A Warning Against EIG Hosting Brands!
October 7, 2021

A Warning Against EIG Hosting Brands!

This is a short post about my personal experience with HostPapa, an EIG brand.

This is a short post about my personal experience with HostPapa, an EIG brand which acquired my previous host, Lunarpages. Read my post A quick comparison of web hosts as of 10/6/2021 for a list of hosts I recommend.

I used to be with a great hosting company, Lunarpages. 19 years of hardly any issues! Unfortunately they've been acquired by "HostPapa", an Endurance International Group brand. EIG is a notorious conglomerate that gobbles up smaller IPP-s one after the other and then uses dodgy tactics to extort money from their clients (check this link for a list of companies they own). You can read many reports on the net about how your site suddenly becomes "hacked" and you have to pay $$ for your IPP to "clean" the site before you are once again allowed access to your own files. Now I haven't personally experienced this, however after my site was migrated I had serious issues with email and the site itself. Ping would result in 20-30% packet loss, sometimes 100% for hours. My email was inaccessible. After three days of trying to sort it out with their chat support, I started looking around. Good thing I did, because a few months after they hit me with the first rate hike which could be "avoided" by paying 2 years up-front. Which I did...unfortunately. A few months after they sent a letter that one of my mailboxes exceeded its limits and now I'd have to pay $2/mailbox/month extra. Of course I emailed them that my account never before had such a limit, and it's not OK to charge your customer for 2 years of service and then to start to impose arbitrary limits that did not exist before - they didn't care, and refused to even partially refund the 2 years of service they channeled me into paying up-front just a few months before. I've published our emails in this post, so you can judge for yourself whether their tactics are something you'd like to put up with or not.

So this all finally convinced me to look around for a new, non-EIG host. For a list of EIG-owned brands to avoid, check out Full List of EIG Hosting Brands (+ Non-EIG Hosting Recommendation):

A Small Orange – 2012
Arvixe – 2014
Berry Information Systems L.L.C.
Bluehost – 2011
Directi – 2014
Escalate Internet
HostGator – 2012
Hostnine – 2012
HostMonster – 2011
Host with Me Now
Network Solutions
Intuit Websites
iPage – 2009
IX Web Hosting – 2015
JustHost – 2011
Networks Web Hosting
SEO Hosting
SEO Web Hosting
Southeast Web
SuperGreen Hosting
Website Builder
Webstrike Solutions
Webzai – 2014

And here are my emails on the matter with HostPapa, decide for yourself:

On 9/13/2021 3:11 PM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Hello Laszlo,

My  name is Galin Bozhkov from the HostPapa’s Solutions Team.  I’m  contacting you concerning the email storage of your web hosting plan. As  you know, LunarPages was acquired by HostPapa a year ago. All hosting  accounts originally purchased with LunarPages have been migrated to our  HostPapa servers. It now shares the same resources as all of our other  shared plans.

As  a hosting company, it is our main priority to provide a stable and  secure server environment and make sure that the hosting accounts  provided by us are not used for data archiving. To help you with the  transition, we have provided you with a higher storage limit than our  most basic shared hosting plans for the past year. However, because  storing large volumes of email on your account has a negative effect on  your account and the server, it is not feasible for us to continue  providing unlimited storage for your email accounts.

That  being said, our system administrators notified me that one or more of  your email accounts has exceeded that limit allocated to your plan by  using 1GB or more per account. You can learn more about the limits we  have for our shared hosting plans here:

Please  reply to this email with the best way to reach you (email/phone), so we  can find a way to resolve this quickly and find a more suitable  solution for your needs.

I look forward to hearing from you!
Kind Regards,
Galin Bozhkov
Account Manager
HostPapa Inc.

On 9/16/2021 4:45 PM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Hello Laszlo,

It’s Galin Bozhkov again, from the Solutions department at HostPapa. I’ve recently sent you a message regarding your email storage limits for your ex-Lunarpages plan.

Today, I’m reaching out to you again to remind you that your email storage has exceeded its limits.

There are a few quick steps you can take as a way to resolve this:
- Delete older emails, especially ones with large file attachments
- Empty your trash
- Upgrade to an email solution that will allow you to store more emails.

Reducing the size of the inbox will offer you some time, but it’s not a permanent solution, so I encourage you to reach out to me as soon as possible to discuss the different solutions we can offer to accommodate your email needs. If we don’t hear from you, the account may automatically be limited or suspended.  As your Account Manager, it is my duty to ensure your project is running smoothly, therefore I would happily help you avoid any type of suspension or interruption from your service, that is why it is essential for you to reply back.

Please reply to this email and let me know what's the best way to reach you.
I’m here to help, so don’t hesitate to reply back!

Kind Regards...

Sun, 19 Sep 2021 23:15, Laszlo Lieszkovszky wrote:

Hi Galin,

We have received your emails but will need some time to sort this out. Thank you for your patience - we have, after all, been clients of yours for over twenty years.


On 9/20/2021 10:08 AM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Dear Laszlo,

Thank you for your response, can you please let me know how much time you would need as I need to inform our administrators.

Our  System Admin has detected that 1 of your users are above the allowed  limit. The allowed individual (per mail account) mailbox storage size  for your hosting package is 1 GB.

You are able to review the storage used for your email accounts in your cPanel -> Email Accounts.

You  see your mailboxes space as unlimited in cPanel because if it is  otherwise your emails will be automatically suspended once you reach the  limits for your package. To avoid mail service disruption and missed  emails that the setting is left as unlimited.

You  have the option to clean up and delete some emails from the mentioned  mailboxes, but have in mind that they are quite large and doing this may  require many emails to be deleted.

On  the other hand, if you want to fix this issue quickly and without any  complications, I would recommend simply upgrading to a VPS / email  license.

Please review this and let me know how you would like me to help you.
I remain at your disposal and I will await your response.

Kind Regards...

Tue, 21 Sep 2021 19:17, Laszlo Lieszkovszky wrote:

Dear Galin,

We have been a client of Lunarpages since 2001. Since acquiring Lunarpages, HostPapa has increased the monthly price to $10.95 / month, and now you wish to charge us extra for any email that uses over 1 GB of storage space - even though our account is supposedly unlimited, and never was any such limit imposed on us over the past 20 years. You are trying to squeeze your customers for a few extra cents.

We have decided to move away from Lunarpages. We request that you cancel all services provided to us and close our account a.s.a.p.

You billed us on May 5th, 2021 for 2 years of service. You *could have* notified us of the planned price hike then, but did not do so. Hitting us with this extra charge now, after we've settled the bill for 2 years of service, is disingenuous and really a form of extortion and we find this unacceptable.

You billed us $263.76 for 2 years of service on May 5th, for service period May/20/2021 -May/20/2023. As we are requesting the cancellation now, so we've used 4 months (plus one day) of this 24 month period. If you are a reputable company, you will refund us for the remaining 19 months. That would be $208.81.

We've also initiated the cancellation of our service through your account control panel.

     Laszlo Lieszkovszky

On 9/21/2021 7:02 PM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Dear Laszlo,

Thank you very much for getting back to me.

If you don't mind me asking, why have you decided to cancel your hosting service?
Kind Regards...

Tue, 21 Sep 2021 20:40, Laszlo Lieszkovszky wrote:

That question is clearly answered in the previous email that I sent you. If you intended to further increase your rates or to impose arbitrary limits you should have notified us before billing us for two years of service.

     Laszlo Lieszkovszky

On 9/22/2021 10:37 AM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Dear Laszlo,

Thank you very much for getting back to me.

I'm afraid that as each currency loses value over time (due to inflation), so do the prices of different goods and services increase. Regarding your second question, you have always  had this limit.

As this is a shared hosting server, you are benefiting from the lowest price possible by sharing the resources of the server with other users. When we exceed our allocated resources, this naturally leaves less resources for the other users on the server and might cause unwanted issues.

Having said that, I certainly understand your situation and I want this to work for you. If you believe there is a chance you could stay with us, I could speak with our billing department and see if we are able to provide you with a discount on one of the plans, which would be better suited for your storage usage.

Kind Regards...

Wed, 22 Sep 2021 12:23, Laszlo Lieszkovszky wrote:

Dear Galin,
   Increasing the price of hosting for the upcoming billing period is of course understandable. The user has time to prepare and switch hosts if he wishes. But charging for hosting and afterwards imposing some arbitrary extra limits like       "max 1 GB per email account" and then trying to charge for it is not OK. Heck, you could write us in half a year and say "we've had to impose a limit of max 10 outgoing emails per day due to some users using our services to send spam emails, so if you wish to send more than that, please consider upgrading to our premium   email plan for $5/mailbox/month." These are extortionary tactics.      
   What does this have to do with inflation? It's like if you buy a car and pay it all and then when you want to drive it off of the lot the salesman says "oh sorry,       you'll have to pay $2k for us to open the gates, you know, inflation and limited resources."
   Regarding "you've always had this limit" it's possible that HostPapa has had plans with such limits, but we signed up for Lunarpages around 20 years ago, not whatever plan HostPapa is offering now. Lunarpages then upgraded us to their new "unlimited" plan around October, 2008 (I'm attaching our correspondence).  Here's a screenshot of Lunarpages' "Unlimited" hosting offer from 2008. Do you see any mention of a 1GB per-mailbox limit?

Source: https://web.archive.org/web/20081022175506/http://www.lunarpages.com/basic-hosting/
   Even in 2016 they made no mention of a per-mailbox limit: https://web.archive.org/web/20161202104120/https://lunarpages.com/web-hosting/shared-hosting

Not even in their acceptable use policy: https://web.archive.org/web/20161108035739/https://lunarpages.com/legal/acceptable-use-policy/

Regarding "leaving less resources for other users", so you are saying that us having one email account that took up less than 4 GB of resources was actually causing       resource issues on your server.
In any case, we're leaving. The only question is whether you will refund us for the remaining 19 months of service. Of course you are not obliged to do so :-)
     Laszlo Lieszkovszky

On 9/24/2021 7:33 PM, galin.bozhkov@hostpapa.com wrote:

Dear Laszlo,

Thank you for getting back to me.

As  you are on a shared hosting server, you cannot use an unlimited number  of resources. In the screenshot provided before you are correct in  stating that you can have an unlimited number of email accounts, however  LP has always had this limit on the total storage.

Having said  that, if you believe there is a chance you could stay with us, I would  be happy to help you further examine the situation and make it work for  you.

Have a great weekend!

Kind Regards...

On 10/7/2021 12:25 AM, Laszlo Lieszkovszky wrote:

Dear Galin,

I'd like to escalate this ticket to a manager please. We are requesting that you close our account, and that you refund us for the remaining 19 months of service that we paid for. We've explained in depth why we came to this decision.

Quoting from my previous email:

You billed us $263.76 for 2 years of service on May 5th, for service period May/20/2021 -May/20/2023. As we are requesting the cancellation now, so we've used 4 months (plus one day) of this 24 month period. If you are a reputable company, you will refund us for the remaining 19 months. That would be $208.81.

     Laszlo Lieszkovszky

A Warning Against EIG Hosting Brands!
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