Hosting24 review

Powerful hosting plans for a bargain price

Hosting24

Our Verdict

Good performance and some high-value shared hosting, but keep in mind you'll typically have to sign up for four years to get the headline price.

For

  • Good value
  • Choice of US or EU server locations
  • Optional cPanel site management
  • Helpful 24/7 support

Against

  • Web knowledgebase needs work
  • Mostly covers shared hosting, no dedicated plans
  • Starter shared accounts are very limited
  • Headline prices require four-year subscription

Hosting24 is a capable provider of budget web hosting, with ranges covering shared, cPanel, cloud and Linux VPS products.

If the shared hosting range looks familiar, that's probably because Hosting24 is a brand of Hostinger International, and both companies sell this particular range – although we're not complaining, as it's decent value.

For example, spending as little as $0.80 a month for the first term (if you pay for four years upfront) gets you 10GB disk space, 100GB bandwidth, a simple website builder, easy installation and more.

The Business plan, at the high end of this range, gives you 30GB of disk space and unlimited websites, bandwidth, databases, FTP users and email accounts. There's a free domain registration (with the annual plan), an SSL certificate, daily backups and more. Again, prices are low for the first term at just $3.45 a month for a four-year subscription.

Hosting24 also has ranges of its own. Its cPanel Hosting range starts at a fractionally higher price of $1.95 a month over four years, for instance, but improves on basic shared hosting in many ways: unlimited disk space, bandwidth, databases, email and FTP accounts. You also get a free SSL certificate, automatic backups, free domain registration (with the annual plan) and site management via the industry-standard cPanel.

If you're looking for more, VPS hosting is available from $3.95 a month, and cloud hosting priced from $7.45. But these aren't as configurable as some of the competition, and there's no dedicated server option. Hosting24 has lots of options for the budget-conscious consumer and small business customer, but not so much for more demanding types.

Setup

Getting hold of our review cPanel Hosting Silver account wasn't difficult. The plan is clearly described on the website, we added it to our shopping cart with a click, and checked out in the regular way (payment options include card, PayPal, Bitcoin and more).

Unlike many competitors, Hosting24 doesn't force you to wait around while it thinks about maybe, perhaps, just possibly activating your account. Instead, it immediately launches a simple wizard to walk you through the setup process.

This starts by registering your free domain name if you need one, or specifying an existing domain if you don't.

The site asks if you’d like your site hosted in the US or EU. Ideally, we'd like hosting locations specified more at the city or country than the continent level, but it's still good to have the choice.

After choosing a password and a handful of other details, the wizard created our account and redirected us to Hosting24's admin console. Our account was fully active, and we were ready to go.

Hosting24

(Image credit: Hosting24)

Creating a website

One common initial problem with many web hosts is finding the key setup information you need. Some providers include it in a welcome email, others point you to support pages with guides and tutorials, a few leave you to figure it out entirely on your own.

Hosting24 avoids all these hassles by including all the most important details in its web console. Whether you're after cPanel URLs and credentials, name servers, FTP host and username, SSH access, initial email setup instructions and more are all just a click away in assorted Help panels. Very convenient.

Beginners may still be a little uncertain, at least initially. While Hostinger's shared hosting package has a task-based page asking specifically what you'd like to do next (install WordPress, use a website builder, upload your own files, and so on), Hosting24 just points you to cPanel and hopes you'll know it's all available there.

Click cPanel anyway and you'll find a section for Softaculous, a powerful platform which automates the installation of WordPress, PrestaShop, phpBB and 400+ other top apps. It's a quality tool, and we're happy to see it here.

Hosting24

(Image credit: Hosting24)

The Site Builder is less obvious, but we found it anyway, tucked away at the bottom of the Software section. It's essentially Zyro, a simple website builder which provides a decent set of 196 templates, then enables tweaking your choice in its straightforward editor. This covers the site building basics only, but it's capable of decent results, and could work for not-so-demanding applications.

If you have a static website ready to go, cPanel's powerful file manager makes it easy to get that uploaded, and you can then edit and organize everything later. Or you can manage your web space via FTP (Hosting24's cPanel hosting gives you as many FTP accounts as you need.)

Experts can take full control of their sites, creating and managing databases via industry-standard tools such as phpMyAdmin, and checking out website metrics via AWStats.

Put it all together and there's a lot of website creating power here. Combine it with cPanel's standard site management features, and you're getting a great environment to both build your site and keep it running smoothly.

Performance

We like to see hosting packages that are crammed with features and options, but if speeds are poor, that won't matter very much, as most visitors won't stick around.

Benchmarking website speed is difficult, but we try to get a feel for performance by running our review site through several testing and monitoring sites.

Uptime.com monitored our site over time, making checks every five minutes, and found response times were generally faster than most. The average was dragged down by occasional blips, though, where responses might take a second (or more) longer than usual. These might have been due to temporary network issues, but it's also possible that other sites on the server were busy at those times, making their own demands on the server's resources.

Uptime.com

(Image credit: Uptime.com)

Dotcom-tools website speed test downloads a test page from 16 locations across the US and Europe. Results were reasonable at 560-600ms, notably faster than free and ultra-budget packages, but comparable to similar shared hosting providers.

Bitcatcha's server speed checker measured response times from 10 locations around the world, and awarded our site an excellent A rating (one below the highest award, A+).

Overall, Hosting24 delivered decent speeds for us, fractionally above average, and leaving us with no performance issues or concerns. There are plenty of other factors that might change the situation, though – CPU time and storage speed on a heavily database-driven app, for instance – and to get a real understanding of performance, there's no substitute for setting up and trialing your own website.

If you run into any problems, Hosting24 offers live 24/7/354 support via a web knowledgebase, chat, and ticket system. The web-based help is often basic, and is hampered by a search engine which does a poor job of pointing you to the best resources. But the support team scored higher with us, responding quickly and delivering genuinely helpful results to our test questions.

Final verdict

Hosting24 doesn't have any dedicated hosting plans, but there's a good range of high-value budget and VPS products (if you can live with a four-year subscription, anyway). Performance is decent, too. Worth a look for bargain hunters.