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Dedicated Hosting vs. Cloud Hosting

There are many web hosting options and two of these are dedicated hosting and cloud hosting. There are advantages and disadvantages to both and these are outlined below.

Dedicated hosting is where a web server is entirely dedicated to your website and, unlike shared hosting, isnt shared with other websites. With your website being the only one on a server it prevents the problem of other sites having an impact on yours.

With cloud hosting you can make use of several servers as required. These are available as and when you need them. Rather than having a physical server (or more than one) that you are paying for all of the time, you use the resources you require at any particular time and pay accordingly. This means that should you suddenly require more resource you can use it, but without paying for it when you are not using it. Essentially, you pay for what you are using at any particular time.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Dedicated Hosting

The main advantage of dedicated hosting is that you are not sharing servers with other websites. This means the entire resource of the server is dedicated to your site. For example, bandwidth for the server is not shared amongst other websites. The lack of other sites makes dedicated hosting very reliable. Unlike shared hosting, problems with other sites cannot impact you. Dedicated hosting can be pricey, though, compared with other forms of hosting as it often means website owners are paying for resources they dont require. Dedicated hosting is a good option for websites where traffic is consistently high. The bandwidth of dedicated hosting may be required and if traffic is steady it is easier to decide how much resource is needed.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Cloud Hosting

Paying for what you use is an obvious benefit. Cloud hosting means having extra resource available to you but not having to pay for it all of the time. Cloud hosting is beneficial for growing businesses. It allows them to easily adapt their hosting as they require more resource. Websites with fluctuating traffic can also benefit. It means having the option to use extra server space when traffic is high but without having to pay for it when traffic is low. Seasonal businesses, for example those who are particularly busy at Christmas or during the summer, are amongst those who should consider cloud hosting. With several servers being used cloud hosting can increase reliability. The overall load is balanced across different servers, meaning less reliability on one server. There are obvious advantages to cloud hosting but also some downsides. Unlike with dedicated hosting, you dont have access to a server. This means being dependant on third-party providers and having less control. Though improving, security can also be an issue, with websites being more vulnerable to hackers.

Dedicated Hosting or Cloud Hosting?

Different options are suitable to different websites. Dedicated hosting might be preferable for established websites or those which are highly sensitive, while cloud hosting can be the better option for sites where traffic fluctuates or is expected to increase over time.

Andrew Marshall

Advantages and Disadvantages of Hosting your own website and Outsourcing

When deciding on your business hosting first you must decide whether you would like to host the site yourself or outsource it to an established hosting company. There are advantages and disadvantages to both of these options.

Advantages of hosting your own website

Those who decide to host their website themselves are those who want complete control over their hosting. This can be a major advantage to some, especially those who would like to constantly monitor everything about their website and their web hosting. Those who would like to make regular changes to the hosting setup (and want to do it themselves) will benefit from hosting their own site. In some circumstances it can be cost effective to host your own site but only if you have the requirements to have your own server. This is because you wont have to pay another company to do it for you. There is also the potential for an extra income stream, because if you are hosting your own website you may have the equipment and expertise to host websites on behalf of others as well.

Disadvantages of hosting your own website

Although in some circumstances it can be cheaper, the majority of the time it is more expensive to host your website yourself. You may have to hire staff just for this purpose, and the relevant expertise can be costly. You will also have to have you own server and other equipment, and if you dont have the requirements to use this to its capacity you will still be paying for it. If you dont have the necessary expertise it can pose obvious problems, especially if something goes wrong. It is also another area you have to worry about, and can distract you from the rest of your business.

Advantages of outsourcing your hosting

The main benefit of outsourcing your hosting is that you are leaving it in the hands of experts. You therefore should be able to forget about it, which allows you to focus on your core business. Most hosting companies offer 24/7 support, something you are unlikely to be able to manage if you are hosting your own site, unless you have a large team employed for this purpose. This support means your site is being watched around the clock which gives you peace of mind. For some sites this can be extremely important. If shared hosting is adequate then you can share servers with the hosting companys other customers which will be cheaper than having your own server. Colocation can also take away one of the disadvantages of outsourcing: that you have no control. With Colocation you own and maintain your own server but rent rack space at a Colocation centre which will cost less than hosting it yourself as you are sharing bandwidth and other variable with other customers. With outsourcing you can purchase Managed Hosting. Managed Hosting means all your hosting is completely managed for you. This should take the worry completely away from you.

Disadvantages of outsourcing your hosting

As already mentioned, you dont have the same control if you are outsourcing. To an extent things are dictated to you by the limitation of the hosting package you choose and the operations of the hosting company. If something goes wrong with the hosting company, for example if they go out of business or make a mistake, you could have a problem. There could also be a potential security risk if confidentiality is a major issue.

For the majority of businesses, outsourcing is the better option. Most do not have the expertise to host their own website, and can make use of the support an established hosting company can offer. In the end it all comes down to the hosting needs and hosting knowledge of each individual business.

Andrew Marshall (c)

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