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Industry Hosting
Founded 1999; 20 years ago (1999)
Headquarters Roubaix, France
Key people
Octave Klaba
(Founder, Chairman, CTO)
Henryk Klaba
Laurent Allard
Miroslaw Klaba
(R&D director)
Products Hosting, Web hosting, DSL
Revenue Increase 240 million (2014)[1]
Slogan Innovation is Freedom

OVH is an Internet Service Provider providing dedicated servers, shared and cloud hosting, domain registration, and VOIP telephony services. The company is a simplified joint-stock company under French law and is headquartered in Roubaix, northern France.

The company has seventeen datacenters[2] housing around 250,000 machines.[3] The company offers localized services in: France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Ireland, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Lithuania, the Czech Republic, and Finland. It has also expanded its services to the United States and Canada. The company has deployed IPv6 and DNSSEC,[4][5] and is one of the sponsors of the free certificate authority Let's Encrypt, which provides free certificates for secure websites.[6]


OVH was founded in 1999 by fr (Octave Klaba), at the time a third year student at the Institut catholique d'arts et métiers (ICAM) in Lille.[citation needed]

In 2001, OVH rented 7 racks from Paris hosting provider Claranet. With its expansion, more room was needed and cooling became an issue, so OVH moved to a datacenter abandoned by Free, a French ISP. Shortly after, the server park grew to 1,200 machines. To keep up with the growing demand, OVH installed new servers.[citation needed]

In 2002, OVH began renting another datacenter, also owned by Free. They later purchased the building, making it the first company-owned datacenter in Paris.

In 2006, OVH opened its first subsidiaries in Poland, Senegal and Spain.

The volume of activity grew exponentially from 6,000 to 12,000 servers. An opportunity arose in Roubaix where OVH has its headquarters, and technical teams, but no datacenter. OVH built Roubaix 1 (RBX-1), its very first datacenter. In 2008 and 2009, RBX-2 and RBX-3 were built.

Meanwhile, the subsidiaries multiplied abroad: Tunisia, Morocco, the United-Kingdom, Ireland, Italy, Germany, Finland, Portugal, and the Netherlands for a total of fifteen branches in Europe and two in North Africa.

Since 2010, OVH has invested 10 million euros in cloud computing to offer new services. At the end of 2010, OVH launched "Dedicated Cloud", a new external cloud solution. It is now possible to deploy a virtual datacenter within an hour and to add resources as needed.

In 2011, OVH hosted 100,000 servers at its datacenters. The company constructed a 100% air conditioning-free datacenter (RBX-4), the first of its kind. In 2012 OVH built its first container-type datacenter in Strasbourg (SBG-1) to respond to the needs of its Eastern European clients. In 2012, OVH continued its expansion and opened OVH, Inc. in the United States and Canada.

In 2013, the OVH had 700 employees and launched a datacenter with an overall capacity of 300 000 servers in Gravelines, northern France. OVH also launched a VDSL Internet connection, opened new offices in Brest, (Bretagne), raised a 140 million dollar syndicated loan to support its investments, and participted with Atos in the "Cloud Plan" initiated by the French government. 2013 also marked the year of the first OVH Summit, an annual event inspired by IT shows in North America.

In 2014, OVH celebrated its 15th anniversary. It now had 800 employees and hosted 180,000 servers in 17 datacenters. The same year, the company launched .ovh, a new generic top-level domain (gTLD). .ovh was the first new French gTLD to be opened to the general public and over 50,000 new domain names were registered within the first five days of a promotion campaign for the launch.[7]

Two new brands have since been launched by OVH: So You Start, offering servers and dedicated infrastructure, and RunAbove, a high performance public cloud solution. These two brands also work as labs where users can test new innovations.


Dedicated servers

OVH has a variety of servers. There are high end servers, mid range servers, and low end servers. The mid range servers are sold under the So you Start brand. The low end servers are sold under the Kimsufi brand.

Dedicated cloud

Some characteristics of OVH's dedicated cloud are its content delivery network, its big data, and its high performance computing (HPC).


Runabove is a public cloud solution designed for developers and DevOps. In October 2014, OVH launched the first per hour cloud computing offer, based on the new IBM Power 8 processor.

VPS (virtual private server)

OVH offers two ranges of VPS in the Roubaix, Strasbourg and Beauharnois datacenters. The first range is VPS SSD, which is based on theKVM. Its specific information is E5V3(2.4 GHz) 2GB to 8GB RAM, 100Mbit/s network. The other range is the VPS Cloud, which is based on KVM. Its specific information is E5V3(3.1 GHz) 2GB to 8GB RAM, 100Mbit/s network.


Since 2014, OVH has offered a collaborative messaging platform for professionals. This solution allows users to share contacts, folders and calendars and sync emails on any device. All data is hosted at OVH's Canadian data center.

OVH Canada

On January 26, 2012, Henryk and Octave Klaba, along with Canadian institutional partners, the city of Beauharnois, the Center for local development (CLD) Beauharnois-Salaberry, and Montreal International, officially established OVH in the Beauharnois-Salaberry Regional County Municipality of southwestern Quebec, Canada.

Located in an renovated aluminium plant formerly owned by Rio Tinto Alcan, the BHS datacenter opened in January 2013, south of Montreal. Within 6 months, OVH teams built two towers hosting 10,000 servers each. A third hosting space of the same capacity was built in 2014.

Designed for the North-American market, as of 2015, OVH's BHS datacenter has an overall capacity of 360,000 servers. It is powered by hydropower.[citation needed]

Key Figures

  • Number 1 hosting provider in Europe
  • Number 3 hosting provider in the world (Netcraft, Jan. 14)
  • 18,000,000 hosted websites (Apr. 12)
  • 220,000 servers (Sep. 15)[citation needed]
  • 17 datacenters (Sep. 15)[8]
  • 2,900,000 domain names (Dec. 12)[9]

In the News

In 2012 and 2013, VMware rewarded OVH with the Service Provider Program Partner award for the EMEA region, and the title of Global Service Provider of the year in 2013.[10]

On October 7, 2014 during the 2nd OVH Summit, Octave Klaba revealed the company's new logo and slogan : "Innovation is Freedom".

In December 2014, Octave Klaba is named IT Personality of the Year by the magazine Le Monde Informatique.[11] OVH also announced a new fundraising of 327 million dollars to support the company's international development.


Until September 2009, OVH hosted a website of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) a Hutu rebel force suspected of having committed crimes against humanity.[11]

In December 2010, Gizmodo revealed that WikiLeaks selected OVH as its new hosting provider following Amazon's refusal to host it.[12] On December 3, the growing controversy promted Eric Besson, France's Industry Minister, to inquire about legal ways to prohibit this hosting in France. The attempt failed. On December 6, 2010, a judge ruled that there was no need for OVH to cease hosting WikiLeaks.[13] The case was rejected on the grounds that such a case required an adversarial hearing.[14]

During the week of April 21, 2013, accounts of at least two separate Bitcoin providers' websites, hosted on OVH servers, were compromised. OVH confirmed that three customers were victims of a vulnerability in their password recovery unique URL system, as it was not generating as randomly as intended.[15]

In July 2013, OVH was attacked by hackers. A database of all European customers (name, phone, hashed password...) was stolen.[16]

On July 30, 2014, American adult magazine publisher Perfect 10, known for having sued several big companies since 2005, including: Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Giganews, Megaupload, Depositfiles, MasterCard, Visa and Leaseweb, filed a lawsuit against OVH for $188 million for hosting websites that illegally provide their images on various pirate sites.[17]


  1. "OVH Mag, Actualités, innovetions & tendances IT" (in French). No. June 2014. OVH. p. 2. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "OVH site" (in français). OVH. Retrieved 2014-10-08.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "OVH about page". OVH. Retrieved 2016-03-30.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "OVH : Ipv4Ipv6". Retrieved 2013-10-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Included Services - DNSSEC - Domain names - OVH". OVH. Retrieved 2013-10-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Gilbert, Guillaume (December 22, 2015). "OVH Commits to Let's Encrypt to Provide Free SSL Certificates". OVH.COM. Retrieved 21 January 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Already more than 50,000 domain names for the .ovh gTLD!". AFNIC. 2014-10-07. Retrieved 2015-03-11.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Innovation is Freedom". OVH. Retrieved 30 May 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "OVH : Retour express sur 2012". 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2015-02-05.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "OVH : Octave Klaba, PDG d'OVH, personnalité IT 2014 pour LMI". 2014-12-18. Retrieved 2015-02-05.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. 11.0 11.1 "Reporter succeeds where UN failed: Rwanda militia website closed". Christian Science Monitor. September 4, 2009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. Greenberg, Andy (September 13, 2012). This Machine Kills Secrets: How WikiLeakers, Hacktivists, and Cypherpunks Are Freeing the World's Information. New York (New York), USA: Random House. ISBN 978-0-753-54801-1. Retrieved 2015-07-23. Within days, they had registered the URL and set up an SSLprotected site and a Tor Hidden Service in an OVH data center in the French city of Roubaix, the same one that briefly housed WikiLeaks' publications until they migrated to Sweden.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. French web host need not shut down WikiLeaks site: judge (AFP)
  14. "Following the wikileaks case". OVH. 6 December 2010. Retrieved 15 October 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "OVH Forum: Our backoffice security".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "OVH : Un hacker s'empare de la base de données clients". 2013-07-22. Retrieved 2014-01-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. "OVH Slapped with $188m Lawsuit for Passing on "Pirate" Traffic". TorrentFreak. 5 August 2014. Retrieved 5 August 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links