Webmasters have numerous decisions to make when running a website. One such major decision is choosing the right web hosting that gets your website running smooth, eventually playing its part in a good user experience. If you are already on VPS, you pretty much know how it works and what you get with it. But just in case you don’t, it is important you know the difference between VPS and dedicated hosting options first.
What is VPS hosting and when do you need it?
Like most webmasters, you might have started off with a shared web hosting account that is light on the pocket and also suffices for the initial hosting requirements like being able to install a CMS, hosting a database, handling ok kind of web traffic, etc.
But when you register a massive increase in your web traffic, you’ll have to upgrade to a server that is designed to let your website handle heavier load. In most cases, webmasters choose to go one step up the ladder and opt for a virtual private server or what is more commonly known as VPS. It has an edge over shared hosting in the sense that your website has a dedicated portion of a server where all its content is stored, unlike in shared hosting where a pool of resources (like memory, hard disk space, bandwidth, etc) are allocated to multiple users.
Though the server is still shared among different users, you have your own set of resources within that server (hence the term “virtual”) which will not be shared with other users who are also using the same physical server.
What is dedicated server hosting?
As the name implies, dedicated hosting is one that runs your website on a completely dedicated server. That is, you do not share any of the resources with other websites which in turn implies that the performance of some other website will not mar that of yours.
You get to have complete control on what the hardware of the server would be like and what software the server would run on. Having a dedicated hosting is more like assembling a computer system. You have the cabinet, and get to choose the configuration to specific details.
When should you move to dedicated server hosting?
Making a decision whether to move from shared/VPS to a dedicated server is not that difficult after all. Here are certain situations where you may want to go for a dedicated hosting account.
- When you face frequent downtimes or the site performs slowly.
- When you suspect that a website on your shared/VPS hosting server is hacked.
- When you need more disk space on the server.
- When you want to have more processing power.
- When you have to run a software that isn’t supported by usual VPS or shared hosting plans.
- When you want control over your website’s DNS setup.
- When you want command line access to just anything pertaining to your website.
- When you expect the site to grow in the future and are prepared to invest for the future traffic instead of taking the pain of moving the site across servers later.
- When you want to easily upgrade resources in the future without having to move your site to a different server.
- When you want to provide high level of security to your website users for processing private or sensitive information such as credit card details, email addresses, phone numbers, etc.
Before you move over to dedicated hosting
The two generic considerations to make before moving to a dedicated hosting from a VPS hosting or shared hosting are cost and requirements. Dedicated hosting is the big daddy of the lot and hence comes at a higher price. However, there are some vendors who offer it at a lower price compared to their competitors. If you are still in a position that you can’t afford a dedicated server, you should reassess your requirements. Sometimes, the requirements can be met with a VPS too or even with a low cost VPS. So, be clear on your requirements and gauge whether it is really worth investing in a dedicated hosting server or not.