Hosting Options for Your Website
A website is really just a software program that will sit on a computer somewhere in the vast world of computers that make up the internet. That computer is called a server because it provides services to a client. Clients are your just a customer’s computers that are accessing a website. So the question for a company considering hosting options is, where do you want your website software to reside? There are a few factors that need to be considered to answer this question. These are website traffic, security and cost.
• Shared Hosting
As the name implies this type of hosting involves the sharing of resources. In this case, the computer (server) where your website resides is shared amongst other companies. This is also considered as a cheap web hosting solution because the hardware costs are shared between all the companies using the server. One of the concerns associated with this type of solution is the inability to handle very large traffic demands. You may have experienced this problem when a favorite website of yours bogs down or maybe even crashes. Another potential issue with this type of hosting is possible security risks. Your customers’ data is being handled by the same computer that is running another companies’ websites. There are good software mechanisms to prevent issues, but nothing is safer than physical separation.
• VPS Hosting
Virtual Private Servers (VPS) is the next step in hosting options. VPS are divided single servers that appear to clients as if they are dedicated. This is a technique that has been used in the computing world for quite some time. Although not as inexpensive as shared servers, they do represent a cost savings over dedicated servers. In addition, they can offer extended traffic handling capacity over simple shared servers. Since there are still multiple programs running on the same physical device, there is no substantial improvement in security over shared hosting.
• Dedicated Hosting
This hosting option involves the use of an entire server for a web site (or group of joined sites). It is the best solution in terms of handling high traffic volume and insuring data integrity. The trade off is that the cost of the server is borne entirely by one company.
• Cloud Hosting
If your website will have irregular traffic patterns then maybe cloud hosting is the right choice for you. This hosting solution allows your server capacity to increase or decrease with your immediate traffic needs. The benefit here is that you only pay for additional hosting service when you need it.
• PHP Hosting
Unlike the other solutions presented, this hosting option is not related to the physical location of the website program. PHP is a popular open source programming language that enables the creation of appealing websites. Being open source, PHP is generally free of cost. There are some security issues associated with this hosting option that should be discussed with the site developer.
Kirsten Ramsburg is a senior content writer for a web hosting review company, Web Hosting Search.