When choosing a hosting solution for your web site, you have to decide based on your current needs and future ambitions and potentials. This takes a lot of planning and a good feeling for assessing the future. If you haven't got the slightest clue about what different hosting solutions bring to the table, we are here to clear up any confusion.
First of all, here is a list of the most popular hosting solutions. Note that they are ordered from the one that is the cheapest/lowest quality to the most expensive/highest quality (Cloud Vs Dedicated is still a subject to debate).
- Shared Hosting Solution
- VPS (Virtual Private Server) Hosting Solution
- Dedicated Hosting Solution
- Cloud Hosting Solution
With shared hosting you get your virtual space on a server and have limited capabilities and very little control over the server set-up. You are sharing this space with many other people, thus the security is rather low. This type of hosting is designated for users who own web sites with low to average traffic and do not require a lot of resources. It is very cheap and can be quite unreliable.
VPS (Virtual Private Server) Hosting
When you look at it, VPS hosting looks a lot like Shared hosting, but it is not the same. You get a piece of the dedicated server which is called a container and resources in the form of disk space, RAM, CPU and Bandwidth. These resources are yours alone and no amount of activity on the server by the other users can take them from you (unlike with shared hosting). You can designate how much resources you will need and you will pay based on that. Another feature that VPS hosting has, and Shared hosting does not, is the control panel. The control panel lets you adjust anything from server resources to rebooting to anything else basically. If you have a web site that isn't too big and it is moderately visited then this might be the right solution for you. It offers 24/7 support, great security and is great for SEO.
When you choose dedicated hosting, you get your own private server which is located in a secure data center. Depending on your deal with the hosting company, you will get an amount of support you asked for, from full to none. The benefits of going for dedicated servers are fairly obvious. You get to use full resources of the server, you also dictate the software that will be used on the server (including the OS), the security will be top-notch and so on. Of course, this is also the most expensive option and you probably shouldn't go for this one if you are not that serious about your web site. Now there are other things that can get complicated when using a dedicated server. For example, changing the hardware of you machine will require some downtime from you web site. If you, by any chance, need more disk space, you will have to shut it down, put in the new hardware and then turn it back on. This sound simple, but changing hardware is not always so easy and it doesn't always go on without a hitch. Also, this needs to be performed by someone. You can't just walk into a data center and start pulling stuff out. Another thing that can go wrong here is physical failure. If the server breaks down, you better have a backup of your site.
This is the newest member of the hosting family. This is another hosting solution that is done virtually, but the difference being that, instead of one server doing the work, a team of servers work together. This brings a lot of fresh options to the table. Because of the fact that you have many machines working together you can add and remove resources based on your need at any given moment. Because of this, a new billing system has been implemented which functions like an electricity bill. You are charged based on the resources used, so there is no chance of having more or less than you needed. In case of a physical server crash, another machine will take over and you will avoid having large down times.
We hope we helped you with pick the right hosting solution for yourself. Cheers.