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The Interserver Interview: Cheap, Awesome Services Plus Datacenter, Dog, and Classic Car Pics!

Today we’re sitting down with Michael Lavrik, Director of Business Development and co-founder of Interserver, a popular provider in our community.  Interserver offers shared and reseller hosting, cheap VPS systems (including storage VPS), dedicated servers, GPU servers, and colocation services.  They’re a high quality provider who offers great value for our readers.  For example, get a 2GB VPS for $6/month, or get a 1TB storage VPS for $5/month!  Let’s dig in and learn a little more about Interserver.

Q: Who are you and where in the world are you located?

 I am Michael Lavrik.  Our HQ is in Secaucus NJ. We have been in Secaucus for almost 20 years. 

Q:  InterServer has been active in our community for quite a while.  You guys have been around since 1999.  How would you summarize your story to date?

I’ve never been one to post much on any website. Although, I have always really enjoyed reading, occasionally even posting, and overall supporting the LET community.

We do have a long history going back to 1999. Today, that’s 25 years ago and it’s hard to believe we’ve been selling webhosting for a quarter of a century. We have been through many economic and technological ups and downs such as the start of the dot-com bubble, the financial crisis of 2008, the birth of virtualization, the pandemic, and now AI. I think slow and steady really summarizes our approach. We try to provide quality service without overextending ourselves.

Our main hub is in Secaucus. We have a small datacenter that we manage along with our own office space. Running a datacenter is not our main focus anymore. Partnering with solid colocation providers is our strategy for expanding our footprint. We are collocated in almost every datacenter in Secaucus such as Equinix, Coresite, H5, Evoque, and Evocative. We connect these datacenters with a fiber ring split up into multiple 100GB channels. Our footprint in Los Angeles is much smaller. We have space in Equinix and QuadraNET. With that being said we plan to focus a little more on this west coast in the coming years. 

InterServer Racks

Q: You have a ton of competition in the industry.  How do you see InterServer’s position in the market?

 Tons of competition is nothing new in the hosting industry. Starting a hosting company is very easy. I believe LET refers to this as “summer hosts”. InterServer has a good history and name. The most important thing is to adapt to changing technologies, prices, and product offerings.

 More and more people are being connected to the internet every day. Starlink (and others) are transforming rural areas. Entire countries are transforming themselves. There is a TON of business to be had.

Q: GPU hosting has really taken off in recent years as everyone tries to build the next ChatGPT.  How is InterServer competing in that market?

 AI is the newest wave of business, it is here to stay much like virtualization. We are doing GPU Bare Metal Servers. Over the years, I still  remain a student of this business. I am always challenging myself to sharpen my pencil in order to ensure that we maintain relevance.  

Q: Our community loves free and we have a lot of students.  Tell us about your special shared hosting offer for students.

We love to give back. For students in the United States, we offer 1 year of free web hosting. A lot of students going through technology-related assignments have taken advantage of this offer to code and create. The hope is that one day it will turn them into paying customers as well. We also offer completely free web hosting to non-profit organizations in the United States. All we ask for is a little recognition such as a backlink in the footer.

Q: What is your company culture like?

 Our NJ team is like a family. Some of whom have been with us for over 10 years. Everyone understands the goals of the organization. We do very little micro-managing. We only do a team meeting 4 times a year and we always do a big Christmas party. Everyone is equal and no one is above taking out the trash including myself.

Interserver Dog

 Q: You have quite a team!  What does InterServer look like when considering team members?  Who is the ideal InterServer employee?

 Our team is comprised of so many different talents. I would definitely say that self-motivation is a big piece of working at InterServer because our footprint spans across 6 data-centers throughout Secaucus. Therefore, each shift throughout the day needs to be able to assess the most urgent needs and execute without being micromanaged. It’s also important to note that we custom build all of our bare-metal to spec at our Secaucus HQ. It’s quite the operation because each server is built, racked, and deployed by our team. There are so many moving pieces to the operation and over the years we have added several additional layers of techs to support growth across multiple channels. 

Q: “Skilla” looks like she’s ready to help out in the datacenter.  Do you have a pic of that ’69 GTO?

 Skilla is now 10 years old (my first baby). She still comes to work with me once in a while. The GTO is a completed project but unfortunately, I do not get to drive it very often.

InterServer GTO


1 Comment

  1. Gumnos:

    I’ve had a Storage VPS at InterServer for a year or two (thanks to an offer posted on LET/LEB) now and have been pretty pleased with the boringness of the experience. It kinda just keeps plugging away without issue. Most places use smaller SSD/NVMe disks which is fine if you need speed more than storage-space; but I appreciate the option for a low-end storage server for media and backups, and at a hard-to-beat price.

    About the only thing I’d change is that their billing is a bit weird, either getting invoiced monthly and having to pay monthly; or having to pay for credits up-front that then get used over time.

    > All billing is month to month. Additionally, a prepay can be made in your MY customer portal to keep a credit on your account. Available money in prepay will be deducted as your monthly invoices are generated. Prepaying does not offer any discounts on your monthly fee.

    I went for the second option, but wish they had more traditional billing options.

    February 24, 2024 @ 10:32 am | Reply

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