In the dynamic realm of web hosting, shared hosting has long been the go-to solution for budding websites and startups, offering affordability and simplicity. Yet, as websites grow, the demands for more power, flexibility, and security emerge. Enter Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting—a step up from shared hosting that promises a cocktail of enhanced performance, control, and scalability. If shared hosting is the cozy apartment you first rent when moving out, VPS is the sleek condo you upgrade to when you need more space and amenities. Ready to delve into the nuances of VPS and see how it compares to its shared counterpart?
There are different hosting options available nowadays, among which the most pricey option is a dedicated server. If you want to go with a dedicated server, you can find one in your area of residence by typing, for example, a “dedicated server Netherlands“.
If a dedicated server is way out of your budget, there are options for shared hosting and VPS.
In this article, we’ll review both to determine which offering is better.
What you should know about shared hosting
So, what does shared hosting imply?
Shared hosting means that you share the physical server with other users. It’s like sharing your building with other apartments, where you have a share of the distributed resources. With a shared hosting plan, you share the resources of a physical server. Your share is private, and nobody has the right to see what you’re using the server for.
Shared hosting is one of the most affordable hosting solutions since it utilizes one physical machine and divides its resources between users. And since you share the resources, the more traffic load other users put on a server, the more likely you are to experience website performance issues. It’s just the peculiarity of shared hosting: if somebody takes a more significant share, someone is left with a smaller one.
When shared hosting can be used
Shared hosting is suitable for the following scenarios:
- If you’re running a static website with fixed content instead of more interactive features or simply do not anticipate significant traffic.
- If you’re on a budget.
- If you’re new to web hosting and development.
- If you don’t need full back-end access or root access.
Shared hosting gets the job done and provides your website with a place on the web. However, if you feel ambitious about the growth of your business, shared hosting won’t likely be your permanent solution.
What you should know about VPS hosting
Virtual Private Server (VPS) still implies sharing a physical server. However, the amount of resources is pre-configured with VPS, meaning that your share of resources will be available to you at any time. But with VPS, you get more than just a share – you have the same root access level as you would with a dedicated server. VPS is much cheaper, though.
A virtual private server resembles a dedicated physical server in its performance but, in reality, is shared with other users. However, you still get complete control over your server’s configuration and the high level of privacy.
Through virtual technology, a hosting provider adds a “virtual partition” on top of the server OS, which allows the separation of the server and the software on the user’s end.
When VPS hosting can be used
Shared hosting is best suited for the following scenarios:
- When running a more interactive website or planning for more considerable traffic.
- When your website requires an uninterrupted flow of resources.
- When you need to ensure a seamless website performance.
- When you plan to expand your business in the future.
- When you have funds for investment.
Compared to shared hosting, VPS is a step up since it ensures a higher loading speed for your website, enhanced security, and more customization features.
Next, we will carry out a more detailed comparison of shared hosting and VPS.
Shared Hosting vs. VPS
The following comparison will help you choose a hosting plan that is right for you.
Let’s get started.
With shared hosting, you won’t get complete access to the server
Since you share the server with other users, there are limits to the server scope you have access to. If you want to customize the server’s software or the specific aspects of it, you can’t, as it will affect other users. The network administrators manage the shared server’s configuration.
Contrary to shared servers, VPS gives you the highest form of clearance – the root access to the server. With it, you can adjust the software configuration any way you need.
With shared hosting, you don’t need a network administrator
The shared server environment is pre-configured and managed by the network administrators from the hosting provider. It means that the hosting provider team will resolve any issues within the network or your server’s performance. It might be beneficial for those who are new to server configuration or those who need more budget for a technical team.
With VPS, you can install the software you need
With shared hosting, the possibility of customizing the OS of your server is limited. However, with VPS, you get complete control over the server configuration, including the option of installing the necessary software packages.
Also, if email is an essential part of your website functionality, you get control over a mail server setup with VPS.
Last but not least, you can also manage and customize the VPS security features.
With VPS, you get resources you’re paying for
With shared hosting, you also share the resources. With VPS, you get dedicated resources for your account that don’t depend on other users’ resources. Thus, you get a specific amount of storage, virtual CPU, and RAM, among some additional parameters.
Since you get dedicated resources, it will ensure better website performance and increased loading time, which can affect your website’s ranking.
With VPS, it’s easier to scale
VPS is more accessible to scale compared to shared hosting. With shared hosting, you might need help with performance, which can hinder scalability.
VPS providers anticipate the growth in your website traffic, thus making it easy to scale quickly, increasing the resources for your website’s functioning.
The choice of a hosting option should be based on what you expect when it comes to the performance of your website.
Even though shared hosting is, in fact, cheaper than VPS, the virtual private server can offer features that the shared one can’t.
So, if you have the budget and ambitions to represent your business on the web, opt for the VPS; you won’t miss it. If you decide to go with shared hosting, that’s fine too!
The best option is the option available to you right now.