Thinking of starting a new website, or migrate your current website to a new hosting? Looking for a solution to set up a remote desktop somewhere around the world? Want to start a game server with your friends? There are many uses for a web hosting service, and a Virtual Private Server (VPS) can be the best choice for many of them.
There are thousands of web hosting companies and websites around the world who provide all kinds of hosting services and hosting types, each with their cons and pros. But if you know what you need and learn about VPS which is probably the most common type of hosting for small to medium-sized websites, you can choose much better and know where to get your hosting from.
What is a Virtual Private Server? How Does it Work?
A Virtual Private Server, commonly called a VPS, is more or less what its name implies: it is not an actual server, but a virtual server that acts and works like a real one. Moreover, it is private, in the sense that you don’t share it with other clients or users. This characteristic especially is meaningful in comparison with another common type of hosting for small websites and businesses, which is shared hosting. But first let’s explain VPS.
A fully dedicated server is a powerful specialized computer, and is more than what most websites and businesses on the internet actually need. Moreover, It is usually a bare-metal device (meaning not managed by the hosting company, but rather by you) and therefore it’s hard to maintain and manage. Usually you would need to hire at least one server admin to handle it, or maybe more. Most websites and business can’t afford that and basically don’t need to. As a consequence, a need arises for smaller, simpler hosting machines.
Here’s where VPS enters. A hosting provider can break down a single dedicated server into several smaller server-like virtual machines, called VPS, using various kinds of virtualization software available. They can offer these individual virtual machines for rent to clients. This is called VPS hosting.
VPS may seem very similar to a shared hosting, but there is a key difference. A shared hosting is when a dedicated server is “shared” among several users, meaning they all have access to their own user account on the same server and can use its resources as much as their need is. The problem is that everyone is using the same device at the same time; at peak times or when a user or two start overusing their fair share of the resources, the device slows down for everyone. Although it is cheap, this makes it unreliable for many purposes. However, unlike a shared server, every VPS machine is allocated its own dedicated resources not shared with anyone, therefore acting much more like a real server than a shared hosting.
Advantages of Virtual Private Server
- Resources are guaranteed
VPS is by definition a private server. When defining VPS machines, each machine receives a dedicated portion of server resources. You do not share these resources with any other client who is using a VPS on the same physical servers. This means that unlike a shared hosting, you can always be sure that you have the resources in your hosting plan available without fail or flutter. This means a lot in use-cases that are sensitive to performance.
- Performance is reliable
Guaranteed resources are critical for a reliable performance. On shared hosting, when a user or client is overactive and uses too much of system resources, it affects everyone. The processing power or CPU time, RAM or system memory, bandwidth and every resource may fluctuate and this can heavily hurt the performance of software running for you. This is why dedicated resources of a VPS are a key feature that ensures performance and reliability. A great example would be like a forex trading software that is highly sensitive to latency and even CPU performance.
- Managed and unmanaged
There are two main types of VPS: Managed VPS and Unmanaged VPS. For many people who don’t have much technical know-how or do not want to entangle themselves with the hassle of running a small server, some hosting providers offer managed VPS. It’s generally a specialized VPS that does a certain job pretty well, such as WordPress VPSfre, or remote desktop VPS. You can use the VPS for that purpose and don’t have much to do with maintenance. On the other hand, there is the standard unmanaged VPS that gives you more control on the machine and what you want to do with it.
- Securer than shared hosting
As I mentioned on a shared server all resources are shared. That includes the storage. This is an important matter since it leaves room for exploitation of bugs and loopholes by hackers to access and change the data of other users who are using the same server. On the contrary, on a VPS server the storage is private and no other client using a VPS on the same physical server can see or change any data on other VPS machines. This makes VPS a lot securer than shared hosting.
- Easy to upgrade for more resources
Whenever that you see the need to increase your resources such as memory, CPU, storage or any other, you can just upgrade your VPS plan with the VPS hosting provider serving you. It normally doesn’t take more than a few minutes in your VPS management panel. That’s something that you can’t do on a shared hosting, and on dedicated hosting you would need to migrate to a bigger server or add extra servers altogether.
- Much cheaper than dedicated hosting
Since each dedicated server is partitioned into several smaller VPS servers that work independently, you can get a reasonable VPS much cheaper than a full server. Depending on the specs your need and your main intended function for the VPS, there are many managed and unmanaged options available for a wide range of prices.
- Full access to the machine
When you get yourself an unmanaged VPS, you get full root access to the VPS server. This means that you will be able to manage the VPS the way you like, store data or files on your VPS storage, or run different services on it. You can change the OS, or completely repurpose your VPS for what you need.
- specialization and freedom
There specialized VPS services available for all kinds of common use-cases. The most common type is WordPress VPS, powering millions of small to medium websites and businesses around the world. Using a forex vps mt4 is very common among VPS traders. A Game VPS is used towards setting up and running a gaming server. There’s remote desktop, there’s Windows VPS and Ubuntu VPS and many more. You can choose from all these types of VPS or opt out for unmanaged VPS where you can change its function whenever you want.
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Disadvantages of Virtual Private Server
- Slightly more expensive than shared hosting
A VPS has dedicated resources, so fewer VPS machines can be created out of a single server than shared server accounts. This means it will cost slightly more, but still the prices are low enough.
- Slightly more work to handle than cloud hosting
One a cloud hosting, all the hassle of running and maintaining the infrastructure is left to the cloud company. Managed VPS is quite similar, only with somewhat more maintenance and setup, and of course more control.
- Needs some technical know-how
Running a VPS is not far from running a server. You will need some fundamental know-how about running and maintain a server and setting up and running operating system and software. Of course, you can opt out for managed VPS and get done with much of that.