Website Hosting with MakeWeb
Frequently Asked Questions
Where will our website be hosted?
We host all our client websites on one of our virtual servers within NextDC. NextDC is an Australian owned, carbon negative server. It is a top tier Data Centre, built on Dharug Country in Macquarie Park, Sydney NSW. This means that your website will be fast to load for your Australian customer base. It also means that Google can see that it is nearby to those customers’ IP Addresses.
Will our emails be interrupted during migration?
Emails can either be on the same server as your website, or the better practice is for them to be on a third party service, hosted elsewhere.
In the case of emails being on your website server via Webmail, then a careful migration is done to ensure those are all in your new mailbox. Emails will continue virtually uninterrupted, however you will be unable to access them temporarily, until you enter the new password for each email address, and on each device that accesses the emails.
Where emails are being hosted by a third party, we carefully match the Mail Exchange Records, so that your emails will continue seamlessly, without any interruption at all. So for those of you on Office365 or Google Workspace, your emails are well poised for migrations.
Will our emails go down if our website goes down?
The most common website outage is a plugin clash, or another kind of software error. (Although outages are not common!) Website software outage does not affect your emails. These will continue regardless.
If the website outage is caused by a server outage (the server itself doesn’t have power or crashes somehow), then there are multiple layers of redundancy to minimise the emails being inaccessible. In other words, the ‘Domain Name Settings’ are stored in Melbourne and Brisbane, so that even in the unlikely event that the website server is unavailable then the emails for that domain name can still operate. Further to this, there are multiple copies of the website, and backup generators for power within the data centre. And there are four levels of hosting providers who jump into action to bring a server back online. That is a worst case scenario, which is extremely rare and is handled with utmost priority.
Are backups or software updates included with a hosting package?
Basic website hosting includes a daily backup. And we do a health check on your WordPress software, including running the updates once a year. In the current technology climate of increased hacking and malware activity, we recommend subscribing to monthly software updates and maintenance.
But we also understand that there might not be a budget for it. So, we offer this annual health check. We work through our checklist and report back to you about the status of your website operations. It’s a great deal for hosting, and we don’t know of anyone who takes this kind of initiative to partner with you and your WordPress website.
What is Malware?
Essentially this is software that gets installed without your knowledge into your website, and it does things that you did not intend for your website to do. One example is the famous Japanese redirect virus, which randomly sends some pages of your website to be redirected to entirely different websites with someone else's products for sale. Another example is when it installs a page that appears to be a login screen, but it actually will record your password so that someone can attempt to use it elsewhere in a nefarious way.
Do I need to purchase an SSL certificate as well?
Website hosting includes the SSL certificate at no extra cost. Secure Socket Layer (SSL) is denoted by the padlock in the address bar at the top of your web browser. We use LetsEncrypt by default on all our hosting packages, which is an open source security certificate that renews itself every 90 days. It’s a great deal, and has made SSL much more affordable. We’ve been running it smoothly on hundreds of websites for over 10 years.
If there is a particular reason you need a more advanced SSL certificate, like needing to include your entire name within it, then we can provide those. Sometimes you might see a bank website for example have their name displayed next to the padlock icon. That is a more advanced certificate. However, most times it’s not essential for small to medium businesses.
Can I still access my cPanel?
Yes, you will have cPanel access. We use cPanel for all our website hosting. And through your management portal, where you can view all of your registered domains and hosting services, there is a button to log you in to your cPanel. (Note, you don’t have to access it if you don’t feel comfortable with server management software. We’ll keep all of that running for you. However, for those of you who are familiar and who want that level of control for Zone Records editing or uploading files or connecting to FTP, and so on, you can definitely access your own cPanel.)
How do I contact MakeWeb if there is a problem with my website?
Who owns the domain if we transfer to MakeWeb?
During any transfer, ownership is retained. So we become your domain name host, but it remains registered in your name and owned by you.
(We do sometimes find that a domain name we transfer in had been originally registered to the incorrect entity (an old ABN, or a previous business owner, or even an incumbent website developer). So it is not uncommon for us to perform a Change of Registrant (CoR) on behalf of a client after a transfer. This duty of care means you can have even more confidence that the domain name is owned by you and noone else will be able to make a claim on your domain name (especially in the case of .au domains).
Makeweb will also provide you with a domain transfer code (accessible from within your management portal), which you can keep on file should you ever need to change domain providers (Hopefully not!)
Are there any fees for transferring domain names?
For .au domains there are no fees to transfer. And, the best thing about domains is that they keep their outstanding registered days. So the renewal date doesn’t change (if you already had, say 8 months left before you transferred, then you’ll still have 8 months even after the free transfer).
The one exception is that some .com and other top-level domain (TLD) suppliers charge a transfer fee, in the form of an extra year of renewal. What this means is that you pay for an additional year, which gets added to your existing renewal date. So if your domain is registered until 15th April next year, after the transfer it will be registered until 15th April the year after next. Ultimately you don’t pay for the transfer, though you do pay for an extra year of registration at the time of the transfer.
Are there any fees for transferring website hosting?
We provide all website hosting migrations free of charge. And the first 3 months of hosting are free. This helps to make the timing of the migration easier. The best time for faster, local, carbon-negative and proactive hosting is today.
When will we be charged for our new hosting and domain service?
For website hosting the first 3 months from the date of the migration is free. Hosting is renewed/expired on the first of the month of your anniversary date. So you will receive an invoice 28 days before the 1st day of the 4th month after your transfer. The invoice will be emailed to you and payable within 28 days, in order to keep your website hosting service active.
For domain hosting, you will be sent an invoice 28 days before the renewal date. You renewal date depends on the domain and will be based on the day the domain was originally registered.
What happens if I am overdue with payment?
The domain renewals and website hosting service is linked to the on time payment of invoices. If invoices become overdue then the domain will expire on that day, and the hosting will be closed on the 14th day.
Domains have a 30 day cooling off period. So if you still require the domain you can contact us at email@example.com to arrange payment and have it renewed. All your website and email services will come online shortly after renewal, usually within the hour.
Hosting also has a cooling off period and you can get in touch with us to arrange payment and reactivate your service.
If you are experiencing financial hardship please don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll endeavour to come to an arrangement. We are proactive about hosting and passionate about keeping the internet running. So if you still need your website service then we’ll work on a way to make the money work for both of us.
I still have credit on my current domain/hosting service. Do I lose that credit?
With domain names yes you do keep all of that credit. With website hosting the credit does not carry over to the new service. This is why we offer the first 3 months free. As it mitigates how much credit you are set to lose. And once you make the decision to migrate, there is not much point in delaying, as it is easier to plan a move together at a convenient time, get everything running smoothly and fast and connected to our monitoring services. That way you can get back to focusing on your business with a clear head knowing your website and emails are well looked after.
Do I need to let our current web hosting provider know we are migrating our website?
We can perform most migrations prior to speaking with your incumbent host. Then you will communicate with them to cancel the services, so you don’t receive any future invoices. On some rare occasions it is necessary to speak with them first, if you don’t have all of the login credentials in order to complete the migration. Your domain and host and emails might be with 3 different suppliers or with the same supplier. If you don’t know this, then we can help you determine what your setup is. And once migrated then we’ll make sure it is clear who manages what for you, so it is easier for you to administer in the future.
What are the ongoing costs of my website?
There are 3 essentials for a website: the domain name, the website software, server hardware (servers also have software, but hosting companies take care of all of that, so we’ll exclude it from this discussion).
Domains need to be registered and renewed, usually annually. You can actually purchase domains for anything from 1 to 10 years at a time.
When it comes to website software, we specialise in WordPress hosting. WordPress core is open source software, so it doesn’t have any ongoing fees. Sometimes there are third party plugins or services that need annual renewal. But that is on a case by case basis, and we’ll let you know if that is required.
Then for server hardware, the website files and its database are stored on a harddrive in a data centre, which is powered on and connected to fast internet 24/7. We’re proud to have equipment in NextDC, which is Australia’s top tier data centre, and is also carbon negative! It is the hardware which makes up the charge for “website hosting”. Essentially it means renting space on a powerful server, to serve your website to multiple website visitors in a fast browsing experience for them.
How do I find my hosting passwords?
Your WordPress website passwords were provided when your website was launched. You can reset the password using your email address. Or if you are having trouble logging in to WordPress then you can get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org to create new accounts or change passwords.
The other account you’ll most likely need is for cPanel. The easiest way to access this is to login to my.makeweb.com.au. Reach out to us if you don’t have those details on file. On that dashboard you can see all your domain and hosting services, and click into cPanel via that interface. If you need a direct cPanel password, reach out to us on email@example.com.