FAQ: How does Sonassi compare to AWS

How does Sonassi compare to AWS from a support and hardware perspective

There’s very little comparison between Sonassi and AWS - because we offer completely different products and services.

  • Sonassi is a specialist managed Magento hosting provider; that built and provide an operating system made specifically for Magento, MageStack.
  • AWS is a cloud platform, with a range of amazing tools, aimed at self-service businesses who have a team to manage their infrastructure (eg. Amazon.com, Netflix and Reddit).

AWS are to Sonassi, as a farmers market is to a fine dining restaurant

AWS give you the basic ingredients, so your dedicated IT operations team can architect, configure and monitor and ultimately cook your own bespoke solution. Sonassi provide the finished product; tried and tested, fully supported, managed and monitored by our expert team - you don't have to do anything.

As to which is more appropriate for you really depends on whether you've got the expertise, budget, IT support team and willingness to risk unreliability/downtime to engineer something yourself - all at the opportunity cost of actually doing what you are supposed to do (selling your goods!). Or simply buy the finished product from Sonassi - and focus on your business.

In terms of raw hardware,

  • We are a specialist Magento hosting provider that has hand built specific server configurations (through thousands of hours of R&D) specifically for Magento. AWS provide virtualised servers, selected for price/power usage, not performance.

  • Our entire network is built for Magento, for low-latency and high performance, and it is the only product we host – so we can provide an extremely thorough firewall policy as standard. AWS host anything, and their network performance is very variable on anything but their largest virtual servers (or those with guaranteed network performance).

  • We have a support team you can contact, who can access your server and network – and continually achieve a 3 minute emergency response time. On small monthly spends, AWS have no support – you are on your own.

  • Our network is built to be redundant and reliable, to suffer power loss, transit provider loss and still continue operating. AWS is designed to be the exact opposite, the whole purpose of disposable cloud like AWS is that you have to build resilience into your deployment (ie. span multiple AWS availability zones) – they’ve had dozens of outages this year alone.

  • We provide bare metal hardware, with dedicated private networking, for ultimate performance and reliability, nothing is shared with other customers. AWS provides virtual machines, on hardware shared with other users, on a network shared with other users.

  • Our pricing is predictable and consistent – and more often than not, cheaper. AWS pricing tends to be extremely variable, and often considerably more expensive than the “calculators” would estimate given the complexity and multitude of hidden charges for cloud services.

Don't do it alone

Self-service has its place and so does shared volatile cloud - but for about 99% of Magento stores, it isn't at all appropriate.

Trying to manage your own hosting would be like abandoning using established couriers to deliver your items - to carrying out your own delivery, just because you can buy a van and the tools to maintain it.

If you want faster hosting, you don't want AWS

Ultimately, and this is the most important point, is that every Magento comparison test we’ve ever done has outperformed AWS by a factor of ~4-10x. And we can even provide a free demo of your store to demonstrate it.