I previously wrote a glowing review for this company in December 2009 on another review site. However, the acid test of a company is how it responds when something goes seriously wrong with their systems and procedures.
On 1st September I raised a support ticket as I was unable to access my VPS that I use for a small number of clients requiring Windows hosting. It transpired that the VPS had been 'lost' during a migration together with the image backup I had created, resulting in total loss of all custom installed applications and data. The excuse offered was 'a communication error on our behalf'.
If this were not bad enough, the offer of compensation was merely to create a new VPS and give me a month free. Naturally I made an attempt to negotiate an improvement on this offer, including 3 months free hosting, credit of fees since the failed migration and a new VPS package that included DotNetPanel to make setup and restoration quicker.
The response was "I am going to refund your payments from the migration date. Please find a new host."
I was somewhat taken aback by this attitude toward a customer, especially given an excellent relationship up to this point. Perhaps it was a knee jerk reaction at the end of a long day? (our dialogue had stretched 14 hours). I gave Ultimahosts one further opportunity to consider their response and confirm that they really did wish to just jettison a customer in such a manner. This was confirmed by the refund of 2 payments (I maintain that this is at least one payment short) and a comment that the issue is "now closed and will no longer garner any response from our support team".
Readers may agree that such an extreme failure in a company's duty of care toward a customer's data through their admitted negligence, and the resulting havoc created, warrants a claim for financial compensation for expenses incurred that would, in all likelihood, be upheld by a court.
I am based in the UK and since taking out my contract I had dealt with Ultimahosts Europe Ltd. Enquiries in the last couple of days have revealed that this branch of the company was dissolved at Companies House on 6th July 2010 and all operations appear to now be handled from the USA. Customers were never notified of this, merely that a "Simplified Billing and Support System" was being introduced. This was advised via their ticketing system, also on 6th July. It required a new account login. I note that the UK operation is still listed as active on their website.
It would appear that UK customers have been 'migrated' to the USA without their knowledge and any attempt at legal recourse for catastrophic events will be impossible to expedite.
I have a full record of all my discussions with the company on this issue, having had the foresight to save locally the webpage for the Ticket under which the discussions took place before they unilaterally closed my account - in so doing they were actually in breach of their own T&C by failing to give 30 days notice.
Biggest Con: Incompetence at losing data through negligence and subsequent attitude to customers