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Canaca is based in Toronto, Canada and has the qualities of a good web hosting provider. A lot of Canadian customers check them out much like Hostpapa and Greengeeks. They offer clients various web hosting choices, including shared hosting and VPS hosting. They have their own data centers, hosting equipment and servers. Established in 1998, Canaca provides web hosting services for Linux or Windows users. But, learn exactly what webmasters are saying about their experience with them.
They have a very attractive website and many people give them a try. In fact, people have been testing them out since 1998. However, sporting a F by the BBB doesn’t make them look all that good. In fact, that is just the tip of the iceberg! In this full Canaca review I am going to show you why I don’t recommend you do business with them.
The price is $9.95 per month, with significant discounts for multi-month contracts. Meaning that if you buy the shared plan on a monthly term it’s actually $19.95 per month. This is probably one of the highest shared plans I have seen. In fact, you could get a reseller account with InMotion and have 6 dollars to spare each month! Bare in mind, you can also buy shared hosting on a 3 month term for $16.95 and a six month term for $13.95/month. This is different from most web hosts, which usually offer between 3 and 5 different shared hosting plans. But, my question to Canaca is why are they so insanely high?
Shared hosting with Canaca includes 300GB of storage, 100GB of transfer, and a static IP. You can resell web hosting with this company, and have unlimited email accounts and unlimited auto-responders and mail forwarders. I should also note that the shared plan with Canaca comes with a 30 day money back guarantee. This is a much better guarantee than SingleHop and ServerPronto.
VPS & Dedicated Plans
Canaca provides VPS services through KVM servers that are free with its hosting services. These provide a combination of VPS services and dedicated services, with a limit of 3 to 4 customers per server. In this way, Canaca can allocate space necessary for each user. They also take care of avoiding overselling each of their servers, preserving excellent service for each of their clients. You have full root access to each one of your servers.
KVM Server 1
The setup fee for the KVM Server 1 package is $5 for a single core server that services a maximum of 3 clients with 450 GB of hard drive space. Each customer also gets 8 GB of SSD and is guaranteed 1 GB of memory. You also get free static IPs. This package is free for 3 months after you pay the setup fee of $5.
KVM Server 2
The KVM Server 2 package comes with free setup, and access to a dual core server. There is a maximum of 2 clients per server, and each gets 700GB of hard drive space. This package also has the 8GB of SSD, and 1GB of memory. The price on this package is $69.95, with significant discounts for multi-month contracts.
KVM Server 3
The third package is KVM Server 3, which gives you a fully dedicated server with up to 4 cores. Customers also get 1.5TB of hard drive space, along with the 8GB of SSD. In addition, the customer’s memory is upgraded to 2 GB. There is no setup fee for this service, and the price is $99.95, with significant discounts for multi-month contracts.
You can purchase domain names with Canaca. When buying a domain name there are number of things you want to consider, and at a glance they are pretty cheap with Canaca. In order to purchase a domain name it’s going to cost you $9.95/year. This is actually cheaper than some other web hosting companies that will charge you $14.99 a year to register a domain name with them. However, one thing I really don’t like is in order to renew your domain name with Canaca you’re going to have to pay $20/year. This makes up for the cheap introductory rate you get when you sign up with them. To transfer domain names they are not free with Canaca though. It does cost you $9.95.
Canaca uses cPanel, and supports the Linux and Windows OS. You can use Webmin, ispCP, or RDP for free with their service. However, it is going to cost you $200 per year for a licensing fee. This is outrageous and I can’t understand why you have to pay so much for a licensing fee. So if you think your going to get a dedicated server with cPanel for cheap think again, because it will actually be higher than a lot of competing companies. Both Hostgator and Siteground give you cPanel for free with their dedicated plans.
Now that we have got all the features out of the way, lets dive deep into uptime, performance, and customer support.
Canaca Performance & Uptime
Contrary to what they should be able to offer, it takes Canaca a long time to resolve downtime errors which unfortunately happen often. Instead of a 99.5% uptime, I think it s something like 90%. In a number of cases, webmasters are reporting that their sites are down for days without any resolution from Canaca. Think of how frustrating it would be to host with Canaca, develop a site for a client and then have to wait a couple days just to get your site back up.
Canaca does have performance, or shall I say security issues. It’s very common for sites to get hacked time and time again. Lots of webmasters have reported this. There is one thing you can usually count on from time to time with their service. Your servers are going to have issues. But, that isn’t the worst part; when your site is hacked it’s very common to play the waiting game, as my customer service part of this review will clearly show.
I did test their servers with isitdownrightnow.com. This is a site that measures the downtime. However, I use it for checking the response rate of their services. Fast servers would respond in under 20 ms. Average servers would respond in 21-50 ms. Slow servers respond in 51 ms or more. It was no surprise to me that Canaca actually has servers that are on the slow end. Their server response time was 78.69 ms.
What is funny is someone actually bought Canacasucks.com (which Canaca actually bought out and 301’ed to their own site). This is something I have seen GoDaddy do a number of times over the years.
Canaca Customer Service
Canaca customer service is very poor! Their customers are absolutely furious with them. It seems to be one of the biggest drawbacks of hosting with them. Customer service is a most major lifeline of a web hosting provider. With Canaca, customer support seems to not exist. They do not have live chat support and the only way to reach them for any concern is through email or you can call them on the phone. Whenever you attempt to call their customer service number all you will get is a recorded message requesting you to email your concern. This has been reported by a lot of unhappy webmasters. To worsen matters they will not even bother to acknowledge receiving your email leaving you to wonder if your concern is being addressed. Many people have reported that their support system is pointless. Here is a look at some screenshot I found about their customer service:
Canaca is a company I would not recommend to anyone. They have lots of downtime, bugs and lacking customer service. Honestly, if you choose them your probably going to end up losing a lot of sleep over them. I too am not confident with the system of not being able to talk to a live person when I have urgent technical concerns. Sure, they have a feature that always says “online now”, but if you call them your going to get a voicemail asking that you email them. What a joke! I would like to hear from Canaca’s staff or even past/current Canaca customers. If you could leave us some feedback on your experience with them it would be greatly appreciated. If you found this Canaca review helpful would you mind sharing it on Facebook, Twitter, Google +1, LinkedIn, Stumble or any social networking sites you participate on?
If you want to go with a good web hosting service go with InMotion or WebHostingHub. Both of those web hosting companies will treat you right and have wonderful customer support, speed, and lots of features. Thanks for reading.
In July of 2015 I decided to start a special section for Canaca. This gives you chance to look at the content I have read on them. There is a lot of information available online which I put into three different sections; positive, negative, and neutral. This will show you why my editorial review does not recommend their service.
Below you can find all the content I feel is noteworthy on Canaca. Please take a second to review the content I have read on them:
This part of my Canaca review is a great addition to my research on them. Why? Because it gives me the opportunity to talk with webmasters that have used their service in the past. What I do is conduct an email interview with their clients and then post them up on tbwhs.com for everyone to read. If you have any experience with Canaca I would encourage you to email me or contact me on Twitter @tbwhs.