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Around the beginning of the month, my new hosting company emailed saying they would be performing system upgrades and that certain email settings would be changing, along with a new IP address. No big deal, I figured. I got my email swiched over (seems that a few emails never got delivered, but didn't lose anything too important, so no big deal at the time). I came back from a long weekend Monday night and my order form was not working. I immediately tried calling and their message stated that they were performing system upgrades which would be completed by June 7th (Monday was the 10th, so accoridng to the message, they should have been completed). I didn't leave a voicemail, I decided to email instead, which I did immediately. Over 24 hours later, I received a response apologizing, saying that PGP wasn't supported on their new system, and that maybe I should install it myself.
First of all, I have no knowledge of how to install PGP myself. Second, and more importantly, it is thier responsibility to have PGP running, since it is one of the main features I pay extra for. I replied asking them to please install it, since it is essential to my business. They replied again that they are sorry, someone is working on it, and that it should be fixed early next week. Early next week would be about a week and a half of having no order form, which is totally unacceptable to me, as I am losing about 50% of my business (people who don't call and order over the phone).
I left a message on their voicemail early this morning and still haven't received a call back. I have emailed insisting that this be resolved today, at least with a promise to have it fixed within 24 hours, and have not yet received a response. I am at wit's end... I can't afford to have my business crippled for a week and a half. What can I do to get some response? Thanks in advance for your help.
Franz A. Honer
PS. To add insult to injury, I got a postcard in the mail today from this hosting company's competition, saying something along the lines "[yourhostingcompany] just upgraded from Linux to Sun and you lost all kinds of features. if you want them back switch to us"
I'm sorry if those sound like stupid questions, it's not that I'm too lazy to go and try to figure it out - when I set up this form I searched and searched and searched and this was the best way I could find to do what I wanted. Appreciate your help!
PGP Tutorial for Beginners to PGP [neiu.edu].
The comment about SSL can probably be ignored, I am assuming that you are using PGP for e-mail security when the order info is mailed to you from the form. I only mentioned SSL in case you could bypass the mailing process and instead access orders online that are written to a file if the order script has that kind of capability.
I will paraphrase their latest email that I received after I posted... they claim that their previous datacenter cut them off abruptly and they were forced to move without having full support for existing features. They will not have PGP working for AT LEAST TWO WEEKS and they understand if I have to move the site somewhere else.
As with my first hosting company, they seemed reputable when I signed up (I called up a couple times to test their support, got a few different people, so I knew it wasn't out of some guy's house), but in times of trouble they have fallen short. I'm not sure how to go about screening my next host to minimize the risk of having my business interrupted.
I have thought about just doing plain-text email, but decided against it. Probably no one would know the difference and nothing would happen, but I'd rather not take that risk with my customers. I did think of putting an order form that asked for everything but their credit card, with a "NEXT ->" button labelled "Continue to Payments", and then have a screen saying that our online payments system was down and that we would be calling them for their credit card info. I'd rather just get it switched to a new host. Really appreciate any suggestions!
Do you think they would be prepared to refund on relatively (2 months) new accounts? Their previous contractor has offered 2 months off hosting if I sign up :)
I'm quite happy to accept that s**t happens, but I also expect some give and take. The fact that they used Linux weighed quite heavily in my decision to use them, so to change that doesn't sit very well with me. (That was pretty controlled of me, don't you thinkż)
I also expected at least that the form-mail facility would be 'ready to use', not that I'd have to figure it out for myself (OK, so I learned something, OK :) )
It's like a new pair of shoes, you've got to break them in. :)
P.S. I am disappointement about Linux though, I really like Linux.
Yeaah, me too. DOn't actually know why. LOL
I'm quite happy to stay with them so long as They tell me in advance when they are going to change 'my clients' login username.
Obviously an oversite, >I'm quite happy to accept that s**t happens,
However I was locked out because I (nor the client) was not informed that the username had been changed. Nor could I access the control panel to find the new username. I did get auto responses though, which got me even more nervous. :O
My first indication of problems was an e-mail mentioning a dispute between two parties (who hold part of my livelihood in their hands).
The web host was just doing what all businesses do, look out for the best interest of their clients as well as maintaining a profit. All of us know their prices were unbeatable for the results you received.
As for not being notified, I can not comment, each of our sites received an email notification about 1 week before the move, in fact the move was put off for a couple of days. The changes that had the biggest impact where explained as well as having a hyperlink to additional information. Within a day or two additional information was available on line as well.
Having experienced computer conversions myself, no one actually anticipates the worst, you prepare for it, but you don't expect it. Unfortunately this time around the worst can alive. It is my opinion they have supported all of us very well, now it's time to support them. I've explained the situation to my clients, though they are concerned, they are willing to wait it out. They know if I feel it's worth it, it's worth waiting for. Good thing this has happened now and not in the fall.
Well that's my 2 cents worth.... perhaps it's more like a nickels worth.