The dust has settled and the times have changed. Well, maybe not so much but it has been a while since my post on MediaTemple and Engine Yard, about which one to choose for the long-term.
To give you a brief recap—I’ve happily been with MediaTemple for years, and I had never used Engine Yard before that post. MediaTemple frustrated me with poor support, and Engine Yard impressed me by talking to me on Twitter (@mrnordstrom) and offering me trial time of their AppCloud service.
I’ve now taken a look at what Engine Yard offers, and briefly tried them out. They’re a fantastic hosting company, no doubt about it. You’ve got instances, you just pay for what you use, and so on—I won’t attempt to explain too much about what they offer (I’m not sure I fully understand all of it myself) but it’s a bit different from “traditional” hosting.
Have a look at their website and you’ll get it. You don’t get a monthly paid VPS with resources you may not need all the time. Instead, you get what you need and you get a lot of flexibility for scaling that. Instead of having to manually configure a VPS, you have the ability to switch software such as web server with just a few clicks, and other neat things.
But I didn’t only talk to Engine Yard; I also talked to MediaTemple. MediaTemple is pretty fantastic in the way they go out of their way to make sure their customers are happy. After many emails flying back and forth between me and an awesome guy at MediaTemple, my confidence in them is back.
Which one is the winner?
These are two fantastic hosting companies, no doubt. They’re also two different hosting companies—at least for now, they offer pretty different services. So which one should we choose?
Well, Engine Yard is flexible. You can see what you pay per hour for the resources you need for your web app and you can scale it up smoothly. Like Rails, it’s more about convention than configuration and you can be up and running with the software you want very quickly. There’s a lot to it so again, check out their website.
MediaTemple’s offerings are straight-forward. I like their no-bullshit approach. They’ll give you shared hosting and different flavors of VPS, and you can talk to them if you need something custom.
I’m personally planning to switch to their new (ve) plan instead of my current (dv). Instead of the (dv), a ready-to-go VPS with Plesk, the (ve) gives you an empty solution that you can set up yourself at a lower price if you’re comfortable with the command line. Throw two of those my way, please!
MediaTemple or Engine Yard? They’re both winners. As always, just pick the one that suits the purpose. I actually think it’s quite fun to manage my server command line. It may take up some of my time but I also learn a lot from it.
That’s how simple it is, and that’s why I will personally stick with MediaTemple and recommend them to my clients. As long as they keep their support at the level which they promise.
Of course, if a project clearly demands what Engine Yard offers, that’s the obvious choice. There are other companies as well (I’m thinking mainly of Heroku) but Engine Yard has definitely earned it’s place at the top of my mind when it comes to their type of hosting.
Keep up the good work, people!