Wednesday, 13 February 2013

BurstNet - Useless Unreliable Service and Rude!!!

Well if you read my last post you will notice that I was in the process of looking for a new host for my websites, and after my experience with I moved to a called BurstNet.

If you have not heard of Burstnet they are a US based firm operating out of Scranton, yes the same place the Office is based on "maybe that should have given me some warning".

This time I signed up for a VPS to give me greater control over my websites.

They Lied to Me - Not in the UK, No UK call centre EVER

I decided to use Burstnet as although they are in the US they told me that they have servers hosted in the UK in Manchester and are opening a call centre for UK clients shortly they also said they are available for support using AOL AIM, they also told me they use Hyper-V for the virtualisation and as I knew this to be a good setup I thought that they are working giving a go.

As their price was competitive I thought I would sign up. I thought I would give it a month to see what it was like so signed up for monthly billing.

Hyper-V No Way Man!!

When the VPS was setup it was in fact not Hyper-V at all but Solus, this gave me a slight worry but I thought as it was running ok, this was a problem I could live with.

The first month everything seemed to be working fine. Although I was unable to find then using AOL chat at all. But as the server seemed to be working OK I thought I would alter my billing to annual.

Burstnet VPS constantly offline and unable to reboot

Now this is where the problems arose, after a couple of months my VPS was offline and I was unable to reboot it using VNC or the control panel and had to raise a ticket, I actually had to call the technical support number (which is in the US, I am in the UK) and spoke to someone who said he would sort this immediately. Which he did and the server was back up and running.

This became a constant thing, just about every other month the server was offline and needed to be rebooted. Each time I raised a ticket and had to get it rebooted. On one phone call I asked if they are overselling the VPS offering and the guy on the phone said, that basically they put as many VPS's on each node as possible. This explained the poor performance and lack of up time.

How many Times can a VPS be Offline?

This continued for several months, and as the service was paid for I thought I would continue until the end and move away then.

Now not only was I getting poor and unreliable service, but in the time I was hosting with BurstNet they never once setup a UK call centre, and even at the time of writing this they still done have a UK call centre at all. So each time I had to call the US to try to get a solution, then on one occassion I rang up only to be told that with the VPS solution it is unmanaged so I dont get phone support, I said I am not asking for support i am asking them to reboot my server as its urgent.

Can you guess what they said?

Nothing they actually hung the phone up on me. A man called Jeremiah put the phone down on me, so I called back and as soon as I said who I was he hung up again, this happened on times until I was finally put through to someone else, who still did not resolve my problem. The problem this time was a bit more worrying than a simple reboot.

So what was the problem this time - well other than the server being offline?

I could not login to my server using my RDC connection as it was not accepting my password, I could not login using the VNC software either, and all my websites and email were down. So this was urgent, when I called I hoped a simple reboot would be all that was needed, but as I had managed to use the control panel to reboot I worried something else was wrong.

When I spoke to Burstnet they said the server must have been compromised and the only way to restore it was a complete rebuild, I said as my password is secure, this is total rubbish. Well after several days of no server and Burstnet refusing to help restore the server, I bit the bullet and rebuilt the server. On doing this I then ran a test on the physical drive space the VPS was using only to find that part of the drive had been corrupted and part of the windows user files had been deleted by chkdsk. On raising this with Burstnet they again refused to accept any responsibility for this failure.

They said the SLA only cover the network and not the hardware, meaning that even if the server hardware fails they are not liable for anything. Talk about a crap SLA.

So I decided after all this hassle and unrealiable service to move away from Burstnet.

The Truth about Burstnet

Burstnet are not UK based (and never will be)

Burstnet operate in the US as and in the UK and europe as, they dont not have any offices in the UK at all. The registered office for domains in the UK is actually a unit just outside Manchester Science Park. When I spoke to the security guy at this address, he said he has never seen anyone from Burstnet. is registrant is NOT DISCLOSED and the registrar is actual Tucows, even though they claim to have a Tag for domains. Strange I think ;)

The VPS is actually hosted in the US not in the UK, the IP is registered in the UK with RIPE but redirects to the US, and when I took the VPS the time zone had to be left as US in order to activated the copy of windows server 2008.

Up until writing this email burstnet do not have any UK based call centres at all only US.

Burstnet Staff are RUDE and hang up on you

The staff are not only very rude, like I said before they hang up on you!!, but they are very inexperienced regarding hosting.

Burstnet services are oversold, over capacity and setup badly

The VPS offerings by Burstnet are not only over capacity, but in my experience are actually a tier 2 virtualisation, that is a virtualisation inside a virtualisation in order to maximise revenue.

It should also be noted that they actually have a clause in their Terms that states they can cancel services and request you to remove negative comments about them you may write anywhere online. Why on earth would a good decent company need such a clause if they werent providing a good service.


Thanks for Reading
Sean J Connolly
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