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VPSSoldiers

Is Hostbill worth the $$$?

40 posts in this topic

I was just dreaming about the future and thinking about things and just wondered, is hostbill really worth the cost?

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What the cost at now? There was an ongoing joke in the past about how they seemingly raised the price on a month to month basis. I used to have a leased Hostbill license that I paid like... $7/mo for I think.

 

Their site doesn't seem to show the pricing and comically I am getting a certificate error when I click 'buy now' to reveal the pricing...

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The software itself is works however I will not prefer HostBill when I have WHMCS. Short Answer = NO Worth IT.

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That page makes me nauseous on the nexus 6. All the zig zag in the tables.

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No it's not worth the outrageous amount they want and here's why.

Hostbill received a ton of good publicity and suddenly became a "hot item" during a period where WHMCS vulnerabilities were running wild.  Two major ones if I recall correctly.  During this period they were more affordable and were a viable alternative to WHMCS in terms of pricing.  Hostbill also had available modules they coded that interacted with SolusVM, Proxmox, cPanel, etc. which meant that you didn't have to rely on a single third party developer to maintain the plugin which was another big plus (also, you know the Hostbill coder(s) know their software inside and out... so they're obviously going to be much better at coding plugins for their own software than third party developers).  

During this period I think Hostbill's popularity went to their heads and they started fluctuating the price ridiculously, going up to 10k for the cheapest license.  

Now, it's stabilized a bit, however still paying 1k for their bare minimum set (the Enterprise 10 edition) is still fairly expensive in comparison to WHMCS.  The vulnerabilities in WHMCS has been fixed and now WHMCS is owned by/in partnership with cPanel, which is even better news for WHMCS users.  Hostbill has lost it's actual market appeal and was a fad.  Many people are still using Hostbill simply because that's what they transitioned to and migrated to.  it's not easy migrating out of a billing system that handles the entire financial side of your business.  

So... tldr: No Hostbill is not worth the money it wants.  The entire pricepoint they have is to try and attract "enterprise" customers.  However, if you actually use it and compare it to WHMCS, I'd say WHMCS has them beat now (unless you pay 5k for their All-inclusive edition).  Also, who the hell charges money so people can report bug reports?  Why is Hostbill advertising that "Hey!  You can submit bug reports for free!"  That's always been a thing for many people.  

Also, just to add.  Their ticketing/support section and their license section on that link is messed up.  You get 10 support tickets/year (under license section) for whichever license you buy... However optional support after 1st year is 75 dollars a ticket, or you can purchase a ticket bundle of 50 tickets/1000 dollars.  Instead they probably should have proofread that page and just kept it "you get 10 support tickets for free on the first year.  After that first year, you have to pay that much per ticket.  However, you can also purchase a ticket bundle for a set amount of tickets for 1k.  This page looks so sloppy to me.  

Of course this is just looking at it from a VPS side.  Hostbill I think is looking to compete as a full inclusive billing system.  Kind of like a cross breed between WHMCS and Ubersmith.  This including automation on the datacenter end and dedicated server systems.  For that, I can see some value in it and can see how it could be beneficial.  However, Hostbill's sporadic pricing changes (e.g. people who previously bought a monthly subscription to Hostbill were suddenly without a license, people who bought a lifetime license suddenly had to play an obnoxious amount for updates, etc) I still wouldn't touch it with a 20 feet pole.   

Edited by HalfEatenPie
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Well I used to think No, but then WHMCS up'ed their support and updates and made me think is Hostbill that expensive lol, you pay $999 but you don't pay that again, with WHMCS you are paying almost $100 a year, it soon goes over that $999 mark. But yeah Hostbill's support is awful, and it's buggy. I use Dacentec for a test server, the label doesn't save successfully, you can get blue alert with a label_info in it, a 404 but it does safe but it's white text lol. So it's down to you.

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 I use Dacentec for a test server, the label doesn't save successfully, you can get blue alert with a label_info in it, a 404 but it does safe but it's white text lol. So it's down to you.

 

This bug has been fixed within 1 week. Tell Dacentec to update their enviroment

 

For me Hostbill has different target then WHMCS and are not comparable. Developers are wring the eye on medium big companies. For example we use it for SeFlow brand and you can do something that with whmcs you can't easily. For example our flexcloud line, is similar to DO / VULTR billing. You charge initial credit then, every month system will generate invoice on hourly usage. Is all automatic and managed by hostbill. Latest release had full support to onapp v4, multi-location, inject ssh, run custom recipes, setup reverse and much more. 

this is only and example, but it offer lot more feature. 

For support remember that you pay one time and had included all minor releases,module major version upgrade costs only about 90€ and you will get 30 days support included. For example we upgraded friday to latest onapp version and found two new bug. I opened a ticket and support is watching to fix immediately.

Same for dedicated, we used own panel in past, then switched to hostbill, you can do all, see graph, automatize payments, reboot server, control server over IPMI, reimage O.S. and much more and is less expencinve then develope own panel.

Definitely worth the moneyif you need this product type.

 

 

Edited by matteob
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 I use Dacentec for a test server, the label doesn't save successfully, you can get blue alert with a label_info in it, a 404 but it does safe but it's white text lol. So it's down to you.

 

This bug has been fixed within 1 week. Tell Dacentec to update their enviroment

 

For me Hostbill has different target then WHMCS and are not comparable. Developers are wring the eye on medium big companies. For example we use it for SeFlow brand and you can do something that with whmcs you can't easily. For example our flexcloud line, is similar to DO / VULTR billing. You charge initial credit then, every month system will generate invoice on hourly usage. Is all automatic and managed by hostbill. Latest release had full support to onapp v4, multi-location, inject ssh, run custom recipes, setup reverse and much more. 

this is only and example, but it offer lot more feature. 

For support remember that you pay one time and had included all minor releases,module major version upgrade costs only about 90€ and you will get 30 days support included. For example we upgraded friday to latest onapp version and found two new bug. I opened a ticket and support is watching to fix immediately.

Definitely worth the moneyif you need this product type.

 

 

Ah but I don' t blame them not upgrading with the history of their system it's just as bad as whmcs, and a lot of people still haven't upgraded to whmcs v6 yet haha. The only exploit I know of happened on Hostbill was the upgrading system. People could get the whole database. :D but don't worry whmcs are having an automatic system soon can't wait to see how bad that is lol

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I cannot in good faith recommend HostBill to anyone.  We've had a lifetime unbranded owned license for several years now, and while it mostly "works", they've changed the terms of the contract (and features, and pricing) so many times that it's almost impossible to keep track of.  The current license doesn't even allow you to write your own addons/plugins, and most of the features that were included when we purchased our copy haven't been updated in years (instead they've been replaced by new, paid modules, with identical functionality).

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I cannot in good faith recommend HostBill to anyone.  We've had a lifetime unbranded owned license for several years now, and while it mostly "works", they've changed the terms of the contract (and features, and pricing) so many times that it's almost impossible to keep track of.  The current license doesn't even allow you to write your own addons/plugins, and most of the features that were included when we purchased our copy haven't been updated in years (instead they've been replaced by new, paid modules, with identical functionality).

You brought an unbranded license at one time and you can use it lifetime. You really can't expect free major release upgrade for free. I can discuss about lack of monthly license, but every company that permit lifetime license had separate support & upgrade plans package

Developers need to be paid monthly

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I cannot in good faith recommend HostBill to anyone.  We've had a lifetime unbranded owned license for several years now, and while it mostly "works", they've changed the terms of the contract (and features, and pricing) so many times that it's almost impossible to keep track of.  The current license doesn't even allow you to write your own addons/plugins, and most of the features that were included when we purchased our copy haven't been updated in years (instead they've been replaced by new, paid modules, with identical functionality).

 

You brought an unbranded license at one time and you can use it lifetime. You really can't expect free major release upgrade for free. I can discuss about lack of monthly license, but every company that permit lifetime license had separate support & upgrade plans package

Developers need to be paid monthly

While I totally understand where you're coming from, if I recall correctly (and correct me if I'm wrong) at the time of purchase they were offering updates with their lifetime license.  Kinda crazy and not sustainable long term, however they did "enter a contract" that way.  Ignoring that...  They practically left their early adopters high and dry in a pricing sense.  People who originally were using the software and paying for it at the lower price range are suddenly expected to pay the much higher price.  It's a dick move. 

I'm not denying developers need to be paid monthly, however they're the one who structured the agreement.  

Edited by HalfEatenPie
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I cannot in good faith recommend HostBill to anyone.  We've had a lifetime unbranded owned license for several years now, and while it mostly "works", they've changed the terms of the contract (and features, and pricing) so many times that it's almost impossible to keep track of.  The current license doesn't even allow you to write your own addons/plugins, and most of the features that were included when we purchased our copy haven't been updated in years (instead they've been replaced by new, paid modules, with identical functionality).

 

You brought an unbranded license at one time and you can use it lifetime. You really can't expect free major release upgrade for free. I can discuss about lack of monthly license, but every company that permit lifetime license had separate support & upgrade plans package

Developers need to be paid monthly

When the terms of the sale included free major releases for 'life', I absolutely can expect them.  I said nothing of a support package.  I am acutely aware of developers needing to be paid, as I have a company full of them.  HostBill retroactively modifying the terms to exclude custom development (i.e. by us, on our copy, for our own purposes) is an issue as well.

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From what Phillip has said it seems like Hostbill has a business model that is unsustainable. Essentially rendering it's own software to replace functionality with paid modules. Part of the issue I see is the skew of Hostbill that is aimed at competing with WHMCS is drastically overpriced. I don't even see a way to buy a monthly license.

They should really look to adjust the pricing to better compete with WHMCS.

Side Note:  Kudos @KS_Phillip, the only other guy I have seen that spells Phillip with 2 Ls.

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I think it worth. Hostbill and WHMCS are for different clients niches. As said on this topic, Hostbill approach medium - big companies and WHMCS is for low budget and small providers.

Have different levels of softwares for everyone requirements.

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With their bipolar pricing I would recommend you stay away from them. 

If you wanna stay away from WHMCS I would recommend you checkout http://www.blesta.com/ 

 

 

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I personally wouldn't suggest them either. Along with Chris (and LicenseCart), I'd suggest checking out Blesta.  At the end of the day, it will come down to figuring out what meets your specific needs though.

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Could always try ISPsystem's BILLmanager.

Not an endorsement as I haven't tried it myself, but it remains a curiosity.

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Blesta is nice, specially the multicompany functionality. 

ClientExec as also come a long way and I really like it.

Edited by host4go

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