Self hosted on the web or your own hardware

The Self Hosted Difference

A better alternative to SaaS solutions

ZPD Applications and You

Why should you trust me with your business?


I have the benefit of being the sole-designer, developer, and support structure for all of the applications I create. This equates to a custom-tailored experience and direct one-on-one support from the source. I don't like gimmicks and I appreciate value as much as you do! This page serves as an honest, insider brief about why you should seriously consider my applications over a software as a service (SaaS). It's also a good read for freelancers and small-business owners.

What is SaaS?

Software as a service (or SaaS) is a way of delivering applications over the Internet—as a service. Instead of installing and maintaining software, you simply access it via the Internet [...] SaaS applications run on a SaaS provider’s servers. The provider manages access to the application, including security, availability, and performance.

Sourced from Salesforce

Why not?

Give yourself some credit. If you are a serious business-minded individual, you can do this. If you've ever used Wordpress then you can install and use my applications. You pay once and get the code forever! Support is included for 6-months on qualifying CodeCanyon purchases and 1 year on premium applications. Oh, and by the way, when you send an email, it's coming directly to me!

Operational Costs

Because at the end of the day, it always comes back to money. Here are some serious considerations you should be aware of when comparing a SaaS solution with one of my applications.


Recurring Payments

Software as a service (SaaS) is by definition: software you are licensed to use that some company serves up for you either online or locally using some licensing mechanism. The word service denotes something provided "over time." This equates to recurring payments and no right of ownership - more on that later.

Limited Resources

Since someone is hosting the software and provides it to a large population of users just like you, there is always a limit on the amount of resources offered to you. if you want more, you got to pay up - every month. Up time and resource packages are regulated by the company you're paying.

Limited Support

A part of the SaaS model involves supporting the software being provided. Unfortunately, support is limited to the functionality of the application, what is beneficial to the large-scale development process, and the vision of the providing entity a.k.a them, not you. This also leads to integration and data control issues.

Lack of Integration

Speaking into support, you should also consider that customization is not usually possible in most SaaS applications. So, if it doesn't do what you need, you either have to find another solution, or buy into another service for that aspect of your business. This equates to more recurring payments and multiple systems on someone else's domain.

No Data Access or Control

Who owns your data? I hope you read that long EULA! Regardless of whether you did or not, your company's data is sitting on someone else's servers, and should you need access to it for integration into other systems, most SaaS solutions respond with "I'm sorry this is not possible and doesn't meet the terms of service", leaving you stuck and frustrated.

High Cost Coupled with Impermanence

The bottom line is that you could end up investing thousands of dollars for an impermanent solution that is at the mercy of the market. At the end of the day you will walk away without the data and kick yourself for not doing what the big names do, and do it yourself. Think it costs a lot? Think again.

You save money when you get the code

Or you could just pay someone a monthly fee forever - it's your choice!


Save thousands by DIY

My applications can run on a website or a local business server, either way you can save up to almost $3,600 USD per year in out of pocket costs.

Learn More

Product Get the code Price 5 Year Cost
active.collab Yes* $299 / mo $17,940*
Teamwork Projects No $249 / mo $14,940
SalesforceIQ CRM No $75 / mo $4,500
Freshdesk No $70 / mo $4,200
CreativeOffice Pro No $49 / mo $2,940
Wrike No $49 / mo $2,940
Smartsheet No $15 / mo $900
Entity CC Yes $26 / once $26
Serenity CC Yes $18 / once $18

* active.collab charges a one-time flat fee of $499 USD to buy the software for self-hosting and requires an annual subscription for upgrades.

Entity {CC} and Serenity {CC} are both one time purchases sold and supported exclusively on CodeCanyon

Hosting it Online


Web-hosting and a custom web application can save you thousands while promoting flexibility and control of your operational process.

Choosing a host

Hosting is really more about personal taste now days. Most hosts are very competitive and offer outstanding deals. Bluehost, Media Temple, GoDaddy, and HostGator are all good options. I can personally recommend Bluehost, since I have been using them since 2006. You can click on their logo to see if they have a plan that fits in your budget.

Choosing a Plan

Shared, VPS, or Dedicated? It really comes down to your budget. A good shared plan can go a long way for a long time if you are just starting up so don't feel pressured to jump in over your head in the beginning.

With that said, the cheapest shared hosting plan could set you back only $60 USD a year (domain name included).

Some things to look for

  • Linux Distro (Ubuntu, CentOS, etc.)
  • Apache
  • MySQL
  • PHP 7
  • cPanel License (Included)

Hosting it Locally


A decent in house server could cost as little as $300 USD.

Go with Linux Compatible Hardware

All of my applications, and the majority of other PHP-powered apps, run on Linux. That's not to say it can't be done using a Windows powered server, but for one, the cost is increased about $500 for the license alone. Besides, Linux is free and is the primary OS used by hosting platforms in the world. It's extremely secure and highly configurable. Trust me, you're going to love it - think Apple macOS, but free, and much more powerful!

Powered by your local network

All of my applications can be used in a small-business environment using a LAMP-stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) server served over a local area network. It sounds more complicated than it actually is. Basically, it's a computer you share on your network that stays on and everyone in your network can access. it's like your own private hosted solution, but your data is all in house on a machine you have complete control of.

The benefit of having it in house is that you pay a one-time up-front cost for the machine, getting the network setup (unless you're tech savvy), and any future hardware upgrades if you need to expand. The key thing to remember, is that you are in control and you don't pay recurring fees to accomplish the same task!

Use Cases

What you can accomplish with a self-hosted application is only limited by your business imagination. Think of a problem your business has and then think of a solution.


What you can do


  • Scheduling
  • Online Training Delivery
  • File Sharing
  • Secure Messaging and Communication
  • Statistical Reporting
  • Business Analytics and Competitor Research
  • Project and Asset Management
  • E-commerce and Product Sales

Who might use a self-hosted solution?


Insert your business here.

  • Medical Offices
  • Charities
  • Freelancers
  • Small-Business Owners
  • Vehicle Dealerships
  • Government Applications
  • Schools and Universities
  • Restaurants

What about OpenSource?

I love the open source community and a lot of the applications out there, but when it comes down to it there are too many singularities open source solutions can't meet. Do yourself a favor and get it made from the ground up!

Are you interested?

Take it back in-house!