Last Update | September 2021
Monthly Update - September 2021
|Hosting Plans||Web Hosting; VPS Hosting; Dedicated Hosting|
|Top Features||No Extra Fees For Transfers; DDoS Protection Included; 1 IPv4 & /64 IPv6 Network; Snapshot Technology; VNC Access; OS Reinstall and Reboot Through Web Interface; DNS Management Through Web Interface; One-click Upgrades Through Web Interface; Uptime Monitoring; Domains and SSL Certificates; Additional IPs; Additional Backup Space|
|Customer Support||Email and Phone Support; FAQ; Tutorials|
During September, Contabo Hosting:
- Didn’t issue any new features or updates
- Ran an urgent maintenance on all VPS
During August, Contabo Hosting:
- Introduced High-Performance VPS with NVMe Drives
- Ran an urgent maintenance on all Virtual Dedicated Servers
During July, Contabo Hosting:
- Announced the launch of two new US Data Centers in New York City, NY, and Seattle, WA
- Had urgent maintenance on the host system and the VPS
During June, Contabo Hosting:
- Reported scheduled network maintenance
During May, Contabo Hosting:
- Didn’t issue any new features or updates
- Completed scheduled server maintenance, incurred interruptions, and connectivity issues
Contabo is a Germany Hosting Company established in the Spring of 2003 in the city of Munich. At the time, it was known as Giga-International and it’s managed to grow from a single server to more than 10.000 servers.
They offer Linux and Windows servers which are highly dependent on what you need. The stand-out factor about them is their colocation services, smooth scaling options, and products they offer.
The main selling factor for me when it comes to Contabo servers is the fact that it offers you the ability to build your own dedicated servers. You can select the processing power, hard disk space, and RAM that you need, with additional features such as backup space as well as ongoing monitoring and management. Keep in mind that this is only the case when it comes to the dedicated servers, and is not valid for VPS hosting or Shared Web Hosting packages.
DDoS protection is offered free of charge across all Contabo offers and is activated automatically. The unique aspect about all of this at Contabo is the fact that it has developed its own in-house DDoS protection.
To test what they are like, I decided to take a deep dive into their website and see what makes them tick.
Getting Started With Contabo Hosting
From the very first second that you enter their website, you’ll get clear information. In fact, you’ll learn everything you need to know within the first few seconds. You see, they have three main offerings here, they tell you about the pricing of VPS, VDS, and Dedicated Servers, and they clearly showcase the pricing. You also learn when they were established and where they operate. This is the perfect website design and what I love to see, as the last thing I want to do is scroll for 15 minutes just to figure these things out.
Now, the thing about the website itself, and you’ll see this throughout the entirety of the article, is that, while it is designed well in terms of what content you are seeing, the design language, as in art, vectors, and overall feel and fluidity of everything feels outdated. It's functional, but it feels like an early 2000s website, and you should keep that in mind going forward.
When it comes to VPS, you can select between:
On the Dedicated side of things, you can get:
For this example, I’ll pick the cheapest VPS server.
Next, you will need to pick a location, and this can either be from the European Union (Germany), or in the United States (Missouri).
After that, you’ll need to pick an operating system. I adore CentOS, so I’ll pick that one.
Keep in mind that you can also choose between Ubuntu, Windows Server, cPanel, Plesk + Windows, and Plesk + Linux.
Next, you’ll arrive at the networking tab. Here you will be able to select your transfer, IPv4, backup space, server management, monitoring, SSL, and Setup.
When it comes to the backup service on offer, Contabo has an add-on that gives you the ability to save encrypted backups through the use of FTP. Alongside this service, you also have another service which is known as 100% Auto Backup, and this provides you with automatic and regular backups for the entire contents of your web hosting account.
Through the usage of add-ons such as these, you can take backups on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
However, if you want to retrieve the backup, you will have to contact the support team and request the files. There is no free backup solution on offer here, so you will have to pay for them.
I’ll just leave everything as it is here, but if you’re really interested, you can open up these settings and tinker as much as you want.
Next, you’ll need to enter some private information.
Click on Private Individual or Business, depending on what you are.
Aside from this, you will need to enter your salutation, first name, last name, address, city, postcode, country, telephone, email, and a confirmation of your email, then just click on next.
Next, you will have to choose a payment method that you want to use.
The most common two types of payments you can use include Credit Cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, as well as PayPal.
You will have a final overview of the order before you can actually click on order and pay, this is just here for you to check if everything is in order.
Wait for the payment to process.
If everything succeeded, you should see a “Payment Received” message.
Okay so here is one thing I did not expect and was surprised when I saw it in the mail.
Please note that I’m quoting the email here:
We are obligated by law to perform customer data verification for each new customer. To fulfill this duty, we need additional information from you.
First of all, we would kindly ask you to provide the following information again, just to make sure there are no typing errors causing the verification issue:
- First name:
- Last name:
- ZIP code:
- Telephone Number:
In addition to the above, please also send us a document that proves the address. This could be:
- A scan of your passport, driving license, or national identity card.
- A scan of your telephone, electricity, or any other utility bill as long as it contains your name and the address mentioned above.
Please note that the provisioning of your order is on hold until you provide us this data. Once we received all relevant data from you, we will complete the verification process and we will continue the setup of your order right away.
It’s okay, I get it, they are in the European Union and they are indeed required by law to perform data verification on all of their customers, and it is nice to see that Contabo is indeed following the law. However, I did not feel comfortable giving out this information to a hosting provider, as this is my own, personal information, and you should be aware that they are required to have this information from you and that you always have options outside of Europe that do not require you to provide this information.
Nevertheless, if this does not prove to be an issue for you and you feel comfortable providing them with this kind of information; go right ahead and do so, at least you know that your hosting provider of choice is following all of the laws and regulations.
With that out of the way, you will receive an email with your login credentials, and all you have to do is log into your account.
Finally, you’ll arrive at the control panel. And wow, that’s an outdated design. As long as it is fully functional, and provides me with the options and features that I need, I don't really care what it looks like; but still, I have to point out that the last time I saw a website like this or a control panel In general that was this basic, well, it was before the 2010s.
Setting Things Up at Contabo Hosting
So, here’s what you can do while using Contabo. On the home screen, you will find some basic information as well as Contabo news. Don’t let the design fool you, the news actually always remains up to date.
Now, on the left side of the control panel, you will have access to the following things:
- Your services
Here you’ll be able to see a list of the services you are using at Contabo where you will see details such as the monthly fee, setup fee, and when the next payment is.
If you click on manage, you can enter the control panel, reinstall it, rescue the system, upgrade the VPS, see the server name or cancel the service.
The control panel itself is simple, and it can show you the status of the server, allow you to restart, start or stop it, reinstall it, rescue the system or create and restore snapshots.
- Customer details
Without revealing too much of my personal information here, the customer detail tab allows you to view as well as update your customer details.
The billing tab, as the name might imply, showcases exactly what your balance is, and what your monthly total cost is. You will also be able to review your entire payment history.
- Payment Method
Here you will be able to review your payment method and change it.
- Server control
Here you will be able to manage your dedicated servers.
- VDS control
Here you can manage your VDS instances.
- VPS control
Here you will be able to manage your VPS.
- IP Management
This section allows you to see all IP addresses that are assigned to your customer account as well as their configuration details.
- OS reinstalls
This menu will provide you with an overview of the pending, running as well as recently finished reinstallation tasks for your servers.
Here, you can manage your existing domains or register new ones.
- DNS Zone Management
Here you can create and manage DNS zones for all of your domains, and all of the entries you create are actually free of charge.
- Reverse DNS Management
Here you have the ability to manage the reverse DNS (PTR) records for your IP addresses.
This is essentially the Contabo blog page where you can learn just about anything they’ve published.
This is just the frequently asked page where you can check any kind of information you are interested in.
Keep in mind that on the bottom, you will always have the ability to scale up and order additional services such as:
- Webspace Package
Level of Support
When you click on the support tab, this screen will pop up.
So you can contact them either through phone or through email.
I sent them an email asking for a refund as well as account termination just to test out how it would work. I received an email 6 hours afterward.
So I simply confirmed this request and received my refund while having my account terminated.
Keep in mind that you are not refunded for the setup fee, just the monthly payment itself.
Security and Backups
Contabo Hosting offers DDoS Protection. The feature comes for free in each server and webspace package to protect you from malicious attacks on the web.
You can also purchase a signed SSL Certificate or a wildcard SSL certificate, with the signature of each SSL certificate being valid for 12 or 24 months. Once this period ends, the provider will ask you whether you would like to extend the feature instead of doing this automatically.
While you can order the SSL together with a hosting service, you can also choose to add it to your offer later on.
Furthermore, access to the cPanel comes with two-factor authentication. So, apart from your personal password, the provider also requires a one-time password each time you log onto the platform, further protecting you from third parties.
As mentioned before, Contabo Hosting lets you purchase additional backup space for dedicated servers but not for VPS or Shared hosting plans. In addition to it, you can use the Auto Backup to automatically backup your content daily, weekly, or monthly, but not for free.
Specific Features of Contabo Hosting
Contabo essentially carefully checks the relation between purchase price as well as the performance offered. They also look at the energy efficiency as well as the durability of each hardware component. They use proprietary optimization scripts in order to manage the load on all of their servers, and they are able to provide stable performance for all of their customers as a result.
They feature a fully unified hardware platform in all of the Data Centers across the globe, and as such they get better discounts on purchase prices that they pass on to customers.
They have 5 data centers in 3 regions.
- USA1 – Missouri
- EU1 – Germany
- EU 2 – Germany
- EU 3 – Germany
- SIN1 – Singapore
Aside from that, they have a premium support team of 64 highly-trained support specialists that can assist you at any time.
They are affordable, perform quick provisioning, have no extra costs associated with transfers, and full virtualization.
You even get additional features such as:
- Snapshot Technology
- DNS Management through a web interface
- Domains and SSL Certificate availability
- DDoS protection that’s included
- VNC Access
- One-Click Upgrade through the web interface
- Additional IPs that are available
- 1 IPv4 and 64 IPv6 Network included
- OS Reinstall and Reboot Through a Web Interface
- Uptime Monitoring Availability
- Additional Backup Service
Performance Speed and Uptime
When it came to the uptime, I can straight up say that I experienced no downtime throughout my testing.
I saw a response time between 750 and 420 ms, with an average of 570 which was interesting, even with the most basic website. All I can say that this is a speedy hosting provider if you are trying to run just about anything from a blog to an eCommerce website.
I feel like I was a little harsh on Contabo hosting by judging their design. Sure it is outdated, but whenever I clicked on just about anything, I was instantly loaded onto the next screen. In fact, I think I saw zero loading time from one tab to another, it was simply amazing. Due to that simplistic design, their own website loaded things quickly, and the control panel was a breeze to go through. That being said, they do not offer live chat support, only call support and email support, and you will likely wait a few hours for a reply. In any case, they are knowledgeable and do live up to their claims. The hosting services on offer are affordable and exceptional when it comes to value-for-money, and they should fill the needs of anyone that’s specifically located in Europe. The Know Your Customer (KYC) process can be an inconvenience, but if you do not mind going through that hassle and providing your information, you should have an amazing experience using Contabo Hosting.