Brain Host: Our Review

Combining a full range of standard shared and dedicated hosting features with comprehensive service and support, Ohio-based provider Brain Host aims to offer “Simply the Best Web Hosting Around.”

Brain Host’s simple, straightforward hosting plans are a smart choice for anyone looking to set up a professional web site without breaking the bank.

Features

Unlike many providers, Brain Host offers just two levels of hosting: Shared and Dedicated; while “business” and “eCommerce” hosting are mentioned on the main page, these fall under available options for the two tiers, and are not tiers in themselves.

All of Brain Host’s plans run on Linux-based servers.

Shared Hosting Features

Shared hosting from Brain Host is split into three packages, all of which include the company’s “unlimited everything” resource allocation and a bevy of included add-ons.

  • Free domain name
  • Unlimited* domains and sub-domains
  • Unlimited* drive space
  • Unlimited* data transfer/bandwidth
  • Unlimited* MySQL databases ($9.95 plan only)
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • Support for Unlimited* email accounts and webmail. (IMAP and POP3)
  • Free 24/7 U.S.-based customer support via email/phone/chat
  • Dedicated IP address available for purchase
  • Free, point-and-click website builder /li>
  • Automatic courtesy server backups
  • Fantastico one-click installer for adding applications and scripts
  • cPanel user control panel
  • Full support for:
    • eCommerce (osCommerce, Agora Cart.)
    • Free 128-bit shared Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate
    • WordPress
    • PHP 5
    • Ruby on Rails
    • Secure Shell (SSH) access
    • Python
    • Server-Side Includes (SSI)
    • Perl
    • Custom Cronjobs
    • FrontPage Extensions
    • Multimedia streaming

*As a rule, “unlimited” in the context of shared hosting generally denotes “limitless until you negatively impact server performance, at which point you may be billed or transferred to a more costly service tier.”

In keeping with its simple (if robust) menu of standard features, Brain Host’s 30-day money-back guarantee is a nice but unsurprising addition to the shared hosting plans.

Dedicated Hosting Features

Brain Host’s more powerful hosting plans reside on the dedicated tier. Like its shared hosting plans, the plans on this tier are simple, straightforward and packed with features. The three packages available are perfect for anyone who needs the full power and security of their own hardware server.

  • Your own dedicated Linux server, with:
    • Many of the same bonus applications as the shared tier
    • Free initial setup
    • Total root access for your server
    • Free dedicated IP address
    • A dedicated processor running with up to 4 cores and at speeds up to 2.26 GHz
    • Up to 12 GB of RAM
    • Up to 1 TB of storage space
    • 10 TB of monthly traffic
    • Managed hosting and support
    • cPanel and WHM server management panel available for purchase
    • SSL certificates available for purchase
    • Additional backup services available for purchase

Brain Host’s dedicated plans are covered by the same 30-day money-back guarantees as its shared plans.

Benefits Breakdown

The Good

Brain Host lives up to its name by making some of the smartest features of modern hosting—cPanel, top-notch customer support, deep and broad application support, etc.—a standard part of even its most basic plans.

The site itself is so straightforward and simple that even the greenest Web neophyte can purchase a plan and be designing a site in minutes.

Brain Host’s pricing and 30-day guarantee are fairly standard, but the addition of 24/7/365 support at all levels is another smart touch for a company that prides itself on keeping things smooth and simple for its customers.

The Not-So-Good

Brain Host keeps things simple with two tiers of hosting and features that are both robust and consistent between packages across the spectrum. While this is very attractive to those who want to “set it and forget it” while setting up their website, those with a need for nuanced configuration and budgeting may need to engage customer service in order to find the exact features they need.

The limited selection and lack of VPS hosting also means that anyone who’s outgrown their shared hosting provider but isn’t quite ready for the expense and power of a dedicated server may need to look elsewhere.

With powerful, feature-rich plans, simple sign-up, and rock-solid support, Brain Host ironically takes most of the mental effort out of choosing a Web hosting provider. It’s a great choice for newcomers and those who need the power of dedicated servers, but those looking for greater customizability or a package that’s little more “middle of the road” may need to invest a little more brain power and look elsewhere.

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