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Hear from our web hosting expert, Claire Broadley.
See what 15 Dataflame customers have to say.
Compare the best Dataflame hosting plans and their prices.
By Claire Broadley
Creating websites since 1996, and tested numerous hosting companies over the last ten years.
Dataflame is a UK web hosting company that focuses on small business customers. It offers low-cost, entry-level shared hosting front and center, with the option to upgrade to plans with higher capacity.
The company was founded by Duncan Knapper, and subsequently acquired by Paragon Internet Group in 2015. Paragon owns a huge selection of brands, including Tsohost, Vidahost, 5quidhost, Webfaction, Dataflame, Elastichosts, Mr Site, and Hostroute. In turn, Paragon itself is owned by the Host Europe Group.
Dataflame offers shared hosting for businesses across four price plans. Although allowances are generous, Dataflame limits the number of websites that you can create. It's notable that backups are included, and the backup feature includes self-restore. This is reasonably rare on shared hosting plans. Site migrations are free, regardless of the control panel or software you are using at your old host.
WordPress hosting is available with very similar specs to shared. Again, the number of websites is very limited.
VPS and dedicated servers are lumped together on one page, as are the Linux and Windows variants for each. Paragon owns its own datacenter, so it's somewhat surprising that only two dedicated servers are on offer.
There are three reseller plans on sale at Dataflame, all with unlimited customers and bandwidth allowance. However, you're limited to the number of websites you can create, which means you can't resell beyond that figure without upgrading your plan.
Dataflame's About page refers to 100% uptime, but this is misleading, because uptime isn't actually mentioned on the hosting pages. In the Terms of Service, there's a 99.9% uptime guarantee, but we found a reference to 99.99% uptime at checkout. It would be wise to clarify this figure if uptime is important to you.
Paragon has its own datacenter in Slough, UK, which is where customers' websites are hosted. There doesn't appear to be any other datacenter option for customers elsewhere.
Support is offered by an in-house team 24/7 via phone, email, and ticket. Dataflame says that all tickets are answered within 24 hours.
VPS and dedicated server plans come with cPanel. But it appears that shared hosting, WordPress hosting, and reseller hosting does not. Dataflame provides an overview of its control panel on its shared hosting page.
While Dataflame will help you to import data from cPanel or Plesk to its own cloud hosting control panel, it doesn't look like there is an export option to transfer data the other way. If you want to move hosts later, this could make it difficult to take your data with you.
If you change your mind about hosting with Dataflame, it offers a 60-day money-back guarantee, "no questions asked." Drilling down into the small print, Dataflame says that you'll need to provide a reason for your dissatisfaction, and it will refund you if it can't help.
If you cancel after this period, you'll get a credit for full unused months on shared hosting only. There are no cash refunds.
Like many of its sister brands, Dataflame specializes primarily in business hosting, and the backup provision is a welcome bonus. The cancellation policy is unusual, and other hosts do better in this area. Before purchasing, compare Dataflame's business hosting with competing hosts that offer a UK datacenter option.
Was this review helpful? Yes | No
Just reading the previous comments on Dataflame and must say I'm disappointed others feel that way. I've been with Dataflame for nearly three years now, hosting over 40 websites with them on a reseller package. The uptime, whilst not 100%, doesn't pose any errors and any down-time isn't for too long.
Their support is one of the best things about Dataflame. If I have a problem, my first port of call is the live chat function on the company's web site, and I always get a response and 99% of the time my problem resolved there and then within that conversation. All in all, Dataflame provide a happy hosting experience and I have no qualms or inclination to sever any ties to them.
Although the hosting does come with cPanel, Dataflame are happy to make any required amendments to your server set-up, i.e. if you need a PHP module enabling/installing, etc. It's this level of human interaction that makes me appreciative of the service Dataflame provides, while also feeling I'm being looked after rather than at the mercy of some multinational organization who doesn't care much for individuals.
My website was built using web builder (WB). Recently the WB software was upgraded which meant that I could no longer make changes to my site... having fought for a week - the company had no backup - was no real help - didnt give me the impression of helping me - my site is now live with no ability to be amended, changed etc.
I have been let down badly and am looking at changing host for my site. I rely on this for my income and losing a 55 page site "just like that" and to be told "oh just start again" is not good enough. Pros - UK based server; 24 hour support; cheap; reliable servers. Cons - Potential to destroy your business!
I've used Dataflame for a very long time now. I've had very little in the way of issues and I've always had excellent support when I've needed it. I would and have recommended them to others as well
I have been with Dataflame flame for several years and the main reason for staying is the quality of the 24/7 technical support. The only real negative experience I have had was that I was using the free Cloudflare service which, as far as I could see, was protecting my sites from attack whilst also reducing the bandwidth that Dataflame had to cope with. However, there was a downside, whilst Cloudflare effectively stopped volume of attacks I was experiencing on all of my sites (so much that my sites were frequently unavailable) Dataflame Tech Support couldn't give me attention during that period because Cloudflare depended on my directing DNS settings to their site so I was obliged to abandon what seemed to me to be a free service that benefited both me and, indirectly, Dataflame too.
In short, I think it would have been better if Dataflame had looked more closely at what Cloudflare offers. I would add,that the Clourflare service was free but I would gladly have paid a monthly subscription to keep the rogue attacks at bay.
Absolutely horrendous!!! I paid for a year and cancelled after a month. they refused to refund me the other 11 months worth of payment which I had already given them.
The security was so bad that I had to delete all my sites. Support was also terrible. They don't have a clue what they are doing and they are very slow. Scott Pringle
Over the last week or two there have been times when I needed to contact technical support, once due to my own stupidity having made a change to DNS that messed things up. The other was a more serious issue that put my site off line for a number of hours. Barry at Dataflame support was incredibly patient with me, worked tirelessly and with his help my site is now back up and running. whenever I have had a problem with pantsunderwearstore.com Dataflame support have sorted things out quickly they have helped me with other issues relating to my server (mostly caused by my lack of knowledge and the service has always been unbeatable.
I have been with this company since 2005 and was reasonably happy with the service. They have recently however changed the terms and conditions of my contract without telling me. I pay the same fee every year I just get much less for it, Dataflame insist they have the right to change policy as and when they please.
I always thought a contract was a contract. They would also charge me a fortune to leave them, I feel like my web sights have been imprisoned.
I have had nothing but good experiences with Dataflame even when there has been problems. Their live chat has always been answered quickly in my experience and always with a couple of minutes at most. Their staff are patient and have always sorted out even the daftest or most serious problems.
I've had no noticeable downtime, and my latest problem was sorted by the fab Adrian. I have been with Dataflame two years and as I only have simple websites, for me they are perfect. I am currently on the Cloud 3000 service which gives me ample of everything.
We've been using Dataflame for several years now and can confirm the consistency of their high quality Live Support. All hours and very patient and understanding. Highly recommended.
After many years experience as a web developer and administrator these people gave the worst service that I have ever experienced in any industry. Their staff are inept, insulting, rude and happily break as many of Icann's regulations as they can ! They are cheap, but they'll cripple your company while you try to sort out their service, don't bother unless you want to deliberately bankrupt your company !
When we tried to move the domains to another registrar they put up as many hurdles as possible to make things difficult for us, including locking the domain as inactive even though we had paid them for another years registration and a transfer fee so that we could transfer. For days they denied that the domain was inactive, even though their own who-is service reported the domain as inactive. This was only resolved, under protest from them, when our new registrar phoned them up to tell them to stop being childish and spiteful. I wouldn't trust them to supply toilet paper let alone an internet domain registration and hosting service !
been a custmer since 2006 and for the first couple of years things were very good. After that they decided to amke changes to their systems without telling us, the customers leaveing me with inaccessible website and deleted all of my emails etc. The help offered to sort out the mess they had caused was alomsy non-existent and this sort of problem occurred about every 2 years since then.
I have has to spend good money with proprietary software providers to undo the harm doen by Dataflames upgrades and not once did I get an apology, just the excuse that it is for my own good. QWell, hackers would do less damage to my business than they di. The final straw was their last upgrade 2 years ago that stopped me accessing my website and yet customers still could so i got a heap of flack and no money. 1 person at dataflame did attempt to put righ the damage but it was terminal so I had no alternative to take down my we site completely.
No apology from Dataflame nor an explanation of what they had done so I would then have the opportunity to pay someone else to put things right again. On the plus side over the entire period they were the cheapest and originally I would have recommended them. Not any more due to continuous changes.
I only use dataflame to host my email domain and manage my emails. The service is cheap and appears to offer lots of features though I don't use them. Uptime for what I need is pretty good.
BUT every time I have need to contact them for support I'm left no better off and very angry. The support staff often don't read what you have written asking questions that you have answered several times before. There initial stance is that there is nothing wrong with their servers and will come up with all sort of wacky ideas to suggest that the fault lies with you rather than them.
If you want something cheap for non-critical use and can tolerate unhelpful, patronising, unskilled and teflon-coated support staff then Dataflame maybe for you. If you need is more critical or you think you will need help then look elsewhere.
Dataflame is cheap. My package gives me loads of features for the money but to be honest I only use it to host my email. Fine when it works.
Where they fall down is with support. Dataflame CS are rude and slopey shouldered. According to them their systems are perfect and nothing is ever their fault - always someone else.
Some times it verges on patronising. For example, I current have a problem with a couple of friends sending me emails from Gmail and AOL accounts which are bounced never reaching the Dataflame servers. I admit that it may not be a Dataflame problem but I was shocked by their response when I asked.
They declared that it must be a problem at my end, my Firewall, my router or my ISP. Now given that these emails sent by my friends never reach the dataflame mail server it is very childish to suggest that the problem is at my end. The emails never get anywhere near me so for Dataflame to suggest that it is my firewall or router either demonstrates a basic failure to understnd networking or an extremely dismissive and patronising nature. Nigel
Dataflame was the first hosting company I ever used. At first I thought my issues were common with website owners, but as it turned out it was just Dataflame's bad, almost non-existent, custom service and downtime. I also don't like the deceitful way they pretend that they are in the US as well.
I had accounts with both dataflame.co.uk and dataflame.com. One was advertised as being in the UK and the other in the US. But whenever I contacted either, I was always speaking to someone in the UK.
They brag about their 24/7 customer service which is what I need because I'm in a different time zone. But whenever I contacted their online chat window, all the staff told me to do was come back when their offices were open. I did complain once that their customer service was supposed to be available all day every day, but they replied by saying that unless their offices were open, there was no staff available to deal with my issues.
And my websites suffered a lot of down time. I lost a lot of money because my websites and email addresses weren't available. Sometimes the downtime would happen day after day after day.
And the staff didn't seem concerned at all or in any rush to get my sites back up and running. They were also difficult to deal with whenever I wanted to move my domain name to another hosting company. They charged me 15GBP to move each of the domain names.
They had to provide me with the EEP key for each domain. Instead of providing it straight away when I'd paid the 15GBP hostage fee, they would take up to a week to email it to me. The hosting company I'm with now say they don't charge people for the EEP key.
Dataflame also stole money from me. I joined their affiliate program (at first, for a couple of years before I knew better). I was told I'd receive 35 GBP for any referrals who bought a hosting package.
In just a few weeks I'd earned 105GBP. Their payout amount was 140GBP so I only needed to sell one more hosting package to collect my money. But the next package I sold, they only gave me 10 GBP.
I emailed and asked why. They said they'd changed their affiliate commissions to a percentage and I'd only sold a small package so had only earned a small commission. I argued several times that their website stated that affiliates could earn 30GBP (they must have lowered it from 35).
They wouldn't answer my emails. My affiliate account didn't receive any more commissions for over a year, even though I know for definite that someone I knew had clicked on my affiliate link and bought a hosting package. We did it just to see how honest Dataflame really was.
It turned out they weren't honest at all. To this day, my affiliate account with them is still sitting there with 115GBP in it and they won't release the money to me. I've asked them several times over the years to pay me my money but they always reply and say that until it reaches the payout amount, I can't have it.
The money has been sitting there for 6 years now. I helped them get business and they cheated me out of my commissions. Very sly, very sneaky, very underhand, and it's just plain stealing.
I absolutely hate Dataflame and wouldn't recommend them to anyone, not even my worst enemy (well...maybe them). They not only cost me money with so much downtime for my websites, they stole money by cheating me out of my affiliate commissions. The only good thing I have to say about them is that they helped to teach me a valuable lesson. I learned not to trust Dataflame.
Features are pretty standard for a cPanel-managed hosting service, nothing too special. Uptime is OK but not great. Support Sucks sucks sucks.
Every time there is a problem their 1st line support are so reluctant to escalate the issue that it takes hours of stupid and pointless by-the-book questions before they even accept that there is a problem. If you are a system and networking savvy techie and you try and help with technical information or suggestions the support staff have no idea what to do with it because Dataflame they are too cheap to pay for a decent level of technical understanding in their support staff. Right now I am still waiting for them to sort out a DNS issue after my service has been down for 20 hours (two websites and 8 email addresses).
Q. What kind of customer is this host suitable for? A.
One with more money than sense. Q. Would I recommend Dataflame to friends?
A. No, I want to keep my friends. I started using Dataflame a number of years ago and they were actually pretty good.
Obviously they are an example of success being the mother of complacency. I'm changing to another hosting company Right now.
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