Web hosting  is a basically a service which gives you a virtual space where you are able to upload and manage your own website content (files, databases, etc), making it available to view on the World Wide Web. There is a huge number of web hosting providers out there and our job is to highlight the ones which are worth your attention.

Shared web hosting is arguably the cheapest form of web hosting out there. It is set up by making multiple hosting accounts which have to share server’s resources between them. This service is very popular between small website owners as it’s capable of sustaining a semi-popular website for a bargain price.

A domain name is your website name. A domain name is the address where Internet users can access your website. A domain name is used for finding and identifying computers on the Internet. Computers use IP addresses, which are a series of number. However, it is difficult for humans to remember strings of numbers. Because of this, domain names were developed and used to identify entities on the Internet rather than using IP addresses.

SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is a website security system which encrypts website’s data thus making it less accessible by people who are trying to tamper with it. SSL is one of the essential tools for any website owner as it increases SEO rankings and improves web site’s uptime.

The use of FTP lets you upload files from your local computer to your web server. If you build your website using your own HTML files, you can transfer the files from your computer to the web server through FTP, allowing your website to be accessed through the internet.

In order to publish your website online, your business website requires a web hosting service. However, a web host gives business owners more than just web hosting services! For example, web hosting firms typically employ in-house technicians to make sure their clients’ websites are up and running 24/7. Plus, when website owners are in need of help or troubleshooting (e.g. script debutting, email not able to send/receive, domain name renewal, and more), the web host’s in-house support are the go-to people. A professional web hosting service ensures a hassle-free experience for business owners, so they can efficiently focus their time and effort on their businesses.

With dedicated server hosting, you have complete control over an entire server. This has many advantages, but it is also more expensive and more complicated.

When you have direct and complete access to the server that is running your website, you can install any kind of niche software you like, make changes to the operating system or language interpreters, tweak configuration settings. For certain applications, like running an enterprise management system or building custom software, you need this level of control.

A Virtual Private Server (VPS) is essentially a server within a bigger server. This is a popular hosting option offered by many web host companies to satisfy users who do not want to share all server resources with other websites, however aren’t large enough to justify paying for a dedicated server.

Somewhere between shared hosting (a lot of people on one server) and dedicated hosting (one account on a server), is Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting. In this model you have your own dedicated server, but the server is a virtual machine, not a physical one.

Managed hosting is a service wherein a third-party provider is responsible for the administration, problem-solving, and maintenance and organization’s hardware or cloud computing resources. Usually, the company that provides the managed hosting also provides the servers or the cloud-hosting environment.

An often used way to explain the different levels of web hosting is to think of it as real estate. When comparing differences between shared hosting and a virtual private server, this would correspond to living in an apartment vs a condo. In an apartment you need to share certain resources with all residents (e.g. parking lots, indoor facilities, etc). These resources can be used by anyone living in the apartment similar to how websites on shared hosting plans share CPU, disk space, RAM, etc.

A VPS on the other hand would be similar to living in a Condo. You would still share certain resources, however you would be responsible for all repairs, maintenance, and would have certain ownership claims for the resources that are shared. There would also be less residents in the building and you would have more rights to the resources used. With a VPS, portions of the server’s resources (e.g. CPU, memory) are dedicated to each account although overall each VPS pulls from the same machine.