You can find the KUKULI web hosting plan, launched in 2018, by following links from the website of the “Linkclub” Japanese computer club that purports to have 100,000 members. In fact, Kukulu (aka. Kurikuri) sits as a sub-domain of the Linkclub website, as do the “Linkclub Hosting X” (professional dedicated-server rentals) and “Linkclub Hosting Service” (Windows servers for businesses) hosting alternatives.
This review concentrates on the KUKULI hosting plan.
Features and Ease of Use
KUKULI sells a single simple all-in-one hosting plan, which (unfortunately) has complex add-ons and confusing options. The plan includes the following features:
- Full data backup service
- One free domain name
- Free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate
- Up to 100 GB disk space
- Unlimited transfer
Despite my initial reservations, this hosting plan is surprisingly comprehensive for expert users. You get programming support for PHP (versions 5.3 to 7.2), Perl, Ruby, and Python, and the supported databases are MySQL and PostgreSQL. SSH access is allowed, as are Cron jobs for scheduling regular scripts.
There are also easy installation options for WordPress, EC-CUBE, and osCommerce. You can also schedule as many backups as required at no additional cost.
I can’t confirm the existence of an uptime guarantee, despite attempting to contact the company, but I can tell you that the hosting services run on Linux with Apache, and that storage is in a RAID 10 configuration to mitigate the risk of data loss.
The hosting plan comes with a free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate and optional SSL upgrades, and a Web Application Firewall (WAF) is included as standard.
Pricing and Support
The prices are quite high, but you do get 100 GB disk space, unlimited transfer, and a free domain name, so maybe you get what you pay for. You can purchase the plan on one-month or one-year terms, with a deep discount for committing to a year’s worth of hosting.
Like some other Japanese hosts, there is a long and rather daunting sign-up form. Unlike most Japanese hosts, you can purchase and pay for your plan online using a credit card. But beware that the initial setup fee is roughly equivalent to two months’ fees.
Regarding support, you can try supporting yourself using the provided FAQs page, or you can contact the support team by email or phone during business hours on weekdays. Unfortunately, you will have to wait 2-3 business days for a reply (and not at all during weekends or holidays), but I hope this waiting time would be reduced in the event of an emergency technical issue.
My personal experience of customer service was far slower even than advertised. In fact, they never replied to me at all, which may well have been because I asked my question(s) in English.