|4.5 / 5.0
|Ease of Use
|4.5 / 5.0
|4.6 / 5.0
|Reliability & Support
|4.2 / 5.0
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The Contabo account management interface looks rather dated, but the portal provides a lot of useful features in a concise and efficient package. Customers can view their services, as well as contact and payment information. Dedicated servers can be rebooted remotely, and VPS administrators can easily stop, start, restart, or take a snapshot of their machine. In addition to 90-minute operating system reinstallations, the Contabo customer control panel enables users to register and manage domain names and their DNS settings.
We'd like to see a more integrated support system, rather than the pop-up modal with the company's phone number and email address, but that's certainly not a deal breaker. The interface also provides easy-to-find links to tutorials and FAQs.
At first glance, Contabo is priced extraordinarily competitively, especially at the VPS and dedicated server levels. Hosting plans do not scrimp on storage, though the company might see a boost from adding an unlimited storage option to compete with other mainstream shared hosts. Contabo pools servers to share bandwidth, enabling the company to support websites with unlimited traffic.
However, customers will have to pay extra for managed services, automatic backups, emergency support, or the ability to add a control panel to VPS or dedicated plans — features that are commonly included for free elsewhere. All in all, we appreciate the supreme flexibility and customizable options that Contabo offers, all with an emphasis on affordability.
Contabo's highly qualified support staff can be contacted 365 days a year by phone or email. US-based customers, however, face some added challenges when reaching out to the Germany-based company: Contabo does not have a toll-free number or 24-hour support, meaning technicians are available by phone from 3 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST (8 a.m. to 11 p.m. in Germany).
Our biggest gripe, however, centers on the company's 95% network uptime guarantee. That mark falls well below the industry standard of 99.9% uptime and allows for more than eight hours of downtime per week. Marketing Manager Markus Heimerl confirmed our suspicions that that company actually performs much higher, saying, "In reality, our uptime is much better than what we guarantee. Just like any other serious hosting provider, we offer you an uptime of 99.9% at Contabo."
We tend to roll our eyes at paid support upgrades, but we appreciate the emphasis Contabo places on customer service. Those who purchase the emergency support upgrade will get priority treatment and a response in 60 minutes or less for up to five servers. Although Contabo says every customer is king, the support upgrade turns customers into emperors.
Best suited for developers or website administrators with a decent amount of technical experience, Contabo gives customers ample room to customize and scale their hosting environments. The lack of 24/7 support or a money-back guarantee keeps us from recommending Contabo to first-time or inexperienced site owners, but we always appreciate affordable name-brand hardware in datacenters owned and operated by the hosting provider.
Overall Rating4.6 / 5.0