Vultr Review: Pros and Cons You Need to Know About It (2022)
Since the surge in popularity of the cloud, cloud hosting providers like Vultr have sprung up to provide customers with a suitable alternative.
After all, the cloud is the stuff of the future. It’s how the current internet works, and how it’ll likely continue to work in the future, or so we’re told.
Vultr was created in 2014 and specializes in cloud hosting. Vultr’s mission is to provide high-quality, cutting-edge technology.
“Our objective is to simplify the cloud,” they declare.
Vultr has served hundreds of thousands of customers and “spun up” over 30 MILLION cloud servers since its inception.
Vultr Review: Pros
Pro #1: Great performance
Performance is everything for hosting, especially if you’re looking for a cloud solution.
Aware of this, Vultr comes out swinging — it guarantees 100% network uptime:
Plus, Vultr will credit customers if uptime drops below what’s guaranteed:
The credits are pretty generous — and they show confidence in that 100% figure.
Now, does Vultr actually deliver on that guarantee?
A brief study of customer feedback will uncover certain performance issues. However, many of these concerns appear to be the result of errors on the part of the reviewer.
Vultr’s ACTUAL performance, for the most part, lives up to its own reputation.
Using Vultr’s server status page, you can observe how Vultr’s servers are performing internationally.
And, of course, there’s the “globally” part: in addition to cutting-edge software, Vultr can install cloud instances on physical servers all over the world.
As a result, you might obtain cloud hosting that is even faster than usual (though it does depend on where you are).
So all in all, performance is not an issue with Vultr…to say the least!
Pro #2: Nice range of quality cloud products
One of the coolest things about Vultr is that its product line isn’t too far from that of a standard, all-purpose hosting company:
Typically, a general-purpose hosting company will sell low-cost shared hosting, high-quality virtual private servers, high-quality cloud hosting, and eventually premium dedicated servers.
Vultr’s products, on the other hand, are all of superior quality because they are all cloud servers. But they still offer the same basic spectrum:
There’s also “Cloud Compute,” which is essentially a low-cost VPS package (or virtual private server). Then there’s “Dedicated Cloud” and “Bare Metal.”
The Dedicated Cloud and Bare Metal plans are extremely similar in that they both practically dedicate a server to you via the cloud.
The Dedicated Cloud differs in that it allows you to purchase a defined percentage of a dedicated server, such as 25%, 50%, or even the entire server.
Bare Metal, on the other hand, provides you with an entire server with complete access. Both allow you to keep dedicated resources that are only available to you, while Bare Metal gives you more control.
“Block Storage,” meanwhile, lets you add storage capacity to your hosting packages.
So there’s a solid spectrum along the lines of usability, cost, and performance that is similar to the traditional spectrum of hosting.
Pro #3: Overall, flexible pricing
Let me show you those products to explain.
First up, are the Cloud Compute packages. As I said, these are basically more affordable cloud VPS (virtual private servers).
In general, it’s very straightforward: you pay for the number of resources you want and are billed per hour of use at a certain rate:
Now, there are way more options than this. The max you can get with this package is 1,600 GB of storage, 24 cores, 96 GB of RAM, and 15 TB of bandwidth.
You can simply upgrade to a higher tier if you require more. You’ll be charged only for what you use, but at a higher hourly rate. You can add block storage if you only require storage.
There is no distinction between the monthly and hourly prices: divide the monthly price by 672 hours (equal to 28 days) to get the per-hour pricing.
This is far more flexible than yearly or even monthly contracts, which sometimes force customers to limit their usage or accept disproportionate price hikes for further usage.
And like I said if you want more storage space, but you’re satisfied with your RAM and bandwidth, or if you don’t need that much of a storage upgrade, block storage is the thing for you.
This is Vultr’s Block Storage product:
It’s as simple as that.
With the baseline price and bare minimum at $1 per 10GB, it costs just $0.10 to add 1GB.
This flexibility allows you to pay for just what you need:
This same basic concept of per-hour use applies to the remaining products Vultr offers.
The Bare Metal products (currently limited to one package at the time of this writing) and the Dedicated Cloud Instances have higher prices, as they’re more premium products, but are still billed per hour by a monthly cap.
Pro #4: Simple and clean interface
Vultr’s interface pulls a lot of weight, especially for setting up and deploying a server.
When you want to spin up an instance (deploy a virtual server), you’re given the option of where you want to deploy:
Then you just need to choose what operating system you want:
And if your preferred Linux distribution isn’t featured, you can just upload the one you want as a .iso file.
Additionally, you can install apps with one when setting up:
But beyond set-up, Vultr has created a clean and stylish control panel for users to manage their products.
Despite being simple in design, the control panel gives a lot of flexible settings and tons of information on the instances or servers.
The control panel also allows for team management and the allocation of privileges to additional users. Plus, it’s super easy to deploy more instances later on, even from a mobile.
Pro #5: Nice infrastructure
You can probably tell from Vultr’s general vibe thus far, but the company places a lot of emphasis on how high-tech it is.
Some highlights include the computer cores/CPUs, used for the Cloud Compute plans:
What they’re basically saying, is that these are very fast processors that can handle a lot more work — and they’re being used for even the affordable Cloud Compute plans.
On top of that, Vultr is constantly improving its security setup.
In fact, just before I started writing this, Vultr announced two improvements to its network security!
Essentially, they’re increasing the amount of encryption they use and agreed to uphold a set of standards that other tech industry companies have also agreed to.
So overall, Vultr’s infrastructure — physically and digitally — is pretty impressive, and it seems to be constantly getting better.
Vultr Review: Cons
Con #1: Not as beginner-friendly as it seems
Vultr’s stated objective is to “simplify the cloud,” as I previously stated. You’d believe they offered managed cloud hosting or at the very least dumbed-down cloud offerings if you didn’t know better.
No, the “simplify” option appears to be for folks who are already technically savvy and know exactly what they want in terms of cloud hosting.
If that describes you, Vultr offers basic hosting alternatives.
Otherwise, it will most likely be overly convoluted.
Let me give an example — here’s the overview of Vultr’s plans I showed you earlier. It’s from their home page:
If you’re not that familiar with cloud computing, how much sense would this make to you?
But that’s just a surface-level point.
The thing is, Vultr is NOT providing managed solutions. This means that you get the advantages of a lower price, but you also have to handle your server yourself.
To its credit, Vultr has some things to make deploying and configuring servers easier, like a simple and clean interface (as mentioned).
In general, choosing a location, choosing an OS, adding features — as I showed earlier — is a straightforward matter.
So I’m not saying it’s useless, especially because the fundamentals are simple. Even with Vultr’s modern management panel, beginners may find it difficult to manage simply the Cloud Compute plans.
The Bare Metal and Dedicated Cloud options, on the other hand, are clearly geared toward the more tech-savvy consumer. But, as is the case with such designs in general, I don’t believe there is much more to say about them.
The short version is that Vultr is still suitable for beginners, but those with a basic understanding of hosting will benefit the most from Vultr’s “simplification.”
The Cloud Compute/entry products wouldn’t be too bad for beginners…if customer support were better. So on that note:
Con #2: Support is iffy
If you Google for reviews of Vultr, you’ll quickly find that a lot of users have at best “mixed” reviews.
We don’t need to look far to see evidence of this — you can even find it right on Vultr’s Facebook page.
Some of these reviews have to do with complaints about billing and server issues.
However, to be blunt, a lot of these have to do with a lack of understanding on the part of customers, on what Vultr says it will do and what it offers.
But, a VERY common complaint is that support is sub-par.
Part of this is because Vultr does not offer live chat or phone support (at the time of this writing), so the only way to contact support is to use an email/ticket system.
Looking more closely, I don’t think Vultr’s support representatives are that bad, but it’s hard to say they’re good enough given the consistent complaints about them.
I’d like to say that Vultr has strong support information to compensate for its weakness in representative support.
But that’s not quite the case. Vultr’s onsite info is pretty decent if you’re already a developer:
The center and right sections are the most robust, which is good for the more technical users.
But if you’re less technically minded — and using, for example, the Cloud Compute plans — then you don’t have many resources to consult.
The FAQs cover important questions, but they leave a lot out, and the answers are very short in any case:
Plus, sometimes the answers to FAQs are less clear and read like advertisements.
Don’t get me wrong: the FAQ still contains useful information. However, it falls short of the requirements for a less tech-savvy user to use the service.
This is partly determined by your preconceptions of Vultr. The onsite materials are adequate if viewed in the context of being only for expert users.
However, it appears to me that Vultr is geared toward more skilled users, but it still strives to simplify and provide services for those who are less knowledgeable — and it still has work to do in this area.
Con #3: Higher-end plans are less available globally
One of the great things about Vultr is that it has high-quality cloud hosting available for customers all over the world.
And if you want a Cloud Compute package, you’re in luck: you get to choose from over 17 locations globally:
But if you want a Bare Metal plan?
You’re down to 7, with only one location in Europe and one in Asia.
And if you want a Dedicated Cloud plan/instance, it’s even less:
With just three locations in the U.S. and one in Japan.
It’s not the end of the world. But if you live outside the U.S., you may find you don’t have as solid a set of options for the Dedicated Cloud or Bare Metal plans.
Don’t despair too much, though!
Vultr is still growing and adding new locations. In fact, they added their 17th location as recently as May:
Con #4: Lack of info about security
To be clear, lack of information about security does NOT mean lack of security.
I’ve found Vultr to have a website that at times seems to put important info in weird places. So it could very much be an issue on the part of the marketing and PR side of things.
However, information about the security of your host is important. Our data centers physically protected? Are there guards? Cameras, at least?
Vultr does say there’s 24/7 monitoring, but how intense is that monitoring, and how much of it is for security?
Like I said earlier, Vultr’s infrastructure is solid, and they introduce new security features regularly. So we have some information, but it’s scattered.
Again, I won’t accuse Vultr of being deficient in security without evidence. But it’s not good that they lack easily accessible information about the state of their security.
Vultr Review: Do we recommend Vultr?
So at the end of the day, is Vultr a company I recommend?
The answer IS “yes.” But it’s a conditional “yes.”
First and foremost, Vultr is a service that beginners ought to be wary of. Ultimately, I do believe even newbies to the cloud can figure it out, thanks to the simple interface.
However, cloud hosting is generally more advanced than regular web hosting, and Vultr doesn’t have much aside from a slick interface to make things easier for beginners — including sub-par customer support.
But, if you’re familiar with the cloud, Vultr is great.
Not only is the pricing itself very good, but the pricing system is also as well. Things such as block storage also allow customers to get the most value out of the cloud without overpaying.