If you are reading this review for a company like HawkHost you are probably just like me. You know the "Top rated" host can be nice but you also have this suspicion that there must be something better hidden around, something that doesn't have enough marketing money and affiliate links to cause all these sites to put them in the Top 5. A hidden gem thats actually faster and of higher quality for a decent price.
HawkHost is that host, after trying them for a few weeks i was immensely satisfied and started migrating my other websites.
Every time you try to google a fast webhost you keep hitting the same bullshit reviews claiming a low ping is better then download speeds.
Claiming that these low pings make the site load fast and that you should get the affiliated host as a result.
HawkHost is a company that dares to be up front about quality, and for good reason.
If you visit their website you can have downloads and speed test pages from all there servers, you know the exact download speeds you are getting before having to sign up. This alone convinced me to try them out.
Alright, the network is crazy fast how about the specs of the server? Every webhost that has cPanel i always manage to get in the statistics page, for hawkhost this is also not hidden far away (I had to do much more effort for the big named company's as they sometimes really dont want you to see that). The statistics page revealed quite common statistics for a good host. The server isn't incredibly full, the CPU has plenty of space for your site and overall it is clear they do not overload there boxes. Swap however was sitting at 100% although i have seen this quite consistantly across these CloudLinux + Litespeed hosts so that might be a visual big more so then an actual problem.
As far as features go they have everything you might want from a cPanel host. Its to much to name specifically so ill point out the main ones such as up to date software. A range of PHP versions all the way up to 7.0. Free anti-spam appliances. Mailing list support, LetsEncrypt and Cloudflare support and many more as can be seen here on their website.
Finally we come down to support, my website somehow always tends to break when migrating to a different webhost. Somehow i always put in these tricks that are host specific and break on slight alterations. With hawkhost i encoutered a complicated issue caused by my complex .htaccess rules. When testing the site reported an IP from india. The indian tech support wasn't very helpful for this issue and reasonably quickly gave up and forwarded it to the internal department. There the LVL2 engineers where assisting me to locate the issue, although in the end i fixed it myself quicker with a workaround due to the uncommon nature of this specific problem. The support attempts after this where much more helpful, knowing how there support system worked i was worried i had to go trough the indian guys all the time having to wait longer for proper help, but this has proven untrue. The indian department is actually very helpful for the common issues most people find and will resolve most things reasonable quick. Things they can't solve will be forwarded to the internal department in canada so all in all support is pretty decent.
Finally ill end this review with some specifics, HawkHost seems to allow most outbound traffic. I had no issue communicating with any of the ports on my gameserver which i usually have problems with with other host as they need to open ports that in the worst cases get blocked later. This means HawkHost is a good host if you have to connect outbound to various sources. Inbound was a bit more problematic but still decent. They block all inbound traffic by default so you can't initiate a connection to the MySQL server from other applications. This means you will have to ask support to whitelist all IP's before they can connect and then allow those in cPanel as well. This should not be a problem for your applications, but can be a nogo if your MySQL developer needs proper tools and has a changing IP-adress.
All in all this host is incredibly good and should suit most of you perfectly no need to look further. However if you run a project which requires incoming non standard port (MySQL , etc) connections from various unpredictable sources this is not the host for you. There is a limit on 20 concurrent processes, which should be enough for most but is not suitable for huge websites.