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A2 Hosting VPS Review

By Sunny Golovine

Updated October 1, 2020

A2 Hosting is one of the most trusted names in hosting, and its no secret why. Unlike other providers that try to fool you with clever pricing or blasting their features page with pointless features; A2 Hosting, on the other hand, gets straight to the point and invests their time in giving you a solid product than flashy marketing.

A2 Hosting has 3 main types of hosting: Unmanned VPS, Managed VPS and Core VPS. In this review I will be covering all three, give you the pricing and features for each and tell you where the best deals are and my personal recommendations.

Unmanaged VPS Hosting

unmanaged-vps-hosting

The most affordable way to get started with a VPS at A2 Hosting is to get and Unmanaged VPS. With an Unmanaged VPS A2 Hosting will set it up for you and give it to you with no support. WHile you do not have support, you are also paying considerably less than you would with Managed VPS hosting. Managed VPS starts at $25/month while an unmanaged VPS can be had of as little as $5/month

While A2 hosting advertises 3 tiers of hosting here: Entry, Mid and Elite. There's more too it than just that. In fact you can completely customize your VPS with the exact specs. Below is a breakdown of everything you can customize and how much it costs.

Disk Space: Starts at 20GB, you can add an extra 10GB for $1 ouper month. You can add up to 250GB of storage to your VPS

CPU Cores: Starts at 1 CPU core, you can add an additional core for $1 per month. You can add up to 12 CPU cores. Note here you can only add an even number of CPU Cores.

Memory (RAM): Starts at 512MB of RAM, you can add an additional 1GB of RAM for $8 per month. You can add up to 32GB of RAM.

Bandwidth: Starting with 2TB of Bandwidth. You can add an additional Terabyte of Bandwidth for $20 per month. You can have up to 9TB of Bandwidth.

Operating System: You can choose between CentOS, Debian, Fedora, Slackware and Ubuntu. There are numerous version of each OS. Note that if you want cPanel pre-installed you must use CentOS and to use ISPConfig out of the box you must use Debian. This options does not cost anything with the exception of CentOS as it will require a license to cPanel.

cPanel License: Like I mentioned previously, if you want to have cPanel added to your VPS you need to purchase License to it. You can get cPanel Admin Cloud for 5 users for an extra $11.99 per month. You can also get cPanel with Softaculous for $14.99 per month. Lastly if you want cPanel added to your VPS you must get a VPS with at least 1GB of RAM.

Turbo Boost: Turbo Boost for VPS gives you a license to Litespeed Cache. For an extra $22/month you can add Litespeed Cache to your VPS. For $30 per month you can add Litespeed Cache with LSCache and LiteMage. All of these are product from Litespeed Tech.

Webuzo Control Panel: If you want to use Webuzo with your VPS you can add it free of charge.

Server Location: Depending on where you or your customers are located, you can choose a server location in Michigan, Arizona, Europe (Amsterdam) or Asia (Singapore).

unmanaged-vps-hosting-features

Overall I love that A2 hosting lets you fully customize your VPS as you only get exactly what you need. Most competing plans give you lots of plans but do not let you fully customize it or have limited customizability. Being able to fully customize a VPS will save you money in teh long run.

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Managed VPS Hosting

managed-vps-hosting

While an unmanaged VPS is great for developers or individuals that need a VPS; however, when it comes to businesses, price isn't so much of a concern as ensuring that the VPS is functioning properly at all times. If you need a VPS and also need to ensure that is is reliable and always working then consider Managed VPS hosting.

Managed VPS hosting is much like unmanaged VPS hosting with one key difference: support. This support means that if something happens you can always call them up and they will help you fix the issue. It also means that some of the lower level tasks like making sure that you server is up to date and has all the latest security patches is all taken care of by A2 hosting, letting you focus on building your website.

While unmanaged VPS hosting will let you fully customize your VPS, with managed VPS hosting you get 3 tiers of hosting instead: Power+, Prestige+ and Pinnacle+.

Managed VPS Hosting price

1 Month3 Months6 Months12 Months24 Months
Power+$60.99/mo$59.99/mo$54.99/mo$53.99/mo$49.99/mo
Prestige+$90.99/mo$89.99/mo$79.99/mo$78.99/mo$69.99/mo
Pinnacle+$115.99/mo$114.99/mo$104.99/mo$103.99/mo$99.99/mo

These prices don't quite line up with the advertised prices. When I looked into it, it turns out that at checkout you get an automatic coupon (MVPS-50) which will knock 50% off of your order.

With the coupon in mind, the most cost effective way to get into VPS hosting here is to get the longest plan. For example if you get the Pinnacle+ plan for 24 months, your total price will be $2399 but after the coupon the price goes down to just $1199, a savings of over one thousand dollars.

Extras

When you check out you also have a few addons you can add to your purchase:

cPanel: You get cPanel license good for 5 users included with your purchase. You can bump that to 30, 50 or 100 user for $5.00, $12.00 and $18.00 respectively.

EssentialSSL: You get a free SSL certificate when you sign up but if you can also get a paid SSL certificate from EssentialSSL for $71.95

Additional IP Addresses: While you get 2 dedicated IP addresses with every VPS plan, You can give your VPS additional dedicated IP addresses for around $5 per additional address. The price per address goes down the more you get.

Litespeed Cache (Turbo Boost): If you want LiteSpeed cache or LiteSpeed Cache with LSCache and LiteMage you can get that added for $22/month and $30/month respectively

Cloudflare WAF (Web App Firewall): You can also bundle Cloudflare WAF with your VPS purchase, this runs $16 monthly.

Softaculous: The VPS comes with Softaculous basic, you can upgrade to Softaculous premium for $3/month. Softaculous premium lets you install tons of different applications on your VPS in one click.

Managed VPS Hosting features

Managed VPS hosting at A2 hosting isn't cheap but it's worth it for the features you get in return. For starters like I mentioned previously, the biggest draw of Managed VPS hosting is the support you get versus unmanaged VPS hosting.

Other things you get only with Managed VPS hosting includes perpetual security where A2 hosting will always make sure your VPS is the most secure it can be and fully up to date, a 99.9% uptime guarantee and DDoS protection.

As far as server specs, below is a table of the most important specs for every tier

Power+Prestige+Pinnacle+
Memory (RAM)4GB6GB8GB
Storage (RAID-10 SSD)75GB100GB150GB
CPU Cores468
Bandwidth2TB3TB4TB

Besides that every VPS comes with 2 dedicated IP addresses. Cloudflare CDN and the ability to host unlimited sites with unlimited subdomains.

However there is one key feature that is missing from Managed VPS hosting and that is root access. Root access can be very important as it will let you do things that cPanel of Softaculous doesn't support. Managed VPS hosting does not offer root access however they do offer Core VPS hosting.

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Core VPS Hosting

I won't talk too much about this tier as it is identical to Managed VPS hosting and features. So what's the difference? As I previously eluded to, the key difference between Managed VPS hosting and Core VPS hosting is Root Access.

You still get all the benefits of Managed VPS hosting like support, the same servers and the same price, just with Core VPS hosting you can go into the server yourself and use root to make changes.

As far as which your should get I cannot recommend one or the other as they are identical with the exception of root access. I would suggest going with Core VPS hosting, even if you never end up having to use root access. It's nice to have the peace of mind that you can.

My recommendations

My recommendations here are pretty simple. If you are using a VPS for personal reason, get unmanaged VPS hosting and save yourself a ton of money. However if you are a business I would suggest the exact opposite. While you will be paying more for managed VPS hosting, the extra money you pay will often pale in comparison to the cost of lost business if anything goes down.

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