What to choose: hosting with a virtual private server or a dedicated server?
As businesses outgrow their shared web hosting service, they are faced with the choice of choosing either a virtual private server (VPS) or a dedicated server to host their website. Knowing what each option consists of, and what your company budget is, is absolutely essential in making a wise decision. The following paragraphs will explain the difference between the two options as well as advantages and disadvantages of both. This knowledge, combined with your budgetary limitations, should help you choose the option that’s right for you.
Virtual Private Servers
Companies usually begin investigating a VPS option when they outgrow their shared hosting plan. As a general rule, this applies when you begin to see 300 or more unique visitors per day to your website. This moderate amount of traffic will quickly eat up the bandwidth your shared plan allows, and significantly reduce the performance of your website. Moving to a VPS solution solves these problems.
Technically, a Virtual Private Server is not its own, separate machine. But it does act like one. The advantage of using the VPS option is that it allows you the customization and control of a dedicated server at a fraction of the cost. With the VPS, you share a hard disk with several other customers, yet your virtual server has its own CPU and memory allotment which is unaffected by any other customers using the same hard drive. That means that as long as your traffic falls within the parameters of your VPS, your performance will never be compromised.
The downside to the VPS option is that it’s very easy to outgrow if you’re fortunate enough to experience an explosion in your business. This is due to the fact that a VPS is difficult to scale if the entire shared system is being completely utilized by all the customers on it. Should you reach the performance limits of your VPS, it’s quite likely you’ll have to start over with a new plan that can accommodate your growth. While this is not terribly complicated, it is rather inconvenient.
A Dedicated Server is the option used by most of the big players on the web. For companies with an extremely large web presence and a heavy bandwidth load, the dedicated server is the only way to go. With this option, the customer has his own computer with resources shared by no one else. That means all of the CPU power, memory, and hard drive space is at the beck and call of the customer subscribing to the service.
The greatest advantage of the dedicated server is the ability to completely control your own environment. For companies with a dedicated IT staff that means you get all the benefits of owning your own equipment without actually having to purchase and maintain it. Customers who don’t have their own IT staffs can usually purchase professional support from their host company at a moderate cost.
The obvious downside to the dedicated server option is the cost. At a minimum of several hundred dollars per month, businesses need to be making money with their websites in order to justify it. This can be somewhat problematic when the company first joins the ranks of dedicated server users if he’s not making enough money to pay the monthly service fees. But as your company grows, you will hopefully be making enough to not only cover the cost, but also generate a profit.
Best VPS and Dedicated Servers for Canada
The virtual private servers and dedicated servers offered by LiquidWeb.com are the ones we recommend for people running a website from Canada.
Read our Liquid Web Review.
Whether a VPS or dedicated server is right for your company ultimately depends on your hosting needs and budget. However, one thing to keep in mind is the goals and plans you have for your business. With a well thought-out strategy, you can utilize the different web hosting options for maximum benefit at all stages of your company growth. We recommend that you go through Liquid Web’s website to find more information about these two hosting options, and to choose the plan that fits your need. Don’t be afraid to start small, and increase as your web hosting needs does.