Drupal 8 and hosting requirements

Drupal 8

I'm writing a little bit today about some of the concerns that folks are having about Drupal 8, the new hosting requirements it imposes, and particularly the concerns that smaller organizations will not be able to find Drupal 8 compatible hosting plans. There is a lot going on with us and with other hosting companies at the moment to support Drupal 8 and other PHP software that has more modern requirements. We don't think this will be an issue with most reliable hosting companies by the time Drupal 8 ships.

First of all, as they stand, the requirements are really not that onerous.  There was an announcement today that the new minimum required PHP version is 5.5.9. This is really not such a bad requirement, though I'll admit that not all hosting companies have PHP 5.5 available.  Our newer server builds all include an option for 5.5.21 - and in fact we're planning on shortly making that the DEFAULT PHP version for new hosting plans - people who need a lower PHP version will need to explicitly set it.  We are currently supporting 5.5 and 5.4 on all of our servers, and if you require 5.3 we can assign you to one of our legacy servers that still supports that. I am sure that as time goes on, more hosting companies will be supporting newer versions of PHP to support newer CMS systems. 

I tihink the primary concern here will be that Drupal 8 so far appears to have a bigger memory foot print than 7, and that may well cause some issues since most lower-cost hosting systems may not allow PHP instances large enough to support Drupal 8 once it has more than a few modules enabled. Though some work is currently going on to lower the memory footprint of Drupal 8, it looks pretty likely to be bigger than 7 (which is not surprising considering how many new goodies it includes).

We have been doing testing of Drupal 8 on our shared server plans, and so far have not had any real issues. It's our intention to have a supported Drupal 8 hosting plan by the time Drupal 8 ships.  This plan will have extended memory allowances, will have PHP 5.5.21, as well as the other features we already support such as memcache, opcode caching (well, that's a no-brainer since it's included in PHP 5.5) and on the Drupal 8 plans, access to a MariaDB server with InnoDB as the default database engine, and free Cloudflare support.  All of this at an affordable price (though slightly higher than our current shared hosting plans).  Help is on the way as we re-structure some of our hosting plans to support some of the newer features that our clients will require.

Hosting Plans

VPS - 4 gig

This is a larger VPS system suitable for a CMS-based site that handles more traffic or needs more capability. You get your own VPS with 4 Gbyte of dedicated memory, root access, and 60 Gbytes of storage.  Beyond those limits it's yours to do anything you want. Free optimized Cloudflare available.

VPS - 2 gig

This is a larger VPS system suitable for a CMS-based site that does not have big requirements. You get your own VPS with 2 Gbyte of dedicated memory, root access, and 40 Gbytes of storage.  Beyond those limits it's yours to do anything you want. Free Optimized Cloudflare available.

VPS - 1 gig

This is a small VPS system suitable for a CMS-based site that does not have big requirements. You get your own VPS with 1 Gbyte of dedicated memory, root access, and 16 Gbytes of storage.  Beyond those limits it's yours to do anything you want. Free Optimized Cloudflare available.

The Half-Acre

The Half-Acre hosting plan is unusual. It's a hosting plan that is shared, but can be used happily for reasonable-sized Drupal sites, and will perform well. Our PHP memory allocation is fairly generous (and can be configured by you in the control panel). This hosting plan will give you a great start for developing a Drupal or larger Wordpress site. As with all of our plans, this includes many Drupal tools, including git, composer, and more. You can run your site under PHP 5.3, 5.5 or (soon) 6.0  and set that easily in the control panel.

The Garden Plot

The Garden Plot is our smallest hosting plan.  It's a great choice if you have a low-volume CMS-based site (Drupal, Wordpress, or Joomla) or a static web site. You may not want the Garden Plot if you are going to have heavy traffic, will be needing large amounts of memory for PHP, or need to be able to configure things heavily. With this package you cannot change your php.ini file, and it is the only one of our packages that has a cap on bandwidth per month. But it's a great starting point.

The 8 Special!

This is our latest plan. It's a special Drupal 8 oriented shared hosting plan. We guarantee that a Drupal 8 site will run successfully on this plan (assuming it does not have unusually big demands or very heavy traffic.) Free Optimized Cloudflare available.