I had been planning to get a US-hosted server for quite a while, but was hesitant because of the initial and monthly investment required and the level of support I would get. The budget hosting services I’ve tried before had quite a pathetic level of service and the servers were often offline for hours or even days. I had evaluated a number of hosting companies, but couldn’t decide on one. Yesterday, I finally went ahead with Jim’s recommendation and signed up with Cari.net. My concern about support soon vanished when I got a verification call from one of their reps who was very helpful and got the server running within a few hours.
I now have a much faster and newer server at my disposal. The default OS is Fedora Linux (almost impossible to find affordable hosting with Slackware support) and I was planning to attempt a remote Slackware install (by copying the filesystem to a new partition and overwriting Fedora), but in the end, decided that it was too risky. It is a 64-bit server and in case I lose access to it during the shift, I would have to shell out more money to get Fedora back. Might as well get Fedora to play nice.
I’m still in the process of configuring it and will start shifting to it sometime next week. There will be as many updates and tweaks as I can manage and my sites, including this one, will be less susceptible to downtimes. They should also open faster for readers and users outside Pakistan.