Dolphin will work at Bluehost, Hostgator, and Hostmonster if you install it properly. You won't be able to install your own Ray RMS server on these hosts, but I am not aware of any shared hosting company that will allow you to do so. You can simply use a 3rd party RMS service which is very reasonable priced (explained further below on this page), which is what most people do. Otherwise, you will need a Virtual Private Server (VPS) / Virtual Dedicated Server (VDS) / Dedicated Server, with full root access and control.
So the short answer is yes it will work at these hosts, but in order to take advantage of the Ray RMS associated with audio/video portions of some of the widgets you will need some form of RMS provider whether it be a 3rd party or your own VPS, VDS, or Dedicated Server. You can find a 3rd party provider of RMS service for around $5 to $10 USD per month.
There are a few hosts that can provide Dolphin Hosting and access to use their RMS service/connection all in one package for around $12 per month.
Generally at Hostmonster and Bluehost the only thing you may need to do is add a custom php.ini file to increase the ray upload limits. If you haven't changed any of the settings in your Hostmonster or Bluehost account usually all that is required is to place a php.ini file in
your main/home/public_html directory with the following:
Note: You may wish to adjust the values to suit your needs:
upload_max_filesize = 100M
post_max_size = 100M
output_buffering = on
max_execution_time = 600
max_input_time = 600
memory_limit = 128M
Then name it php.ini and place it in public_html directory.
You might consider putting it in the ray directory too here:
If you have made any changes to your Hostmonster or Bluehost PHP Configuration settings in the hosting control panel you may already have a php.ini file and you can simply open the file with a text editor and increase some of the values. Then, save it back to the server/your account.
If you do already have a copy of php.ini in your main directory just open it with a text editor and find these and increase them accordingly:
You can find the PHP Configuration Settings in Hostmonster or Bluehost Cpanel towards the bottom "PHP Config" as pictured:
When clicking this, you will be brought to a screen like this:
This picture is generally the default setting. Be sure you really know what you are doing before making any changes to these settings.
Like most shared hosting accounts you will not be able to install your own ray RMS server. You just won't have the access needed to install the media server. It also consumes server resources a shared hosting account generally will not allow for the low monthly fee most of these offer.
If you need or want your own ray RMS server you will probably have to get a VPS/VDS server or dedicated server which will be much more costly per month. More linux and server administration will also be required in order to maintain and configure your account, which can be a little complex for some.
You can still use a 3rd party RMS service from a company such as Zarconia.net for around $8-$12 per month. I'm sure there are probably a few others that offer RMS service if you look around. I mention Zarconia.net because they are a long-standing supporter and active within the Dolphin community. Again, there are probably others, but a provider of RMS service tends to be a little harder to find.
So you can use a host like Hostmonster, Bluehost, and a number of others. Then, get a 3rd party RMS service if you intend to use the audio/video portion of something like Ray Chat, Ray Messenger, or Ray Profile Player, etc. If you don't plan on using these features then don't get RMS. If you decide to use them later, then simply add a 3rd party RMS at that time.
At Hostgator you usually have an additional option in Cpanel "php.ini Quick Config"
When clicking on "php.ini Quick Config" you will be brought to a screen as pictured where you can adjust your php.ini settings. Once again make sure you really know what you are doing or before messing with this or making any changes.
Other hosts do not use a php.ini per individual account. There is a main master php.ini file configuration which is shared by all accounts on the server. They may or may not allow you to make changes by means of a .htaccess file to accomplish similar value increases. In this case, with this type of setup you can add to the main .htaccess file yoursite.com/.htaccess with something like the following example:
php_value upload_max_filesize 100M
php_value post_max_size 100M
php_value output_buffering on
php_value max_execution_time 600
php_value max_input_time 600
php_value memory_limit 128M
Notice the php_value part, and there is no equal's symbol (=) like there is in php.ini. If you add those commands to .htaccess and you get a "Internal Server Error" most likely your host is setup to use a php.ini file instead.
You can simply ask your host if you are not sure or need help. Most decent hosts will gladly help you out with this.
The only real drawbacks of shared hosting is they are shared with other accounts on the server. Some hosts will pack them in there. That's how they make their money. If you happen to get on a server with numerous other accounts or a site that hogs all the server resources it can slow your site down at times.
All shared hosts have some kind of CPU and resource limitations. They will only allow you to consume X-Amount of CPU power or memory for X-Amount of time. If your site pushes their limit they can and will suspend your site. It all depends on the host, but they all usually have some kind of definition of what their allowed limit and time is in their terms of service.
The ray video uploads is probably the biggest consumer of server resources you will encounter. If you upload a big video or a bunch of videos one after another you could be pushing the allowed resources limit for your account specified in the terms of service for your hosting company and/or hosting package.