From Heroku to AppFog, one way ticket


A few months ago I migrated my personal website (a single page with a bunch of links served by Sinatra) from Heroku to AppFog. I did it because Heroku service has one big limitation: you can’t point a root domain to a Heroku app. Actually there are some workarounds to do it but Heroku discourage them.

AppFog is quite different from Heroku. It allows you to point your root domain to their app (see blog post and docs about that). It doesn’t use GIT for deploy, it uses a command line tool called af who transfers your code from e to the cloud and perform management operations (actually really similar to Heroku toolbelt).

Setup is done using one of the available Jumpstart, a ready-to-go scaffold for your needs. There are jumpstarts for Rails, Sinatra, Django, WordPress and more. In addition you can choose several add-ons (many of those are also available on Heroku). The free plan offers you 2GB of memory with no limits. It’s enough for personal use.

Another advantage is the lack of idle. Heroku Dynos goes idle if you app isn’t accessed for a while. My site has 5-6 accesses per day so it’s idle for each request… AppFog seems not affected by this problem, probably works in a different way.

If you website is small and has low traffic my advise is to use AppFog.

  • Many tnx for your article! I was wondering on how to speed up my WP development using heroku, but php in heroku is really a pain in the neck. I’ll try AppFrog instead

    • My blog is still on Heroku but I’m planning to move it to something more flexible. AppFog is cool but recently added some limitations with custom domains ( ). I’m currently testing OpenShift ( ) and it seems interesting.

      Let me know! 🙂

      • I see…
        Well, the weakest point in AppFog is the lack of a persistent file system, which means I basically cannot update my app without doing a complete code pull. This is a ugly limitation if you plan to use the platform for developing components for, let’s say, WordPress, Joomla and so on…

        • PaaS are not good for development IMHO. When you are in production this “ugly limitation” can save your life but when you code, deploy every fucking modification is a pain. For development I usually work on my local machine or any cheap VPS hosting such as Digital Ocean ( )

        • JB

          Hi Gabriele, not sure if I understood you correctly but I think your may want to check out the following link if you don’t know about it already…

  • openshift is a good choice