Good java/j2ee app shared hosting December 19, 2006Posted by javafoo in hibernate, java, java hosting, javanotes, struts basic.
…is non-existent. Sorry I let the title fool you. So, I have been working on this small project (struts, hibernate, mysql stack) on the side. No the project did not warrant the need of java, I could have hacked it in good ol’ perl/PHP/Python, take your pick. But the people(University of ..midwest) who wanted it done, thought java was cool and the help that I got, could only program in java (yes, this is the case mostly, you can hardly find programming language agnostic programmers these days). I digress, anyhow, the app was done, everything seemed to work on my trusty laptop. The demo went fine and the client asked to have it deployed. They left the hosting to me. Piece of cake huh! Hardly, I discovered. It’s the ‘E’ for enterprise in j2ee, it’s just not meant for shared web hosting, you are better off with dedicated servers and your own IS staff to maintain it. Most of the shared service providers will not give you your own java VM and/or tomcat/jboss/resin to play with, the security policy files are too restrictive(rightly so, it’s their server they don’t want you to muck around) and you will need to know all the libraries in your app that will need permissions (mostly by trial and error). The support staff are *nix demi-gods, most of them will reply promptly, even at unearthly hours(they need to get a life), but will draw a blank with any Java webapp help. All in all not a pleasant experience. Of course this has changed a bit now, there are some mature java webapp aware hosting providers out there, you can find them with a little googling. But it comes at a premium, not really helpful when you are on a budget. So if your project is small and you can get away with some simple scripting language-mysql magic, that can be hosted on the $19.99/month hosting service in the midwest, put your foot down, educate the client, stay away from java. Yeah, I know this piece of advice, coming from javafoo. But that’s how it is.