LibraryHost Since 2011

FAQ


Our company

Who is LibraryHost?

LibraryHost was founded by Caitlin Nelson, a digital librarian and archivist, and Christian von Kleist, a programmer and entrepreneur. We’re a mission-based tech company that serves small to mid-size institutions without their own I.T. department or who wish to outsource some of their I.T. needs.

When was LibraryHost founded?

LibraryHost was founded in February of 2011.

Where is LibraryHost located?

LibraryHost is based in Gainesville, Florida near the University of Florida, and many of our staff work remotely.

How is LibraryHost different from a generic web host?

When you run open-source library software with a generic web hosting company, you are responsible for setting it up, maintaining it, backing it up, upgrading it, and fixing it by yourself. If something goes wrong, you might have to do a lot of googling and consultation on mailing lists to figure out the problem.

Generic web hosting might cost you more, after considering the time investment made by you and your staff.

When you host with LibraryHost, we eliminate all of the I.T. frustrations, so you don’t have to worry about anything but your content. Our staff has many years of experience running open-source library software, so when something goes wrong, we can fix it quickly. We also have a multiply redundant backup system, fully automated monitoring, and regular internal audits to ensure that our customers' files and data are safe and secure.

We are proud to save our customers a great deal of time, money, and stress by being experts in our niche.

Products

What software can LibraryHost host for me?

So far our customers can run Archon, ArchivesSpace, Open Journal Systems, and Omeka in the LibraryHost cloud. We are growing! If you have a specific software you’d like us to host, please contact us.

Can you host ______ for me?

LibraryHost is very interested in doing pilot projects with institutions that want to use open-source library software and require an experienced hosting partner to set it up and maintain it for them. We have begun offering each of our hosted products through pilot projects. We are currently doing a pilot for AtoM (Access to Memory) with a partner institution, and that is going very well.

Do you know of open-source library software that we should provide hosting for? Please contact us.

What do “cloud storage” and “records” refer to in the LibraryHost plan levels?

Cloud storage is the total amount of server disk space available to your ArchivesSpace, Archon, Omeka, or OJS instance. Cloud storage is used up primarily by digital objects (e.g., images of photos, audio files of sound recordings, PDFs of articles).

Metadata-only records require hardly any disk space to store. They do use up your cloud storage, but 5GB of storage is enough for tens of thousands of records.

We don’t like to impose artificial limits on the open-source software we run for our customers, which is why we place no limit on the number of repositories or records you can create in a certain plan level (subject only to storage space). This is what ∞ Records means in our plan descriptions.

How do I pick a plan level?

Please consider these important questions:

1) How much storage do you need for digital objects?

What is the total size of images, video files, and other digital objects that you wish to store with LibraryHost?

2) How many annual support hours would you like included?

We discovered that many institutions want bundled support hours because it makes budgeting easier, so each plan level, except Light, comes with a bundle of support hours that can be used throughout the year. Support hours can be used for major upgrades, customizations, content fixing, etc.

3) How many staff members or users will access your content simultaneously?

The higher plan levels are hosted on larger and faster servers.

Need more help picking a plan level?

We can send you a detailed quote with more information on what’s provided with each plan.

Technical

Do you provide backup services?

We make sure your data is safe. When you host with us, your data is backed up to three separate, secure storage locations on a daily basis. We keep daily, weekly, and monthly rotating backups which enable you to recover if you accidentally delete data and don’t realize it right away.

What about data security?

The technical co-founder of LibraryHost was Senior Analyst at a computer security consultancy whose Fortune 500 clients included Facebook and Adobe under his tenure. If you’d like more information about our security practices, please contact us. We’d be happy to provide you with our PDF brief “LibraryHost: Security and Scalability.”

Will my software be available 24/7?

LibraryHost has an excellent uptime record, with overall service reliability greater than 99.9%. Our network and servers are monitored continuously, and we purchase computing power only from top-tier infrastructure companies such as Amazon, RackSpace, and Linode. Our services are rarely interrupted except on a per-customer basis for scheduled maintenance and hardware and software upgrades.

Do you support SSL?

Yes, we support SSL (a.k.a. HTTPS or TLS) for your LibraryHost subdomain (your-name.libraryhost.com), which provides encrypted communication between your users and your software hosted by LibraryHost.

What is a cloud server?

The cloud is a model of computing where processing power and storage space are commoditized.

A few years ago, companies like LibraryHost needed to maintain a fleet of powerful servers, each of which was expensive to buy and maintain. Powerful hardware was required to withstand infrequent heavy loads, but it went to waste during the quiet periods, which often lasted most of the day. That old strategy was expensive and prone to single points of failure.

LibraryHost rents processing power and storage space separately from several larger companies like Amazon, RackSpace, and Linode who maintain a large network of servers worldwide and parcel out their power as a commodity. We rent exactly as much computing power as we need, and we can instantaneously rent additional power whenever it’s required.

The cloud makes it possible for us to host our customers' open-source software at affordable prices and with high reliability.

Payment

What payment options are supported?

You can pay via check, bank transfer, or credit card. We can bill against purchase orders. Since many of our customers are colleges and universities, we are very familiar with the particular invoicing/billing needs of large academic institutions.

How am I billed?

If you choose to purchase online, your credit card will be charged within 3 business days for your first term of service. Thereafter, your credit card will be charged monthly/yearly for the amount shown on the order page. If you pay by check or bank transfer, we will invoice you on the appropriate date.

We believe in 100% straightforward pricing and no processing or setup fees will ever be charged.

Can I try the software for free?

You sure can!

Free two-month trials

Free trials require a credit card, but you won’t be billed anything for the first two months of your trial. (We do this so that you can trial on a personal credit card if it’s a headache to pay with a company card.) You can cancel at any time before your two-month trial is over and you won’t pay a penny.

Extended trials (beyond two months)

After your first two months of free trial service, we hope you’ll have witnessed the benefits of LibraryHost and will be ready to sign up for one of our paid levels. However, if you need more time with our trial, you can extend your trial period for just $15/month for another four months.

Trial plans vs. full plans

Trial plans are intended to act as your own personal “sandbox” while you try out the software we host. In order to receive full backups, technical support, data migration, branding services, and other benefits, please sign up for a paid plan.

Can I cancel my contract?

Should you decide that you no longer require service from LibraryHost, you can cancel your account at any time, and any unused portion of your service contract will be refunded.

We will stop billing you the day you request account cancellation, though the actual process of cancelling your account will take up to 3 business days. Any refund due will be calculated from the day you requested to cancel your account.

Please note: Depending on your bank, refunds may take 1 to 7 days to be processed.

If I cancel my plan, what happens to my data?

Your data is very important to you and to us. If you cancel your plan with LibraryHost, we will keep your data safe and make arrangements to transfer the data to you.