In this following interview, we had the opportunity to speak with Mr. Alan Zabron, co-founder and senior admin of JVM Host, a hosting company.
Take a break and read this interview to learn more.
Can you tell us a bit more about the story behind JVM Host?
Alan: JVM Host was founded in 2010 by employees of another Java hosting company that was sold out to an investor who had their own staff. We were left without our jobs and it was a natural decision to continue our work but now under our own brand and with improved ability to drive it our way. We decided to focus on improving client satisfaction and the JVM management feature that was not provided in cPanel.
What were the challenges that you faced when you opened the company and how did you overcome them?
Alan: We had experience in almost all aspects of running a company so the main obstacle was to acquire and provide enterprise-grade hardware to our clients. As we had limited funds we started with a small set of legacy servers and another set of rented servers. This allowed us to keep collocation and renting costs at an appropriate level to get thru the first year. As the number of clients continued to grow we had enough funding to fully switch to owned hardware. We also had to quickly write our own Java Control Panel like the one we were using has been sold along with the company we were working for.
What are the main services and products of JVM Host?
Alan: We target clients who need to host applications that run in Java Virtual Machine. Such apps are usually written in Java or JSP but JVM also supports a few other programming languages like Jython, JRuby, Groovy, Clojure, Kotlin, Scala to name a few. In every hosting package, client receives a private JVM that can be managed from the command line or custom web interface. We are calling it Java Control Panel. The client can switch between a shared server (cPanel or Directadmin based) with private JVM, VPS, and dedicated server back and forth, and we help with migration when such a need arises.
Can you tell us a bit more about what Java Hosting means and how it is different from the other ways of hosting?
Alan: Java support is like an addition to usual hosting features. A simplified recipe can be: take a regular web host, then add a shell, private JVM, and a JVM management plugin to it. This way any client can consolidate non-Java and Java apps under a single account. JVM is like a small virtual machine inside a regular hosting account and thus such an account usually needs more resources (CPU, memory, IO) than a regular hosting account. We provide the resources (according to the package client orders) and help to solve any issues which may arise during deployment and runtime of applications.
Many customers are not familiar with the terms Java Hosting. What is your approach with those customers?
Alan: Well, not everyone needs Java hosting. Most hosting users are satisfied with regular hosting features. Those who want to host apps that need JVM to know what they are looking for and can find us easily. Regular hosts (usually giant companies) are not our competitors. If you ever need to publish Java/JSP-based web application and be able to use all regular hosting account features at the same time just type JVMhost in your search engine.
How important do you think customer service and customer satisfaction are for one hosting company?
Alan: These are basic terms, especially in small companies where every client counts and staff usually have a closer relationship with clients. Customer satisfaction was our goal from the beginning and user comments at HostAdvice are showing we care for them. Most packages come with a trial version so everyone can test at virtually no cost. The vast majority of users continue with regular packages after the trial expires. Satisfied customers will make our company going, refer their friends, post positive comments. Without them, we would be gone.
What are your plans for development and expansion in the following 5 years?
Alan: We entered the Directadmin plugin market and plan to continue building more plugins for this excellent hosting control panel. In addition to JVM we plan to offer GraalVM. This would add support for even more programming languages being run in a private VM. Other plans include rebuilding/merging the knowledgebase and articles section of our website and rewriting Java Control Panel to a more modern, featureful, and better-integrated version.
Where do you see the hosting industry moving in the following period?
Alan: Although the biggest players try to increase their market share I think in the nearest future there will be still space and demand for dedicated servers, regular hosting, niche hostings, and other managed hosting services. The services just need to match client requirements better than ever with support quality, uptime, redundancy, scalability, etc. Cloud or on-demand services are not a 'one size fits all solution.
Finally, is there anything else you would like to share with the hosting community?
Alan: I would like to invite everyone looking for a stable host with Java capabilities (private JVM) where clients are not just numbers but our small staff knows everyone who is contacting us for support. Of course, there are clients who do not contact support at all and so we know them less :). This year will celebrate our 11th anniversary and for your readers here are coupons valid till end of the year 2021:
• 11ANJ30 30% for JVM with cPanel products (Tomcat et al.)
• 11ANV50 50% for VPS products