Website hosting

I am considering creating a new and updated website for 2017 that makes it easier for me to update, do SEO etc. Currently my website is just a hand built one, HTML/CSS etc.

I considered WordPress, but found it very clunky and my site was infested with WordPress viruses within a week, so that put put off.

What about SquareSpace, has anyone used it? How flexible is it for a largish site?

What are other good options? If I can’t find one I might end up just building a new site from scratch again but it seems like a waste.

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Wordpress viruses? Darn… where did you host that?

Wordpress although is not my favorite can be a viable solution to host a website… I have several sites running with no viruses… lol You need a good host, some simple security principles applied and you are done…

Are you a programmer?

I am a programmer :slight_smile:

It was hosted on Azure, I didn’t do anything special, but it seems to be a pretty common problem

I’ve really been enjoying using Jekyll with sites these days. Depending on what you’re creating, the static nature may be a non-starter, but the upsides are that security becomes a minimal concern and the resulting static files are blazingly fast. Middleman is a similar static site generator using Ruby that I’ve heard good things about as well.

I’m hosting a couple of small sites on S3 with https and Cloudfront (their CDN) for $1.50/mo total. They don’t get much traffic, and the configuration took a night or two of tweaking, but now it’s a breeze.

On top of that, SiteLeaf has been great for filling the gap between static and hosted CMS by providing a web interface for writing posts and managing the content.


We’re using just Digital Ocean $5/m droplet with Nginx (don’t use Apache, it wastes so much time to config!) and Bootstrap 3 static site. You can get many inexpensive Bootstrap themes or templates at sites like Wrap Bootstrap or Creative Tim and rearrange them a bit (fonts, colors, images) to get a unique look.

I’ve been wanting to try stuff like this. Do you have any good resources (links) that helped you get going and could possibly reduce the night or two of tweaking?

Not really. The main issues I found were that the blog posts out there about it were simply outdated. AWS is moving fast and changing quickly. So the AWS documentation is your best bet. The biggest problem I ran into was caching with CloudFront. When you’re tinkering, make sure to set the cache expiration really low. Then, when you start deploying, cache invalidation can be somewhat troublesome, but there are some good tools out there to script that from the command line so that site updates also explicitly do the cache invalidation.

That said, it does seem that they recently added a feature to automate the setup of a static web site with S3 + CloudFront(CDN) + Route53(DNS) + Certificate Management. So it’s probably much easier than when I did it. I’d suggest giving that a try first.

I remember seeing it when I logged in recently, but I didn’t need it, so I didn’t do much more than click around a little.

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Garrett, funny I just logged into aws after a while and noticed they created a wizard like setup for S3 hosting. I agree AWS is getting more complicated but it looks like they are creating helpful wizards around the underlying setup to make it easier. But I’m sure in the end you should understand what is going on under the covers as you will have to modify things as you go.

I used jekyll with s3website in the past to setup s3 hosting.

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static hosting with a CDN is explained here:

However, I found WP easier to update and with forms and 3rd party plugins.

One of our team members wrote this up a while back on how we publish sites to S3 automatically after a Travis build completes:

May be useful.

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That’s a nice writeup, thanks for sharing that!

Ended up just creating a normal site, no Wordpress. Preview here :slight_smile:

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