When we moved to Floyd County, we divested ourselves of most of our business interests so I could concentrate on photography and have the time so Amy and I could enjoy life.
One of the businesses I kept was a scaled-down web hosting operation from the company I started in 1994. Over the years we built a successful operation hosting business, organization and news web sites for those with computer savvy. We also used our various hosting platforms to develop web sites and other Internet-related products.
I sold off part of the hosting business before we moved to Floyd but kept some servers to continue to host my various sites and sites for friends, associates and longtime clients. I also started offering free or reduced-cost hosting to bloggers and other small business operators, many of who lacked the computer expertise to set up or maintain web sites. I found as time went on that my workload providing support for these sites increased dramatically.
The problem came home to roost last week when we moved our data center out of Northern Virginia and closer to us in Blacksburg. Although most of the 127 sites we host moved without a problem, a handful of sites caused a lot of problems – nearly all of them blogs or small sites that outdated code or extensions that create server problems.
So I decided Sunday to get out of the web hosting business so I can concentrate on things that interest me. The motto of Blue Ridge Creative has always been: Determine What Sucksâ€¦Don’t Do It. Notices went out today that we are closing our web hosting business effective May 31. We will continue to host sites that I own or ones that I develop but will no longer host third party sites or blogs.
There are many web hosting companies out there who specialize in blogs or web sites for novices in web operation and they can do a far better job than we. I made a mistake getting away from my core of hosting only the sites that I own or maintain or co-locating high-end, scalable servers for those who need high-end web sites and have the in-house expertise to manage them.
For months now a number of friends have told me I need to learn how to say “no.” Some of those had web sites on my servers and now face moving because I have started to say “no.”
There’s an old Mongolian proverb about being careful what you wish for. I just determined what sucked and I’m no longer doing it.