Sticking it to the CPU Exceeded Errors!

I’ve only been with Bluehost for about 7 months, and for the most part, I’ve been very happy with the speed and service they offer. However, recently, as many of you are aware, all my websites have been shut down for 5-10 minutes, multiple times a day for exceeding the CPU limits.

I’ve studied the error logs and it appears that these errors are caused by slow MySQL queries to the database. Since most of the queries come from core files in WordPress and SWCMS, the only reasonable explanation for these CPU exceeded errors is the volume of traffic my sites are getting. In September, that figure was 267,194 visits.

Time for an upgrade

Bluehost charge less than $7 a month to host all my websites on one of their shared servers, so I can’t really complain if their CPUs can’t handle the load. Instead, it’s time to pay for some real service, so I searched out the best hosting solution short of leasing an entire server: a Liquid Web Virtual Private Server.

I managed to find a discount coupon at Digital Point giving me $30/month off, and bringing the total cost down to $75/month after the initial $150 setup I chose to pay. That’s a fair whack over $7 a month at Bluehost, but I should be able to recoup the cost if I don’t have the downtime I’ve been getting.

As I type this, I’m waiting for the technicians to set it up for me, and then I’ll spend the next week or two moving my sites across. Until I’ve done that, I can’t say whether it will solve all the hosting problems I’ve had over the last year, but I’m quietly confident.

Stay tuned for updates. My sites will go offline for up to 72 hours when I point the domain names to the new server.

10 comments

  1. Pingback: The CPU Exceeded Errors, which some of y … « JapanSoc Community Blog
  2. billywest

    That’s quite a fee every month. However, it seems like a necessary investment. Hope everything goes smoothly. I’ll be crossing my fingers for you.

  3. Tori

    So you will have all of your sites with one host?

    I have a similar set up to your $7/mo with Anhosting (<– found out about them on an UpstartBlogger.com post after searching for “webhosting that doesn’t suck”). (multiple add-on domains under one hosting plan). I have a few sites on there, but Nipponster is with a different host.

    Someday I hope to have your traffic “problems” πŸ˜›

    • Nick Ramsay

      Yeah, it’s easier to manage them if they’re on the same host, but it’s probably safer having them on different hosts so that one bad apple won’t spoil the rest, or whatever the saying is.

      • Tori

        I was thinking separate hosts would be safer too, but probably it is just paranoia. If something is going to go wrong it will probably go wrong regardless of the option one chooses.

        With the one-bad-apple-spoiling situation you are probably much better off now, with the vps, than you were before. I would imagine you shouldn’t have to worry (or worry as much) about some other site on the shared server eating up resources and causing downtime.
        Of course if one of your apples goes bad…

        The reason I was think separate hosts might be safer is that if a host gives you problems you only have to move the few sites you have with them instead of all of your sites.

        Anyway, let’s hope our hosts will get it all right. πŸ™‚

        • Nick Ramsay

          It’s been a couple of weeks now, and I’m quickly learning that most of the problems I’ve had are caused by my own shoddy programming. Here’s what happens: Let’s say you have a form with two radio buttons with values 10 and 20. You write a program with a loop, using the passed value as an upper limit. It all works fine because the value HAS to be 10 or 20, right? Wrong. If the script is called directly, bypassing the form, then no parameters are passed and the program gets stuck in a loop. I have hundreds of such scripts and am working through them now, making sure that all values have a default. What a fun learning experience! πŸ™„

  4. freedomwv

    I am sure that the investment will pay off in the end. This is going to give you a whole lot more freedom with respect to what you can do with your sites. By the way virtual tripping is a very cool site!