Can you really get FREE web hosting?
Yes, there are hundreds of free hosting web sites, as far as not having to
pay any money to have your website hosted. Generally they either cost you in
time, web hosting restrictions, or modifying your free web pages by adding
popups, banners, or other adverts. When looking for free web hosting
(especially on search engines), you should beware that there are also a
large number of commercial web hosts that claim to offer free hosting
services, but those often have a catch, such as paying an excessive amount
for a domain name or other service, and therefore aren't really free. The
free free hosting guide below will give you some tips for finding the right
free webhosting comapny for you.
How do the free web hosts make money?
The free website hosts often make money in other ways, such as putting
banners, popups, or popunders ads on your free webpages. Some free web
hosting companies do not put ads on your site, but require you as the
webmaster to click on banners in their control panel or signup process, or
just display banners in the file manager in hopes you will click them. Some
lure visitors with free hosting in hopes you will upgrade and pay for
advanced features. A few send you occasional emails with ads, or may even
sell your email address. A new method that is becoming popular is requiring
a certain number of "quality" forum posting, usually as a means of getting
free content for them and thereby being able to display more ads to their
Are free web hosts reliable?
Generally no, although there are a few exceptions. If the free host is
making money from banner ads or other revenue sources directly from the free
hosting service, then they likely will stay in business, provided someone
doesn't abuse their web hosting server with spam, hacking, etc., as often
happens to new free web hosting companies with liberal signup policies. If
the freehost accepts just anyone, especially with an automated instant
activation and it offers features such as PHP or CGI, then some users
invariably try to find ways to abuse it, which can cause the free server to
have a lot of downtime or the free web server to be slow. It is best if you
choose a very selective free hoster which only accepts quality sites
(assuming you have one).
Uses for free webspace
Free web hosting is not recommended for businesses unless you can get domain
hosting from an ad-free host that is very selective. Other reasons for using
free hosting websites would be to learn the basics of website hosting, have
a personal website with pictures of your family or whatever, a doorway page
to another web site of yours, or to try scripts you have developed on
different web hosting environments.
How to find the right free web hosting site
The best place to search for free webhosting is on a free webspace directory
website (i.e. a web site which specializes in listing only free web hosting
providers). There are some which add new free hosts pretty much every week
(and if it is updated often, has usually had to delete about as many). There
are also many which almost never update their web site, and a huge percent
of their links and info are outdated. Unfortunately that includes most of
the directories that were the best several years ago. The problem is free
hosts change so often, and most fold up in less than a year (often even
after only a day or two), that it is hard to keep such a freehosting
directory up-to-date. The most recommended free web space directory is Free
Web Hosting (http://www.free-webhosts.com/), which has a detailed list of
over 500 free web hosting providers with user reviews, ratings, and free
hosting searchable database. It is updated daily, and the advanced free web
hosting search has 42 options, helping you to find the free hosting package
with all the features you need, such as CGI, PHP, MySQL, ASP, SSI, Ruby on
Rails, FrontPage server extensions, and even free cpanel web hosting.
For a smaller, more selective list of the best free hosts, there are also
these free webspace hosting directories:
Best Free Webspace (http://www.100-Best-Free-Webspace.com/)
Free Hosting (http://www.Absolutely-Free-Hosting.com/)
Free Webspace (http://www.free-webspace.org/)
Other (usually less useful) resources include subcategories of freebies
sites, search engines and directories, and forums. Your ISP might also
supply you with free webhosting.
Hints for finding the best free web hosting service
Generally it is best not to choose a free hosting package with more features
than you need, and also check to see if the company somehow receives revenue
from the free hosting itself to keep it in business. As already mentioned,
it is best to try to get accepted to a more selective free host if possible.
Look at other sites hosted there to see what kind of ads are on your site,
and the server speed (keep in mind newer hosts will be faster at first).
Read the Terms of Service (TOS) and host features to make sure it has enough
bandwidth for your site, large webspace and file size limit, and any
scripting options you might need. Read free webspace reviews and ratings by
other users on free hosting directories. If you don't have your own domain
name, you might want to use a free URL forwarding service so you can change
your site's host if needed.
Recommended free web hosts
It would be awfully hard to recommend any free web space host and someone
not like it, as different people need different web hosting features and
have different priorities, and the webhosting quality may change over time.
Also some people want free domain hosting (you own the domain), and others
might not be able to buy a domain name. Here are some of the most
recommended free web hosts, and their main features.
50Webs (http://www.50webs.com/) gives you a URL such as
http://you.50webs.com/ (or you can use your own domain name), and offers 60
MB webspace, POP3 email, and unlimited bandwidth. You can upload via a file
manger or FTP import. There are no ads or popups placed on your hosted web
pages. You can setup multiple addon domains and subdomains under the same
web hosting account.
Tripod (http://www.tripod.lycos.com/) is controversial. Many people hate the
ads they put on your site or its other limitations, but it is one of the
oldest and most reliable free web hosts. They give you 20 MB webspace, a
subdomain, file manager and editor, and webpage statistics. The bandwidth
limit is 1 GB/month. You can upload several file types such as RealAudio,
RealVideo, Flash, MP3, and Java; and CGI/Perl, SSI, and FrontPage Server
Extensions scripting is supported.
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