Web hosting may be the most undervalued part of the World Wide Web. Everything you love about the Internet – podcasts, memes, articles, tweets, websites, online games, Netflix content – live on a server that a person or company pays to keep running so you get access to it. Web hosting is an invisible yet important element of the online experience.
If you are thinking of saying that you are starting a website, there are several basic web hosting aspects that you should know before you begin the project. Although it is relatively easy to enroll and use a vendor-provided site building software to quickly create an attractive and functional front end, there are many related terms and concepts that can wrap your head. As you soon see, it is somewhat confusing, if not completely contradictory. Here's what you need to know about web hosting before you open an account.
1. There is a big difference between host types
If you've spent some time on the web site's website, you've probably seen words such as shared VPS ] dedicated cloud, WordPress and reseller. They represent the different types of web hosting, but not all web hosts offer them all. In addition, the host types differ significantly from one another.
Almost all web hosts offer shared hosting, the cheapest form of web hosting. With shared hosting, your site shares a server and server resources with many other websites. If you want to keep your web hosting budget small and don't expect much traffic, shared hosting is the way to go. You should pay less than $ 10 per month for this hosting type. This level of hosting is really best suited for small websites that do not need a huge amount of bandwidth, however. As you share resources with other websites, you should be prepared for a single slowdown if one of your peers starts attracting many visitors.
Larger companies expecting heavy traffic to their websites should choose VPS or dedicated hosting, all of which offer increasingly powerful server specifications. VPS hosting is like a powerful version of shared hosting, except that fewer fewer sites share a server's resources, which are also a bit more segregated. VPS hosting costs more than shared hosting, but you should pay less than $ 100 a month.
Dedicated hosting places your site on a server itself, so it can take advantage of a server's full power. This is the most expensive type of host; You can stop paying $ 100 a month or more for this raw power.
Dealers let you start your own brand hotel without having to worry about building the infrastructure from the start. WordPress hosting lets you build a website in an environment that caters to the world's most popular content management system. And cloud host ? It is a completely different beast that allows you to easily scale the site's power over multiple servers, but not every web host offers it. Than. The price for these host levels is everywhere, so shopping is important.
Check out our various explainer articles (linked to in the above section) for a deeper dive into each host type.
2. Bandwidth is not the same as data transfer
"Bandwidth" and "data transfer" are often used interchangeably to define the amount of data your site earns for visitors, but the term does not technically have the same definitions. Bandwidth represents the total amount of data that can be transmitted simultaneously, while data transfer is the throughput or actual amount of information that can be used over a certain period of time, usually one month. Think of it like this: a web host can have a maximum of 5GB of bandwidth, but depending on your host plan, your site can only allow 1GB of data transfers per month.
Note: For example, if your site exceeds the assigned monthly data transfers to a Reddit hit, a web hosting company may slow down the speed of your site or transfer a fee as a penalty. It can even encourage you to upgrade to a higher web hosting class. It is good to know the site's data limitations before you encounter situations like this.
3rd Unlimited is not completely unlimited
Unlimited storage and data transfers are usually associated with shared or WordPress plans, and they allow you to run wild … within the boundaries. If your blog gets a steady stream of reasonable traffic (whatever that means!), You'll be in good working order. However, you should not expect to upload or stream 50TB data per day. The average joe does not do what is likely to fail in some dubious activities.
You should consult a hosting provider's terms of service or a customer service representative to learn exactly what you can and cannot do within the framework of your unlimited offer plan. For example, DreamHost says that the company does not track bandwidth or traffic, so you never have to worry about priced transfer fees.
4. Solid State Drive / Hard Disk Drive Tradeoff
If you want to sign up for shared web hosting, you will probably get properties on traditional hard disk drive (HDD). The advantage of a hard disk-based server is that it can offer large amounts of storage on the cheap. As you move up the host steps to more powerful deals, such as VPS and dedicated, web hosting will allow you to build a website on an SSD.
SSD-based servers are flashless storage devices. SSD technology is still quite expensive, so your SSD-based servers usually have much less storage space than hard drives. You will rarely see 1TB SSD servers, which is a number common in the HDD arena.
The discussion SSD vs HDD is a long-lasting one that goes far beyond the scope of this article. I recommend reading Tom Brant's excellent SSD vs HDD: What's the difference?
5. A Linux Server will do … Mostly
Almost all web hosts offer Linux as the operating system that runs their servers. In fact, I don't think I've reviewed a web hosting company that lacked the free, open source system. Even if you are not familiar with Linux, you do not need to do any special work on the back to build a website. Website builders make the construction sites a breeze.
If you said that if your site needs ASP or ASP.NET scripting frames, you must run with the Windows Server operating system. This is because your script writes and web pages your product only works in a Windows-based environment.
There is another advantage: Microsoft apps, such as Office or Outlook, integrate with the server with ease. The downside? Windows servers are incompatible with Linux-based, open source software, if you do not mind.
Windows servers cost about $ 10 to $ 20 more than their Linux equivalents, but if you need Microsoft tools, it's a small premium.
For more web hosting tips, check out How to create a website and how to register a domain name for your site.