Downtime Notice – Migrating Away from DigitalOcean This Weekend!


This is to inform you that it is likely that there will be a period of downtime for StocksCafe this weekend. It might become inaccessible as I proceed to migrate away from my current hosting provider, DigitalOcean. Thank you for your understanding.

Note: You can stop reading here if you have no intention of using hosting services. The following is written because DigitalOcean has pissed me off yet again with their latest reply and I hope to share this “wonderful” experience with anyone considering their services.

Why am I doing the migration?
Honestly, it is costly in terms of time to be doing such a migration. I have used DigitalOcean ever since I started StocksCafe. All is good when everything is fine but I am extremely disappointed at how they handled the recent episode of shutting down my access to the SMTP port.

After taking a long three days to reply, they sent a reply that continues to piss me off. You can read the reply in its entirety below.

1) Threaten instead of being apologetic
I have been using their server to send emails for the last two years before they suddenly decides to block it without any prior notification and causing disruption to my website operations. Not to mention that they had it shut down for a total of five days.

Not only were they not apologetic, they also decided that a threatening tone was the best way to reply: “… we can revoke access to SMTP at our discretion with no further warning.” To me it reads: We will shut down your SMTP port in future again whenever we feel like it again without any warning or notification just because we can and we do not care about you at all.

2) Did they really have a good reason to do so in the first place?
Did they really have a good reason to do so? If so, why would they so easily turn it back on again without requesting me to change anything at all? The fact that I didn’t have to change anything proves that the blocking was uncalled for in the first place!

Is there a better way to handle this? Of course! They should have chosen to work with me first instead by simply reaching out to me with questions or suggestion of things that I need to change if any. And if I do not react appropriately or swiftly, then proceed with the block.

I have used DigitalOcean for the last 2-3 years. All is fine when nothing happens, but from this incident, it shows that DigitalOcean believe they have the authorization to do whatever they want – just because they can – without consideration of their clients.

This is my experience with them. If you still want to use DigitalOcean’s hosting services, good luck!

Although it is likely they won’t even bat an eyelash at losing my business, I do not wish to continue paying a “professional” team even a single cent a second longer so that they can continue to threaten me.

This is why I will migrate away from them as soon as I can even though that means burning through my entire weekend.

Their “professional” reply.

Hi there,

Thank you for the information you have provided.

We’ve reviewed the information and have removed the SMTP block from your account.

Just to reiterate – we require our subscribers to follow the CAN-SPAM act for all email, and the CASL for any email sent to a subscriber in Canada.

If you do not, and we receive complaints of violations, we can revoke access to SMTP at our discretion with no further warning.

If you have any further questions regarding this matter, please let us know.


Trust & Safety,
Digital Ocean Support


  • Hi,

    Thank you for the update.

    I think this is quite normal right? They don’t allow us to use their server to send out the email. We will need to use third-party email provider to send emails out.

    I had the same experience and had to block out the SMTP port, in the end I use mailjet or similar kind to do the job.

  • @jevandres: “I think this is quite normal right? They don’t allow us to use their server to send out the email. We will need to use third-party email provider to send emails out.” => Yes, I agree that it is quite common. But I dislike the way it was handled. If you block me right at the start, it is fine. If you are going to block me when I have already been sending emails for the last 2 years, it is not fine without any communication. Finally, it angers me when you continue to use a threatening and almighty tone after you disrupt my website operations.

  • I have implemented few projects for my company in AWS, so far so good. I’m quite new to this portal, is your website static or dynamic? If static then can try out serverless implementation, more cost effective.

  • @ongkc66, yup. Not really suitable for StocksCafe operations. StocksCafe does requires server side computations.

Evan Koh



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