Managed cloud VPS on LiteSpeed with Redis + NVMe SSDs? Yes please.
So the thing about Scala Hosting is: many people use control panels because they want LiteSpeed, but these usually lack support + email hosting. Scala has all these with NVMe/Redis. After testing them, I gotta say – they’re definitely fast. They also have a perfect TrustPilot rating.
As with any host, there are a few catches.
You have to use a VPS plan with their own control panel (SPanel). Otherwise, you don’t get OpenLiteSpeed/Nginx support and you’ll have to pay extra for things like cPanel and HTTP/3. However, SPanel is theoretically supposed to be better than cPanel with less resource usage. The other con is they have limited data centers (US, EU, as well as Asia if you use their SPanel).
Scala is relatively cheap considering you don’t have to pay for a cache plugin, email hosting, and QUIC.cloud’s CDN has a free plan (although I recommend their paid/standard plan which uses all 77 PoPs and includes DDoS protection). Still, the standard plan is just $.02 – $.08/GB.
Putting it all together, you get: cloud VPS hosting + LiteSpeed server + LiteSpeed Cache + QUIC.cloud CDN + NVMe SSDs + Redis. Unlike many cloud hosts, you also get email hosting, a free domain, 50GB NVMe storage (even more on higher VPS plans), and unmetered bandwidth.
Scala’s CEO (Chris) is a genuinely helpful guy if you get the chance to talk with him and they don’t pull any of that unethical BS like some hosts do (see my SiteGround/Hostinger reviews).
Scala pros? Speed, SPanel (assuming you like it), they’re affordable, scalable cores/RAM on VPS plans, and great reviews (at least on TrustPilot… there aren’t many in Facebook Groups). Scala cons? They’re not as well-known as mainstream hosts, using cPanel has several disadvantages, shared hosting lacks features including LiteSpeed + HTTP/3, and they have limited data centers.
- LiteSpeed on VPS plans
- NVMe + Redis on VPS plans
- SPanel vs. cPanel
- Build your own cloud VPS
- US, EU, Asian data centers
- Dedicated IP
- Plan differences
- Several security features
- Higher renewals
- Support (and Chris)
- Perfect TrustPilot rating
- Not much feedback in Facebook Groups
- Scala vs. ChemiCloud
- Up to $200 affiliate commissions
- Getting started
- TTFB + hardware test
1. LiteSpeed On VPS Plans
Scala uses OpenLiteSpeed on all VPS plans and their WP Cloud plan.
This means you should use LiteSpeed Cache + QUIC.cloud’s CDN. And since Scala uses LiteSpeed Enterprise on SPanel, you get 10GB free monthly bandwidth from QUIC.cloud.
Obviously you’ll use LiteSpeed Cache which is arguably the fastest cache plugin with server-level caching and does a great job with core web vitals (I have a detailed guide on configuring the LSC settings). Then you have QUIC.cloud with HTML caching, but I recommend using the paid/standard plan which uses all 77 PoPs and includes DDoS protection (instead of the free plan which only uses 6 PoPs and no DDoS protection). Between the 3, this is one of the fastest setups (and also the cheapest) since LiteSpeed Cache is free and QUIC.cloud is $.02 – $.08/GB with 10GB of free monthly bandwidth when you use LiteSpeed Enterprise on Scala’s VPS plans.
2. NVMe + Redis On VPS plans
Even Scala’s lowest VPS plan has 50GB NVMe storage (faster than SATA SSDs and more than Rocket.net/Kinsta). You can also add an extra 10GB for $2/month when building your own VPS.
Scala supports both Redis and Memcached, although these usually need to be requested and setup manually. Once requested, use LiteSpeed Cache to add Redis in the object cache settings.
Scala also uses SDS (software defined storage) where each file is stored in chunks of 1MB on 3 different NVMe drives, so when you read/write data it happens 3x faster than read/writing to a single NVMe drive. This gives them an advantage to most self-managed public cloud providers.
3. SPanel vs. cPanel
Use SPanel (it’s very similar to cPanel). Using cPanel on Scala has disadvantages:
It’s an extra $20 – $200+/year (even more if you want HTTP/3) and it doesn’t support OpenLiteSpeed, Nginx, Scala’s custom built SShield, it uses more resources compared to SPanel, no option to use the Asian data center, and it doesn’t support cloning/staging either. SPanel has all these, it’s free, and was built by Scala based on feedback at features.spanel.io.
4. Build Your Own Cloud VPS
I like how you can scale CPU cores, RAM, and storage individually, as opposed to having predetermined amounts like they do on Cloudways. Adding more resources is pretty cheap too:
- Extra 1 CPU core: $8/mo
- Extra 2GB RAM: $4/mo
- Extra 10GB SSD storage: $2/mo
5. US, EU, Asian Data Centers
Our customer can choose from our native infrastructure in Dallas-US, New York-US, Sofia-EU… or from the integrated DigitalOcean data centers in Bangalore, London, Singapore, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, San Francisco and Toronto.
6. Dedicated IP
You get a dedicated IP address which can prevent emails from getting flagged as spam from other sites on your server, faster file transfer, etc. However, this doesn’t impact performance.
7. Plan Differences
The “Entry WP Cloud” plan is nice if you want something faster than shared hosting but aren’t ready to pay for a VPS. It has 2 CPU + 2GB RAM + 50GB NVMe which can be enough for a website with thousands of daily visitors. Since it has 2GB RAM, they can install LiteSpeed Enterprise for free. Less expensive than a modest shared hosting plan and has all the advantages of the cloud.
You may also notice 2 similar plans: “WP Cloud” and “Build 1 Cloud VPS plan.” Between these, I recommend the Cloud VPS since it uses NVMe and lets you control CPU, RAM, and storage which you can upgrade/downgrade (unlike their WP Cloud plan). Otherwise, these plans are the same.
8. Several Security Features
Every cloud VPS comes with:
- Dedicated firewall
- Outbound spam protection
- Security penetration tests and pen testing for cPanel and DirectAdmin
- Blacklist monitoring (including contacting the blacklist to get it unblocked)
9. Higher Renewals
You have to sign up for 3 years to get the cheapest price which isn’t always typical for VPS hosting. There’s a 30 day refund policy, so make sure you’re happy with the service before then.
10. Support (And Chris)
It’s hard to get a 5/5 TrustPilot rating if the support sucks since in many cases, most reviews are related to support. With hosts like SiteGround and Cloudways offering “mediocre” support, it’s a big plus for Scala. Smaller hosting companies like Scala tend to care more about support IMO.
I’ve also gotten the chance to speak to Chris (Scala’s CEO) and you can obviously tell he’s passionate about the business. He’s shared quite a few stories about going him and his team out of his way and building custom solutions for larger clients. He’s one of those people who offers help in any way he can, so it’s nice to support someone who actually has genuine interest.
11. Perfect TrustPilot Rating
These are usually biased since reviews are solicited by support, but I rarely come across a 5/5 stars (I’ve seen mainstream hosts like Kinsta/SiteGround get too big, the service declines, and ratings go down). There are a few bad reviews on Scala’s Facebook page, but nothing too crazy.
12. Not Much Feedback In Facebook Groups
Feels like at least half the WordPress Facebook Groups are controlled by SiteGround (they’re admins for several major Facebook Groups), so it’s been hard getting unbiased feedback from these groups – since it feels like the only company you’re allowed to recommend is SiteGround.
Nevertheless, I couldn’t find much about Scala Hosting… I usually try to look for unbiased feedback and ideally before & after migration results, but I couldn’t find anything about them.
13. Scala vs. ChemiCloud
Scala’s cloud VPS plans looked similar to ChemiCloud’s (LiteSpeed, NVMe pricing, CPU/RAM, etc). So outside of features like SPanel and SShield, I asked them to distinguish the difference.
Here’s what Scala said:
- Backups cost extra with ChemiCloud, but they’re free on Scala.
- Scala is true cloud flexibility. Instead of using fixed VPS plans with resources which automatically makes the service non-cloud, Scala allows the user to add/remove cpu’s/ram at (i.e. adding 10GB storage is $2/mo instead of upgrading to the next plan).
- ChemiCloud only allows 1 account, otherwise you pay extra. SPanel allows unlimited.
- You need to pay extra for security starting at $9.95 for a single account and going up to $34.95. Scala has SShield which protects unlimited accounts which does not cost extra.
- Outbound spam filtering costs extra too. It’s free with SPanel and also includes 24/7 instant manual reaction in case of spamming since SPanel will alert us about the event.
14. Up to $200 Affiliate Commissions
I know there’s gonna be people that say “you only recommend Scala because they pay $200/sale.” Welp, I also recommend LSC over WP Rocket (even though I don’t get commissions) and BunnyCDN over RocketCDN (even though I only get credits). WP Engine pays $200/sale and you won’t see me recommend them. Scala caught my eye because of their reviews/technology, plus people have been asking me to suggest a managed VPS host on LiteSpeed. So there you go.
15. Getting Started
You can always request a free migration, but here’s a good starting point:
Step 1: Choose a plan – Entry WP Cloud is a step up from shared, use VPS otherwise.
Step 2: Login to SPanel – you’ll get an email prompting you to set up your SPanel account.
Step 3: Create new account – in your SPanel, click “Create a new account” and fill out your details. I like how you can choose which features you want installed so you can prevent bloat.
Step 4: Install SSL – go to Manage Account → Manage. You’ll be taken to your SPanel page where you can install SSL, manage backups/cron jobs, and do things like you would in cPanel.
Step 5: Configure LiteSpeed Cache With QUIC.cloud CDN – see my guide on configuring the LiteSpeed Cache settings + QUIC.cloud. While the settings will be different depending on the site, I listed common settings below which you can use as a baseline (but read the full tutorial)!
Step 6: Setup Object Cache – Memcached is set up automatically, but you will need to request Redis from Scala if you want to use that instead. Once you’ve decided on Redis or Memcached, activate it in LiteSpeed Cache’s object cache settings and make sure the connection test passed.
16. TTFB + Hardware Test
Here are tests from KeyCDN’s performance test (which measures TTFB in 10 global locations) and the WordPress Hosting Benchmark tool. These are with the host’s recommended cache plugin/CDN configured which in Scala’s case, is LiteSpeed Cache + QUIC.cloud’s standard plan.
Think Scala’s a good fit for you? I appreciate you using my aff link: scalahosting.com
I will give it a try next month
Appreciate your reviews!
Any time! Lmk if you need help.