Hosting

How to choose the best web hosting service

Sorry, no introduction here! Let’s get right to choosing the best web hosting services.

Web hosting services definition (very succinct, really)

Well, there should be some sort of intro after all. Let’s make it quick. Behold the list of web hosting services with the tersest descriptions ever:
  • — shared hosting – one physical server placed somewhere, lots of users sharing it at the same time;
  • — virtual private/dedicated server (aka VPS or VDS) – still one server, fewer users who feel like using a real server hardware. Oops, spoiler, they do not really. That’s why it’s called virtual server;
  • — dedicated server – the plainest thing with its one user, one server approach. And yes, this time the server is not a virtual one, but a bare metal one.

That’s it, as promised, brief about the most popular web hosting services. Probably, you already know the basics, anyway. Let’s get to the main course!

Web hosting services comparison, get the hosting you need

Ok, there are three hosting options, at least. Which one to choose?  Like always, you should consider:
  • — what you want to get from a service;
  • — how deeply you can or want to get involved in managing it;
  • — how much you are ready to spend.

So, let’s call these characteristics Output, Skills and Price accordingly. Now, we’re going to rate hosting services with points for each one of them. Like 1 will be the lowest (easiest) mark and 5 is the top (hardest). Ready, steady and go!

Shared goes first:
  • — Output – from 1 to 2 points. Don’t wait for miracles and remember that there definitely will be limits set by hoster. It could be number of domains, files size and number, automated tasks frequency and so on;
  • — Skills – same 1 or 2 points. There is a control panel by default. For example, cPanel that is very popular by hosters. Most routine tasks can be managed using a friendly interface. There are comprehensive helps and faqs, in case you get a bit confused. It’s pretty much a few clicks now and then, so it shouldn’t be too complicated;
  • — Price – guess what, 2 points again. Why not 1 you ask? Well, it’s not for free. Wait, you actually can find shared hosting even free of charge! Any case, it won’t cost you arm and leg.
VPS next:
  • — Output – from 3 to 4 points, it’s pretty good. Basically, it can be almost as good as a dedicated server. Almost any hosting task you’re willing to tackle can be leveraged with a virtual private server. Starting from running multiple websites to video streaming, file storage, launching a game server, etc.
  • — Skills – from 3 to 5 points, it’s quite a range. The thing is it depends on a few factors. First of all, you can go with Windows VPS and it will be like using a home PC, to a certain extent of course. Secondly, you can add a control panel and make it like working with a good old shared hosting. But you can also skip all that and stay with a raw command-line if you know what it’s all about;
  • — Price – ranges from 3 to 4 points. It’s quite affordable if you stick to low resources sets. On the other hand, it can be on the same level with lightweight dedicated servers tariff plans if you get excited and constantly upgrade your VPS.
Here comes a tough guy, please welcome – the dedicated server:
  • — Output – obviously 5, high five. The only thing that restrains you is a hardware itself. Task range is limitless. All you can do online can be done with a dedicated server – storing files remotely, running databases or custom applications, or even making and reselling your own VPSs;
  • — Skills – from 3 to 5, like with a VPS. When it comes to administrating these two are pretty much the same. Pick an operating system you know or a control panel to make your life easier;
  • — Price – once again 5 points. As you will be a single user of the whole server, all costs that are normally divided amongst customers using VPS or shared services will be charged to you only. So, you better make sure that a revenue from doing what you’re doing will at least cover your spendings.

I guess we’re done. Some obvious pieces of advice before you go, cheap web hosting services are mostly cheap. But the most expensive one doesn’t also guarantee any success. Choose wisely and let the force be with you!