> >I'd also be interested in what people are charging as I'm thinking of
> >setting up as a contractor myself and it would be nice to have a 'ball
> > park' figure of what the going rate is ...

A lot depends on what you've done and the image your customer has of the 
value of what you are doing.

Many times I meet with customers, talk to them about their system and offer 
my services for $500/day (I don't like to charge hourly).
Many times they think it's too much because some wanna be visual developer 
thinks there is nothing to it using Microsoft.
Those people usually encounter major cosltly problems because the guy they 
are paying $20/hour has no experience but gives them a false sense of 
security. And when it goes wrong, it costs them so much that paying you $500 
seems like a bargain. 
It happened to me many times and I am smiling as I am writing this 
remembering some situations.

The problem is that you have to be able to differentiate yourself from those 
fakes, and it can be difficult. They usually have flashy sites that move and 
make sound linked some database capability with access (like to catalog their 
dad's wine bottle so they never plan more than one simultaneous connection).
But it certainly looks  hell lot more impressive than what you have to show, 
since you have to worry about little things like the number of connections 
and bandwidth.
Meanwhile you are telneting to your server to show the customer how efficient 
and performing your code is in a language they don't understand.

A guy posted earlier about a customer that does not want to change host 
provider and this host provider cannot guarantee any security.
The provider will even provide access to the customer to compile MySQL 
himself so he can increase security. They will probable give full access to 
the server!
I can't believe a hosting company would give root access to one of his 
customers don't they realize the damage and security hole they are exposing 
themself to.
I don't give root access to anybody, it is not a matter of trust, accidents 
happen and all gets lost.

This host company is crazy and the client who wants to stay with them is 
crazy too.

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