iHost was started in 1997, by four Computer Science undergraduate students of Harvey Mudd College in California, as a web hosting site with just one Pentium 100 web server and a shared bandwidth. Since then, they have come a long way with owning 1,500 web servers and hosting more than 800,000 websites today.
iHost is essentially a green web hosting company which buys Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) to power their servers. A REC stands for 1,000 kWh worth of non-polluting energy generated by resources that can be replenished. With the use of these RECs, iHost makes use of renewable and clean energy to power their systems and hence help in reducing the emission of carbon into the environment. Their RECs have been certified by Green-e. But even then, there are some emissions that a company cannot avoid. To balance those emissions, iHost participates in Carbon Offsets which neutralizes these emissions by reducing them elsewhere. The EPA’s (Environmental Protection Agency) reviews agree with the fact that the offset purchase of iHost meets the standards set by the nation. iHost is also a member of EPA’s Green Power Partnership Program.
The datacenters of iHost are dedicated to following all the environmental friendly practices such as using recyclable coffee cups, turning off lights, reducing travel, using paper to the least and printing on its both sides, etc. The datacenters have also been making use of power-efficient AMD processors to run their servers.
They own the Certificate of Carbon Neutralization by The Green Office which acknowledges the immense effort put in by iHost to maintain itself as a green web hosting company. In fact, they also provide their customers to be able to put the “green site” icons on their websites which confirms that this website is hosted by a carbon-neutral green web hosting company.
iHost only provides Linux/Unix based hosting but the owners give reasons for it to, claiming that Unix based products best serve the internet. They offer one plan which costs $8.95 / month and includes unlimited disk storage, unlimited domains, unlimited email accounts, free domain registration and much more. There isn’t any flexibility in the plans they offer, but they do offer many additional upgrades to this one plan. They also provide free web hosting for non-profit organizations registered in the United States as long as they can provide the company with a valid RS-issued 501(c)(3) determination letter, which is a very charitable effort by iHost.
iHost also provides 24/7 customer support and an amazingly long 97-day guarantee, i.e., if someone doesn’t like their services, they can get a full refund if requested within 97 days of their purchase. Their guarantee is period is the longest any green web hosting company has offered yet. iHost is a full package and if one wants Linux based hosting, iHost is strongly recommended.