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As the number of websites and services provided over the internet increases exponentially, there’s an increasing demand for web hosting services. It also led to newer technologies in the web hosting space, one of which happens to be VPS hosting.
What is VPS Hosting? – At a Glance
Virtual Private Server hosting utilizes virtualization technology to offer dedicated hosting resources to multiple users. Users have access to a virtual machine running its own copy of an operating system which allocates memory and processing speed for a similar performance as dedicated hosting.
Intro to Web Hosting
To make a website go online, you have to upload all its files to a web server. A server is a physical computer used for storing databases and files for websites. When you access a website, the server is responsible for sending these stored files to you over the internet.
Web hosting is the handling, maintenance, and storage of website files and requires storage space on a server. You purchase this server space from a hosting service provider. When you share space on the same server as another website, this is known as shared hosting. When you get a whole server for your site, that’s dedicated hosting.
But VPS hosting is different. Let’s see how it works.
How Does VPS Hosting Work?
VPS hosting offers you a virtual server that simulates the capabilities of a dedicated physical server but is actually shared among different users. Thanks to server virtualization, your web host installs a virtual layer atop the operating system to make divisions in the server. This lets each user install their preferred operating system and software onto it.
Think of it as partitioning your computer when you want to use multiple operating systems like Windows or Linux without rebooting. A big advantage of VPS hosting is that you have the same SSH and root access as a dedicated server but it’s much cheaper.
Should You Choose VPS Hosting?
The web host and type of hosting you choose directly impact the security, performance, scalability, and management level of your website. You also have to make a decision depending on the traffic you get on your website.
Different hosting options are offered at different prices. For a small business making the wrong decision could be a costly and ineffective allocation of resources, setting your business back.
While there’s a variety of hosting providers online that provide VPS plans. It’s important you make your choice based on:
- The amount of traffic
- Your budget
- The amount of security you want
- The level of technical expertise in your team
- Overall scalability
You should also make sure to get the services from a reliable VPS hosting company to avoid technical issues. If you’re interested, do check out Namecheap’s VPS hosting.
Situations VPS Hosting Works Best In
VPS hosting can prove an excellent choice for medium-level workloads that need consistent performance. Here are a few scenarios where VPS hosting could be the best option. These are when you want to:
- host 1-10 websites with medium web traffic
- host web servers or email
- host cPanel or Plesk
- develop and deliver cloud-based services
- host heavy databases
- have quick accessibility to store and view website data
While this list is not a complete overview, it should give you a good idea. You can use a VPS server for what you’d use a dedicated server for. Although there would be lesser storage and bandwidth. It’s a more affordable option compared to dedicated servers especially when you only want to pay for what you need.
Virtual Private Server Hosting vs Other Types of Hosting
Different types of web hosting vary in terms of customization, pricing, performance, and availability of the service. To make it simple, we’re comparing the major types of VPS to help you get a comprehensive view of the options available:
VPS Hosting vs Shared Hosting
With shared hosting, you share a server and resources with other companies. But VPS utilizes virtualization technology with a dedicated share of hard drive space, memory, storage, etc. So, it basically simulates a private server.
Shared hosting is a good option when you’re on a tight budget or just hosting a simple website with little security or compliance needs. Otherwise, VPS provides superior performance, security, and control.
VPS Hosting vs Dedicated Hosting
Dedicated hosting gives you complete access to all the resources on a physical server. Like network access, memory, storage, and processing power. VPS on the other hand simulates a dedicated server through virtualization technology. Unlike dedicated hosting, VPS allocates users a share of the resources.
There’s no doubt that dedicated hosting has superior performance complicated to VPS. There’s also a wide selection of operating systems. VPS offers somewhat of a limited selection. However, both options give you complete root access and control over the OS. The interesting part is that both VPS and dedicated hosting offer reliable security (as long as you’re using reputable hosting).
If you need to host massive databases that numerous people can access quickly, or host many websites with extensive bandwidth needs, dedicated hosting is the way to go. VPS is the sweet spot between shared and dedicated servers. Cheaper than dedicated hosting but with a higher performance than shared hosting.
VPS Hosting vs Cloud Hosting
Cloud hosting is a combination of VPS and shared hosting. It offers higher availability and performance. With the added capability to scale CPU power and memory on demand. When it comes to VPS hosting, you get a fixed performance.
With cloud hosting, you can choose between Linux and Windows OS, but it requires more technical expertise to configure than VPS. Cloud hosting although secure is physically distributed. Making it a bit more vulnerable to attacks. If real-time scalability is your main priority, cloud hosting takes the lead.
Pros & Cons of Virtual Private Server Hosting
Read on below to see the benefits and limitations of VPS hosting.
- Faster and reliable than shared hosting
- Cheaper than dedicated hosting
- Easy and reliable server backups are a standard
- Allocated share of resources ensures there’s minimal fluctuation
- Traffic surges from other users don’t impact you
- Greater control with SSH and root-level access to server
- Good security since data is locked from other users via isolated instances
- Scalable. As your needs grow, you can upgrade the server resources with ease
- Requires technical expertise to set up and maintain your VPS
- Unlike cloud plans, management is technically demanding
- Poorly configurated servers can make you vulnerable to attacks
- Doesn’t provide users with complete control over the server
- Resources can be allocated poorly which causes server issues
- Not easy to set up a shared server
- More costly than shared hosting due to lesser users sharing the same server
VPS Hosting – FAQ
VPS hosting works best for website owners expecting medium web traffic that exceeds the scope of shared hosting plans but still doesn’t require the resources of a dedicated server. It’s a good sweet spot between the two.
If you’re a new company on a limited budget, shared hosting could be a better option. Although there is a tradeoff of security and performance with choosing the cheapest plan.
If your team lacks the technical expertise to configure and maintain a VPS server, it might be worth looking into Managed VPS hosting. It comes with full technical support.
If you’re a growing enterprise that needs more power and resources, dedicated servers would be a better option. A use case could be large websites with heavy bandwidth needs.
VPS is secure due to the isolation of each instance from the environment. This security is why VPS is preferred over shared hosting, where all environments share resources and can be affected by each other’s vulnerabilities. For instance, a denial of service attack on a shared server would bring down all websites hosted on that server. Since each VPS environment is isolated, it remains protected.
VPS is a fast and reliable option. With VPS, you are allocated your own bandwidth which helps you get reliable performance as you would with a dedicated server.
With a VPS hosting environment, you’re given a dedicated bandwidth at a comparatively cheaper price which makes it a viable option for websites with medium traffic.
To wrap this up, there are a lot of factors to consider when choosing VPS or any other web hosting. You can see there’s a lot to think about when it comes to picking the right option. Based on the information in this article and your own judgment, you can decide whether or not VPS hosting is the right fit for your needs.