ssh and telnet are functionally the same thing, it is just that telnet passes all of the data (including your userid / password) in clear text, so it is possible that anyone with a sniffer on the line could capture that information. SSH on the other hand encrypts the entire communication session. SSH has kind of become the defacto standard for doing telnet type activities. For Windows there are several free ssh clients, putty, ttssh and even a free client from www.ssh.com.
Whether you use ssh/telnet or FTP as the communication method is really more of a matter of personal preference. As I said, my hosting provider does have SSH, but I do about 99% of my site maintenance via FTP. I have a mirror copy of my site on my Windows box and when I upgrade Geeklog for example, I unarchive the files on my Windows box, copy them to the right place on my copy site and then use FTP to move it all up.
Either method works just fine and with great FTP clients like FileZilla, you can even edit your config.php and other files directly from the FTP client.
From my experience, what you want to look for in a hosting plan for Geeklog is this:
- Fast MySQL server
- Ability to store files outside of the webroot
- Control over the php.ini file
- Access to the raw web server logs
I'm sure others can add to this list, but if I can find the items above, hosting a Geeklog site is pretty painless.
A note of caution
Almost all hosting providers offer a tool called Fantastico to install Geeklog and several other CMSs. Unfortunately, Fantastico does not install Geeklog in a secure manner. You are much better off doing the installation yourself. Granted, using Fantastico is pretty simple, just click a link, but a manual install of Geeklog is also pretty simple and straight forward and you will have a much safer system in the end.
Anyway, there are lots of good hosting services out there that will give you a good environment for Geeklog. Figure out what is the most important to you
and go from there. For me, I really like the fact that I can have upto 6 different web sites using different domains with my hosting plan.
Good luck with your quest...