This is part of my series of try some alternative hosting options. Next up, I decided to try NearlyFreeSpeech.NET. It’s a long-standing pay-for-use service that’s been around since 2002, so has a good history and isn’t about to disappear.
The setup process wasn’t particularly straightforward. First, you need to create a member account. Then a billing account (you can create multiple of these), then a site (again, multiple supported). Note that you have to enter a bunch of name and address details in your account record. You should get a couple of cents to allow a ‘trial’ when you create it.
To run it permanently, you’ll need to deposit some funds. What it costs to run is based on the type of site(s) you set up, as it’s essentially a combination of bandwidth, storage space and ‘Oomph!’ — or CPU+RAM.
When setting up a site, you get the option to pick from the different types of site. Static sites don’t incur a daily base charge ($0.01 for dynamic sites) or a cost for resources (based on a unit of CPU+RAM called a RAU).
Bandwidth starts at $0.25 per GB, but it goes down depending on how longer you have been a member and how much total bandwidth your account has used. Their pricing estimator put me at about $0.50 a month.
As part of the setup process you get an alias — essentially
short_name.nfshost.com — this is what you need to create a CNAME for if you host your domain name elsewhere. In order for NFS.NET to associate your domain with your account you need to add the domain name as an alias of the site.
They don’t seem to advocate using a bare domain (leepenney.com) but rather the www subdomain (www.leepenney.com). As most of my static site was setup for the bare version (references to CSS files, etc) I had to add an additional alias to cover this. Continue reading…