Shared Hosting Vs. VPS

One of the best ways of reaching out to a global market is by advertising your products and services through a website. For a website to stay up 24×7, it has to be hosted on a web server. It is possible to set up your own web server, but it requires substantial maintenance work and advanced equipment to keep it running all the time. Instead, outsourcing the job of hosting web pages to companies which run professional web hosting services is a more cost-effective option. There are three prime options to choose from. You could go for a dedicated web server, which hosts your site exclusively or go for either one of shared hosting or VPS. The dedicated server option is mandatory for websites with high daily traffic, while the rest of the two options are ideal for small business web sites with low traffic.

Difference Between Shared and VPS Hosting

Both services are designed to keep your website up 24×7 and they differ substantially in the amount of control that a webmaster gets in hosting the website and other facilities.

Basic Difference
A shared hosting service manages multiple websites through the same server software. The resources of the server are divided to host every one of the websites. Each website may be provided with a separate hard drive volume, to host its web pages.

The user control is provided through software programs installed on the server like DirectAdmin, Plesk, cPanel, and InterWorx. Using these web-based control systems, the webmasters can upload and make changes to the content of their web pages. Most of the standard applications are made available to webmasters, but the entire job of server maintenance and software upgrades is handled by the hosting company.

If you need advanced software development for your website, shared web hosting is not the ideal choice. The operating system used is mostly Linux. A typical service will offer you plenty of hard drive space on the server, FTP, mySQL databases, and email. Such a service can also be run privately and is known as server colocation.

A VPS (virtual private server) service offers a separate operating system for every web site, along with dedicated RAM, which allows a webmaster to have complete control over site management and also provides the freedom to carry out advanced software development. So, even though your website shares the same machine with other websites, your own operating system is isolated. These services provide high bandwidth and the user is completely in charge of server administration. These are ideal for websites with moderate level traffic and plenty of online software features.

Security Comparison
When you analyze the security features of both services, it will be realized that VPS is more secure than shared hosting. If one website that is a part of the shared hosting program is hacked, all other websites shared on it are vulnerable to hacking attacks. On the other hand, since VPS services offer a separate operating system, they are more secure. So, if you are looking for a high level of security and expecting a high amount of traffic, VPS is a better choice.

Cost
Not surprisingly, VPS is costlier compared to shared hosting services as they offer dedicated RAM, more facilities, and a greater level of security. These services charge upwards of USD 30 per month to more than USD 100 per month for hosting your website. On the other hand, a shared hosting service has a starting cost around USD 7 per month, which may range up to USD 20 for greater number of facilities and bandwidth. Ergo, it has advantages when it comes to cost. If you are looking for low-cost web hosting, this is the hosting type you should go for.

For small websites with very limited traffic, shared hosting is the cheapest and most cost-effective option, but it provides very limited amount of control to the user. On the other hand, for websites with a greater amount of traffic load and more functionality, a VPS service is ideal. Analyze your web hosting requirements and your budget to decide which of the two services will be ideal for your website.

Shared Hosting Vs Dedicated Hosting

The Internet is a platform for every business to make its presence felt. In order to maintain a website, a web service provider needs to be contacted for hosting. You need to make a choice between shared and dedicated hosting. It would be impossible for a company to make this choice in haste, and it needs to consider many things before taking a final call.

What is Shared Hosting?

Also known as virtual hosting, it occurs when you dish out a monthly fee to a third-party service provider in order to use his equipment for your web server. The service provider handles everything ranging from backup and security to setting up the server and managing the bandwidth. The sole task of your company in this scenario will be to develop the content for your website.

In this type, you end up sharing the server where your website is placed, with many other websites. This has various pros and cons, but the biggest disadvantage is the fact that you end up sharing many resources. It is also possible that the traffic on your website would be affected by the traffic on other websites, hosted on the same server.

Features

Sharing the IP Address: Since you are sharing the server with other websites, you will obviously have the same IP address. If these websites happen to be blacklisted for spamming or some other illegal activity, you would also suffer the consequences for the same. To avoid such a scenario, you should choose your web host responsibly.

Greater Response Time : If there are two or more websites on the same server, it goes without saying that the response time for each individual website would be longer. This will make the visitors wait longer and they might not wish to visit your website again.

Server Crashes Often: In many cases, if the server host does not monitor the activities properly, the server will get overloaded and crash. This occurs more frequently in shared hosting vis-a-vis dedicated hosting. Choosing a web host that is reliable and well-known will help you avoid such a situation.

Cost-effective: The most important benefit is the cost factor. Since you are sharing the server with other websites, it is pretty economical. Also the maintenance and monitoring of the server is not your responsibility, so you do not have to divert resources towards it.

Hardware and Security: As with any web based activity, good security is essential. This is handled by the service provider and you need not worry about it. The web host also provides the required hardware, so you do not have to invest any resources there.

What is Dedicated Hosting?

As opposed to shared server hosting, dedicated hosting carries greater efficiency, provides more security, and entails lesser problems. Dedicated web hosting service is mostly used by big corporations and businesses that see a large amount of traffic. It simply means that your web server sits on its own box which is partly managed by the service provider. It is completely opposite to shared hosting, and means that the server is entirely dedicated to your needs and web traffic alone.

Features

Faster Response: Since the server is solely dedicated to your website alone, the response time will be much lesser as there are smaller lines that the visitors have to wait in. This helps to maintain the level of traffic on your website.

No Bandwidth Restrictions: On shared server hosting, each website has a limit of bandwidth and it cannot be crossed. This is not applicable as far as dedicated server hosting is concerned. The entire bandwidth available on the server lies at your disposal.

Greater Control: In this case, you are the boss. Nobody’s activities can harm the functioning of your website. You are free to install any application and you can also carry out script testing as regularly as you want. You’re given much more freedom, as running your website smoothly is entirely your own responsibility in this case.

Higher Cost: Since you are monitoring and regulating the server yourself, the costs incurred by you will be greater. You will have to invest more on hardware and security, and regularly carry out maintenance checks. As a result of all this, the price will go up and due to this very fact, dedicated server hosting is chosen only by big web-based companies, social networking sites, or large corporations.

Greater Security: As compared to shared hosting, you can achieve greater levels of security in dedicated hosting. Again, this stems from the fact that you are in control of the security measures and you can adopt whatever means you find appropriate and necessary. The web host will also provide you with backups in this case.

Final Choice

Now that the difference between shared and dedicated hosting is clear, the question is which is better. The truth of the matter is that you cannot say that one of these methods is better than the other. You can only decide which method is more suitable for your business needs. The size of your company will also help you determine if you should opt for either.