The dirt on unlimited disk space and unlimited bandwidth
While looking for a suitable web hosting provider for your website, you may have stumbled upon web hosts offering unlimited disk space and/or bandwidth as part of their hosting package. These unlimited web hosting deals are hard to pass on right? Let me explain to you what unlimited web hosting really is.
So I went to BestBuy the other day and bought a hard drive with unlimited space for my computer and now I don’t ever have to worry about running out of disk space again!
No one would ever believe the above statement right? But when a web hosting provider claims they offer an unlimited amount of disk space people are easily suckered in. Why is this? Maybe they think that web hosts have access to futuristic hardware that a regular consumer doesn’t have access to.
Best case scenario example: let’s say the web host uses servers with 10 hard drives at 1TB each. This brings the available disk space to 10TB. Yes 10TB….that is a lot…but it still isn’t Unlimited TB. The thing is, it’s physically impossible to offer unlimited disk space. I can guarantee you that no web hosting company will let you monopolize its disk resources.
Let’s take a look at the Terms of Service of some popular unlimited web hosting companies(these are real companies with names removed). They are very tricky when it comes to what you can use their service for:
xyzCompany will not tolerate any form of storage space abuse. At least 90% of YOUR web pages (”HTML”) must be ‘linked’ with files (GIF, JPEG, etc.) stored on xyzCompany servers. Website that are found to contain either/or no HTML documents, a large number of unlinked files are subject to files deletion or account cancelation at the discretion of xyzCompany with or without prior notice.
xyzCompany reserve the rights to terminate any account found to contain file streaming such as audio, radio and video streams (AVI, MPG, MPEG, MOV, MP3, PODCASTS, etc)
If YOU do not qualify for the unlimited service, disk space will go unmonitored until YOU reach the amount allocated to YOUR specific web hosting plan (”PLAN”). Thereafter, normal website data storage costs $0.20/1MB/month will be billed to YOUR account. If you want to pre-pay for disk space overages, you will be billed $0.10/1MB/month.
Basically what they are saying here is unless your website is 90% HTML and images you will have unlimited disk space. Otherwise, you are only allowed to use xyz amount of disk space and bandwidth.
Another very popular ToS clause is the server resource monopolization clause. This basically states that if a user is abusing server resources (RAM and CPU time), the account will be automatically suspended. So if you have a website with any amount of decent traffic, your website will be terminated. If your accounts starts to use up too much disk space or bandwidth, they will simply say you are abusing server resources and give you the boot.
In conclusion, it is impossible for a web hosting company to offer unlimited bandwidth and disk space because it is physically impossible to do so. Disk space costs money and bandwidth costs money; it’s as simple as that. These unlimited web hosting companies are using phony marketing tactics to lore you in.