If your website is starting to receive more and more traffic, itâ€™s obviously time to celebrate. On the other hand though, that shared hosting plan of yours probably just isnâ€™t enough anymore. If you’re in need of a dedicated server or aÂ managed dedicated server, you might not know what to look for in order to make sure that you get the best deal possible with dedicated hosting, something that can handle your traffic (even if weâ€™re talking about sudden spikes).
Managed dedicated hosting can be confusing if you’re accustomed to shared hosting. There aren’t too many things you have to know about dedicated servers, so don’t worry. The main things you should look at if you’re considering managed hosting are price and power.
Aspect #1 – Price
Price is definitely an important factor, whether you’re looking for Linux dedicated servers or Windows dedicated servers. If you’re used to the costs associated with shared hosting, the dedicated hosting costs (especially managed dedicated hosting) may seem quite high. You can compare prices, but if youâ€™re not knowledgeable enough, you may start comparing apples with oranges. The best way to determine if you’re getting a fair price is to know what the servers specifications are: in other words, the power of the dedicated server.
Aspect #2 – Power
If you’ve taken advantage of shared hosting in the past, you’re probably accustomed to things such as bandwidth and storage space. When you’re looking at dedicated servers, there are a few more numbers you should be aware of when shopping around. When it comes to bandwidth and storage, both of these numbers are going to be far more impressive (more than enough unless you’re serving videos or are hosting applications which are extremely demanding in terms of resources) than what youâ€™ll find with shared hosting plans (assuming that weâ€™re not talking about a shared hosting provider which oversells outrageously). Other numbers are more important, though, in order to make sure that your website is going to be in good hands as it grows in popularity.
First of all, we have the issue of RAM to worry about. If your website uses a CMS (such as WordPress or Drupal), it’s attached to a database and needs a certain amount of RAM in order to be able to handle a lot of visitors who are dropping by at the same time. As to how much RAM you’re going to need in order to support the growing userbase of your site, this is different on a case by case basis, so you’re going to have to find someone who can figure it out for you or learn even more about dedicated servers and RAM usage. Pick up the phone and give your potential hosting provider a call, let the hosting company youâ€™re planning to choose help. At the very least, send them an email which explains exactly what youâ€™re interested in and let them know how much youâ€™re willing to pay.
Types ofÂ Dedicated Hosting
Another thing you’re going to want to consider when searching for a dedicated server is whether you want to go with a Windows dedicated server or a Linux dedicated server. Your shared hosting account is likely using one or the other. When you make the jump to the next level of hosting, though, you might want to consider the strengths and weaknesses of Windows dedicated servers as well as Linux dedicated servers. While Linux dedicated hosting and Windows dedicated hosting both have their pros and cons, as you move to a larger server, it might be a good time to evaluate which platform is best for you, based on the applications you want to host..
Dedicated Server Control Panels
If you are used to shared hosting, you’re most likely familiar with the standard administration areas. When you move on to dedicated hosting, you’ll usually get a choice between different control panel interfaces to control all sorts of details related to your server. Windows dedicated servers and Linux dedicated servers will have different options available. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with all of these different options and go with something you feel comfortable using. You’ll want to find dedicated hosting that offers you a choice when it comes to control panels.
Managed Dedicated Servers
If you’ve never administrated your own server, an option to consider is managed dedicated hosting. What this means, basically, is that you’ll get hosting professionals who know what theyâ€™re doing to be on call and ready to assist you with not only keeping your server tuned and running, but also when it comes to updates to software on the server or any other things (such as security holes). As you can imagine, that in itself could turn into a full-time job.
By going with a managed dedicated server, you’re getting some help from professionals with some of the mundane (but very important) tasks which must be performed on a dedicated server in order to keep it running. This might seem like a small thing, but if you consider the price and the value you get for these services, it’s definitely a great deal, unless you can recompile Apache with your eyes closed. You can’t? Or maybe you don’t even know what Apache is? In that case, let the pros do their job and stick with what youâ€™re good at.