Monday, 18 August 2014

An Introduction to Web Hosting for Beginners


Today, most of the people & businesses have their own website. You can create your website on CMS platforms such as WordPress, Joomla etc. These platforms are affordable(free) & easy to use. With knowledge of website hosting & other services, you can take advantage of Internet boom. In this article, we will discuss about web hosting basics for beginners.

What Is Web Hosting?

A website is a collection of web pages which contains text, content, images, videos etc. Website hosting simply means a personal or company's website available to public over the internet. To place your website on the Internet, you need to store it on web server. You should rent or buy some space on a web server.

Web Server: Web server is a computer where you buy some space & store your web pages. It serves your website over the Internet to the users. These servers are provided by Web hosts or web hosting companies.

Web Host: Web host is a company that provides space on a server to host your website. Large Web hosts have their own servers or data centers where they host multiple websites, but some web hosts don't have own server. They rent server from large company & provide(resell) the space under own brand. These hosts are called resellers & this service is called reseller hosting.

An introduction to web hosting for beginners

Some Basic Features Provided By Web Hosts:

Below mentioned are some basic features provided by web hosting companies.

Disk Space: Disk space refers to amount of storage space provided by web hosting company. Disk space will be used to store website files contains text, images, video, content etc. Web hosting company provides the disk space for all size of businesses according to their needs.

Bandwidth: Bandwidth refers to amount of data & traffic allowed to travel & transfer between your site, users & the Internet. Web hosting companies provide particular level of bandwidth. More bandwidth your site has, it will be faster to load. If your website has lots of graphics or heavy pages then you will need higher bandwidth & higher storage.

Programming Languages: Web hosting packages provided by web hosting provider includes programming languages such as HTML, PHP, ASP, Python, perl scripts with MySQL, MSSQL databases.

Uptime: This is the amount of time that a web server has stayed up & running. If a web host has high uptime percentage then it means their servers stay running & good for host any site. Most of hosting providers offer 99.99% uptime which means website will down for 8.8 hours in a year. If you have E-commerce website then you require greater uptime.

Support: This is one of the most important feature you should take care while choosing web host. Web host should provide quick customer support via chat, phone, tickets & email for your problems related to website.

Pricing: You should make sure that your web hosting company not charge extra money for basic features. You should also check that there is no hidden charges in your hosting plan.


Types of Web Hosting:

Web hosting companies offer different types of web hosting services according to website needs. Generally, there are four types of web hosting options: Shared Hosting, Virtual Private Server(VPS), Dedicated Hosting & Cloud Hosting. You can migrate to any plan when you want.

Shared Hosting: In this hosting, multiple websites share space on a single server. This is cost effective hosting solution. This hosting is best for personal websites, small businesses, low traffic websites etc. This is economical hosting option because server cost is shared in multiple users. In shared hosting, websites share server resources such as processor, RAM, disk space & bandwidth.

Virtual Private Server(VPS): VPS hosting divides a server into multiple virtual servers. VPS offers you a physical server with dedicated IP address & resources. Users have root access to their virtual server. This solution provides features same as dedicated server at lower cost. So this is also called virtual dedicated server. VPS hosting is very popular from small businesses to large size businesses.

Dedicated Server Hosting: In dedicated hosting, you will get your own server & only your websites are stored on the server. You have full control over the server. This hosting is best for large websites because large websites need more resources such as bandwidth, disk space, and processor. In dedicated hosting processing speed is high rather than other hosting options. In this hosting, traffic of other websites can't affect your website, so you don't need to worry about downtime. Dedicated server is most secure & reliable.

Cloud Hosting: In cloud hosting technique, multiple servers are connected to each other. This is based on “Service on Demand”. You can use only resources which are required for your website. You can add more resources at any time when expect higher traffic. This is very cost effective way. Cloud computing based on “Pay as you go”. It means, hosting provider will charge you only for what computing resources you use. It also offers great ability to handle high traffic.

So, these are commonly used web hosting services in web hosting industry. You can choose any hosting platform for your business as your convenience. If you small or personal website, you can select shared hosting or cloud hosting. If you have medium sized business then you can go for VPS hosting. If you have e commerce website or large traffic website, you should choose dedicated hosting.

Linux & Windows Web Hosting:

Windows & Linux are most popular operating system on which server runs. Linux is an open source operating system. Linux OS supports scripting languages like perl, python, PHP & MySQL database. While windows OS supports scripting languages such as ASP, ASP.NET & MSSQL database. Linux hosting is very popular among different size of businesses because its cost is less than windows hosting. Window hosting is more user friendly than linux hosting. Website which designed to be hosted on linux server can be hosted on windows server. But linux hosting is not compatible with Microsoft technology.
Both windows & linux offer equal security for your website. You can choose windows & linux hosting according to your website's need. If website needs windows application then you have to choose windows hosting.


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