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OVH mon amour, or Sweet dreams to lowendians

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Terms and preamble

Lowendians, or low-endians are hosting providers offering low-end hosting solutions. In case you don't know about this rather large part of modern hostingsphere, feel free to visit LowEndBox (LEB) and LowEndTalk (LET) sites. You will quite many interesting posts/offers, by the way.

However, the post's subject starts with OVH name. You can easily find facts about OVH on Wikipedia. To me, this is reliable and huge provider with very strange policies towards their users.

I am OVH customer since March, 2012. The Kimsufi server I tried wasn't very impressive, so finally I have canceled it. In July, 2013 several events happened that changes OVH image and, as some say, will destroy lowendians' business. Can that be real?

Kimsufi 2013

Kimsufi 2013 is most controversial set of low-end offers ever happened to hosting industries. Also, it's a good example how moot PR decisions can affect company's reputation.

Simple put, here's chronology.

On July 25-th, 2013, OVH declares a new line of Kimsufi (low-end) dedicated servers, with the lowest one costing 2.99 Euro, VAT excluded.

On July 26-th, 2013 on all OVH sites, one by one, appeared a comment that the offer is for EU citizens (as well as Norway and Sweden, as it turned out) only. All the orders already accepted and paid for, coming from non-EU locations have been canceled. The latter action resulted in utter negative impact on OVH reputation, even if the latter denies it.

The level and heat of «The Drama» can be understood by reading, for example, this LET thread.

The orders are severely delayed, even at the moment. It's not strange: according to OVH management's reports, at least 1000 servers is assembled daily.

Will it be really death for low-end industry? I think it'll hardly be.

First, the amount of KS 2G, the cheapest offer, is limited. Despite the fact OVH uses an entire new datacenter for it, it will finally be filled. Second, even if «EU only» restrictions is lifted it won't bring too many customers. Why? Well, imagine: if you made an order, then provider changed the terms and banned your location off eligibility and then simply canceled your already accepted and paid-for order... will you trust such a provider afterwards? Instead of accepting the error and accepting «unreliable» orders. Perhaps I'm too ignorant in best PR/customer relation practices.

Third, OVH treats customers from different locations differently. Do you need a proof? Try registering at OVH forum (they suggest using forums for support on their customer's dashboard pages), such as forum.ovh.com. If you're outside EU/other official OVH locations, you will just see a string indicating that registration is closed for your location.

So, summing up, my money is good when OVH takes it, but otherwise I am of inferior grade for the provider. Perhaps they will be so kind to grant access to forums and response to my posts in Twitter/other media (those they currently ignore). At the moment I am given an impression they (OVH management) simply don't care about me as a customer.

Sins of OVH

1. They change rules en route. They can restrict services availability after promotion/whatever starts and cancel already accepted order that didn't meet new restrictions. Thus, OVH is unpredictable and unreliable.

2. They ignore support requests from non-EU users — resources posted via means available in customer's control panel. They might have a special contact means for users from given country, but it's never advertised in user's control panel.

3. They ignore requests/questions/whatever from non-EU on their social media. You will never receive a question if you ask a question unpleasant to company.

To me, the above was enough to distrust OVH completely.

You don't have just to trust my words. Here are some facts illustrated by forum threads:

  • OVH starts to cancel Kimsufi servers paid by credit cards — citizens of Italy lose their servers: thread at OVH forum.
  • Another thread (on Kimsufi forum) on same subject
  • Thread on Italian Hostingtalk forum

More threads links might be added later. I suppose you appreciated the way the customers having lost their servers were, in fact, assumed to use their credit cards, so to say, not too legally.

Conclusion

Regardless of OVH's internal and external problems, I still like its services. No, really. I like them till they expire, for I have no plans to use OVH services any more — I ceased to trust this provider.

I communicate with support staff, they talk to me in my native language, are very quick and professional. It's staff on hosting locations, not management high above, that donates to whole impression.

Enough to make me happy, since VPS I keep at OVH is running quickly and.is quite stable. However, in all honesty, I doubt I will order anything from OVH in foreseeable future.

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