About UK Hosting Direct

UK Hosting Direct a trading name of Bell Online Ltd, a UK based business that started off providing Internet streaming services from MixStream.net around 2007. During the next few years, we noticed that our existing customers found it difficult to find quality, affordable web hosting that allowed them to use large amounts of storage space - most of our customers being Internet radio stations, they often like to provide their listeners with on-demand content in the form of MP3s.

It turns out that the majority of web hosts make big promises when it comes to the amount of space they offer. Unfortunately, when someone comes along that actually uses a significant amount of their allowance (either space or bandwidth), these hosts start to threaten to suspend accounts or even demand extra money! They can't deliver their promises. You may well wonder why this is the case - it's because they have oversold their web space.

What is overselling?

Overselling is where the web host sells beyond their means of delivery. Or put another way, they sell more space than they have available on their servers. Unfortunately, there's no reliable way to tell when a web host is overselling, and they aren't often open about it.

As an example, it's possible that a web host will have a server with a hard drive capacity of 300GB. They want to offer lots of space for very little money so they advertise web hosting plans with 50GB of space for £5 a month. Sounds like a great deal, right? Well, they'd have to sell about 20 of their plans in order to break even - they have sold 20 x 50GB plans - that comes to 1000GB before they've even made a penny!

(300 / 50) * (100 / 50) = 12 If just 12 people on their server used half of their allowance, the server would become too full to operate and no one would be able to upload any more files, databases would freeze and in all likelihood the server would crash very quickly.

If you're one of those 12 people, then that web host doesn't want your custom, and if you're lucky they will give you notice before deleting your account.

Is overselling bad?

Not necessarily, in fact it has its advantages. A lot of service providers oversell, such as mobile phone networks - if a huge number of people in an area used their phone at the same time then the network simply wouldn't be able to handle it (this is very apparent on new year's eve each year). The fact is that overselling allows companies to provide you with a service at a much lower price than if the resources were 100% dedicated to you. If your mobile phone provider didn't oversell, then your calls would probably cost 100s of times more. In fact, we oversubscribe bandwidth on our Value Shoutcast plans and we're very clear about this - it allows us to offer a much lower price to people that don't constantly use their full allowance.

Will this affect me?

If you're unlikely to use the full allowance that you're offered for most of the time, then you will most probably never notice a web host overselling if they do it well (although, surely you're better off knowing exactly what you can use, aren't you?). However, if you need to host large audio or video files then you will benefit from the certainty that UK Hosting Direct offers, as we can guarantee that you are able to use 100% of the space that you purchase and our prices are still surprisingly competitive, so take a look at our shared hosting and reseller plans.

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