Only 3 shared hosts ready for Rails 3.1? How lazy can we get?

Posted by Collin on 05/25/2011 in Rails Hosting Information, DreamHost, HostGator, and LiquidWeb.

For those of you who don’t know, and most of you do, having a host that updates Ruby on Rails with the latest framework and gems regularly is desirable. In this article we are taking a look at the hosts that going to hit the ground running with Rails 3.1 when it’s released. The results we find are astoundingly low. The update of Rails to 3.1 brings with it the implementation of “The Asset Pipeline”, which “makes CSS and JavaScript first-class code citizens and enables proper organization, including use in plugins and engines.” And many more features such as HTTP Streaming, default jQuery, Reversable Migrations, Mountable engines, Identity Map, Prepared statements, Rack::Cache on by default, Turn test-output on Ruby 1.9 ,Force SSL, Role-based mass-assignment protection, has_secure_password, and Custom serializers. Read on to find the champions of up to date Rails hosting.

#1 Dreamhost: Dreamhost prides themselves on keeping up to date with the latest framework updates. In short, Dreamhost stands ready to rock and roll. When questioned about how soon they will be moving to Rails 3.1 after its release date they responded with “we will when it’s released, but only after our admins test it”. Which should be comforting, considering you want the techs from your hosting provider to be up to date as well. ;)

#2 HostGator: HostGator keeps its servers up to date with the most recent software upgrades. When reached for comment they responded much the same as Dreamhost. “We try to upgrade our software as often as we can, but we will only upgrade when we are 100% sure the software is completely stable and compatible with our servers.” Again, testing is a good thing, due to the fact that your hosting company needs to be as understanding of the software they support as you are, if not more.

#3 LiquidWeb: Liquid web allows you to install anything Linux compatible on their dedicated servers with full root support. When contacted they stated “on dedicated servers you can install anything linux compatible” “we can also install it for you”.LiquidWeb offers fully managed Rails updates on VPS, shared, and dedicated servers, ensuring you will always be using the most up to date and secure software available.

So what’s the deal with the vast majority of hosts maintaining support that isn’t up to date? The answer is possibly laziness, and possibly due to the cost and effort required to actually keep up to date with software and support for and ever growing Rails community. I would say it’s a lack of commitment overall that leads back to something I talked about in my article "Rubyphobic? Why some web hosts hide Ruby while others feature it.". The majority of hosts are afraid to take the steps necessary to become a fully committed Ruby on Rails host, sad really.