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Unlimited Hosting vs Inodes

Hostgator offers unlimited hosting capacity. But what does ‘unlimited’ means? Does ‘unlimited’ means that you can now store unlimited files in your Hostgator account?

The answer is NO.

Surprised? As a smart consumer, you should know that all unlimited hosting offers are actually limited. While storage capacity and bandwidth offered are unlimited, hosting companies often set limits in CPU processing power or number of files. Yes, it’s true that hosting companies are able to offer as much as hosting power their users want under normal circumstances; unlimited hosting offer in reality, however, is more like a marketing gimmick that’s used to attract shopper’s eyeballs. You might want to read further on the truth about unlimited hosting offer here but what we’ll discuss in this post is the file storage limitation in Hostgator account.

Inodes limitation in Hostgator

Yes, Hostgator limits number of files you can store in their hosting account. Or more accurately, Hostgator sets limits in inodes.

Illustration of inodes

What’s inodes?

Inodes the data structure on a traditional Unix-style file system such as UFS. An inode stores basic information about a regular file, directory, or other file system object. In brief, inode is the count of files created or uploaded to a server. At the time of writing, the inodes quota in my Hostgator account is 250,000 – this means that I can only upload or create, by maximum, 250,000 files in my unlimited hosting account.

I feel cheated! They said they are offering unlimited hosting!

Don’t be. Folks at Hostgator had never hide anything about these fact about inodes quota and the inode usages are showed clearly in every account’s cPanel front page. Hostgator, in fact, is the very few hosting companies that is such transparent towards their shoppers.

Bluehost and Hostmonster mentioned about account suspension for overused CPU quota (but not inodes!) and Lunarpages talked about inodes count on their wikipage but nothing specific are mentioned. Not to say that these other hosting companies are bad, but at least you can see that unlimited hosting packages by others are not ‘unlimited’ after all.

So if inodes limitation is not cheating then what does inodes has to do with me?

Basically nothing – unless you plan to run your site on a buggy database scripts or use your Hostgator account for spamming purpose. 250,000 inodes indeed, is a huge number and it’s pretty hard to fill up the quota. I runs 5 websites on my Hostgator account and yet I used less than 3% of the inodes quota given.


So please, don’t misunderstand that I’m writing this blog post to complain Hostgator. Instead, I’m trying to make you stay informed with what you’re buying. Hostgator, is still, very much recommended and I introduce them to my friends and families every time I was asked.

Visit Hostgator Online (Hostgator Hosting: $7.95/mo!)

2 Comments so far »

  1. machbio said,

    Wrote on January 1, 2010 @ 3:17 am

    is this real fact or u one of the host gator ones..

  2. Hosted_with_the_gator_and_love_it said,

    Wrote on March 18, 2010 @ 6:36 pm

    I run my website on Hostgator, and use around less than 10000 inodes, 250,000 inodes is plenty. One thing I didn’t like however is that every 1 email users 1 inode, so even though they allow you to make unlimited email addresses with unlimited quota, be careful, and it is best to set a quota on your email accounts and to not let them get filled up :O

    I love hostgator, they ARE the best host i’ve been with in my life I would say, i’ve been with many, many hosts in the past and hostgator offers the best plans for a low amount of money.


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