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Category: General Issues

Web4Africa becomes an official cPanel FastUpdate Partner


Web4Africa, a leading pan-African web hosting company, today announces the launch of Africa’s first cPanel FastUpdate server.

The server enables cPanel servers within Web4Africa’s network and others in the Southern Africa region to download cPanel installations and updates at very fast speeds.

cPanel describes the system as follows:

The FastUpdate Cache system serves as an on-demand cache for your servers. This system accepts update requests from cPanel & WHM
servers and provides them with the most recent software versions. The FastUpdate Cache system allows you to speed up new feature
installations for your cPanel & WHM servers.


The new cPanel FastUpdate server brings the current number to 48, around the world.

Web4Africa is proudly an official cPanel Licence Partner and offers shared Web Hosting, Reseller Hosting, VPS Hosting and Dedicated Servers to clients worldwide.

A review of VPS Hosting in Nigeria

Computer / Network security

A few months ago, I had the privilege of discussing in-country hosting with the CEO of Web4Africa. He informed me he was about to start offering hosting accounts in datacenters here in Lagos.

I’ve always been a proponent of internet performance and one of the major issues with the performance of internet applications is that of latency. Latency is the amount of time it takes for you to send a request and to get a response. Back in the days when all the Internet access we had in the country was via satellite, it was not uncommon to have round trip times of 3000ms and above (i.e. you send a packet to a server and you only got the acknowledgement 3 seconds later). This was okay back then when Internet traffic was mostly bulk data transfers. These days, you deal with applications that require sub-second response times (hello the realtime web) and latency has become an all too important factor in the drive to satisfy Internet users impatience in getting what the want as quickly as they can.

Web developers have had to rely on web hosting companies with servers hosted in other data centers around the world. At best, our applications couldn’t do better in round trip times of at least 100ms. No longer do we have to put up with this and neither should your users do the same. We now have affordable servers in our country! You can put your development environment now on a server in Ikeja or Victoria Island and work directly from the terminal and have a near realtime experience (it’s as though you were working locally on your computer’s terminal).

Oluniyi gave me early access to his server infrastructure and I’ve been using it for a few months now and my experience has been a somewhat bittersweet one. I assumed that I would ping the server and get at most 40ms (given that I was using wireless Internet, that was an acceptable RTT). My experience was mixed.

Like in other countries, there is a local Internet exchange in Lagos providing peering for ISPs with infrastructure in the state and (like every properly configured data center) the data center that Web4Africa’s local servers are colocated is connected to the local exchange; however not all ISPs are connected or have properly configured routing to leverage the exchange and so on the well engineered networks of some ISPs I would get RTTs of 20ms or even 13ms and on the badly configured or no-peering ISPs, I would have even worse RTTs (200ms) because data has to transit through London before coming back to Lagos. So packets will originate from Lagos, transit through routers in London and then terminate in Lagos again.

I currently only host a local bitcoin node on this development server and the network performance and uptime has been stellar. Web4Africa is a very competent hosting service and I cannot recommend them highly enough. High server specs and solid state drives will ensure that your applications perform at their optimum.

Pricing is not as you would expect when comparing it to foreign providers and the reason is a simple one: the cost structures are different – data center operators have to generate their own power which increase the cost for service providers. Nonetheless, they are competitively priced and if you’re a performance nut like me, then you should definitely sign up and start testing your applications with them. Your users will definitely be happier and thank you for it.

Even though I mentioned worse performance while testing the services from some other ISPs, what’s important to note is that, this will only get better. When sufficient content is hosted locally, ISPs will start to optimize their networks to take advantage of peering arrangements provided by the local exchange.

Written by Tim Akinbo. He is the Founder and CEO of TimbaObjects Company.from Lagos Nigeria.

Note: The high latency on a few networks mentioned above is due to their inactive local peering. Web4Africa is already engaging the management of IXPN for improvement in the user experience.

Web4Africa recognized as a leading .ng registrar by .ng registry

.ng domain name

Web4Africa, a premium-category NiRA accredited domain registrar, was awarded in the two categories of most consistent .ng domain registrars at the NiRA Registrar Forum held in Lagos Nigeria.

  • Web4Africa came first in the most consistent on premium category. This category refers to the volume of 2nd-level .ng domains registered by Web4Africa in the year 2013.
  • Web4Africa came second in the most consistent registrars category. This refers to the overall volume of domains (2nd-level and 3rd-level .ng domains) registered by Web4Africa in the year 2013.

To celebrate this milestone, Web4Africa is offering a 20% discount on .com.ng, .org.ng, .mobi.ng and .name.ng domain name registrations and renewals till June 2014. The promotional code MASTER2013 to be redeemed at www.web4africa.net, to take advantage of this limited-time offer..ng domain name

The exact text of the official announcement is re-published below, as culled from NiRA’s newsletter:

The trios of UpperLink Limited, Web4Africa and WhoGoHost have been pronounced the most consistent registrars by the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA) for the year ended 2013.

Announcing this at the end of the year get together hosted by NIRA for its registrar community in Lagos recently, the acting Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Akinbo Adebunmi said that the aforementioned three registrars made it as most consistent registrars with varying degrees success.

He also announced another three registrars as the most consistent on premium category, namely Web4Africa, Lexsynergy and UpperLink.

While commended those who crossed the threshold to keep up the good work, he charged other registrars to up their games in all ramification to ensure they are listed among top runners in the coming year.

According to him, this recognition is to encourage NIRA registrars to be innovative in conducting their .NG businesses so as to always grow the domain name industry in Nigeria.

.ng is the internet country code top-level domain name for Nigeria. Domain extensions .ng, .com.ng, .org.ng, .mobi.ng and .name.ng are open to anyone in the world.

New Domain Names are coming

A whole lot of new domain extensions are about to be unleashed to the domain market, unlocking website owners’ creativity in choosing domain names as we would no longer be restricted to the relatively few domain extensions that are common-place today: com, .net, .org etc.

New domain name extensions

There is about to be a domain extension for just about every major business, profession, geographical location, interest, lifestyle, or movement. Complicated domain names made-up of 3 or more words should be a thing of the past as the large number of new extension would offer easier and better domain choices.

Web4Africa can confirm the availability of the following domain extensions:

.africa: is the regional domain name that covers the over 50 countries and territories in the continent of Africa.

.joburg: Africa’s richest city deserves a domain extension of it’s own.

.capetown: website owners in one of Africa’s most beautiful cities can use the best domain to target their local market.

.durban: one of South Africa’s most important manufacturing and business hub needs a unique identity on the web.

.app: apps abound in today’s world: smartphones, digital camera’s, tablet PCs etc. A .app domain extension can make navigating the clustered web of apps easier.

.inc: most company names in North and Central America end with INC. A .inc domain extension for such companies is only natural.

.home: everyone deserves a piece of the internet. Everyone deserves a home on the internet. What better domain extension than .home?

.art: for the artistic minds that making life a pleasure, .art is the ideal domain extension.

.blog: as a blogger, stand-out from the crowded World Wide Web with your own very .blog domain name.

.llc: Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) in North and Central America deserve a domain extension. .llc is the most natural fit.

.shop: whether small shops, or big shops, every shop owner with a web presence can shine on .shop

.book: books are not an exclusive preserves of “book-worms”. Books are the compass for navigating today’s high-tech world. Every book marketed on the World Wide Web can call a .book domain extension home.

.design: creativity should not be limited to canvases, computer mouses or graphics design suites. As a designer, you can be creative with your web address as well.

.music: be inspired. Extend your inspiration beyond the piano and recording studio, and into choose the best domain name for your music, with .music.

.movie: movies no longer have to make use of hyphenated and hard-to-remember domain names. Whether blockbuster or budget movies, the best home on the web is .movie.

.web: usage is limitless for this domain extension. If it’s on the World Wide Web, it can make use of .web.

.store: big store, small store, every store owner who wants the most ideal web address for their online store is invited.

.hotel: the hospitality industry, our home away from home, deserves an exclusive home on the internet.

.love: the web domain of positive emotion and affection is .love.

.ltd: your company name may end with LTD but you have an unlimited access to make use of .ltd domains.

.cloud: one of the fastest growing IT industries now has an exclusive domain name extension known as .cloud. Every cloud service provider can have a web address that stands-out from the crowd.

.mail: perhaps you don’t need a website but want a custom email address. .mail is an ideal domain extension for your email needs.

.news: as a new house, print or electronic, nothing spells out your agenda to a web audience than a .news domain extension.

.xyz: short, stylish and easy-to-remember. .xyz is open and available.

Supercharge your WordPress blog

WordPress being the world’s leading blogging software is loved by most bloggers. Constant innovation is one of the reasons for the affection. One of such relatively recent innovations is the Jetpack mega-plugin. I called it a mega-plugin because it is a plugin like no other; it comes with several functionalities that would have otherwise only have been available by installing multiple plugins.

WordPress comes in two variants. The self-hosted WordPress.org that one installs manually or via one’s hosting control panel, and WordPress.com the ready-to-go blogging platform that requires no installations. WordPress.com is hosted by Automattic, the company behind WordPress, and so are all blogs hosted under WordPress.com

What Jetpack does is to bring some additional functionalities that were hitherto exclusive to WordPress.com platform, to WordPress.org users. The image below is self-evident.

Jetpack website screenshot

Jetpack.me website screenshot

Jetpack can be installed easily from within your WordPress installation, just like most other plugins but the additional power it brings to your blog is unrivalled. Jetpack adds the following features to your WordPress blog:

  • WordPress.com Stats: Simple, concise site stats with no additional load on your server.
  • Comments: enables your visitors to use WordPress.com, Twitter, or Facebook accounts when commenting on your site.
  • Subscriptions: Allow users to subscribe to your posts and comments to receive a notification via email.
  • Contact Form: Easily insert a contact form any where on your site.
  • Sharing: The most super duper sharing tool on the interwebs. Share content with Facebook, Twitter, and many more.
  • Spelling and Grammar: Improve your spelling, style, and grammar with the After the Deadline Proofreading service.
  • Gravatar Hovercards: Show a pop-up business card of your users’ gravatar profiles in comments.
  • Shortcode Embeds: Easily embed videos and more from sites like YouTube, Vimeo, and SlideShare.WP.me Shortlinks: Enable WP.me-powered shortlinks for all of your Posts and Pages for easier sharing.
  • Beautiful Math: Mark up your posts with the markup language, perfect for complex mathematical equations and other über-geekery.
  • Extra Sidebar Widgets: Easily add images, Twitter updates, and your site’s RSS links to your theme’s sidebar.
  • Enhanced Distribution: Share your public posts and comments to search engines and other services in real-time.

Installing Jetpack is simple. You can install it from within WordPress without having to download/upload anything as is obvious from the image below:

Jetpack installation

Jetpack installation

We are WordPress super-users at Web4Africa too and offer super-charged web hosting that comes with WordPress.

Web4Africa Ltd. acquires Alireta.com hosting service


Web4Africa Ltd., the leading web hosting company in West Africa, has acquired the web hosting & domain names services of Alireta Nigeria Limited with effect from 1st May 2011.



Founded in March 2003 under the name DomainStandard.net, Alireta broke new grounds by offering domain registration and web hosting services to residents of Nigeria at prices much lower than what was obtainable within Nigeria at that time. The operation has constantly remained among the top ten Nigerian web hosts since inception  and was rebranded to Alireta in May 2008.

Web4Africa has acquired 559 active clients who owned 458 domain names, 295 shared hosting accounts and 19 reseller hosting accounts. With few overlaps considered, it is expected that the acquisition would boost Web4Africa’s portfolio to over 13,600 active clients, over 8,100 domain names, over 1,500 shared hosting accounts and 169 reseller hosting accounts.

The acquisition would expose Alireta customers to over 70 international domain extensions, at lower prices, more flexible web hosting plan choices like Windows/ASP.NET hosting as well as 7 online payment methods including a method that accepts Nigerian debit cards like Interswitch Verve and GTB Naira Mastercard.

Yomi Adegboye, founder and CEO of Alireta said concerning the sale of his company’s webhosting and domain services:

“Alireta and Web4Africa are two of the longest standing webhosts in West Africa. We also have a long history of partnership, and we are confident that both Alireta clients’ accounts and my own personal and business accounts are in the best hands possible on the continent. This transfer of Alireta’s web hosting and domain services to Web4Africa will see our clients enjoy even better world-class support and lower prices. In the meantime, Alireta Nigeria Limited will continue to provide the excellent web design services that we are known for at a new domain, www.anl.com.ng”

“But my primary focus from now will be in pursuing more exciting opportunities in the mobile and telecoms sector as a consultant, speaker, and as editor of Mobility Nigeria.”

Oluniyi Ajao, founder and Managing Director of Web4Africa Ltd said:

“We have solid plans for 2011 that when executed, would move us further up the ladder in the international domains and web hosting marketplace. This acquisition brings us closer to our plans.”

Web4Africa was founded in 2002 and this acquisition further consolidates its position as the web hosting giant in the West African sub-region. Web4Africa targets the global marketplace via www.web4africa.net and targets the Nigerian market via www.web4africa.com.ng

About Web4Africa
Founded in 2002, Web4Africa offers domain names, web design, web hosting and ecommerce solutions to clients worldwide.

Which .ng domain extension should you choose for your Nigerian website?

.ng domain name

.ng is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Nigeria. .ng domains come in different flavours and its best to choose the domain extension that reflects your type of organization. Nigerian domain extensions can be classified into two: open and restricted..ng domain name

Open .ng domain extensions: These are those open to registration by virtually any individual or institution from any part of the world. They are: .com.ng, .biz.ng, .org.ng, .name.ng and .mobi.ng

Restricted .ng domain extensions: These are intended for specific types of organizations/institutions in Nigeria. They are: .net.ng, .gov.ng, .edu.ng, .sch.ng, .mil.ng

  • .com.ng, .biz.ng – commercial entities. All types of businesses are welcome to make use of these domain extensions. They are open to any business/individual around the world.
  • .org.ng – organizations. This domain extension is intended for Nigerian non-for-profit organizations. There are no restrictions on the use of this domain extension.
  • .name.ng – individuals. This domain extension is intended for the use of natural persons. It is best suited for personal or family websites or email addresses.
  • .mobi.ng – mobile websites. This domain extension is intended for the use of websites targetted at mobile devices. The .mobi.ng website should be mobile-friendly; display easily/properly on smartphone and other mobile internet devices.

Restrictions on the use of the following domain extensions are strictly enforced by the .ng registry.

  • .net.ng – network infrastructure. This domain extension is intended for Internet Service Providers and their network infrastructure only.
  • .gov.ng – Nigerian governments. This domain extension is strictly reserved for the use of the Federal Government of Nigeria and its parastatals, the 36 state governments in Nigeria and their institutions.
  • .edu.ng – degree awarding academic institutions. This domain extension is strictly for the use of degree-awarding Nigerian academic institutions that have been duely accredited by the Federal Ministry of Education in Nigeria.
  • .sch.ng – academic institutions. All other types of Nigerian academic institutions that do not qualify for .edu.ng are welcome to make use of this domain extension.
  • .mil.ng – this domain extension is strictly for the Nigerian military institutions only, and not open to the general public.

To register your .ng domain name, simply head to www.web4africa.com.ng

How to choose your dot ng (Nigerian) domain name

.ng domain name

The on-going free .ng domain name registration promotion has afforded us the opportunity to take over a thousand .ng domain registrations from the general public so far. From the registered domain names, we have found it necessary to educate .ng domain patrons and prospective customers on how to choose a .ng domain name.

The following suggestions are not rules but only intended to make your internet marketing more effective.

Keep your domain name short and simple

.ng domain nameChoosing a domain name is like choosing a brand name for your business or product. The name should be simple and easy to remember. It must be especially easy to pronounce over the phone or radio. Considering .ng domains are still relatively few, several choice words are still available to register as domain names; especially words that best reflect your business.

You can register a simple English word that best describes your business. Compound words or adjectives would only bring unnecessary complication. Keep it simple and memorable.

Avoid the word “Nigeria” where it is possible

The essence of the .ng domain name system is top identify websites related to Nigeria. The mere fact that your business/organization website ends with a .com.ng or .org.ng in itself potrays your website as that of a Nigerian commercial entity or non-profit organization.

In essence, adding the word “nigeria” before or after your name when registering a .ng domain name can only make things unnecessarily complicated. Again, short is better.

Avoid hyphens

Although the .ng registry accepts domain names that contain hyphens, its best to avoid those. The key principle is to keep your .ng domain names as simple as possible.

Questions and suggestions are welcomed in the comments area below.

To register your .ng domain name, simply head to www.web4africa.com.ng

Nairahost customers: A new dawn for web hosting in Nigeria


Dear Nairahost customer,

This is to inform you that Web4Africa Ltd., a leading web hosting company in West Africa, has acquired the operations of Nairahost.

You may read about the acquisition here: Web4Africa Ltd acquires Nairahost

Please bear with us as we quickly get a hold of Nairahost operation. This is just a courtesy notice and we would update you further in the next few hours.

Do well to follow Web4Africa on FacebookTwitter.

Change is here, for web hosting in Nigeria. Get ready for drastic improvements in pricing and service delivery.

Should you need support or have questions, simply write to support[at]nairahost.com and we would do our best to assist you in a timely manner.

Note that we are unable to access nor comment on past issues.

Oluniyi D. Ajao,
Web4Africa Ltd.

The home truth about patronizing local web hosting companies

Web4Africa Web Hosting

We are fully aware that many of you patronize local companies not because you don’t have foreign options but because you prefer to patronize your own people and keep the money in your local economy. That does not mean you should tolerate mediocre service delivery. Whatever your reasons for patronizing us are, we are resolved to offering you world-class web hosting, professional web design and affordable domain name services. You deserve only the best. With Web4Africa; the best, you would get.


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