Whether you’re looking for scary masks, tween Halloween costumes for girls, a flapper dress or baby Halloween costumes for 2014, you can likely find it at Halloween Costumes.
Stand out in some of the most creative dress-up styles for kids, adults, couples, groups and even pets. Dress your kids as characters from Frozen, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Captain America, Batman, Star Wars, plus Spider-man and other superheroes. Make your baby’s first trick-or-treat special as an ear of corn or peapod, Sully from Monsters Inc., a bald eagle or pretty pony.
Grown-ups: since the festivities are on a Friday get into the spirit! Find Wonder Woman, pirate and wench couples costumes, vampires, 1920s, 50s, 70s and 80s movie characters, Mad Hatter and Alice in Wonderland. You can even create a custom mask from a photo. Now that’s scary!
Do it more affordably this year with coupon codes for Halloweencostumes.com.
HOW TO USE HalloweenCostumes.com Coupons
Visit HalloweenCostumes.com for great costumes any time of year! Make your purchase smarter by saving money with a Valpak.com coupon code on your HalloweenCostumes.com order!
For GET CODE offers
– Click GET CODE for the HalloweenCostumes.com offer you want to redeem
– Click COPY on the pop-up screen to copy the promo code
– Click GO TO MERCHANT WEBSITE to shop www.halloweencostumes.com
– Add a product that qualifies for the promo code to your cart
– During checkout, paste the promo code in the PROMO CODE box, then click APPLY
– Your HalloweenCostumes.com discount will now be applied
Spirit Halloween was founded out of the observation of a trend on the verge of explosion. Since the opening of its first store in 1983, Spirit has experienced tremendous growth. In 1999, Spirit Halloween operated 63 seasonal locations throughout the United States and was acquired by Spencer Gifts LLC. Since its acquisition, Spirit has expanded its store base from 63 locations to over 1,100 for the 2014 season and has become the largest Halloween specialty store on the planet! Spirit Halloween stores are situated in high visibility, high-traffic strip centers. The typical store opens around Labor Day weekend and closes in early November. Spirit Halloween stores are located in all 50 states and throughout Canada in all major markets.
All of us at HenryG® Dance are, first and foremost, dance lovers. We carry the latest dance shoes and accessories for ballroom, ballet, zumba, flamenco, jazz, cha cha, Latin dance, modern dance, salsa, mambo, quick step and waltz. Our operations office is based in China to keep our costs low, which we then pass onto you. Being in China also allows us to handpick master tailors and work closely with them to ensure consistently high quality and fashionable dance products.
We are inspired by the principles of the legendary dancer, HenryG®. He never compromised his dedication and devotion to dance, and we apply the same ethos to our company. We are committed to offering only top of the line dance gear at affordable costs with the aim of supporting established and aspiring dancers and hopefully, the next generation of HenryG®’s.
All of our shoes are lightweight, with professional outer suede soles, to provide the perfect grip and poise needed for a dance shoe. The soft inner soles provide arch support, comfort and flexibility. We have dance shoes and dancewear suitable for all dancers, from New York City professional dancers to Spanish preschoolers.
Our Service Promise
We’re committed to providing you high quality dance shoes, clothing and accessories as swiftly as possible so you can slip into them and get dancing! For each order, we double check every item before it is sent to you to ensure it is meets our quality benchmark.
We’re sure that you will love your HenryG® Dance products, however if you are not completely satisfied with any product within 30 days of receiving it, we will provide a full refund anywhere in the world, no questions asked.
We are continually improving our products and service in hope of making them as close to perfect as we can. We would be grateful to hear your experiences and feedback, good or bad, by contacting us.
Playing Our Part
HenryG® Dance has the following ethical and carbon neutrality policies:
– Our products are all made by fair and reputable tailors
– Our tailors all comply with international health and safety regulations
– We only use environmentally-friendly packaging materials
– We donate to carbon neutral charities to offset any work produced by our companies
– No exotic/endangered animals, genuine fur or rare materials are used in our products.
Would your lifestyle change if your website was ranked #1 on Google?
In 2006, Carol Sprague was earning $8.00 an hour as a full time administrative assistant. But this wasn’t the real reason she had to have a job.
Too young for Medicare, Carol and her husband Dwayne couldn’t afford the high price of health insurance.
This all changed when Carol and Dwayne attended our basic 2-day, hands-on SEO workshop.
Four months later, Carol launched her Tire Pressure Monitor website. Within two months, she had taken over the #1 position on Google!
Today Carol and Dwayne manage their 7 figure online business while crisscrossing the USA and Canada in their spacious motor home.
CAROL AND DWAYNE’S LIFE CHANGED. SO CAN YOURS!
The secret to Carol and Dwayne’s success was learning the basics behind a technique called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It’s a skill that anyone can learn with the right amount of time, and the right teacher.
SEO Training SW has helped hundreds of business owners just like you to sort make sense of SEO and Internet Marketing.
We have trained and consulted with businesses big and small, including the Trump Network during their 2010 launch of the Apprentice TV series.
What’s our secret? We have developed an ethical, easy way to master SEO strategy that you, your customers and Google will love.
SEO CONSULTING SERVICES
Too busy to attend one of our basic or advanced workshops? No problem. Let us provide you with a custom consulting/SEO service package!
Services can be as basic as a simple 60 minute SEO telephone evaluation of your online business or as advanced as a private SEO Consulting Training Workshop for you and your staff at your location.
You can even choose to have our staff do all the work for you! From website development to onsite and offsite SEO, social media and video production, SEOTraining does it all!
No client is too big or too small!
CHOOSE THE SEO/INTERNET MARKETING PACKAGE THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU!
START WITH OUR BASIC 60-MINUTE SEO TELEPHONE EVALUATION.
During this quick review of your site we will provide you with simple strategies or changes that you can immediately implement to help boost traffic to your site and be “search engine friendly”. Our 60-Minute SEO Site Basics phone consultation is scheduled at your convenience. We will call you and review your site with you. This appointment will most likely be our first time reviewing your site. No advance research or analysis is included with this consultation. We will record the call and send you a link where you can download the recording at your convenience. The 60 Minute SEO Phone Evaluation can usually be scheduled within 2 weeks from when payment is received. The fee is just $300.
Request your 60-Minute SEO Site Basics Evaluation Now.
DETAILED SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION PHONE CONSULTATION
For a more thorough review of your site, consider our SEO Site Evaluation. This is a detailed and in-depth phone consultation with detailed information on:
- Discovering the best keywords and phrases for achieving success
- Creating high-quality, keyword-rich marketing copy
- Designing more desirable Titles and Meta tags that get better click-throughs
- How to improve your web sites internal and external linking structure
- How to improve and better track your Pay-Per-Click campaigns
- Track your user statistics and your search engine rankings and more
This is not some evaluation run by a software package you purchase yourself. This is a thorough site evaluation and analysis accomplished by carefully studying your:
- Keyword phrase selections
- The design of your site
- Its current ranking
- Your link reputation and popularity
- Your competition
- Your target market
- We perform the analysis on your site before reviewing the findings with you and your staff on the phone.
When we meet, you are encouraged to have your website designers, developers, marketers, or any other personnel you feel may benefit from the SEO consultation on the phone. We will also record the call and send you a link where you can download it at your convenience for later referral.
We are also always happy to answer any additional SEO questions you may have. If possible, please provide those additional questions in advance.
In-depth analyses can usually be scheduled within 14 business days after payment is received. The fee to review your site and the phone consultation is $2,500.
Request your SEO Site Evaluation Now.
COMPREHENSIVE SEO REPORT AND SITE ANALYSIS CONSULTATION
Our team of SEO consulting experts will analyze your onsite and offsite optimization strengths and weaknesses. We will then write a detailed report with ideas for improvement and techniques that should be implemented. The report will show you exactly what needs to be done to make your site the very best it can be, and as appealing as possible to your target market.
Your Comprehensive SEO Site Analysis report will include the following information, unique to your site:
- Comprehensive Search Engine Optimization Web Site Audit
- Forensic and User Behavior Keyword Research
- Complete On-Site SEO Review and Analysis
- Current Search Engine Rankings and those of top competitors
- Full Site Usability Analysis
- Complete Off-Site SEO Analysis including link popularity, saturation, and reputation
This program includes two hours of telephone consulting. During your scheduled phone time we can review the report in more detail or go over questions that the report may bring up. Alternately, you may choose to go forward and implement the changes we’ve outlined within the report, and then consult with us afterwards to be sure you’ve done it right. You can split up your call into scheduled half-hour increments if you prefer.
Use our report to optimize your web site in-house. Or, allow our team to perform the necessary search engine optimization services for you. If you choose this option, we will deduct the fee of the Comprehensive SEO Site Analysis from your final invoice.
Your site analysis will contain the following detailed information:
- Problem/Trouble spots that might impede top organic rankings
- What should be done to the current design to help achieve top rankings
- Analysis of your site’s copy with suggested changes
- Extensive usability/user interface evaluation testing and results
- Ideas on which pages might benefit from new copy and optimization
- Keyword research through the WordTracker database of keywords people use to search
- Site architecture and navigational feedback
- How to improve your Title tags
- How to improve your Meta description tags
- How to improve your Meta keywords tags
- Browser compatibility check
- How the site is currently ranking for relevant keywords
The reports will also contain any other relevant information and suggestions about your Web site, which might help it to gain more targeted search engine traffic. We will also be happy to answer any specific questions you may have regarding the search engines and/or your site.
Due to the extensive research, analysis and writing that go into creating your custom report, it generally takes 4 – 6 weeks from when we receive payment in full, to when you receive the finished report. Expedited reports with a two-week lead time may be available on a limited basis for an additional fee, depending on our schedule at the time. The fee for the Comprehensive SEO Site Analysis with Report & Phone Consultation starts at $3,500.
Request your Comprehensive SEO Site Analysis Now.
SEO CONSULTING RETAINER PROGRAM
If you believe your SEO needs will require more than a single hour to discuss we are available on an hourly or monthly retainer basis. If you have ongoing SEO issues or are interested in phone-based SEO training, this option may prove to be a better value overall than the one-hour phone consultations described above.
Monthly SEO Retainer Plan – Ongoing Phone Consultations(3-month minimum contract.)
For a $4,500 retainer fee (paid in advance), you will receive email and phone consulting with our staff at your convenience.
This option is perfect for:
- New SEO companies who are just starting out trying to get clients
- Advertising or Web Design companies responsible for multiple client sites and who require quality SEO advice for each
- Corporations who don’t have an in-house SEO person on staff
Having our staff on retainer is like having your own in-house SEO consultant. We’ll review your progress and evaluate your site any time you need. We will offer verbal or written suggestions on:
- How you can improve your SEO programs
- How to best present your internet Marketing proposals
- Creating effective monitoring and tracking reports to clients
- How your own sites can be improved for the search engines and your site visitors.
Have a quick SEO question? Call or email us at any time during business hours and receive an immediate answer. If we are not immediately available when you call, we will generally call you back within 24 hours (if not sooner).
Request your SEO Consulting Retainer Service Now.
PRIVATE IN-HOUSE SEO CONSULTING AND/OR TRAINING
The staff of SEO Training SW is also available to come to your office and consult with your IT and/or Marketing team in order to answer their search engine optimization questions.
- In-house SEO Consulting starts at $1500 per day, plus expenses
- In house SEO Training starts at $7500 per week plus expenses for instructors. Additional student discounts apply based on the number of expected students.
- 1 – 3 Students – Regular Tuition Fee each
- 4 – 6 Students – 10% off Regular Tuition Fees
- 7 – 9 Students – 15% off Regular Tuition Fees
- 10+ Students – Call 623-203-6117 to discuss
What’s clear when using eToro is the simplicity and ease of use of the eToro social trading platform, OpenBook (AKA Copy Trader).
Their aim is to make the financial markets accessible to more people and they achieve this by offering a fully integrated solution. Because eToro is both managing the social investment network and acting as a broker, investors can manage everything through the same interface (i.e. no need to sign up with a different broker). The information made available in OpenBook about the past performance of the traders you may consider copying (i.e. the “Professional Investors” previously known as Gurus) is also kept basic, making it easy for novice investors to use, though lacking the depth more serious investors may look for. I.e. past performance is mainly represented in terms of % gains over the past week, 1 month, 3 month, 6 month and 1, 2 and 3 year periods. Unfortunately the way the gain % is calculated is not transparent. The formula should ” take into account all the relevant numbers and transactions in the trader’s account”. However, because the full trader’s history is not available (a massive omission in our view), the gain % calculations cannot be replicated. Solely making investment decisions on these often very large % gain numbers may set some wrong expectations. However, eToro allows you to trade with a free fully functioning demo account (click here to try). This allows you to follow “Professional Investors” using virtual money to evaluate and review their performance in $ gain terms. This will give you a more realistic view of what you can expect when you allocated say $1000 to a certain “Professional Investor”.
The amount of ”Professional Investors” available on OpenBook is large and by joining the eToro social trading network, anyone becomes a potential ”Professional Investor” (i.e. you can follow anyone you like, even people who only follow other people can become “Professional Traders”, and likewise, so can you). As such, eToro stays true to their vision to create a completely open network where everyone can share, learn, copy, interact and compete with one another. It’s also worth noting that anyone who becomes a “Professional Investor” displays their real name and photo in their profile (verified by eToro customer services), which adds some level of trust that you’re following real people. There are a few tools in Openbook to help you find the traders/Professional Investors/Gurus you want to follow and copy. You can use the ‘People Rankings’ to list the best performing traders and for example sort them by number of copiers, which is always a good starting point since over time, profitable traders will amass a larger following on the social trading platform. In March 2014, eToro also released the ‘Discover People’ tool which allows you to filter through their traders using a wider range of parameters, such as Profit Percentage, Trading Consistency, Country and many more. This tool is certainly a significant improvement to the search capability on offer before. eToro is free to join and use (no annual fees or commissions). The only costs you incur are the broker spreads and overnight rollover fees. The eToro spreads on each trade which are arguably slightly higher than with most brokers (e.g. 3 pips for EURUSD). However, when you automatically copy trades from other traders you’ll notice (in WebTrader) that in most cases (>90%) there’s no slippage, which makes up for the higher spread. (Slippage is the difference in price the trader you copy gets and you get, and with networks that use other brokers this is normally 1-2 pips per trade.) The overnight rollover fees charged by eToro are arguably also a bit higher than with most brokers. This should be taken into consideration since most of the traders you can copy have a tendency to keep positions open for weeks or months, meaning over time these rollover fees can add up if open trades aren’t managed carefully. If you’re a novice trader there’s a wide range of training materials available to get you up to speed (targeted at any level). There are also weekly webcasts, reviews and daily news to keep you informed on current events. The eToro OpenBook social network is also very active and any questions you might have are normally answered very quickly by your fellow investors.
Can you make money with eToro? The simple answer is yes, but it’s not easy. Obviously all will depend on your risk level and targets. If you expect to double your account in 1 week, then you have to accept the risk of losing all your equity in that period as well. Our personal preference is to find low risk but profitable “Professional Investors” to copy, though these are very difficult to find. Many of them also have the tendency to leave trades open for months with wide stop levels which means your equity will fluctuate over time and you have to see this as a longer term investment opportunity. Your actual results are also unlikely to match those displayed in the eToro rankings, because the popular ”Professional Investors” can use the monthly payments they receive for each copier to offset their losses or account drawdown.
Is it as easy as ‘sit back and relax’? No, as some serious is required to select the traders you want to copy and which meet your risk reward level. Just selecting the most popular ”Professional Investors” will not be enough. Once you’ve built your ‘people based’ portfolio you’ll have to regularly monitor the progress and re-evaluate your allocations since even traders ranked in the top 10 can get you into trouble. E.g. investing $10,000 evenly across the top 10 eToro Gurus on May 1st 2012 would have left you with $8,778 by April 1st 2013. Doing the same with the top 10 eToro traders at the beginning of June would have left you with $9,367 by this date.
eToro Review: Pros
- simple interface
- integrated social trading network (OpenBook) and broker (WebTrader)
- free, fully functional demo account
- integrated risk and money management features
- can trade on currencies AND major indices AND commodities (oil, gold and silver) AND shares
- active social network and excellent training materials
- low slippage
- the “Professional Investors” you can copy all display their real and verified full name & photo
eToro Review: Cons
- unable to view the full history of all the previous trades by the “Professional Investors”
- historical gain % calculation in OpenBook is confusing and not transparent
- for every good performing trader to choose from, there are still plenty of poor ones (most are also longer term traders)
- Trader Finder/Discover People functionality can still be improved (though currently much better than what it was)
- actual results in your account will often not totally match the ones displayed for the trader you copy in the eToro interface (mainly because they often use their commission payments to add to their balance at the end of each month)
- higher overnight rollover fees than most brokers
- currently only able to manage your account in $ USD
The mission of MTI is to be a catalyst for success. Our team provides tools and support for athletes and performers to strengthen their mental skills for optimal performance. The core of our work involves teaching people how to control their thoughts and emotions so they can perform their best when it matters the most.
We work with a variety of age, experience, and competitive levels within a multitude of sport, business, and other performance industries.
Please enjoy the information you find on the MTI site. After looking through the site, if you would like more information about our services or would like to set up a free initial session, please complete the process in the mental training services area
To-do lists are great for keeping track of the myriad little tasks we must accomplish every day. “Submit expense reports,” “Take cat to vet,” “Buy coffee,” and so on. But what about the really big things–the dreams we want someday to come true? A to-do item like “get company onto Fortune 500 list” or “write prize-winning novel” may look a bit silly. But such lofty goals are made up of numerous subgoals, each of which can probably be broken down further. Goalscape Desktop (89 euro, $117 on March 12, 2012) is a tool for realizing your goals that does away with the list metaphor and uses an innovative circular interface instead.
Goalscape’s interface is very eye-catching, but its beautiful form has everything to do with function. This cross-platform, Adobe AIR-based application puts your “master goal” in the center of a circle, with subgoals surrounding it. So if you are trying to get to the Olympics as a competitive sailor and must perfect your boat handling, “boat handling” would take center stage, surrounded by specific areas of handling, such as “upwind,” “downwind,” and “start.”
This particular example is interesting because that’s what Marcus Baur, Goalscape’s managing director, used to get to the Sydney Olympics in the 49er class. This was done on paper, before Goalscape existed as an application, but makes for a great use case for the methodology.
There are only so many hours in a day, and we all have just so many resources to work with. Having subgoals arranged as pieces of a pie reflects that, making for a clearer use of resources. You can also adjust each subgoal’s size to reflect its relative importance, and track your progress by moving a slider from 0 percent to 100 percent. As you move the slider, the subgoal gradually fills with color, as does its “master” goal, proportionately to the subgoal’s importance.
Goalscape Desktop avoids breaking things down to a to-do list, preferring to focus on the greater view. Even so, every goal can have a start and end date, tags, and a responsible person assigned to it. You can filter goals by these attributes, and there’s also a search-as-you-type feature for quickly finding goals, no matter where they are located on the Goalscape.
The main drawback is that Goalscape doesn’t tightly integrate with a to-do based workflow, so using the tool must be an intentional act: You must decide when to open Goalscape and start reviewing your progress. It’s a habit that isn’t always easy to build, and the biggest barrier for adoption (at least for me). Goalscape’s iPhone companion app does offer a list view, and the company is considering integrating such functionality in future desktop and Web versions as well.
Since each subgoal can be further broken down, goalscapes can become very detailed. In my own use, I easily got to five levels of nested subgoals. Goalscape offers two ways to manage this visual overload: You can limit the depth of the current display, or you can double-click a subgoal to drill down into it, making it the center of the circle. You can also print out your entire Goalscape or a specific view of it, to make an interesting motivational poster.
Since Goalscape is so open-ended, it can be used for more than project management. I used it to get a bird’s-eye view of my entire day-to-day existence, subdividing my life by areas such as family, work, health, learning, and so on. Having to resize each such area made me consider my priorities, and setting specific subgoals for each area made me consider what would make that area “successful” (reading enough books, planning to avoid overload, and so on). I wish Goalscape Desktop offered an easy way to transform those insights into complete to-do lists for implementation, but the application is more focused on the big picture view of things.
Goalscape also offers an online subscription-based service called Goalscape Connect that teams can use to set their priorities and monitor their progress. If you are looking to get a clearer picture of your activity and make tangible progress, Goalscape Desktop offers a unique and compelling way to get there.
Note: Clicking the Download link takes you to the vendor’s site, where you can download Adobe AIR (if necessary) and install the desktop software.
Raw Living has been in business since 2002, when it was a simple five-page website selling juicers, algae and tahini…since then we have grown to become Europe’s largest resource for cutting edge plant nutrition. We have the largest selection of super foods in Europe, as well as all the tastiest raw food snacks from around the world. We pride ourselves on being more than just a shop: we hope that we can go some way towards introducing you to the raw lifestyle and helping you set off on what we believe is a wonderful and thrilling path.
To this end, we have a ton of free resources here for you. There’s a Where To Start section, which breaks it down as simply as possible. A free 46 page e-Book with articles and recipes for when you’ve got a bit more time. And a free Super Food Spotlight e-course, which introduces six of the most popular super ingredients you might well be considering including in your diet.
If you’re wanting to get busy in the kitchen, you can browse our Recipe section with over 30 of Kate’s recipes, and if you’re looking for further information on the products, you can browse our Blog which has tons of product reviews, more recipes, and interesting articles.
When you’re done with all that, you might want to check out our YouTube, which has a load of great introductory videos.
If you still need questions on the raw lifestyle answering, please don’t send them to our office, where they are so busy making sure all the orders get sent out as quickly as possible. Your best bet is to join our members’ site, Kate’s Magic Bubble, where you can post your questions to Kate and get access to even more recipes, articles, interviews and videos.
If you want some live action, Kate puts on events all across Europe, or if you’re the kind of person who prefers to learn from the comfort of their own sofa, you can check out Kate’s talks on The Raw Magic Academy (as this is a new site, there’s only one talk on there for now, but we’ll be adding more over the coming months).
So, like we said, we hope we’ve got you covered! And if you want to let us know how you’re getting on, please hit us up on Facebook and Twitter.
Actually, the site used to house even more information on the raw food lifestyle, but sadly, we were ordered to remove it in July 2013.
it is currently illegal to share this information, which we have spent decades researching, with you. Primarily down to EU legislation that was passed at the end of 2012, we are allowed to tell you very little about the products we sell, why we recommend them and what they have historically been used for.
To be able to share information, we need to have registered our products with the EU permitted claims register. This process takes years and costs over £100,000 per product, so obviously is not possible for small businesses such as ourselves. For now, we are still allowed to sell the foods on our website, although there are plans in process within the EU to change that as well, and outlaw all herbs, supplements, and seeds. Yes, crazy, but true! For now, the legislators have decided that it is in the public’s interest to be sold herbs without any qualifying information that might help with guiding customers why to use them, or how much and how often to use them. We are forbidden to use words such as “health”, “energy”, “benefits”, “vitality”, “pure”, “antioxidants”, “superfoods” and “probiotics.”
We think this issue goes far beyond whether you believe herbs have medicinal properties or not, and extends to freedom of choice and freedom of speech. But for now, it is not illegal for you to share information. Please tell your family and friends how much you enjoy these foods. Tell them where they can find the best quality at the best prices. Tell them how our right to choose what we put in our bodies, and our rights to share information that has been in the public domain for centuries, are being violated. Do your research and learn about who makes the laws (unelected groups of “experts”, who work closely with the giant pharmaceutical, agrictural, and chemical companies), and what the real intentions of the laws are.
DreamHost are known for low-cost shared web hosting and domains, but also offer VPS and dedicated services.
At the time of writing this review, DreamHost are about to launch cloud storage. However, they do already have a limited personal cloud storage service called Files Forever. This allows content producers to host files on DreamHost’s servers for a one-off fee. Producers can optionally charge for downloads. To try Files Forever, you need to be a DreamHost customer.
Based in Brea, California, west of Los Angeles, DreamHost launched in 1997, so it has a long and proven track record. It’s owned by New Dream Network LLC, a company formed by four college students in 1996. All four co-founders are still working for the company, and Simon Anderson – an experienced entrepreneur and executive – is now CEO. Despite restructuring, the company still employ a friendly and personal tone on their website and marketing material.
DreamHost offer a very generous affiliate programme which offers cash rewards for referrals, plus a free domain name with each new account. They also have an impressive two week free trial and a 97-day money-back guarantee promise. The environmentally-conscious will also be interested to note that DreamHost is entirely carbon neutral despite hosting more than one million domains.
DreamHost Hosting Plans
DreamHost’s shared hosting is based on Debian Linux and aimed squarely at the budget end of the market. It has all the hallmarks of a low-cost host with little or no limits on capacity and bandwidth.
Their VPS and dedicated hosting is also Linux-based. Signing up to any package will give new users a free domain name for one year. Dedicated servers on DreamHost include dual-core and quad-core processor options, and you can optionally choose to run Nginx in place of Apache.
Interestingly, DreamHost also provide free web hosting to non-profit charitable organisations. However, your organisation will need to be US-registered to take advantage.
Details of their cloud hosting packages have yet to be announced at the time of writing this review. The Files Forever service runs at a one-time upload fee plus associated transaction fees for downloads.
Unusually, customers can purchase gift cards for DreamHost hosting. There’s also no reseller option beyond the normal affiliate programme.
Unusually, DreamHost offer a 100% uptime guarantee across all shared, VPS and dedicated hosting. Should a fault at DreamHost cause your website, database, email, FTP, SSH or webmail to go down, you’ll be credited with one free day’s hosting for every hour of downtime. The amount of downtime is calculated from the moment you open a support ticket, so it pays to be proactive.
DreamHost don’t publish any data about uptime on their website, but they do have a detailed status blog at DreamHoststatus.com.
DreamHost currently operate from two data centres, one in downtown LA and one close to LAX airport. These are shared facilities, although DreamHost own a large stake in Alchemy, the company that runs them. Each facility is staffed round the clock and has 3 megawatts of uninterrupted power supply provision. Both facilities are equipped to handle fire and earthquakes.
Customers can manually back up their websites and account data (including mailboxes) with a single click from their control panel.
DreamHost doesn’t offer telephone support, although you can pay a small premium on your monthly fee to have a member of staff call you. The extra fee also covers live chat support. Otherwise, all support is via email and/or ticket – there’s no phone number.
Customers can find most of the answers to technical questions (such as DNS, domain transfer, email and FTP details) in the wiki (which acts as a knowledge base) and forum on the DreamHost support portal alongside the network status blog. Customers are kept up-to-date with a regular newsletter.
DreamHost in the News
DreamHost has something of a chequered history.
In January 2008, DreamHost over-billed practically their entire customer base when automated billing services failed and a member of staff re-ran billing for the wrong year. The company initially said that they accidentally took an additional $7.5 million in hosting fees in the space of one day. After this blog was written, the figure was downgraded to $2.1 million.
In another high-profile news story, DreamHost’s FTP passwords across all accounts were hacked. Customers were advised to change their passwords.
DreamHost Control Panel
Fans of Cpanel or Plesk may be disappointed to hear that neither is provided onDreamHost. Instead, the company offer a completely custom control panel which was created entirely in-house.
Login to DreamHost’s control panel and you’ll find access to everything to do with the hosting account, from billing, Django, ImageMagick and account details to MySQL and email accounts. Although it’s very capable, people who have previously used Cpanel may feel frustrated once they realise they have to re-learn a new administration system to perform basic tasks, such as increasing the phpmemory limit or accessing phpmyadmin.
DreamHost are proud of their One-Click Installer software which allows users to quickly install common packages. The One-Click Installer covers WordPress, phpBB, Moodle, Joomla, Drupal and other bits and pieces to handle discussion, wikis, ecommerce and blogs.
With every package, you’ll also enjoy a free domain name for a year. The domain is registered in the customer’s name and can be transferred away from DreamHost at any time.
DreamHost also offer free CloudFlare performance and security services. They offer limited support for Java and full support for Jabber (including running your own Jabber server) and Jquery.
DreamHost Money Back Guarantee / Cancellation Policy
DreamHost offer a comprehensive 97-day money back guarantee. Should you change your mind about hosting with them, you can close your account with a click and receive a full refund. In order to qualify, you’ll need to pay your fees via credit card and your account must not have been closed for spamming or violating DreamHost’s terms. As with most money-back offers, any fees for domain registration can’t be refunded.
DreamHost are built on the ‘stack it high, sell it cheap’ philosophy. By using their own control panel, they retain a certain amount of control over what customers can do with their domains. In addition, by offering extremely limited support options, the company don’t expose themselves to high after-sales costs, helping them achieve more competitive pricing.
If you want an easy, low-cost way to get a few websites online, DreamHost provide most of the features you’ll need for a good price, particularly on their shared hosting plan. If you don’t get along with their control panel, you can simply cancel the contract within that 97-day period and get your money back.
However, fans of Cpanel would be best advised to look elsewhere. And if you rely on live chat or phone support to get things done, be sure to factor in the extra cost when comparing hosting providers.
PRICING & PLANS
CyberGhost offers 3 pricing plans, Free, Premium and Premium Plus, and in its FAQ explains that its real aim is to provide a free VPN service, with the premium plans introduced as a way to help fund this.
FREE VPN (GRATIS)
CyberGhost offers completely free anonymous surfing through its Free VPN plan, and users are under no obligation to upgrade or do to anything else. The plan does however come with a number of important restrictions:
- A 1 Mb/s speed cap
- Advisements – users will be shown at least 17 seconds of advertisements when they first connect, plus some more ads every 2 hours
- No free choice of servers – free VPN users are automatically connected to an available server, although CyberGhost do say this will usually be located close-by
- Automatic disconnection after 6 hours of use (users can immediately reconnect, but see below…)
- Users must manually reconnect after disconnection (no auto-reconnect)
Users of the free plan are connected via the secure OpenVPN protocol, but only its weakest (128-bit) version.
VPN PREMIUM (£4.49 / $6.99 P/M)
The Premium plan is quite reasonably priced compared to the competition, and offers the following advantages:
- Unlimited bandwidth – CyberGhost claim an average throughput of 6Mb/s, which we will put to the test later in this review
- Unlimited traffic
- Free choice of servers – over 50 are available, however all but 5 are located in Europe, with the other 5 being located in the US
- No adverts, waiting queue, automatic disconnection after 6 hours, or other such restrictions placed on the free service
- Automatic reconnection
- Not mentioned on the website, but when you open a new account in the VPN client you are offered a 30 day absolutely free trial of the Premium VPN service.
Open VPN encryption is still 128-bit, but Premium users can also connect via PPTP and L2PT with IPSec (all also with 128-bit encryption).
VPN PREMIUM PLUS (£6.99 / $10.99 P/M)
The Plus plan builds on the VPN Premium package, offering the following additional advantages:
- Up to 5 devices can be connected simultaneously
- Access to VPN servers on an extended server park, which have been configured for secure 256-bit OpenVPN encryption
Direct customer support is available via a ticket system or live online chat. There is also a good FAQ area, with a useful search function which we found handy while researching this article. We also liked the fact that it is possible to rate the usefulness of each FAQ article, which should assist the CyberGhost team in making further improvements. In addition to the FAQ, there is a bulletin board which supports threads in both English and German, and while not over busy, is active.
The CyberGhost website is very neatly and attractively laid out, with navigation intuitive, and information easy to find. A regularly updated blog, and fun but informative bios and photos of the CyberGhost team members, Twitter, Facebook and merchandise pages, all help give the impression that CyberGhost is a professional outfit.
FREE WEB PROXY
A nice touch is the inclusion of a free web proxy service, so that casual users can surf the web anonymously without even the need to download CyberGhost’s free VPN software. We will check this out in a bit more detail later in the review.
PRIVACY & SECURITY
As we have noted in other reviews, we consider 128-bit OpenVPN encryption to be absolutely fine, exceeding the security requirements of most people. It is however difficult to get excited about, and we prefer to see at least 256-bit encryption, which is available from CyberGhost, but at an extra cost…
Much easier to get excited about is that CyberGhost keep no logs. No content, visited websites, IP addresses or personal communication is kept all. Anonymous log-in records are kept for 24 hours for statistical purposes, but are deleted every day. Also, no payment account details are stored once the payment process is over.
Apparently CyberGhost did receive demands from the German authorities to hand over user information, but thanks to their no logs policy they had nothing with which to comply. Top marks.
REGISTRATION AND SETUP
Registration took a matter of seconds, and no personal information whatsoever was requested.
The installation process was as simple and uneventful as you could wish for, but a Flash guide explaining the steps which appeared in the browser download page was a nice touch.
Even nicer was the offer of one month’s free Premium VPN membership! This is not mentioned on the website, and therefore came as a complete surprise. We like surprises like that, and this is by far the most generous free VPN trial we have yet encountered.
On logging-on for the first time (and whenever reconnecting) we were presented with an advert for CyberGhost’s Premium services. Similar adverts also pop up every two hours you are logged on to the service, but they can be dismissed after a few seconds. We did not find them particularly intrusive and, frankly, felt this very small price to pay for a no cost VPN service.
The VPN client itself is styled to match the CyberGhost website, and is similarly attractive and well laid out. As a free user you cannot choose which server to connect to, so connecting is simply a matter of hitting the big button and letting CyberGhost do the rest.
Et voila! You are connected.
The first time that you use the client you are warned that emails cannot be sent when using CyberGhost as an anti-spam measure. However, email accounts can be added to an exception list, so this not really a problem.
An interesting and welcome addition to the CyberGhost client is the Antispy add-on module, which provides a wealth of options that give you very precise control over a large number of settings that can compromise your anonymity on the internet.
The client’s Settings tab gives you plenty options for making the software work as you would like it to.
On our 10 megabyte UK broadband internet connection we achieved the following results when automatically connected to a London based server.
Of course, each time you connect using the free VPN service you are connected to random server, so connection speeds are likely to vary somewhat, and the results would be disappointing for a paid service. However, for a free service they were in our view quite impressive, being easily plenty fast enough for casual anonymous web surfing, and more than double the supposed cap quoted on the CyberGhost website.
Taking advantage of the free one month trial, we took a look at CyberVPN’s Premium VPN service. The client is of course the same one, but we could now choose to connect to any of the Premium VPN servers.
Servers can be sorted through in order of speed or anonymity
CyberVPN even provide a pretty server map to reassure you that you are indeed connected as you should be.
The Video Portal is, to be honest, an unnecessary gimmick that provides links to a very limited number of popular TV shows via their broadcaster’s web TV portals. This is nothing that simply visiting the relevant web portals yourself could not do, but at least does no harm and doesn’t get in the way of the otherwise excellent service.
Again, on a 10 meg UK connection to a London server:
An excellent result!
Instructions and relevant configuration files are provided for using CyberGhost OpenVPN with iOS, Linux, OSX and Android. The instructions for Android require that the device be rooted, so we did not perform our usual tests, although we imagine that configuring OpenVPN for Android would work just fine. In addition to this, configuring Android, iOS, etc. to work using the PPTP protocol (only available to Premium or Premium Plus customers) should be straight forward enough, although instructions are not provided. The tutorials that are provided appear easy to follow, although they are not accompanied by screenshots.
FREE WEB PROXY
GhostVPN are nice enough to offer a free Web Proxy service. Although nowhere near as fast, good at protecting privacy, or handing complex webpages (we could not get YouTube to work for example), it is quick and dirty way surf the web anonymously.
Although the fact that we were using a suspect IP was spotted, we were not connecting from London and our correct IP address was not displayed
The main real problem with the Web Proxy service is why on Earth would you want to use it when the free VPN offered by CyberGhost is so good?
- Completely free VPN service that worked very well. Although ad supported, these were very rarely seen
- The speed test results for the Premium service were excellent
- One moth free trial for Premium service with no up-front payment
- No logs or user details kept#
- Good looking and functional VPN client
- Antispy add-on is packed with great features to help keep your online identity a secret
WE WEREN’T SO SURE ABOUT
- No servers outside Europe and the US
- The 128-bit OpenVPN encryption on most serves is ok
To be honest, we absolutely loved using CyberGhost, and struggle to find a valid criticism of it. The free service provides an outstanding experience, with minimal advertising and better than expected speed test results, while the Premium VPN service expands upon this to give great speed test results and an overall excellent user experience.
We think that reserving 256-bit OpenVPN encryption for Premium Plus customers is a fair decision given how much is provided for free. Given that the basic Premium VPN service come with an immensely generous 1 month free trial, can think of little reason not to give it a try.
The only real caveat comes from this being a primarily Europe based service. Of the 54 Premium VPN servers, only 5 are located outside Europe, and those in the US. Asian and other users worldwide will suffer slower connection speeds due to the distances involved, but may still find this service valuable thanks to the high level of anonymity afforded by CyberGhost not keeping any logs and user details.