Surf7 is a website solutions provider in Malaysia offering a range of services from website hosting, email solutions, web development services, domain name registration and broadband services. Surf7 is established in 2002 and runs from AIMS data center in Malaysia. Before we take a look at how it stands against the other players in the market, let’s look at the features of its web hosting plans.
Surf7 has 2 web hosting plans – Developer and Premium.
Developer Hosting Plan
The Developer plan is targeted at webmasters who need to host a number of low resources consumption websites. With that, this plan comes with a small disk space of 2GB but a higher number of park domains (100), add-on domains (10) and MYSQL databases (50). The downside is that the server for this plan is only in Malaysia.
Premium Hosting Plan
On the other hand, the Premium plan is ideal for corporate users who seek stability and uptime for their online business. This plan gives you a larger disk space at 20GB but lacks in size for the other main features.
Surf7 has some good features which I like, namely:
- Site management tools
cPanel control panel, FrontPage access, anonymous FTP and Dreamweaver access
- Advanced Features
Crontab, Apache Handler, HotLink protection, Image Magik, Manage OpenPGP keys and Custom MIME type
- Free preinstalled scripts
PHPBB forum, OSCommerce, Invision Board, PHPNuke, PhpMyChat and Entropy banner
- Multimedia support
Realplayer/Quicktime, Flash/Shockwave and Windows Media
Surf7 also throws in bonuses for both hosting plans:
- Free listing in businessworld.com.my, a business directory website powered by Surf7
- RM200 NBePay payment gateway rebate on signup and 10% on renewals, as a result of partnership between Surf7
- A large number of web templates (200)
With both plans priced the same at RM250 annually (about US$81.94), the selection of the plan pretty much depends on our requirements and location. I’d say that Surf7 doesn’t really give you many choices of plans but the extra features they have could make up for it.
Comparison with ServerFreak Web Hosting
Then, we have ServerFreak and their 5 plans – Prime, Supreme, Deluxe, Platinum and Gold. By comparing similar storage sizes, ServerFreak’s prices are higher than Surf7’s. Take, for example, the Elite plan that gives on 10GB but charges RM300 per year. That’s half the storage of the Premium plan, yet 20% more expensive. Furthermore, ServerFreak doesn’t offer as much as Surf7 features-wise. Offerings are pretty standard fare; only 50 preinstalled scripts; CGI, SSI, PHP 5, Perl and Python programming tools and Flash/Shockwave support.
ServerFreak vs Surf7: Surf7 wins.
Comparison with Exabytes Web Hosting
Exabytes‘ offerings put them in the same league as Surf7. Exabytes has 3 plans – Ebiz Plus, EBiz Gold and EBiz Gold Unlimited, all for small and medium size business websites.
Ebiz Plus gives you 10GB of disk space for RM193.68 per annum, EBiz Gold gives you 300GB for RM287.28 and EBiz Gold Unlimited gives you unlimited disk space, data transfers, email accounts, subdomains and databases for RM291.85 in a current promotion. With this promotion, the prices are very competitive and you get much more with the EBiz Gold Unlimited plan for just RM50 more than Surf7’s plans where there is a cap on their features.
Exabytes vs Surf7: Exabytes wins.
Comparison with Bluehost Web Hosting
Now looking at BlueHost, their sole plan competes very closely with Surf7 in terms of pricing, but BlueHost wins hands down in terms of the unlimited features that their clients get. Offerings are almost similar to Exabytes’ where clients get the regular features. However, domain name is given for free for the first year, on top of True Resource Management that provides protection for the websites against abusive users.
The verdict is: BlueHost wins against Surf7.
Is Surf7 a Good Web Hosting Provider?
If your requirements aren’t high and you can make do with the basic and regular features that most plans offer, you can go with BlueHost or Exabytes. But if you need something out of the ordinary, for instance if you are a web developer, then Surf7 Developer plan is a good choice for your web hosting needs.