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The first question crossing your mind might be: “ColdFusion, people are still using that? I didn’t know it still existed!”
Chances are, if you were searching for this topic, you are one of those companies who saw its value, and for whatever reason, still wish to continue using it.
What Is ColdFusion?
ColdFusion is a server-side application language for delivering dynamic content to websites.
Despite the fact that its popularity has waned in favor of newer languages, it remains in use largely because it allows rapid development in a user-friendly (easy to understand) scripting language.
It has its own CFML (ColdFusion Markup Language) syntax which closely resembles HTML and XML, making it easy to read, while at the same time making use of the power of a Java virtual machine, which enables it to run easily in both Linux and Windows operating systems.
It also integrates well with Adobe’s other suite of products, making for instance, PDF creation quite easy and seamless without the need of other additional add-ons or plugins which are common in other languages.
Is ColdFusion Dead?
Contrary to popular belief, ColdFusion is still alive. Like almost all programming languages, it may likely never completely die.
ColdFusion was once a popular web programming language, enabling users to create dynamic content without having to rely on the existing CGI frameworks of the day.
It enabled one to generate pages on the back end and serve dynamic content to users upon request.
There are now many other technologies which also do this, and many of them have taken over in popularity. These are namely PHP, ASP, .NET, Ruby and others.
Many companies who adopted ColdFusion have continued to use it due to several factors, ranging from complex embeddedness into existing systems, or simply because of an “if it isn’t broken, why fix it” approach.
On top of this, development is still continuing, with new versions having been released within the last two years. For these reasons, while its popularity may be waning, it will likely continue to live on in some form.
The Best Web Hosts Still Supporting ColdFusion
Due to its wane in popularity, it can be a bit difficult to find reliable web hosting services which continue to provide access. The vast majority of web hosts no longer provide this service.
However, there are still a few that are focused specifically on providing this service, some of whom are specialists, and some of whom are partnered directly with Adobe.
Listed below are 4 of the best ColdFusion web hosting services still on the market today:
DailyRazer – Affordable ColdFusion Hosting Plans
www.dailyrazor.com has provided ColdFusion hosting since 2004. They boast 99.9% uptime, and around the clock professional technical support.
They provide support for Coldfusion 10, 9, and 8, and integration with many more features, including CF Image, and more.
They provide three hosting tiers starting at $8/month, all of which come with the Plesk control panel, and free SSL security.
Visit DailyRazor’s website to learn more about their ColdFusion hosting plans.
CFdynamics – Powerful ColdFusion Hosting
www.cfdynamics.com has a central part of its mission to focus on ColdFusion.
They provide a suite of tools, including office integration, and AJAX tools to enable you to make the most out of your ColdFusion hosting.
All packages include free installation and/or transfer, and the most recent version of ColdFusion.
They provide connections to both MySQL and MS Access databases, as well as .NET integration and automated site backups. They allow you to run earlier versions of ColdFusion if it is necessary for your applications.
Visit CFdynamic’s website to learn more about their ColdFusion hosting plans.
Media3 – Popular Choice for ColdFusion Hosting
www.media3.net is a specialist in the platform that has been working with ColdFusion since it was first created in 1996.
In fact, they use ColdFusion themselves for their own website, and all of their back-office operations, including billing, support, and control panel functions.
They include Fusion Reactor activation and automated setup of security within the sandbox.
If you are concerned with ColdFusion being phased out, Media 3 is an excellent choice as they intend to keep it as a central part of their business.
They are partnered with Adobe, and regularly sponsor the ColdFusion summit in Las Vegas.
Visit Media3’s website to learn more about their ColdFusion hosting plans.
Coalesce – Suitable for Large Organizations
www.coalesceservices.com uses the power of Amazon’s AWS to host your ColdFusion application.
The advantages of web hosting on AWS are extremely good for large organizations who need to be able to have flexible and powerful cloud-based hosting.
Coalesce provides customized hosting services, helping you configure AWS cloud-based hosting to be able to run Cold Fusion.
They work with Adobe to build ColdFusion AMIs. They provide full managed services to make the entire process as painless as possible, while giving you the full range of services that AWS provides.
Visit Coalesce’s website to learn more about their ColdFusion hosting plans.
How to Choose the Best ColdFusion Hosting Plan for You
When choosing a hosting company for your ColdFusion website, there are a few factors that you should likely consider, as these can be crucial for assuring your success.
The number one question you should probably be asking should surround support.
As ColdFusion is a lesser-used technology these days, it may be difficult to ensure that you will be able to get the technical help you need should a problem arise. Determine to what degree they are committed to working with ColdFusion developers.
Also important is whether they support older versions of ColdFusion, as there are some differences between the versions.
Extremely important is a long-term commitment. Some companies may be intending to phase support for ColdFusion out, which could cause you some problems in the long run.
Transferring hosts can be a time-consuming process, so it’s in your interest to determine whether support for ColdFusion is part of their long-term plans.
Website speed is important! Are the application servers up to date? Are they correctly configured to deliver your site’s content quickly? Do they have any objective testing results to backup their claims of site speed?
Ask them for what benchmarks they use for performance so that you can compare them against their competition.
Do they provide clustering of application, database and web components? If your site expects high-volume transactions during certain periods, this can increase the availability of your site during peak times.
If you are transferring your site over from a different provider, find out if there is a charge for any assistance in the migration and/or the setup time.
Some hosts limit server access, particularly on shared hosting plans. How much access do you have to handle problems on your own? If access is limited, will there be an additional for more support?
If you are a developer who has been using ColdFusion for a long time (in fact 70% of CF developers have been using it for over 10 years), there’s a good chance you still see the value in it and have no desire to throw out your well-designed existing codebase.
As support for it is not as strong as it used to be, it can be difficult to find the best web hosting companies committed to ensuring that your sites live on.
If you, like many, do not have the resources or desire to rebuild your entire systems from scratch, this article should help you find companies who are still committed to the vision that you still have.
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