If you’ve ever purchased web hosting, in any form, you’ll have no doubt come across the wide variety of packages and plans that each of the many web hosting companies offers. Understand what they mean and understanding what is right for you and your business, however, is a different story. In this article, we’re going to go for a quick run through of the various types of hosting you’ll see out in the wild. It’s obviously impossible to say which of the below is going to be best for your site but hopefully, the information below is going to assist you in deciding that.
One thing I will say doesn’t go for the bare minimum. There is nothing worse than getting a site up and running and you finding out that the package you’ve chosen is under specified or doesn’t have enough resources. If you’re not sure on what you need, at least make sure the package is scalable so you can upgrade later if need be.
This is the hosting service you’ll typically come across. Every provider will offer this. As the name suggests, the hosting is shared. That doesn’t mean your package will be shared, it just means that the physical computer that is serving your website will also serve hundreds, maybe even thousands of other sites. Obviously all this will be done behind the scenes so there is no risk of someone gaining access to your site/account but it can mean that resources are severely limited, particularly if there are a handful of sites on the server which are using a lot of resources in their own right.
Shared hosting plans are the cheapest out there due to their low resource usage. This company, hostpresto.com is one of the best we’ve seen when it comes to packages versus price but there are lots out there.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that is what you need if you want to resell hosting services to your clients and whilst it can be used for that, people often take out reseller hosting plans purely because they want to host more than one website on the same account. Reseller hosts will provide you with a control panel to add/remove/edit multiple hosted sites which makes running lots of your own sites or hosting your clients sites easier. You can also assign credentials to individual sites/accounts too should you wish to start your own hosting business. Price wise they’re obviously more expensive that shared hosting but still much cheaper than a VPS.
A VPS or virtual private server is a hosting service which has software controlled resources. So on the physical server, the host would configure how much disk space, bandwidth, memory and CPU processing power to apply to your account and those specific resources would be allocated to you. The user of such a system would also get access to a command line to do whatever they need to do within the confines of the virtual environment. It’s basically like splitting up the server into portions with each running its own hardware and software controlled virtually so to the user it looks just like they’re running a dedicated server but physically they’re not. Cloud solutions are becoming more and more common when it comes to virtual private servers as the resources at the disposal of the host and user alike can be significantly greater than being physically confined to the specific server the VPS is hosted on.
This is the most expensive package you’ll find when it comes to web hosting. It basically means you’ll have a specific, physical server solely to host your site(s). No shared resources, no software control, everything that is on the machine physically will be at your disposal. Not many people take out dedicated server plans these days as the various cloud solutions out there can provide more than enough resources to run even the biggest sites but if you’re a major corporation or are bothered about potential security issues you’ll no doubt be in the market for a dedicated solution.
Hopefully the above has helped you decide what it is you need and hopefully you’ve learned a thing or two about web hosting in general. Some of the types in this article will obviously be overkill if you’re just looking to host a small project but knowing what’s what may assist you in the future once your site gets to a level where you need one of the higher-end, dedicated solutions. Good luck with your project!