Just had $1,200 monthly bill for excess bandwidth... | FerrariChat

Just had $1,200 monthly bill for excess bandwidth...

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by rob lay, Nov 5, 2003.

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  1. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    Ok, I need to talk with the ISP and network gurus. FerrariChat.com had 379 GB of traffic last month. My old plan only allowed 30 GB of traffic, so everything over they charge $3 something for every GB over.

    Since May they've upgraded the allowed GB to 300, so I was on an old plan. Luckily they're making it retroactive so I don't have to pay the excees. I'm only due what's over 300 GB and a plan switch fee.

    Here's my questions...

    1) What are most ISP's charging for bandwidth these days? My current host is part of plan up to 300 GB, then $3.53 for each additional GB. Is that reasonable?

    2) What alternatives do I have? If I got my own T1 installed to my server, could I then bypass the ISP's bandwidth fees?

    I'm really looking for advice on costs and also making sure performance is improved.

  2. lesterm

    lesterm Formula Junior

    Nov 3, 2003
    Durham, NC
    Well, I had some websites that I needed to host myself due to various reasons. The first option I explored was getting an SDSL line installed. The line was basically the speed of a T1 (1.5Mbps up/down), and I was allowed 50(ish?) IP's. This was good in theory; however, the reliability was horrendous. The only upside was that it was only $500 a month. After that, I decided to get a T1 line installed, but I think I went a little overboard with that. I contacted UUNet and had them install the line. This was $1,700 a month for a full tier 1 T1. The reliability was awesome (duh) and they gave me a free Cisco router. I am sure you can get T1 lines for around $900 a month from your local ISP.

    The next option would be to find where the bulk of your bandwidth is coming from and try and reduce it. I am assuming that images take up a lot, so if you can find a way to distribute that, maybe you could eliminate the high ISP fees. Just a thought...
  3. Sean F.

    Sean F. F1 Rookie

    Feb 4, 2003
    Full Name:
    Sean F
    Get rid of Image hosting.

    Instead of user's posting a picture on your server, have them post it somewhere else and link it, but so that it will still show the image. Some other free message boards I post on work that way using a [​IMG] to target the image.

    Of course, then the user's would have to find another site to host their images and that is a big part of this board from what I've seen.
  4. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
    MA USA
    Full Name:
    Mr. Doody
    i've provisioned a few T1s in my day and done a bunch of online operation cost modelling for online games (previously life).

    first, you do NOT want to get your own pipe into your house or office. you want this hosted somewhere with a TON of redundancy (network, power, etc. etc.). don't even think of it - especially if you plan to start charging money for the service. downtime would be a big black eye.

    second, do some checking online. everybody pretty much publishes their prices. if you need to run your own h/w you're geographically toast. if you can run on anybody's h/w you can and should locate wherever (nationally) the routing is good and bandwidth is cheap. we used to need h/w access for security reasons (we rented a whole rack) so we were limited to 3-4 facilities in the boston area. pay particular attention to the folks tied into any of the central internet hubs.

    third, the bandwidth and hosting business is in the ****ing toilet. choke choke. gasp. choke. cough. gasp. help! nastiness. i'd rather be selling my rectum on 42nd street for $20 a pop than selling bandwidth and hosting today :). it's yucko. it's that bad. negotiate like a mofo, dude. make their ears bleed. they'll *****, moan, complain, ***** some more, and eventually cave. then they'll have a party that night 'cuz they closed a new customer for the first time in 75 years.

    fourth, stop paying on data transfer. if you think about it, that's a BULL**** number if the provider is a real provider. they own a tunnel to the internet. they own the whole tunnel, lock stock and barrel. let's say it's 100 cars wide. that's a fixed cost to them. if there are only 50 cars going through at a given time, they're totally cool. they can meet their guarantees and speeds and all that good stuff. the only time things get messy is when there are 80 cars going through or 90 or 120 want to get through at once. then they're in a messier state that warrants charging you more money to get through the tunnel. we used to pay on throughput, not data transferred. so we'd buy, say 20Mb/s for $x per month. some moments in time we'd be using 1Mb/s. some moments 18Mb/s. and some moments we'd use 30Mb/s or 50Mb/s. they'd track that usage at some level (second? minute? dunno) and then take a number at some high percentile of the usage data samples (eg: if at the 95th percentile (ie: 5% of the (highest) usage time) we were using 23Mb/s they'd charge us for the extra 3Mb/s usage). it's not reasonable to charge at the 100th percentile 'cuz if some bozo on a T3 goes after some huge content it'll spike it to some crazy Mb/s and higher. so then you negotiate the percentile down from 95 or 98 or whatever to 90 or 80 or whatever you can get away with (and you can get away with a lot).

    even if they don't own the whole tunnel (some ISPs do not - they're paying bandwidth to their upstream provider), most hosting providers own SO much more tunnel than they can sell right now that they effectively own the whole tunnel. so don't buy that argument.

    we renegotiated our hosting every 9-12 months and were ALWAYS able to get substantial savings and service upgrades each time even during the height of the bubble - never mind afterwards. these bozos were buying bandwidth so fast they shot themselves in the forehead with grenade launchers. the surviving companies still own insane bandwidth that's sitting fallow.

    my few drachmas.

  5. Matt LaMotte

    Matt LaMotte Formula 3

    Oct 30, 2002
    Your the man!
  6. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ

    Aug 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Carbon McCoy
    Boy am i glad my name didn't come up in this thread...
  7. tjacoby

    tjacoby F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
    Vancouver Canada
    Full Name:
    If you can survive with your servers at a colocation facility, that's always my vote. It's a whole lot cheaper to move the servers to where the Internet's high speed and redundant than to build it to your site. In Canada we see very competitive environments, and can make a few recommendations/introductions offline for some US options if you're interested. $3USD/gig is high for a high traffic site, but then I'm paying $9CDA/gig for a less than 10 gig/month. (The ISP is an ocassional customer so I don't mind).
  8. Horsefly

    Horsefly F1 Veteran

    May 14, 2002
    DES, your name DID come up in the thread, it's just that Rob installed a DES filter in the OUTGOING line to YOUR ISP so that you will never know when we talk about you!!!
  9. Evolved

    Evolved F1 Veteran

    Nov 5, 2003
    Doody is correct. There is money in the admin time for your soon to be servers. You'll need to buy some decent hardware as well. You'll need a decent APC, T1, Server, Router, a place to put it, electricity($20/ month).

    If you plan on chargeing for ferrarichat it has to be up 100%, not 99 or 98%

    I have my own line and server because I do experimentation on a regular basis with software that'll routinely require a reboot some specialization an ISP will not give me. I use both postgresql and mysq on my servers, for example....

    My advice is ask Doody to call and renegociate your contract with the ISP or if he's really generous he can bundle it in with his business and Rob can just mail him a few hundred bucks a month.
  10. Stickanddice

    Stickanddice Formula 3

    Nov 2, 2002

    We do a lot of hosting but its for our existing clients only so we are never in pressure to have to sell those services. I was thinking about it but not after this post! Hahahaha >>i'd rather be selling my rectum on 42nd street for $20 a pop than selling bandwidth and hosting today<< Hahahaha.

    I agree 100% with the tunnel analogy. Most of these companies try to milk every penny out of you. In short you got really ripped off, but can now leverage that to negotiate MUCH better pricing or they'll be losing a good customer. It pisses me off when I see this done by these companies. It simply discourages folks from using services like this in the first place.

    Best of luck.

  11. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    Ok, I'm trying to figure all of this out, I'll keep everyone updated. Sales hasn't talked to me yet for options, but I might not need them. It appears the new software is more bandwidth efficient.

    Is 1,000 k 1 Mb. or 1 Gb.? It must be Gb, because that's how they're billing me. They're taking my monthly average Incoming plus the Outgoing to arrive at my bandwidth usage.

    Why is the incoming 10 times higher than the outgoing? You think the outgoing would be higher.

    Here's the graph they're using...
  12. Enzo

    Enzo F1 Rookie

    Feb 14, 2002
    Full Name:
    Pat Pasqualini

    1000k is 1 MB and 1000mb is 1gig
  13. SRT Mike

    SRT Mike Two Time F1 World Champ

    Oct 31, 2003
    Full Name:
    Raymond Luxury Yacht

    Rob something is messed up with that graph. Outgoing for you should easily be 10x the incoming, if not much more. As for the K vs MB vs GB, remember that is bits per SECOND. 1,000 BITS is 1k. 1000k is 1MB. 1000MB is 1GB (roughly- so don't you anal types jump on me). But there is a lot of SECONDS in a month... 1,000BPS is 1k/second - if you sustained that 24/7 that would be 2.7GB of transfer per month. That graph is probably average BPS over a 24 hour period or something. I think they are accurate in the transfer, just don't see why outgoing is lower than incoming.

    As for transfer/month, check out these guys:


    I did the same research a few months back and chose these guys. Their $20/mo account has UNLIMITED bandwidth. They may have changed their plans around because I thought I was paying $29/mo but getting a static IP as well - I forget.

    I use them to host large image files so my customers don't hog up our server and also because I can never compete with the massive bandwidth these guys have. They have been very good for us - wouldn't hesitate to recommend them -and they got some PC Magazine editors choice or something or other recently too.
  14. WJHMH

    WJHMH Two Time F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Sep 5, 2001
    Panther City, Texas
    Full Name:
    LOL! Des watch it with all the your photo posting, I think it would be better to provide a link to all f chatter photos.
  15. TestShoot

    TestShoot F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Sep 1, 2003
    Beverly Hills
    1. Remove image hosting, big gains
    2. think about compressing your content with xcache.com or similar, big gains
    3. you should not be charged on transefered data, but on burstable sustained b/w
    4. anti leech images, my testshoot.com allows ferrarichat to hotlink my images but other sites see a no leech file (10k) that saves substantially over views of my images (up to 90k)

  16. MikeZ_NJ

    MikeZ_NJ Formula 3

    Dec 10, 2002
    Southern NJ
    Full Name:
    Mike Z.

    I think this is where they're getting the numbers... those max/avg/cur values are per second. Remember the following - 1000 k = 1 M, 1000 M = 1 G, AND 8bits(b) = 1Byte(B). The graph is only viewing bits, you're charged in bytes.

    Using the averages, you have: 985.035 kb + 76.278 kb = 1061.313 kb = 1.061313 Mb per second of usage on average.

    For the month, that would be:
    1.061313 Mb/sec * 60 sec/min * 60 min/hr * 24 hr/day * 31 day/month(October) =
    2842620.7392 Mb/month =
    355327.5924 MB/month =
    355.3276 GB/month

    That doesn't explain why they charged you for 379 GB though. Also, the incoming and outgoing should be reversed, I would think.

    I forgot that those were approximate conversions (1000k = 1 M, etc). You have to deal with powers of 2 and whatnot to get exact. That should be right on the money.

    Edit 2:
    That doesn't make sense either. 1 GB = 2^20 KB = 1048576 KB. That would give you LESS than 355.3276 GB/mo, not 379.
  17. MikeZ_NJ

    MikeZ_NJ Formula 3

    Dec 10, 2002
    Southern NJ
    Full Name:
    Mike Z.
    One more thing... you say the software's more efficient, but remember that there hasn't been nearly as many images uploaded. Last month, there were some HUGE image/content/bandwidth intensive threads.
  18. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    YES!!! That's dead on. Thank you very much. Now I understand. The reason that's this graph is a little less is because it's showing the previous 30 days, not October like the 379 number.

    I know there aren't quite as many images, but usage appears to be like 25-50% of what it was. There are still users coming on and getting use to the software, but all my other traffic indications (visits, posts) are within 80% of October numbers. Is it possible being 100% database driven is making the bandwidth that much more efficient. I don't know how, but it seems like it.
  19. Artherd

    Artherd F1 Veteran

    Jun 19, 2002
    Bay Area, CA
    Full Name:
    Ben Cannon
    Rob- I have a high-speed server connected to burstable 100mbit (and then gigabit) links in a datacenter I can access 24/7/365 if you're in need of added bandwidth. (we could maybe put the images there.) I get a decent rate on bandwidth that I could pass on to FC.

    I had my servers in a datacenter in my office for ~2+ years (and dev servers long before that.) DON'T DO IT! It's a solution looking for a problem, unless you have the $ to do it RIGHT (raised floor, paid staff to fix it while you go Skiing...)

    It's all about the images when you are talking bandwidth. Text practically rounds to zero, it's that small.

  20. atheyg

    atheyg Guest

    It was the Bikini thread

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