Best Zend Hosting 2016 - Review, Ranking & Promotion

Zend Hosting
After reviewed dozens of Zend hosts, we have come out a list of best Zend hosting, which are rated independently based on Zend environment and optimization, supported PHP versions, reliability, technical support and affordability.

To choose the best Zend hosting for your websites developed by Zend framework, we highly recommend you going with the following best Zend hosting services which have been truly tested by our editors.
Rank 1 2 3 4 5
Editorial Rating 5.0 of 5 5.0 of 5 4.5 of 5 5.0 of 5 4.0 of 5
Customer Rating 942 votes 1192 votes 244 votes 511 votes 286 votes
Read Review BlueHost Review InMotion Review JustHost Review WebHostingHub Review HostGator Review
Regular Price $5.99/mo $7.99/mo $7.99/mo $8.99/mo $6.95/mo
Discounted Price $3.49/mo $3.49/mo $2.50/mo $1.95/mo $4.86/mo
How to Claim BlueHost Coupon InMotion Coupon JustHost Coupon WebHostingHub Coupon HostGator Coupon

Best Zend Hosting 2016

Starting at $3.49/mo, BlueHost is always awarded as one of the most affordable hosting providers in the industry. This company offers various hosting solutions to meet the needs of most customers, among which the Zend hosting solution is a spotlight compared with other hosting packages.

BlueHost Zend hosting service is designed for customers who develop their sites based on Zend framework. In addition to featuring Zend framework, BlueHost offers one free domain name, daily backup, Shared SSL, unlimited disk space & bandwidth, and the latest programming languages (PHP, Ruby on Rails, Python and Perl). By using cPanel, webmaster can deploy their sites with the help of rich features. In a word, BlueHost is a trust-worthy Zend hosting provider that can be a part of your success.

Why They're the Best Zend Hosting

The Zend web hosting are rated based on the following checkpoints,
  • Zend Environment: most of web hosts only support PHP 5 in FastCGI mode that the Zend Optimizer cannot be loaded for running your Zend websites in best efficient way. The Zend web hosting providers usually have installed Zend optimizer on the shared server, enables you to run Zend Guard encoded files. The Zend optimizer can speed up the PHP code execution process by up to 100%.
  • PHP Versions: the latest Zend framework v1.11 requires the PHP version 5.2.4 or above. It's important to be aware whether the web hosts are running the old versions of PHP. When we're reviewing Zend web hosting, we prefer to recommending the web hosts with higher PHP version supported.
  • opcode: it is highly recommended for Zend websites as it can improve Zend web application performance with code execution caching and acceleration.
  • Reliability & Uptime: the successful key to run a website is to have a reliable web hosting service with high uptime. It's the same to Zend web hosting rating. All of our rated top 10 Zend hosting are proven to provide 99.9% uptime consistently.
  • Technical Support: whether web hosts provide enough documentation about their PHP configuration for your reference to setup the Zend websites. And whether the web host technical support staff are familiar with the Zend framework configuration, that can help you debug out of your problems in practice.
Finally, as you're looking for a shared Zend web hosting, we don't forget to consider the affordability in our rating. It is based on the combination of all above factors and the price. We're looking for helping you find the best cost effective Zend web hosting at any time.

What is Zend Framework?

Zend is an open source framework which provides object oriented components and is quite convenient for PHP developers to easily create complicated websites based on Model-View-Controller (MVC) design by reusable and testable PHP code. Zend Framework has come a long way and evolved into a professional PHP class library that has been already used to run many websites around the world. It has a very versatile and effective codebase and is great for corporate licensing.

Zend framework helps PHP in creating websites with minimal work. There are plenty of benefits if Zend framework is used in a proper way. Zend framework provides PHP developers with a lightweight component library that includes up to 80% common and generic functionality for most of web applications. So developers can save up to 80% of effort on the development and be more focusing on the business logics.

Zend framework naturally supports localization and globalization, multiple types of database, distributed caching system, code runtime optimization, URL rewritting for search engine optimization and much more. And the web designers can also design and implement the web UI interfaces without any dependency to the code behind. That can significantly improve the concurrent web application development efficiency in teamwork.

The most helpful Zend components include,
  • Zend Auth: APIs for authentication and membership
  • Zend Cache: a flexible facade about caching, supporting multiple backend such as File based cache, Sqlite based cache or Memcached.
  • Zend Controller & Zend View: the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architecture and framework for developing websites with reusable and testable code.
  • Zend Feed: a simple approach to work with live syndicated RSS or Atom feeds.
  • Zend DB Access Layer: a lightweight database access layer with providing an interface to CRUD databases.
  • Zend Lucene Search: the PHP version of the powerful Apache Lucene search engine.
Zend Framework version 2.0 requires PHP 5.3.3 or later. The version 1.7 requires PHP 5.2.4 or later. The older versions require PHP 5.1.4 or later, while the ZF Programmer's Reference Guide strongly recommends PHP 5.2.3 or later for the sake of the security and performance improvements included in these versions of PHP. PHPUnit 3.0 or later is required to run the unit tests packed with Zend Framework. Many Zend components also require PHP extensions.

If you want to read more features of Zend framework, please read this article. If you're developing websites by Zend Framework, choosing a proper Zend Web Hosting as above can help your online business be easier and better.

How to Manually Set Up Zend Framework in Shared Web Hosting?

When you seek a shared web hosting for your private or small business websites, you may confuse which web host can fit your Zend website runtime requirement, because most of the web hosts don't claim that they have Zend optimized web hosting. However, follow the steps below, you can set up shared web hosting with Zend framework by yourself step by step.

Step 1. Download the latest version of Zend Framework with minimal package from website. Don't choose the recommended full package because it's closed to 20MB. The minimal package only takes less than 4MB and it has contained all components on running Zend websites. It's lack of documentation and examples, but it is just same as the full package in functionality.

Step 2. Find a Zend web hosting provider and setup your web hosting and FTP account in the control panel.

Step 3. Upload the zipped Zend Framework to your web hosting via FTP.

Step 4. Log into the web hosting control panel and go to the online file management application. Unzip the Zend Framework and rename the folder ZendFramework-1.11.11 to zend. This folder shall contain a sub folder named library.

Step 5. Get the PHP configuration information for "documentroot" and "includepath" values. If the web host uses cPanel, it takes easy. You can click the PHP configuration icon the control panel and get both server/PHP runtime configuration, as the following screenshot,

Zend - PHP Configuration

Step 6. If the web host doesn't provide cPanel or PHP configuration, you have to write a simple PHP script to get the information manually. Create a PHP file "getinfo.php" with the following one line,

<?php phpinfo(); ?>

Upload it into your website via FTP and visit it in the web browser. Make a note of the "documentroot" and "includepath".

Step 7. Edit "php5.ini" (or "php.ini") and add the following line:

include_path = [DOCUMENT_ROOT Value]/zend/library

Step 8. Visit the "getinfo.php" again and check whether the PHP configuration is changed according to your new value.

Step 9. Test Zend Framework by creating a new PHP file as following.

Test Zend Framework

What Is Zend Optimizer

Zend Optimizer is a software package offered by Zend, allowing you to run encoded files by Zend Guard for improving PHP code execution performance by 50% to 100%. Zend Optimizer is not supported widely in shared web hosting although some web hosts claim to support Zend framework.

Zend Guard compiles and encodes text-based PHP scripts into an independent binary format which is known as Zend Intermediate Code file. You only need to deploy the binary files then the web server executes the binary files instead of parsing the plain-text PHP scripts at runtime. The transition not only improves the performance of execution, but also helps you protect PHP source code especially when you're running on shared web hosts. The prerequisite of web servers to run Zend Intermediate Code files is that the web host installs and enables Zend Optimizer. Without it, your Zend Guard encoded files cannot be executed, and your website cannot be run successfully.

How to Check Zend Optimizer Installation?

To confirm that Zend Optimizer is installed and enabled properly for your web hosting account, the best practice is to contact with the web host technical support via live chat or telephone certainly. Also, there is another approach that you can check Zend Optimizer installation and version by yourself, by using phpinfo() method. You need to create a PHP script file, phpinfo.php, with the following code.


Upload phpinfo.php onto your website root directory, and access it in the web browser. Then you can get all information about the Zend and PHP runtime environment on the shared web host. You can find the following lines if the web host supports Zend Optimizer.

Information about Zend Runtime Environment