automatically be tracked by the same ticket system used by the support help desk. This is my favorite method to request support, because it is fast, convenient and effective. Email support is available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
2. Support Help Desk (LunarDesk) - You will send your inquiry through the use of an online form. All your inquires will be tracked and recorded using their ticket system. They even keep a history of all your issues so you can refer back to them anytime you want. There is also a knowledgebase of frequently asked questions in the help desk so you can find your answers without creating a support ticket.
They used to be using a third party support help desk system
known as DeskPro. But because they are so
oriented, they decided to dump DeskPro and develope their own help desk system
and call it LunarDesk!
3. Toll-Free Support - Just call 1-877-LUNARPAGES if you need phone support for USA and Canada. For the United Kingdom, call 0800-072-9150 instead. If you live outside of these countries, you cannot dial the toll free number. They provide another support line for their international customers: 1-714-521-8150. I have called them several times and they have no problem talking to me with my slang.
4. Lunar Forums (LunarForums.com)- LunarPages provides forums to let their customers communicate and help each other. You can find many answers for your questions. You will also meet many happy customers there. Remember only hosts that are confident with their services and have many customers dare to set up an open forum. Currently, the forum has around 35,670 registered users. And LunarForums is also one of the oldest webmaster forums out there.
I will surely rate their customer support as 10 over 10, or 11 over 10 if I can :-) Their customer satisfaction speaks for itself. I always stress to my visitors who write to me that if they are web hosting newbie who need a lot of attentions and supports, they should always pick LunarPages. This will make sure that they are fully taken care of in their "early age".
If you have read my reviews or other web hosts, you will notice that I will state that if you have any unresolved issues with the host, you can always forward them to me and I will take them directly to the officers. Even though I have direct contact with many important officers of LunarPages (even the CEO), I never mention it in my LunarPages review. I don't need to do so because all LunarPages clients are able to resolve the issue directly with the dedicated support staffs without going through a third party like me.
Sometime ago, I have submitted a possible SPAM issue to them. To my surprise, not only that they reply to my email but they have also called me and left me a voice message! You can click on the 'Play' button below to listen to the voice message yourself. They did look into SPAM issues seriously to make sure the mail server is not blocked. They are constantly making sure that all their customers emails will be sent and received properly.
Multiple Domain Hosting - Host Unlimited Websites In 1 Account!
If you have read my BlueHost Review, you know that multiple domain hosting is the most important feature of web hosting. LunarPages offers unlimited free add-on domain with the plan. That means you can host unlimited websites under the same hosting account! And because of this, I no longer need to have many different web hosting accounts as I can host a few websites in 1 account. The good news is that I can save a lot of money. But the bad news is that as a reviewer, I no longer have the luxury to try out many other web hosts.
Flash Video Tutorials
You can enjoy learning by watching video tutorials instead of reading boring text tutorials (over 100 video tutorials!). These tutorials include changing nameservers, working with CPanel, setting up your email client, uploading your site with FTP, using Dreamweaver MX, using Macromedia Flash and using Microsoft FrontPage. Whenever you get stuck, just watch some videos.
FREE Domain Name
LunarPages will offer a free domain name with all annual plans. All new customers may register a new domain or transfer their existing domain to LunarPages at no additional charge. The domain will be registered in the customer's name and will be free for the first term of payment. This offer is automated and no coupon code is required.
PHP & MySQL Platform
LunarPages offers a very good platform for PHP and MySQL. They do a great job on keeping both software up to date.
As you can see, I am using PHP and MySQL extensively in my site. I use an opensource content management system (CMS) known as Drupal to run the entire site. And I am also using several other PHP scripts and all of them require the use of MySQL databases to store information. LunarPages allows you to create unlimited MySQL databases.
They also have PHPMyAdmin pre-installed. You can manipulate your MySQL databases easily through the web-based interface.
You are even allowed to connect to LunarPages MySQL server remotely using SQLYog or other MySQL remote connect tool, or even a self-written PHP script on your local computer (or another web host)!
There is a wonderful technology with LunarPages that allows you to select which version of PHP you want to use (PHP4 or PHP5). Although you can't have both enabled at the same time, this solution is far more advances that any other web host where all you them requires you to move to another sever if you want to change your PHP version! For LunarPages, you can simply choose to use either PHP4 or PHP5 directly in the control panel. My site is using PHP5 now.
LunarPages owned more than 2,500 live servers for web hosting. Every month, they will add at least 5 new servers to their server farm. New customers will most likely be placed on the new servers because they have the most resources. They are using Dell PowerEdge 2850 servers powered by dual Intel Xeon 3.2Ghz hyper-threaded processors, 4GB of memory and 5 x 73 gig hard drives in Raid 5 configuration. Each server cost more than $10,000! Backup of all servers is performed in a daily basis.
Control Panel - LPCP or CPanel
LunarPages no longer provide CPanel as the default control panel. They are now using the home-made LPCP control panel. This has been discussed in my blog post LunarPages LPCP vs CPanel. You can still choose CPanel but you will require to pay an additional $2/month. You can choose your control panel preference when you sign up.
You can try the demo of LunarPages LPCP control panel here. They have continuously developed LPCP for the last few years, making it better and better.
If I have to pay extra $2/month for CPanel, I would have chosen BlueHost (our #1 rated host) or JustHost. If you do not mind the control panel, you can choose LunarPages for their excellent customer service or you can also try iPage which uses vDeck control panel.