#ChicagoVPS, a short review after two weeks

Jul 17, 2015

When I decided to start testing Odoo two weeks ago, I decided that instead of Linode’s $10/month 1 GB RAM KVM SSD VPS, I would shop for something a little more inexpensive. I could’ve gone with DigitalOcean’s $5/month 512 MB RAM droplet, but during my shopping around I found that ChicagoVPS had a 5 GB RAM cyber monday deal still available, so I jumped at it. Unfortunately, it was also a yearly subscription. At $60, it seemed like it should handle it well, so I jumped at it.

First, the specs:

  • 5 GB RAM
  • 2 TB bandwidth
  • 100 GB HDD
  • OpenVZ
  • Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

I signed up on a Friday night. Unlike many, many VPS providers, they must manually provision their VPSes. And they must only do it on weekdays during daytime business hours. It was late Monday before the machine was ready for me to login. This was frustrating enough.

Once I logged into the client area of their website to get my IP address and change the root password, I realized that my root password was displayed prominently in plain text. Fortunately, their control panel is HTTPS, but I find this horribly insecure, as if I had multiple boxes it would be easy for someone to get all my passwords by guessing one.

I logged into the VPS through SSH and got worried that it was broken. It sadly took more than 30 seconds for SSH to ask me for my username. Once logged in, I tried to run Ubuntu updates, only to find the console laggy and the downloads slow.

Seeing as how I’d only toyed around with the VPS for a few minutes, I quickly submitted a trouble ticket to get my money back and cancel service. It took another day to get an unsatisfactory answer: They don’t give refunds, only credit.

Absurd? A bit. Would it take this long to get a reply if I was having a real support issue, not just billing? I have no clue. Would I recommend the service? Definitely not. Am I still with them? Yup. I have 11 more months with this VPS and I intend on using them. I considered filing a discrepancy with my credit card company to get my money back and force cancellation, but I paid through PayPal and don’t need to put that account into jeopardy for this. I’ll transfer Odoo to another service when this one is done. But I’ve learned my lesson. I’ll only use Linode going forward, and I’ll be pretty happy with that choice.

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