Canvas Host has recertified as a B Corporation!

b-scoreCanvas Host just completed its 2015 B Corporation re-certification. As part of the certification process, we answered hundreds of questions in the B Impact Assessment (BIA). Questions were broken into five main categories covering our operations: Environment, Workers, Customers, Community, and Governance. A sampling of questions were randomly audited.

Upon completion of the assessment, we received a B Impact Report score on a scale of 0 to 200. To put it into perspective:

  • An average businesses score 50 points.
  • A certified B corporation is required to score a minimum of 80 points.
  • Canvas Host scored 109 points! We’re thrilled to have reached a new level of B performance in our business.

View our B Impact Report:
http://www.bcorporation.net/community/canvas-host

So… why are we a B?

Like other B corporations, we operate on triple bottom line principles (people, planet, profit), not just profit alone. Additionally, we embrace a philosophy of business with purpose that goes far beyond our mission statement and addresses how we benefit (or impact) our environment, community, employees, stakeholders, and customers. We’re held to a higher standard, with legal structures in their operating agreement requiring that we consider the impacts of our decisions. It’s a higher level of accountability, and certainly the challenge of a higher bar of performance that we have chosen to meet.

If every business was a B, the world would be very different. Imagine companies with purpose addressing concerns that effect others around them: Education, poverty, environmental responsibility, social justice, advocacy for underserved communities, a spirit of community service and volunteerism… the list is endless.

We want to see a world in which companies care just as much as you and I do about taking care of our planet, starting with our own decisions.

That’s why we’re a B.

How can you get involved?

Whether you’re a business or non-profit, a school or hotel, a freelancer or a mega-corporation, you and your colleagues can get involved in the B community. Whether you have the legal means to inact the B Corporation requirements, there are things you can do to help the B movement!

For more information on B Corporations, we invite you to visit B Labs’ website:
http://www.bcorporation.net/

B Labs’ website maintains a public directory of all certified B Corporations. If you want to support the B community, a great way is to connect with B Corporations or consider using their business for your needs:
http://www.bcorporation.net/community/find-a-b-corp

If you’re interested in taking the 20-minute Quick Impact Assessment, please visit this site:
http://bimpactassessment.net/quick

And to go for the full assessment, please visit:
http://bimpactassessment.net/

Canvas Host is also a registered Oregon Benefit Company, a legal state entity recognizing the qualifications we undertook as a B Corporation. Benefit companies in all 50 states, and every country worldwide, are the ultimate goal of B Labs’ efforts. If you have any questions about B Corporations, please contact us with your questions. Together, we can B the Change.

– David Anderson

p.s. B Corps get 25% off their first hosting order! Contact us for details. :)


On WordPress Plugins and Hosting Security

wordpress

As a hosting platform, Canvas Host’s network is home to thousands of WordPress websites. WordPress runs well in our environment and saves our customers tons of headaches and costs compared to building and maintaining a website from scratch.

In part, WordPress’ ease of publishing is due to its extensive, user-supported plugin library. With more than 100,000 ready-to-use WordPress plugins — many of which are completely free — it is increasingly possible to build a website customized to each customer’s individual need. You name it, there’s likely a plugin for it.

That said, plugins are also one of the top threats facing your website’s security. Not all plugins are rigorously tested. Sometimes they contain unknown weaknesses — known as vulnerabilities — which hackers and automated scripts can prey upon. In these instances, your website can be secretly hacked without any advance warning.

When we learn a website has been hacked, we often discover it is a website running an old version of WordPress, else it was using untested or new plugins that hackers have found a way to break. Regardless of the cause, a hacked website in our network presents a risk to all other customers on that server and it must be suspended immediately, without question. By “suspending” a website, we’re not ending your service, nor are we declining your business. Instead, a suspended website cannot serve web pages (which may contain phishing scripts or viruses), process PHP or CGI scripts (which may process stolen credit cards or send out spam), or send or receive email (which may contain viruses and other nefarious email contents. The domain is still accessible via web browsers with a message that it is “currently undergoing maintenance”.

While the website is suspended, our team communicates with you by opening a Support ticket, as well as first trying calling you directly to inform you as fast as possible that your website is having some problems and that we had to suspend it. We’ll do what we can to assist in determining the cause of the issue, including looking at server logs, and performing a quick scan of your website to try to pinpoint the issue. We’ll talk with your webmaster or webmistress to help them sort out the issue. If you do not have a web developer, we are available for immediate consulting work.

Here are some tips to protect your WordPress website:

  1. Keep WordPress updated
  2. Keep all WordPress plugins updated
  3. Research new WordPress plugins first to confirm they are safe and written by a trusted developer
  4. If in doubt, perform some basic research online or “Google” your plugin to see if there are known issues
  5. Ask your web host – we may already have an answer for you!

I recognize that anything impeding your business is costing you time and money. We want to deliver you reliable, secure hosting service with tools to ease you on your way. In order to ensure that reliability and security, we have to take a proactive approach to police our network, identify threats, and respond as quickly as possible.

As your web host, we are your partner and we’ll do whatever we can to help you succeed online. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you more.

Thank you,

David Anderson


End of our $4.99 domains deal for .COM and .NET

Wow, what a month it’s been!

When we launched our latest domain deal, we had no idea how popular it would be. The terms were $4.99 domains on the first year of new .COM or .NET domain registrations. The deal was to run through March 31, or when we reached 2,000 domains.

Today, we hit 2,000 and the special offer ended 8 days early.

We’re so thankful for the support and business you’ve shown us. Though this offer has expired, you can still take advantage of great domain offers through our website. Some of the hottest, newest domain extensions are available as cheap as $7.98 for the first year!

Take a look if you get a chance:

LIMITED OFFER: New domains as low as $7.98/year!
.ACTOR .DANCE .NINJA .PUB .REVIEWS .ROCKS .SOCIAL  View Terms

$7.98 Domain Special Promotion Terms

By taking part in the promotion you agree to Canvas Host's terms and conditions.

  • This offer is valid on the first year of new .ACTOR, .DANCE, .NINJA, .PUB, .REVIEWS, .ROCKS, and .SOCIAL domain registrations.
  • This offer applies to new sales only and is not applicable for renewals.
  • This offer is valid to all customers and new customers.
  • Domains renew at their normal, non-discounted rates after the initial contract period has completed.
  • Offer will run until the April 30, 2015.
  • Canvas Host reserves the right to end this offer at any time.
  • Normal cancellation policies apply.
  • All of our standard Terms and Conditions for other services apply and take precedence over these terms where there may be a conflict.
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Thank you again,

David Anderson


Explaining website storage and bandwidth

At Canvas Host, we measure everything. It’s how we stay on top of our operations, the health of our network, and the performance of our servers. All of this directly helps us provide our customers with the best service possible.

Unlike many web hosts, we do not oversell, meaning, we don’t offer “unlimited” plans in which we give away impossible amounts of storage and bandwidth, and hedge our bets against a handful of customers hogging network resources and ruining the fun for everyone. Instead, we place hard limits (quotas) on our hosting plans for much storage space you can use, and how much traffic your website can receive.

We offer generous amounts of both storage and bandwidth in all of our plans, but it can be hard to understand what that means. We created the following examples using our basic hosting Plan A, to explain website storage and bandwidth, and to show you just how much you can do with even our most basic plan.

1) Plan A includes 3GB of storage

3 Gigabytes is equal to 3,072 MB (Megabytes). That’s equal to:

  • 314,572 email messages, or
  • 20,480 web pages, or
  • 12,288 web-resolution images, or
  • 1,228 print-quality images, or
  • 614 video files

For an average user, 1GB is more than enough space for a website with images, high resolution videos, and multiple emails with thousands of email messages.

Hosting Plan A permits you up to 3 distinct websites. With this plan level, you could set up three (3) websites, each with the following:

  • 250 pages or WordPress blog posts (37.5MB)
  • 200 web-resolution images (50MB)
  • 80 print-quality images (20MB)
  • 20 video files (100MB)
  • 5 email accounts, each with 5,000 messages (625MB)

For the average website owner, Plan A offers ample storage space.

2) Plan A includes 60GB of monthly bandwidth (data transfer)

Any time someone visits your website, they download a copy of your pages, images, and other content to their web browser. Any time you send someone email, that data is sent between your website and the recipient. The term “bandwidth” (also known as “data transfer”) measures how much data each month is downloaded from your website via the Canvas Host network.

60 Gigabytes is equal to 61,440 MB (Megabytes). That’s equal to:

  • 61,440,000 emails sent
  • 409,600 page downloads (pageviews)
  • 240,576 web-resolution image downloads
  • 24,576 print-quality image downloads
  • 12,288 movie downloads

Of course, no one is going to send 61 million emails through a shared hosting plan. Actual bandwidth usage typically breaks down to:

  • 60-70% web traffic
  • 10-25% video/file download
  • 1-5% email traffic

And all that boils down to the number you actually are looking for: how many visitors per month?

  • About 50,000 monthly visitors

For all of our plans, we email notify customers whenever they reach 80%, 85%, 90%, 95%, and 98% of their monthly bandwidth. Additionally, customers can always check on their hosting plan usage by logging into their website’s Cpanel console, else by logging into our online Support site, which reports on current usage.

For the average website owner, Plan A offers ample website storage and bandwidth. If your website is near the limit, a simple chat with our Support team may help free up space, or our Sales team can optionally upgrade you to the next plan level up.

Thank you,
David Anderson

—–

Assumptions for the examples on this article:

  • 5MB Average video file size
  • 2.5MB Average print-quality image size
  • 250KB Average web-resolution image size
  • 150KB Average website page size
  • 10KB Average email message size


New Staff: Meet James Bell

James BellWe’re excited to introduce James Bell. He’s joined our team to assist with bookkeeping and payroll. James has a background in Accounting, but approaches numbers with a creative mind. He said it best when describing finance management: It’s part art, part science. If you have a chance to speak with James, we hope you’ll welcome him to the team.

One more thing — we now have two “JB’s” (James Brown is in our Technical Support team as Hostmaster/Tier 2 Support). If you get the two confused, don’t feel bad, I found myself doing some double-takes this week. :)

Thank you,
David Anderson, Owner