Web Hosting and its types analyzed
Web hosting for common people is just about a couple of decades old phenomenon. So it is natural that hardly any layman completely knows it; and if you are going to be associated with web hosting, you should have a fair knowledge about web hosting.
So what exactly is Web Hosting?
You regularly surf through websites inline. What you are seeing is the visual representation of the website. The actual website is a certain code which is stored in a number of different files and these files need to be stored in a computer, in such a way that it is switched on and connected to the internet for all 24 hours of the day; so that anyone from any corner of the world can access the website at any time of the day. Hence, a bit different kind of storage computer is required for that purpose. It is like your everyday computer, just more powerful, and called as a ‘Server’.
Imagine someone is playing a song using sheet music. Then the code is the sheet music, the browser is the player and the website that you actually see is the song. The server is owned by a person, called as the web host or the hosting provider, who rents it to people who own a website and want a storage space to keep and run their websites. The web host also gives other services like backup, support, security, server management etc. This whole process is called Web Hosting. Some of the basic types of Web hosting are as follows:
It is the hosting in which one’s website is present on a server that also hosts many other such websites, i.e. the server is shared between many websites. The number can range from a few websites to a few thousand! The physical hardware, as well as all the software part, also is shared equally by the websites. It is great for beginners as not much technical knowledge is required here as compared to other hosting types. It is also the cheapest, as one server cost is shared by all the website owners whose sites are hosted on it. Almost all the web hosts give all the basic features required to run a website properly.
Reseller Web Hosting is one which is primarily shared hosting, but with some extra features and tools that will help you resell the hosting space. Those extra features can include private name servers, free website templates, white label technical support etc. which means the hosting company themselves will handle the technical support issues of your client.
VPS or Virtual Private Server Hosting can be called as a middle ground between shared hosting and dedicated hosting. In VPS hosting, multiple websites share the same physical server but get their own virtual private space on it equally, thereby mimicking a dedicated server. For e.g., if a server has 32GB of RAM, and hosts 8 websites, then each website will be assigned 4GB of RAM and so on. The website owners get root access to their own virtual space. Hence, as compared to shared hosting, they should have more knowledge about all the hosting stuff. The one difference regarding the number of websites on the server is that in shared hosting there can be more than a thousand websites on one server, but in VPS hosting, a maximum of only around 20-30 websites are allowed. The cost of a VPS server is higher than that in shared hosting but lower than that of a dedicated server.
Dedicated Server Hosting
As the name suggests, in this type of hosting, the website owners will get a server all for themselves! Although the costs are more than the previous hosting types, the website owner gets to decide almost everything about the server like how much the RAM, HDD space should be, the OS on the server etc. Hence, a high level of technical expertise is required for the setup, installation, and managing of the server and website. It is the uppermost level of server anyone can get. It is best suited for websites which are big and getting a lot of traffic regularly.
There are also some more types of web hosting like Cloud hosting, Colocation hosting, Managed hosting etc. In the end, it is up to the website owner to finalize which type of hosting is the best one for their business.