StartLogic Sucks

I hooked up with my first ISP back in 1995, when I put up a web page to advertise Electric Avenue, my 21 line dial in BBS. (I’m sure you’re impressed with the brilliance of that business plan.) Since then I’ve done business with a half dozen different internet service providers. Some started out great and turned to garbage. One that I really liked fell apart when the founder died unexpectedly. One raised their prices too much when this site went over their 250 meg limit. But through them all, the good ones and the bad ones, Startlogic stands out and the lousiest, most miserable, most horrible ISP I’ve ever dealt with.

Shortly after I moved this site to Startlogic I started the Podcast Peer Awards, and opened another Startlogic account for it. Things were uneventful for a while, until Startlogic started randomly bouncing my e-mails. E-Mail came in OK, but sending them out became a crap shoot. It was because they had their SMTP server set to use some craptastic blackhole list, and sometimes my IP was in it, and sometimes it wasn’t. This was before they had the kinks worked out of their “Never Let The Customer Contact You” policy, so I was able to get through occasionally, where I was given a lecture on spamming (which I have never, ever done) and treated like a criminal. After the tenth or twelveth time this happened I wrote them a ticket that told them I needed this fixed again and condemmed their incompetence.

I got a phone call from them. They actually called me back! And the reason for the call left me nearly speechless, which has happened approximately four times in my entire life (and I’m an old fart). They were calling to yell at me for questioning their competence! Not to help me with the problem, not to apologize for being complenety bereft of anything resembling a clue, but to chastise me for being pissed off about them breaking a crucial feature over and over and over again.

I was amazed. I was flabbergasted. I was disgusted. I’ve made a living doing various forms of technical support for most of my life. I know my customers on a first name basis and like almost all of them. And when they frustrate me I’m still Mr. Politeness, because I have to be. Being rude is not an option. Revealing simple annoyance is not an option. Like everyone in support I’ll sometimes make disparaging remarks in private, after I’m finished dealing with someone, but never, ever to the customer.

But here they were, calling me to bitch me out for being annoyed at their incompetence.

It wasn’t too long after that I moved davehitt.com to Dreamhost, who I’ve been happy with. They actually respond to questions and frequently have the answers. What an amazing concept in customer service.

But the heart of the Podcast Peer Awards is the forum. I guessed that moving a live BBS from one site to another was going to be a big risky job, and I had paid in advance for a year, so I left the site on Startlogic.

This week Startlogic blew up the forum. They completely screwed up the server where the database resides, making it impossible for PPA members to log in and converse and cast votes. I got some help at the phpBB forums, but there was still one problem with it that I didn’t know how to resolve. Like a fool I wasted an hour waiting on hold (“your call is important to us”) and had their “live” chat window open, before I gave up. An SQL guru where I work showed me how to fix the last remaining issue (it took, literally, fifteen seconds) and the board worked flawlessly for nearly ten hours before Startlogic fucked it up again.

I’m so annoyed and disgusted I tried to buy startlogicsucks.com, but someone beat me to it. I could write a small book on the stupid, horrible things that Startlogic has done, but I’ll settle for making it a blog category and telling one of the stories from time to time.

In the meantime I’m making plans to move the PPA to Dreamhost.

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12 Comment(s)

  1. Dave, as a web programmer I’ve had the opportunity to work with many a client’s web hosting provider. I know that the bad ones are more plentiful than the good ones.

    Recently I was trying to help a client with some sudden problems with his website. Turned out that they’d decided to move the database to a new server but didn’t copy any of the data over and made no mention of it to anybody.

    They didn’t even know what I was talking about when I confronted them about it at first.

    I’m always running into problems like that with all sorts of hosting services. And they’re usually not the clients’ first problems with the providers.

    It’s pretty much trial and error to get a good one.

    Parrot | Feb 21, 2008 | Reply

  2. Startlogic is a really bad choice to go with. Their servers are slow as hell and they have major e mail problems as well as account password issues as of late. Being locked our of my account is just par for the course with these people.

    I dread having to upload files via my FTP program because it is so slow and laggy. Yes, I host about 12 websites on my FTP program and it is the only one that takes forever to exchange files during an upload. They also outsource all of their customer service to non english speaking idiots that know nothing about anything therefore not being able to help you. Its frustrating as can be. I am leaving Start Logic as soon as I come up with the Money.

    Joe Stenhouse | Feb 25, 2009 | Reply

  3. I’ve been happy with Dreamhost – I have three sites there, their performance is good, and their support is excellent. Use the promo code HITTMAN to get $50 off your first year.

    BTW, you can host all 12 of your sites for the price of one account, which ain’t too shabby.

    Dave Hitt | Feb 25, 2009 | Reply

  4. Really Dave? That sound like a good deal. I will make sure to check them out today.

    Thanks Dude.

    Joe Stenhouse | Feb 25, 2009 | Reply

  5. Startlogic took my money without notifying me and then charged me $35 dollars to CANCEL my subscription!

    Last week I noticed that $85 had been taken out of my bank account by Startlogic. I called to ask them why and they said it was for website hosting. The website they say they were “hosting” hadn’t been active in over a year. I don’t remember having signed up with them but with the information they had on my email address and other info, I felt that if I disputed it, I would lose.

    So after about 45 minutes of trying to get them to refund the $85 dollars, I finally gave up and told them to take the damn $35 cancellation fee and give me back the rest of my money.

    I did not receive any emails from Startlogic saying that my site was up for renewal and that they would be automatically taking money from my bank account. Unlike other website services that I have used, they don’t seem to think this courtesy is necessary.

    I also can’t believe Startlogic charges a cancellation fee! The guy on the phone told me that it’s clearly stated in the agreement when I signed up. Although it isn’t listed ANYWHERE on there website policies. I can only assume its listed in really tiny print in some obscure place that no one ever reads.

    Bottom line: DON’T give Startlogic your credit card or debit card number because they will take your money without warning you, and then they will charge you $35 to give it back. Theives!!!

    Dazzlecat | Mar 28, 2009 | Reply

  6. I had a similar case of my credit card being incorrectly charged by them. I just called my credit card company and explained to them what had happened. Since then, I have switched my web sites over to Tigersites and have nothing but good things to say about them.

    Andrew | Apr 1, 2009 | Reply

  7. Hi Dave,

    While I haven’t had the experience you have had with StartLogic, I have noticed that their support is somewhat lacking, even with simple questions. Your article, and the other comments, are definitely eye opening and I will be looking for another hosting provider soon.

    Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with the rest of us.

    – Glen

    Glen | May 18, 2009 | Reply

  8. I recently renewed my expired domain in June 12 for 2 years. Last week i got an email stating that i JUST renewed my domain for 3 years. After waiting on hold for 45 minutes for billing, I get “Tech Support” instead, but they assure me that they can help me. They told me that I called on August 2nd to renew for 3 years. The bad thing, the Tech support agent didn’t see this as odd in any way.

    I told them i didn’t call to renew and they said “Well you can keep your credits for use later on the website”. This really floored me to have a “sales pitch” to deflect the real issue here. FRAUD FRAUD FRAUD

    This implies that the Tech support agent is very aware of the un-authorized transactions made by Startlogic to its customers. Isn’t this considered being an accomplice to fraud?

    I am sure they covered their butts with the disclaimer that nobody reads.

    I will be moving ALL of my customers that use this hosting company and make sure everyone knows how they scam their customers.

    Bill Dance | Aug 19, 2011 | Reply

  9. StartLogic sucks, and more.
    They don’t know the basics of web hosting
    They have incompetent support staff in India. They actually have never announced that it resides in Mangalore, Karnataka, India.
    The support staff there is absolutely worthless. You can make out that you are probably chatting with a careless betel chewer who is a school drop out and who has no idea about your question asked, doesn’t know English in the first place, and frustrates you no end with his guffaws.
    StartLogic changes the file permissions on their own. 644 gets changed to 755. Why? They have no answer.
    The support staff will easily let anyone in the webhosting panel of a customer by the answering of a very stupid question. Their security in this context is absolutely (ABSOLUTELY) alarming (ALARMING). You can complain as many times but either they will not understand or pretend that they have not understood and be evasive, be diversionary.
    The sites hosted on their werservers will not show in other countries for some mysterious reason. Instead something else will show up, perhaps Google search engine sites. Unconfirmed reports have told me that they have a back door liaison with Google.
    The Simple scripts that are normally allowed on other webhosting sites fail on theirs and you are frustrated down to hell and you have no idea about retribution from where. Their support staff doesn’t know what you are talking about. So you pay for the databases but they are as good as redundant.
    StartLogic webhosting by default will name your index file as index.htm when the first file to the best of my knowledge is index.html. They deliberately do not let this little important piece of info. known to their customers. Thus, this fact coupled with some other technical glitch or gimmick (by StartLogic themselves), will not yield your home page but a parking page filled with their ppc advertisements. That file (the .html file) is not visible to you in the control panel. THAT IS BIG BIG FRAUD. The entire internet community should take note of this. How petty can anyone get. Theft of your traffic and making money from your traffic is a WEBHOSTING INTERNET CRIME.
    Unconfirmed reports have told me that their Indian employees in Mangalore have illegal liaisons with some Indian companies.

    ……………

    I’ll be back with more.
    Sandeep Vij,
    Tripodot.

    Tripodot is my brainchild. I set it up singly despite no knowledge of web design. Visit http://www.tripodot.info. Thanks. No work or maintenance has occurred on the sites since December 2007 (which is another matter). I was attacked in Nov. – Dec. 2007 (again in 2008) and still recovering.

    Sandeep Vij | Apr 12, 2012 | Reply

  10. We trying to weed out these so called “top hosted”. We sick of this biased reviews. If you had any experiences with any hosts, visit http://www.hostinsight.com and leave your review.

    Hostinsight.com | Sep 2, 2012 | Reply

  11. I’m delighted the people keep replying to this thread occasionally, because they’re helping to keep “Startlogic Sucks” high in the search engines.

    BTW, in case anyone is wondering, Startlogic Sucks.

    Dave Hitt | Sep 2, 2012 | Reply

  12. This is further to my grouse expressed on this page.
    Not only do the file permissions get changed from 644 to 755 for a mysterious reason, there is no record of the date and time when this criminal act was committed. There is no way you get an intimation. There is no way you get to know when your webhosting control panel was accessed and from where (ip address, country etc.). Very surreptitiously, without informing the customer, the index.html files are removed. So if you have already taken care by uploading (copying from .htm and then renaming actually) a .html file also alongwith the .htm (default of StartLogic), even then you are not secure because you never will notice or be intimated when a thief or ghost will enter your hosting panel and remove or delete the .html file. Example is the link above at http://www.tripodot.info. It is actually supposed to go to http://www.tripodot.com/info/index.htm. It is a redirect by the way (incidental). It doesn’t. It actually goes to http://www.tripodot.com/index.html. This is because StartLogic by default names all html files uploaded with .htm extension but actually points the folder recall or folder fetch command to the index.html file. Okay, fine. So I copied the .htm file, renamed the file with the extension only to .html and then kept it alongside, hoping that now in any case, the intended file shall be seen. Alas, I noticed after a few months that the .html file was gone and now if you were to go to http://www.tripodot.info, then you would actually land up at their parking page at http://www.tripodot.com/info/index.html. And this is because (to add to that), there is also an act of “undoing” your disabling of the 404 error page. This means that if you have disabled their parking page as a result of 404 error page (where they show their page with ppc advertisements), then once again a ghost or a thief visits your control panel and undoes the disabling, meaning that now allowing for the error page with ads to show. Did you get it? 2 things were done by them – no. one >> .html file removed by them, no. 2 >> undoing of your disabling of the 404 error page. So the visitor lands at their parking page with their ppc ads. And you don’t know that this is happening. You can’t check everything all the time. This is because some geolocation parameters also creep in. I am in Delhi, so here it is fine, but in Maharashtra or Assam or another country for that matter, they are displaying the ppc page. You tell this to their support staff when you notice, and they tell you that you must have a secure password!! Can you believe that? I don’t know from what family background these crooks come? Petty, louts, thieves, hungry and naked. Get out and beg, StartLogic! Don’t spoil the hosting industry. :-( Disgrace. I have since noticed (only a few hours ago), that the .html file was gone. I have done it again (copied the .htm file, renamed it to .html and then keeping it alongside the .htm) (April 26, 2013). So let’s see what happens when you visit http://www.tripodot.com/info/index.htm and http://www.tripodot.com/info/index.html which should actually be the same (copies). If it doesn’t, intimate.

    Sandeep Vij | May 3, 2013 | Reply

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