Downtime - Hentaish and Neechan


Txxxa this sucks but seems the filesystem on that server has gone awry, so we are in the process of fsck, this is gonna take some time (its been down for 5 hours already), sorry about that everyone, but shit happens with moving parts, now depending on the outcome, we can be back in a couple of hours (problem resolved, RAID worked), or if we have corruption, ill have to bring from the backups, the hosts or mine whatever are the freshest, from what i checked, my backups are from this Saturday, so not so bad if they come from me ^_^

Ill update with more news in a couple of hours, sorrryyyy ^_^'

Update 1: Yep still going at it, that's what happens when you put several Tb in one place, still no major issues until now, 8hours of downtime... this sucks... a bit hehehe

Update 2: Final stretch on fsck, its been down for almost half a day 11hours >_<

Update 3 - Final: Yay every site is back online and working fine, still 13hours of downtime... tsss wasn't pretty...

Free Hosted DNS Review YAY... I think...



So i got an e-mail from EveryDNS warning that they are moving on from the freemium model into the dyndns paid DNS (they were merged or acquired some time ago), that's cool, i guess, i was only using them as backup DNS for Hostcult, since that domain runs pretty much all our hosting (so if it fails 90% of my sites start failing), before i was just using my domain registar DNS ( ResellerClub ) and they pretty much failed a lot on me over time (with glitches, maintenance, performance issues), so having a backup DNS was a pretty good idea, so with this e-mail from the now defunct EveryDNS, i think i have a opportunity to check my options (and in the process share them with you all).

So why not choose a professional/paid DNS? well if i don't find a good alternative, them ill probably pay for it, but DNS is such a thing that 95% of the time im running it myself on each server, i only really need dns for off server domains or for my main hosting domain, so checking the free alternatives seems like the place to start, so i'm doing a showdown between: Hosted VS ResellerClub VS InternetBS VS NameCheap VS CloudNS VS Hurricane Electric VS PointHQ VS XName VS CloudFlare.

Added info for the tables:
Europe Avg: A 24 hour average from my computer in Europe.
Monitoring Avg: A weekly average from Pingdom DNS (From 2 locations in Europe and USA), 5min intervals.
Monitoring Spike: The worst performance for that week from Pingdom DNS (From 2 locations in Europe and USA), 5min intervals.
Uptime: If it was online or not.
Location: where the DNS server is.

Local DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns3.hostcult.com 170 129 419 100% USA, TX
ns4.hostcult.com 166.5 109 325 100% USA, TX
Notes: Running on Cpanel, Complete DNS functions.
Restrictions: None.
Comments: Well running your own DNS isn't perfect but its simple and doable, the client when doing a DNS query will have a quicker time, connecting again to the site (since both are in the same place), also changes to DNS are done quicker, overall good if you are hosting the sites on the same place as the DNS, and not that important the reliability, since if the server is down, the DNS being up or down is irrelevant.

Branded ResellerClub DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns11.hostcult.com FAIL 112 301 100% USA, TX
ns12.hostcult.com FAIL 98 293 100% USA, TX
ns13.hostcult.com FAIL 105 283 100% USA, TX
ns14.hostcult.com FAIL 82 258 100% USA, TX
Notes: Didn't get any response from my own tests >_<, Average Control Panel, Complete DNS functions.
Restrictions: Its only available for domains hosted there.
Comments: Humm ResellerClub is my main domain registrar, and my current main dns host, but like i said above and as you can see on the tests, ResellerClub leaves a lot to be desired, its average at best, normally not so good, it also doesn't help that all of their servers are in the same place.

Un-Branded ResellerClub DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
mercury.orderbox-dns.com FAIL 93 275 100% USA, TX
venus.orderbox-dns.com FAIL 77 219 100% USA, TX
earth.orderbox-dns.com FAIL 88 212 100% USA, TX
mars.orderbox-dns.com FAIL 118 363 100% USA, TX
Notes: Didnt get any response from my own tests >_<, Average Control Panel, Complete DNS functions.
Restrictions: Its only available for domains hosted there.
Comments: Much like the Branded, the Un-Branded DNS is kinda slightly better, that makes it even more disappointing since i use the branded, ResellerClub is average at best, normally not so good, it doesn't help as well that all their servers are in the same place.

InternetBS DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns-canada.topdns.com 175 88 245 100% Canada, QC
ns-usa.topdns.com 133.5 91 205 100% USA, NJ
ns-uk.topdns.com 109 74 176 100% USA, TX
Notes: Average control panel, Complete DNS Functions, although ns-uk has uk in the name, its actually hosted in USA, weird...
Restrictions: Its only available for domains hosted there.
Comments: Well InternetBS is also one of my domain registrars, and i can say im pleasantly surprised, even though my own test weren't awesome, the weekly average shows that they perform pretty well, so kudos to InternetBS for a solid DNS Service.

Namecheap DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
freedns1.registrar-servers.com 95.5 78 200 100% FAIL
freedns2.registrar-servers.com 95.5 82 188 100% FAIL
freedns3.registrar-servers.com 178 72 187 100% Germany
Notes: Good Control Panel, Complete DNS Functions.
Restrictions: None.
Comments: My last and least used domain registrar was surprising, not only do they provide DNS services for free to anyone, but the performance was outstanding, they clearly know what they are doing, this is one of the best candidates to this point, excellent job.

CloudNS DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns1.cloudns.net 60 86 190 100% FAIL
ns2.cloudns.net 160.5 88 242 100% USA, TX
ns3.cloudns.net 112.5 72 233 100% Bulgaria
Notes: Good Control Panel, Complete DNS Functions.
Restrictions: Free for only 3 Domains.
Comments: Cloudns has a good panel and a pretty good DNS performance, even tough a bit weird, clearly their ns1 performs awesomely well, while the other 2 are a bit more weak, also hosting DNS in Bulgaria is just plain weird, you should keep DNS near major backbone transit facilities, that's what i think.

Hurricane Electric DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns1.he.net 232.5 119 265 100% USA, CA
ns2.he.net 229 196 740 100% USA, CA
ns3.he.net 234 194 712 100% USA, CA
Notes: Average Control Panel, Complete DNS Functions.
Restrictions: None.
Comments: Hurricane is kinda horrible in everything, clearly putting all their DNS servers in their facilities in California, doesn't help little old me half way across the world or anybody else for that matter.

PointHQ DNS (No Longer Recomended!)
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
dns1.pointhq.com 63 111 242 100% FAIL
dns2.pointhq.com 133.5 110 238 100% FAIL
dns3.pointhq.com 228.5 92 210 100% FAIL
dns4.pointhq.com 63.5 96 225 100% FAIL
dns5.pointhq.com 67 73 186 100% FAIL
Notes: Good Control Panel, Complete DNS Functions.
Restrictions: Free for only 10 zones.
Comments: PointHQ has some servers closer, some server further away, still pretty good performance overall, but i wonder, normally a browser checks the first nameserver or it just chooses randomly, so you want a excellent first nameserver performance and then good performance from all the secondary ones, with PointHQ we don't have that, if my browser checks dns3 im gonna have to wait 3 times more than if i was lucky and it choose dns4, so yeah, its ok i guess.
Update: Yeah its now fully paid! And they kinda screwed their users, so i would skip this one!

XName DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
ns0.xname.org 83 79 302 100% France, Paris
ns1.xname.org 69 106 336 100% France, Roubaix
ns2.xname.org 109.5 118 311 100% France, Villeneuve
Notes: Good Control Panel, Complete DNS functions.
Restrictions: None.
Comments: Xname has been around for some time, and it shows, in a good way, they have some great performance, and i find it even more remarkable because all their DNS is in France, but USA monitoring still was quick, that just shows that you don't need to put DNS servers across the world to give good performance, good job.

CloudFlare DNS
Europe Avg Monitoring Avg Monitoring Spike Uptime Location
carl.ns.cloudflare.com 175.5 70 235 100% FAIL
sue.ns.cloudflare.com 178.5 65 173 100% FAIL
lady.ns.cloudflare.com 178 71 203 100% FAIL
todd.ns.cloudflare.com 176.5 93 245 100% FAIL
Notes: Basic Options, Lacks DNS Functions.
Restrictions: None.
Comments: What is cloudflare doing here? well cloudflare can also host you DNS, you can disable their CDN system, so basically you can use it as a pure DNS host, that's why its here, so i have to say its weird, on my personal tests it goes from blazing fast 62 to 284 that's why it has that average, also their system is probably a distributed one, as it doesn't matter what dns server i point to, it will always reach the same place, probably they are leveraging their own CDN for their DNS hosting, and that's a good thing, check the weekly average, that's some impressive performance, with cloudns and namecheap with close results, probably cause all 3 are leveraging some sort of CDN cloud system as well, still it seems inconsistent at times and the lack of full DNS features, kinda kills it from the start, but still something to watch out for the future.

Conclusion
So what am i going to use, well most likely ill go with Namecheap and maybe Xname or Cloudns as backups, Namecheap clearly has a combination of full features and outstanding DNS performance, and also a namebrand you can trust with something as important as DNS.

As a sidenote, good job everyone, 100% UPTIME!!! YAY!!! (i include myself on this, so *pat pat* on the back) also i know this review is a bit unfair, DNS is more than these checks, and everyone can have a bad day, you just need a DDOS on one of the nameservers and bye bye average, also there are tons of providers missing, but i choose these ones according to popularity and namebrand, since that makes this choice of providers a bit more trustworthy, still i think this is a good broad view of them and good enough for me to make my choice.