Virtual Private Servers (VPS), or Virtual Dedicated Servers (VDS) as they are often known, are types of hosting services that are held to bridge the gap between shared hosting and dedicated hosting. A VPS system can, quite simply, do away with many of the disadvantages of shared hosting and brings with it many of the advantages of using a dedicated system at a greatly reduced cost. Many users of this hosting solution agree that this could well be the future of hosting. So, what is it all about?
Before VPS systems became available you were basically given a choice between shared and dedicated hosting. Shared was the cheapest option and dedicated the most expensive. With shared hosting this was based on the fact that your site was hosted on a server that also hosted a number of other websites which cut the costs of your hosting. Dedicated hosting, however, gave you a server to yourself and consequently cost more money.
Although these solutions worked to a certain extent, they didn’t keep everyone happy. Shared hosting could be problematic in that it limited what you could do and the service you got would also depend on the pother sites that shared your server and their traffic. Whilst dedicated hosting does away with these problems it comes at a far higher cost.
Having a Virtual Private Server, however, simply bridged this gap. For example, it comes with a lot of the benefits of dedicated hosting and none of the associated costs. And, it eliminates a lot, if not all, of the problems you might experience with shared web hosting solutions. So, how does a virtual servers system work?
A Virtual Private Server does not give you a single server solution. It works by allowing your hosting company to turn a single server into a number of virtual and independent servers via a specially designed software system. This gives you many advantages to both traditional shared and dedicated web hosting systems. For example, you can:
- Keep your hosting costs low as you will technically still ‘share’ a server even though the system gives you a Virtual Private Server of your own.
- Enjoy better performance and privacy than you will get with shared hosting. This is, for example, a better solution for e-commerce functions in many cases than shared hosting as it comes with better security.
- Allow your site to be hosted in isolation so that it will not be affected by the activities of other websites that share the same virtual server.
- Get a better range of features and functionality than you would with shared hosting including full administrative access and the ability to customize and use your software packages of choice.
This kind of VPS solution is becoming the hosting package of choice for many website owners on a global basis. It is now the preferred hosting choice of many small-medium businesses, allowing them to host their website with many of the features and benefits that have, up until now, been the remit of larger organizations with higher budgets. A Virtual Private Server really can help your website punch above its weight without costing you the earth.