Migrated my website and switched over to a different host provider

Louise Chan

Louise Chan

During the past few months, my previous host provider (HelioHost) experienced licensing issues with the hosting control panel that they were using (CPanel) and they were essentially forced to temporarily disable their control panel services and switch to a different hosting control panel.

For individuals like me who took advantage of the free webhosting services that HelioHost provides (although I also show my appreciation by donating to their cause from time to time), we were given ample time to back-up all of our website files (including databases) and were offered an option to sign up for their paid VPS products in order to temporarily migrate our websites and continue to keep it up and running. As of now, they are still in the process of completing their control panel migration to Plesk so I decided to explore other free webhosting services to keep my website alive and running for free (well, almost free since I still have to pay a yearly subscription to keep my domain name and maintain other services such as SSL certification).

I don’t want to spend more on VPS subscriptions since I only maintain my website as a portfolio website and partly as a blog documenting and sharing my thoughts and what I have learned in mobile development so I did not opt for what they are offering as a temporary alternative.

I’m still able to access my website through HelioHost but maintaining my website (as of this time) without a control panel is a bit convoluted since access to configure website is still limited. This means that any ongoing maintainance to my website such as updating my SSL certificates once they expire could not be done by myself and would require assistance from the host provider’s support team.

With the current limitations presented to me, I decided to migrate my website to ByetHost, another great free web hosting service provider. Only difference with ByetHost is I would have to spend a bit more for web certificates (so that users may access my site using the ‘https’ protocol) since they don’t support certification from Let’s Encrypt. Subscription is not that expensive (only less than $6 for a year’s subscription using ssls.com). Another caveat with ByetHost is they seem to have disabled email services for their free accounts so I will not have a way to provide email contact info under my web domain (@louisechan.ca). I’m currently exploring other options for email contact information such as using the email forwarding services provided by CloudFlare or just simply setting my email contact using Gmail (which is what I am doing right now) but this task is not a big deal to me.

If there’s any positve thing that I have gained from migrating to ByetHost though, it would be that WordPress (which is what I use as my website content builder), works great and loads faster compared to my previous web host service provider so I will now be able to serve content for my web pages “as-is” and will not have to convert them to static web pages as what I did before. Another advantage with using WordPress to directly render my web pages is that I will now be able to activate dynamic features within my website such as the comments section so that I will be able to easily interact with individuals who would wish to leave comments on my posts.

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