So you’ve got your shiny new website developed, and now you need a hosting plan to make it available to the internet? But, what is web hosting really? It can be confusing for a normal user and make you wonder which type of hosting to go for or which plan to choose.
Web hosting is nothing but a server connected to the internet which can ‘host’ your website files and serve it to the people who request for it, i.e. visit your website.
You need a web hosting to store your files on a server because how else can the people looking for your website access it if you’ve not stored your website files at a location which is available 24/7?
There are different types of web hosting available and you might be wondering which one is the right choice for you. Let’s quickly take a look at them.
Undoubtedly, the most popular and widely used web hosting. Shared hosting is exactly what it sounds like, you share it with other people. But what does that actually mean?
The resources of the server (i.e. RAM, CPU, network etc) are shared between multiple users who are assigned that particular server. It is a great cost-effective hosting if you’re just starting out with your website or if you haven’t got too many visitors to your website. Since the resources are shared, this type of hosting is the lightest one on your pockets.
What are the downsides, you ask? Well, the resources offered in shared hosting plans are usually on the lower end and not suitable for a high-traffic or resource demanding websites.
This is also the slowest server of all the options. Moreover, you might experience slower page load speeds during peak hours.
Most of the hosting providers have a fair usage policy so that you or someone else doesn’t hog up all the resources of the server and make the server slow for other users.
If you’re running a small personal blog, or a simple website with a few visitors per day, this hosting is the best one for you.
Yes, you guessed it right! This type of hosting is dedicated to you only and you are the only person using the server’s resources. But this comes at a price! Dedicated hosts are super expensive and might be overkill for your website if you don’t have a large amount of daily traffic visiting your website. This is also the fastest server of all the options as the resources are on the higher end and not being shared by anyone else. If you’re running a high traffic e-commerce store, or any high traffic and resource expensive website, you need a dedicated host.
Virtual Private Server (VPS)
So your website might fall under that category where you need more than a shared hosting but a dedicated host is a bit too much. Surely, there must be some middle ground? Introducing Virtual Private Servers, commonly called as VPS.
VPS are also shared by users but there’s a catch. First, the number of users sharing a server is far less than that of a shared hosting. Secondly, even though users share the server as a whole, the resources allocated to you are reserved for you only and not used by anyone else, even when you’re not using them! Your website won’t be affected by what the other users are running on their account. They are suitable for medium-sized websites.
So VPS is a cheaper option than a dedicated host, while still providing you dedicated resources for your website
This was a brief introduction to the 3 most common types of web hosting. You can now choose which hosting best suits your needs and embark on your journey to host your website on the internet.
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