Whether you have just ventured into entrepreneurship or consider taking your organization to the next level, a reliable web hosting is one service you will always need. Choosing a suitable hosting service can, however, be mind-boggling, given the dizzying array of options available in the marketplace. To help you through this, we have compiled a list of the most common types of web server hosting services. Let us discuss them one by one.
1) Shared Hosting
In shared hosting, your website is hosted on a server shared with other websites. One of the biggest advantages of this kind of hosting is price. Since you are sharing the server with multiple tenants, the cost of hosting gets shared. The obvious drawback of shared hosting is that your website is on the mercy of other tenant websites. If one of these sites experiences a surge in traffic, your website will slow down.
A shared hosting plan is ideal for those who are just starting out and do not expect huge traffic and/or those who have a static site.
2) Reseller Hosting
In reseller hosting, a web hosting provider allows their hosting services to be sold by a third-party. Reseller hosting allows an organization or individual to act as a hosting provider without the need to build and manage IT infrastructure.
As a hosting reseller, you can offer different plans to your clients and have control over billing, storage, and RAM of your shared account. Several web designers make a monthly income from reseller hosting.
Reseller hosting offers the following perquisites:
- Free website templates
- White label technical support: Here your hosting company will take care of your client’s technical support issues.
- Private name servers
Reseller hosting is ideal for those who intend to sell web server hosting as a business.
3) Cloud Hosting
Cloud or Grid Hosting is a relatively new kind of hosting service that has been there since 1999. In cloud hosting, a large number of physical servers are combined to form a single large virtual server called the ‘cloud’.
Because cloud hosting offers access to a large number of server resources, clients can easily scale resources up and down as needed. So, if your website gets an unusually large amount of traffic at some point or the other, cloud hosting will manage it and will not let your website go offline.
Cloud hosting follows a pay-as-you-go pricing model wherein you pay only for the resources consumed. If your website is growing and you need an upgrade from the current shared hosting plan, cloud hosting is for you.
4) Virtual Private Server (VPS) Hosting
In VPS hosting, a single physical server is divided into several virtual servers (or virtual machines), each of which acts as a separate server and has their dedicated RAM, CPU, and HDD space. The number of virtual servers on a single physical server is not more than 10-15.
Since each website is hosted on a separate virtual server, a client cannot use more resources than what they have been allocated. As a result, the performance of any website remains unaffected by tenant websites. VPS hosting is essentially a hybrid of shared and dedicated server hosting.
VPS hosting offers the flexibility to configure your own environment without impacting other clients.
VPS is popular among website owners looking for an upgrade from their existing shared hosting plan as it offers the benefits of both shared and dedicated hosting.
5) Dedicated Server Hosting
In dedicated server hosting, you rent an entire physical server for your exclusive use. You have complete control over the resources of the server as you don’t share them with any other client. As a result, you don’t need to worry about other websites hogging up the resources on your server.
Most of the dedicated server hosting plans let you customize the server to a certain degree: you can decide how much and which type of RAM you will use and also the operating system on which your server will work.
Dedicated server hosting usually requires you to know how to manage a server. If you lack the required technical know-how, you can opt for managed server hosting and let your host handle the day-to-day management of the server. On the other hand, if you require complete control over your server and have the expertise to manage it, then an unmanaged hosting plan works well for you.
You should choose dedicated server hosting only if you own a heavy-traffic website indispensable to your business and/or you have stringent data privacy/hardware requirements. Otherwise, a cloud server works just as well..
6) Colocation Hosting
In colocation hosting, you buy your own servers and then rent space in a third-party data center to install the servers. In colocation, the service provider offers the bandwidth, IP address, and power for running the servers. Colocation server is similar to dedicated server hosting, except that you own the server.
Because it involves an upfront investment in hardware, colocation web hosting can be more expensive than other forms of hosting.
If you own a small website that draws little traffic or do not have the expertise to set up and maintain hardware, then colocation is not the option to go for. However, if you have a small or medium-sized business and expect significant web traffic but don’t want to deal with the hassle of setting up an in-house server, then colocation is for you.
7) Self-Service Hosting
Self-service is a kind of hosting where you do everything on your own right from buying and installing the server, configuring the software to ensuring enough cooling and power for your hardware and making provision for redundancy. Self-service web hosting requires you to build a small data center and spend on hardware, software, floor rentals, and technical staff. You also need to take care of things such as bandwidth, cooling and data safety, and security.
A self-service web hosting is similar to dedicated server hosting, except that there is no restriction on hardware resources-you can install as many servers as you need.
If you own a large company with a gigantic website and your revenue depends on your website running smoothly, then self-service web hosting is the option to go for.
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