Picolocation Review

I recently discovered Picolocation and sent them my Raspberry Pi to host in their Aberdeen data centre. I knew that this was a somewhat risky move and could backfire in a number of ways. Unfortunately it did and so here is what happened.

For a start my 16GB SD card got damaged by Royal Mail in transit. Remarkably it looks like the SD card reader on the Pi, the card was in this, was undamaged but this is not the case. The Pi is no longer stable and so is essentially useless now. Thanks a lot Royal Mail for your careful treatment of my parcel.

Now, Picolocation seems to be run by a very nice guy called Philip and he is a pleasure to deal with. Unfortunately there appears to be a degree of deliberate deception involved. First, their Aberdeen data centre appears to be at a residential address. Your Pi will have to be behind NAT because they only have one IP and you will have to use their reverse proxy to host a website. Second, they are allegedly on an EE business line but this would come with a static IP, but their IP is set dynamically.

So, overall my advice to people is watch out; you don’t get something for nothing. My advice to Philip is to stop hiding things because his operation would be perfectly legitimate for some use cases if he wasn’t being so shady.

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