But how can you know there is only 4 servers behind a single IP for godaddy ?
ANd what kind of server it is ?
I worked in a hosting company, and they use low-end servers, with a single IP for each different plan.
The most popular plan have hundreds servers behind.
If you make 100 different http request on a website, they are (more or less) randomly made by different servers.
Everything is managed with huge cisco switchs.
This is i think a good choice, because if a sever fail, everything still working for everyone, just sightly slower (but when you use dozen servers, you don't notice it).
And if more people (websites) coming, we just had to add more servers.
Files are on netapp fileservers.
It's not mean you get a fast nor slow hosting with this kind of architecture.
It depend on how many server you use for all you clients, and how do they use them on average, because this is real shared hosting, where all servers (at least in the same plan/functions) are equally shared for all domains.
There is redundancy for about everything : servers, hard drives on netapp, switches, peering & transit links, electrical arrival (3 different ones... if one fail because of maintenance or not, you still have power !), batteries if there is really no electric power, and diesel generator in the last choice.
With this kind of architecture, except human error, you don't have any downtime.
Just a few seconds if a switch or a link fail, the time to automatically change routes (with OSPF).
They even have backup of netapps in a different place.
They had a project to make everything up back in 48h in a different place if something serious happen in the main location. But i'm not sure this emergency plan is off the paper.
But you can really make this only if you host really a lot of websites.
DH could do it, they have the minimal size for.
But it's a lot of work on the start, and you must change about everything if you didn't do it when you start hosting.
To go back on dreamhost :
I'm on it because it is ok for most of my needs, and i don't have critical website that must be up 99.999% of time (that's less than 9H downtime a year)
But about performance : there is many more factors than the number of websites/IP (and even on server) on average.
Godaddy is maybe slow, but definitely, it's not because they use an multiple server/IP architecture (if they does).
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