A Complete Guide to Virtual Private Server Hosting (VPS)


What is VPS hosting?

Virtual Private Server hosting is a service that offers anyone a dedicated virtual server to host their website. It is also referred to as Virtual Dedicated Server hosting. Those who have used normal hosting understand that it is a contention based system. Your website has to compete with thousands of other websites on the same server for the same resources. This usually means that your website will at times underperform when the server it is being hosted on is under heavy use. In the end you end up getting much less than what was promised when you signed up for your normal hosting plan

VPS hosting offers a better alternative to all this. Unlike normal hosting, VPS is a service whereby you get to enjoy the benefits of having resources dedicated to your website only. The following are some of the features associated with VPS hosting:

  • Having dedicated Hard Disk Space for your website.
  • Having dedicated Memory allocated to your website.
  • Usually one is allocated a specific number of cores on a processor

This means that with VPS hosting one gets to enjoy the following benefits:

Configuration: Ability to install, configure and manage your own server software including the OS.

Scalability and flexibility: With VPS hosting one is able to upgrade their capacity easily depending on their needs and the ability to change server parameters to optimize performance offers a great deal of flexibility unlike normal hosting. Furthermore, most VPS hosting providers allow one to upgrade or downgrade their plans easily thus enabling one to meet unexpected spikes in website traffic.

Better service support: Usually those who have a VPS end up paying more compared to a normal hosting service. This comes with the added benefit of better support from the hosting company ensuring that you resolve all potential challenges in the shortest time possible.

Affordability: Compared to having your own dedicated server whereby you may end up underutilizing the allocated server yet paying a lot, VPS hosting is an affordable solution yet comparable in performance to a dedicated server.

Better security: The sharing of resources in normal hosting leaves a website more vulnerable to hacking and other security issues. VPS hosting on the other hand is more secure since the websites are separated from each other by virtue of being hosted on distinct virtual servers.

VPS hosting is a good all-round solution. However there are a few challenges with VPS hosting such as:

  • Sharing of CPU resources. In some cases the allocated CPU cores may be insufficient when a site is under heavy usage hence one should carefully consider the CPU resources they are being allocated beforehand.
  • Restrictions on OS one can run on the server is another challenge in some VPS hosting services. Most offer support for running Linux and UNIX based Operating Systems hence one may need to dig deeper to get support for alternative operating systems such as Windows.
  • Usually having a VPS also means that you will need a systems administrator or someone with the know-how at hand to manage the virtual server. This might mean an additional cost to the website owner.
  • The above issues however are really not that serious if you identify your needs before signing up for a VPS service. Doing so will ensure that you get to enjoy the best of VPS hosting and your website users will reward you for doing so.

And now time for some frequently asked questions (Quick Q&As).

  1. Do I need VPS hosting?

The answer to this question depends on your needs. However if you feel like you are not satisfied with your current computing setup and costs, moving to a VPS hosting service may just be what you need.

  1. What are some of the best companies for VPS hosting?

There is really no one size fits all when it comes to VPS hosting. The best way to answer this is by first outlining what you require from a potential VPS hosting provider. From there it is easy to narrow down on who to engage as your VPS host. A virtual private server does provide the best quality performance in the market.

In conclusion: VPS hosting is one of the best hosting plans in terms of performance and customization wise and all at an affordable cost.