Most Reliable Hosting Company Sites in April 2009

Rank Company site OS Outage
DNS Connect First
1 DataPipe FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.015  0.656 0.007 0.015 0.015
2 New York Internet FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.015  1.418 0.030 0.062 0.157
3 Virtual Internet Windows Server 2003  0:00:00  0.015  1.827 0.077 0.161 0.388
4 Hosting 4 Less Linux  0:00:00  0.015  0.165 0.097 0.198 0.396
5 INetU unknown  0:00:00  0.020  0.289 0.057 0.121 0.237
6 Pair Networks FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.025  0.137 0.045 0.094 0.227
7 Linux  0:00:00  0.025  0.237 0.064 0.129 0.130
8 ZeroLag Communications Linux  0:00:00  0.025  0.113 0.074 0.151 0.152
9 Rackspace Linux  0:00:00  0.030  1.690 0.051 0.105 0.106
10 Windows Server 2003  0:00:00  0.030  0.430 0.066 0.132 0.277

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DataPipe, New York Internet, Virtual Internet and Hosting 4 Less had the most reliable hosting company sites in April 2009.

Jersey City based DataPipe's commitments to customer service were recognised in this year's Stevie Awards, where the company was listed as a finalist in the Customer Service Department of the Year - IT & Telecommunications category. The company has more than 1,500 customers in six data centres and eight business office locations in the United States, the United Kingdom and China.

New York Internet was established in 1996 and is located in the heart of the Wall Street area. The company's core services include dedicated servers, colocation and virtual web hosting - all backed with a 99.999% uptime guarantee.

Virtual Internet (VI) offers a comprehensive range of hosting solutions, including managed hosting and dedicated servers running Windows or Linux. VI also offers domain registration services - in October 2000, it was the first UK public company to become an official ICANN accredited registrar. VI's own website is served by Microsoft IIS 6.0 on Windows Server 2003.

April saw Hosting 4 Less make its second consecutive appearance as one of the most reliable hosting company sites. The California based company runs its own site on Linux, offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee and also runs, which offers an online solution for remote backups.

Among April's top ten hosting company sites, four companies run their sites on Linux. Three companies run their sites on FreeBSD (including DataPipe and New York Internet), while the remaining two identifiable operating systems are Windows Server 2003.

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April 2009 Web Server Survey

In the April 2009 survey we received responses from 231,510,169 sites. This represents an increase of over 6 million sites when compared with last month, with Google and nginx accounting for almost all of the changes. Apache remains in the lead, as it has since 1996, with a total of over 106 million sites, followed by Microsoft-IIS with over 67 million and QQ with almost 29 million.

Some interesting language specific servers which can be seen in this month's survey include the Ruby application server Mongrel, with just over 41 thousand sites, and the python based Zope with almost 46 thousand. The Pike and C based Caudium has almost 14 thousand sites, the Erlang based Yaws has about 70, and a newcomer, Salvia, which is a lightweight web server framework written in Haskell, has one.

Following on from last month's mention of fake server headers, where we saw the venerable ZX_Spectrum/1997 (Sinclair_BASIC), this month we have hi, appearing as the server banner for twitter, which is currently the 432nd most popular site amongst our toolbar community.

Total Sites Across All Domains, August 1995 - April 2009

Graph of market share for top servers across all domains, August 1995 - April 2009

DeveloperMarch 2009PercentApril 2009PercentChange

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Most Reliable Hosting Company Sites in March 2009

Rank Company site OS Outage
DNS Connect First
1 FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.010  0.205 0.015 0.039 0.055
2 Swishmail FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.010  0.606 0.016 0.032 0.086
3 Linux  0:00:00  0.010  0.502 0.063 0.286 0.545
4 Hosting 4 Less Linux  0:00:00  0.010  0.218 0.131 0.267 0.531
5 Windows Server 2003  0:00:00  0.014  1.291 0.048 0.099 0.203
6 New York Internet FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.019  0.395 0.030 0.063 0.136
7 F5 Big-IP  0:00:00  0.019  1.403 0.049 0.168 0.316
8 Linux  0:00:00  0.019  0.569 0.053 0.234 0.408
9 Pair Networks FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.019  0.508 0.059 0.122 0.304
10 INetU unknown  0:00:00  0.019  1.226 0.074 0.156 0.245

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Acens, Hosting 4 Less, and Swishmail had the most reliable hosting company sites in March 2009, with each site failing to respond to only two of the requests made by Netcraft's performance collectors.

Swishmail has consistently been in the top ten since they first entered in August 2008, but this is their first appearance as number one. Based in New York, Swishmail specialise in email hosting, and offer a variety of email and web hosting solutions. The company's main website is served by nginx, running on FreeBSD.

This is the third time in the last six months that the aptly named has been in the top ten, having come in seventh last month, fifth in January and fourth in October 2008. Located in Newark, New Jersey, ReliableServers offer services such as VPS hosting and colocation. Their front page is served by Apache on FreeBSD.

Hosting 4 Less has been in the top ten three times in the last six months, after taking tenth place in January, third in December 2008 and sixth in October 2008. Hosting 4 Less is based in California, and offer a variety of hosting services, including online backup. Their front page is served by Apache on Linux.

Acens is based in Spain and is one of three European companies in this month's top-ten. They offer a wide range of services, from web hosting to colocation and networking. This is the second time that Acens has been ranked first, the last being August 2007, which saw Acens in joint first position with INetU and New York Internet. Acens were also in the top ten last month.

Coming in a close second, with only three failed responses is Netcetera, a British company based on the Isle of Man. Netcetera offer co-location, hosting and a range of other services. Netcetera have the only site in this month's top ten which is served by IIS on Windows Server 2003.

New York Internet, which was last month's most reliable hosting site, appears sixth this month.

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Deluge of Browser Security Issues Drives Mass Migration

Netcraft has observed a surge in popularity of the Lynx browser, particularly since the recent Pwn2Own competition, which was held at the CanSecWest conference in Vancouver last month. During the course of the competition, security researchers once again exposed fresh vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari.

Financial institutions have noted that the Lynx browser is particularly suitable for online banking, as it supports the latest cryptographic ciphers used in ecommerce, and is immune to attacks via JavaScript, Flash and other multimedia content. Lynx's algorithms for dealing with such threats are so comprehensive, it is just as safe as if the multimedia content was not there.

User Agent share at FNB Oki Koki

April Erste, Public Relations Manager at the First National Bank of Oki Koki, told Netcraft that users are migrating to Lynx because of its speed and advanced security features. She added: "Lynx has not once suffered a buffer overflow in its image processing, and indeed has suffered no security vulnerabilities at all in the last 2 years." By comparison, the most recent Firefox security update was only 4 days ago.

The bank also notes that Telnet remains popular with a small group of its customers. Although it lacks the sophisticated user interface of Lynx, many security experts argue that Telnet is significantly more secure and has the largest installed base of any browser.

Erste said that while the bank is dedicated to providing an accessible online banking experience, some customers still report difficulties when trying to make HTTPS requests through Telnet without the aid of an extended keyboard layout.

Telnet online banking
A customer navigates the bank's online portal using Telnet

One factor that has held back wider adoption of Lynx is its lack of protection against phishing. As with other web browsers, it can be difficult to tell a genuine bank website from a well-constructed lookalike. To bolster Lynx's growing footprint in the browser market, Netcraft has released the Netcraft Toolbar for Lynx. This free add-on blends in at the top of every web page, and not only protects Lynx users against phishing attacks, but the beautiful text-based rendition of the Netcraft logo is sure to brighten anyone's day.

Netcraft Toolbar for Lynx

March 2009 Web Server Survey

In the March 2009 survey, we received responses from 224,749,695 sites. This has brought the total up by more than 9 million sites, with QQ and Microsoft making the most significant contributions. Apache remains in the lead with a total of 104 million sites, while Microsoft-IIS's gain of 3.3 million sites (mostly consisting of new Windows Live blogs) brings its total up to 66 million.

After storming into the survey last month, this month sees QQ gain a further 8.9 million sites. QQ now hosts nearly 29 million Qzone sites under the domain, all of which are served by its own QZHTTP server. Little is known about this server, although people have noticed a similarity that suggests QZHTTP may be a customised version of thttpd.

Although it is generally uncommon for websites to use fake Server headers, there are some cases that stand out more than others. One relatively prevalent example is ZX_Spectrum/1997 (Sinclair_BASIC), which is used by a Russian company to serve 0.02% of the world's websites. The ZX Spectrum was an 8-bit personal home computer released in 1982, but it was discontinued two years before the World Wide Web even existed.

Which servers do the busiest sites use?

With almost a quarter of a billion websites found by this months survey, it is timely to show which web servers run the busiest sites on the web.

Using traffic data compiled by aggregating visits from the Netcraft Toolbar community, we have determined the web servers used by the million busiest websites on the Internet. Examining a fixed number of high traffic sites produces a less volatile view which is uninfluenced by parked domains or the majority of personal sites, shared hosting accounts and blogs.

The clear leader amongst web servers used by the million busiest websites is Apache with a 66% share. It has a 47% lead over its closest competitor, Microsoft-IIS, much greater than on the web as a whole.

Server Share amongst the Million Busiest Sites, March 2009


Total Sites Across All Domains August 1995 - March 2009

Total Sites Across All Domains, August 1995 - March 2009

Graph of market share for top servers across all domains, August 1995 - March 2009

Top Developers
DeveloperFebruary 2009PercentMarch 2009PercentChange

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New York Internet was the Most Reliable Hosting Company Site in February 2009

Rank Company site OS Outage
DNS Connect First
1 New York Internet FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.005  0.011 0.057 0.117 0.255
2 Linux  0:00:00  0.011  0.054 0.037 0.080 0.157
3 Server Intellect Windows Server 2003  0:00:00  0.011  0.008 0.068 0.140 0.396
4 WebFusion Linux  0:00:00  0.011  0.005 0.071 0.153 0.373
5 Pair Networks FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.011  0.009 0.074 0.151 0.373
6 Swishmail FreeBSD  0:00:00  0.016  0.010 0.050 0.102 0.220
7 unknown  0:00:00  0.016  0.009 0.060 0.120 0.172
8 INetU unknown  0:00:00  0.016  0.010 0.074 0.157 0.295
9 Softlayer Technologies Inc unknown  0:00:00  0.016  0.023 0.079 0.162 0.492
10 Linux  0:00:00  0.016  0.081 0.082 0.287 0.591

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New York Internet was the most reliable hosting company site during February 2009, failing to respond to only one of the requests made by Netcraft's performance collectors throughout the month.

New York Internet was closely followed by UK2, Server Intellect, WebFusion and Pair Networks; each of which failed to respond to two requests in February.

This month's victory marks a hat trick for New York Internet, which also came joint first in the previous two months: January and December.

Established in 1996, New York Internet is located in the heart of the Wall Street area and owns and maintains its own data centers. The company's core services include dedicated servers, colocation and virtual web hosting. The company's main website is served by Apache running on FreeBSD.

FreeBSD is used by three of February's most reliable hosting company sites, with another three using Linux and one using Windows Server 2003.

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