VPS server hosting is seen as the form of web hosting that fills the gap between reseller web hosting and dedicated server hosting in terms of the features and resources that each other form of web hosting can offer. A VPS server is effectively a virtual machine hosted on a physical machine as the resources that your VPS server uses are in fact those of the physical machine, albeit with a certain amount of the host machine’s resources being guaranteed directly to your VPS server. Like dedicated server hosting, you have a choice of operating system when ordering a VPS server in most cases meaning that you can customize your VPS server to meet your requirements exactly. Virtuozzo is the main virtualization application used by web hosting providers to allow them to offer their VPS server hosting services, although many are increasingly moving over to Hyper-V based systems so that they are able to offer Windows Server 2008 VPS hosting services – Linux VPS hosting is still offered using Virtuozzo. The dedicated web hosting environment offered by a VPS server will be a lot easier to manage than that offered by a dedicated server, simply because if something goes wrong then it is fairly easy to reload the operating system in a virtual hosting environment.
Dedicated Hosting Environment
VPS server hosting will be able to offer you your own isolated dedicated web hosting environment, something that isn’t available with lower end forms of web hosting such as shared web hosting. A dedicated web hosting environment will allow you to install any applications of your choice on your VPS server, in turn allowing you to create a web hosting environment that meets your personal requirements perfectly. As you won’t have to worry about other users compromising the performance of your VPS server, the dedicated web hosting environment will provide you with a more reliable web hosting experience than you may be used to. However, it is still important to take into consideration that although you are using your own dedicated web hosting environment, the hosting environment offered by VPS server hosting is in fact just a virtual portion of the hosting node that you are going to be sharing with other VPS server customers.
With any dedicated web hosting service, you will be provided with your own guaranteed resources that will be yours to use as you wish – the good thing with guaranteed resources is that they are expandable any time with most web hosting providers. Although the resources guaranteed to you with VPS server hosting are only virtual, they still act like dedicated resources that you would have available to use at your disposal with a dedicated server. The standard guaranteed resources available with VPS servers are generally disk space and RAM; the CPU of the hosting node is usually equally shared amongst all of the VPS servers hosted on that particular server. Bandwidth is a resource that doesn’t have any impact on the performance of your server but a guaranteed amount is always provided with any VPS server hosting service.
Choice of Operating System
You will also be able to choose the operating system that you have installed on your VPS server meaning that you can choose a VPS server hosting service based on your technical needs as well as your resource requirements. Any good web hosting provider will be able to offer you both Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008 for your VPS server; although it is recommended that you choose the latest Windows operating system, you may have previous experience with the management of Windows Server 2003 servers and so may be more comfortable using this operating system. If you prefer to use open source applications then your web hosting provider should also be able to install any Linux distribution on your VPS server for you; in all this will allow you to create a server that is very custom to what you require.
Managing a VPS server is usually far easier than managing a dedicated server as the platforms that web hosting companies use to offer VPS server hosting generally come with a web based control panel that you as the customer will be able to access. Although you will still be able to manage your server via Remote Desktop in the case of a Windows VPS or SSH in the case of a Linux VPS server, a web based control panel will allow you to restart your server in the event that something causes it to crash or even reinstall the OS on your VPS server in the event that you are unable to get your server started for one reason or another. If you have never managed a server to any level before then you will also be able to choose fully managed VPS server hosting; although costing extra, this will allow you access a fully professional support team that will not only manage your server for you but can also advise you on what is best for you.
Comparison to Dedicated Servers
VPS server hosting can be compared to dedicated server hosting on some levels in terms of the benefits you receive, but when it comes to the resources available, you will find that dedicated server packages will always outperform VPS server hosting packages. Whilst a VPS server can offer you reasonable resource assignments, as a dedicated server uses physical hardware, they are a lot more scalable and can offer a lot more resources for your money.
In conclusion, VPS server hosting is a viable option for smaller businesses that have the need for a dedicated hosting environment due to the security and reliability that is offered, but may not have the need for a dedicated server because of the large scale resources that are offered by having your own dedicated box. VPS server pricing is close to that of shared hosting so that you can find a good bargain without having to do too much searching – in all, you will find VPS servers to be within the same price range as reseller hosting rather than dedicated server hosting.