What are the differences between a virtual private server and a dedicated server? Which one to choose for your business?
When the traffic of a website becomes too high or you want hosting whose content and access are fully controlled, shared hosting is no longer enough and you must, therefore, refer to a dedicated server or a private server virtual.
Having significant traffic does not mean that we have to look at the number of visitors per day but rather that we have to pay attention to the peaks of audiences, the CPU load of the server, the use of the RAM and therefore resources that the machine must mobilize at the same time to be able to respond to external stresses. If there are more than 25 accesses to the database at the same time and/or the website application uses a lot of processes, then you should think about using a dedicated server otherwise the site will be slow and even blocked by the emergency and backup procedures that hosts generally have on their shared machines, in order to prevent all sites from crashing due to the fault of one.
Whether for a dedicated server or for a virtual private server, the host takes care of the maintenance of the physical machine. There are dedicated server solutions where the host will also take care of the server OS and basic functions (Linux, Apache, Plesk), as well as dedicated server solutions where the role of the host is just connecting the machine to the internet (then instructs the client to manage the OS updates of its server, as for a personal computer). With regard to private virtual servers, the host ensures the maintenance of the physical machine on which the virtual private server is installed, and also provides assistance in solving all types of problems related to the server, leaving it to users to manage the operation of the applications installed there.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of these two types of hosting for a company?
Private Virtual Server (VPS)
The VPS is based on a shared infrastructure (the physical machine is divided into several virtual compartments), so you share the resources of this server with other users while enjoying the benefits of a dedicated server. The private virtual server has its own central unit, its own memory allocation and operates independently from other virtual compartments: the actions of other users sharing the server hard drive with you will, therefore, have no impact on the performance of your website.
The host takes care of the installation of the private virtual server, as well as the maintenance and updates of the patches. On your side, you can install all the applications or all the scripts that you need for your site. Private virtual servers also make it possible to monitor the traffic of the sites installed there thanks to various administration tools.
VPS is a hosting solution perfectly suited to professional websites, regardless of the size of the company. It is a perfect compromise between shared hosting and dedicated servers.
Benefits of the Private Virtual Server
- Security: By operating independently and autonomously, the private virtual server offers more security for businesses.
- Performance: The high-performance equipment generally used by hosting providers can support significant load increases.
- The cost: A private virtual server is much less expensive than a dedicated server while offering fairly close performance. The costs of managing the physical machine are in fact divided between all the users. Thanks to virtualization, you benefit from the freedom of a dedicated server at a reduced price.
- Reliability: The private virtual server is reliable and perfectly suited for storing backup files.
Disadvantages of the private virtual server:
- A VPS will still be more limited than a dedicated server in terms of performance or configuration possibilities.
- In the event of a strong increase in traffic to your website, the private virtual server may be slower to adjust than a dedicated server. The private virtual server is installed on a hard drive shared with other clients, resources are already allocated and it is then necessary to change the plan when one reaches its limits.
- In some cases, we prefer to turn away from the VPS in favour of the dedicated server. If you need specific hardware to be on the machine (external peripherals, hardware keys, etc.), a network between several servers or that your server is physically separate from the others, then the private virtual server will not the case and you will have to opt for a dedicated server.
The dedicated server is the most common option for high traffic websites. You have your own computer and are therefore the only one to use its resources. With a dedicated server, you are the only one to use the server and are thus limited only by its capacities. You can customize your server yourself and administer it as you wish.
Dedicated servers make it possible to host a large number of websites and deploy tailor-made applications. For companies, they also offer the possibility of communicating between employees in a secure manner. With a dedicated server, you can control everything passing through your corporate network. You can also centralize the management of all your IT equipment.
A dedicated server offers many possibilities for companies, such as setting up an IP telephony service, an intranet, an extranet, a VPN server, etc.
Advantages of the dedicated server:
- Flexibility and control: With a dedicated server, you fully control its environment. You can install all the tools, scripts and applications you need.
- Security: Being the only user of the server, the risks of being hacked or hacked are much lower than with a shared server.
- Stability: You benefit from the best performance since you are the only one to use the server resources. With a dedicated server, no bad surprise in the event of a sharp increase in traffic to one of your sites.
Disadvantages of the dedicated server:
The main disadvantage of a dedicated server is obviously its price. Performance has a cost, and dedicated servers are expensive. For sites with high traffic or for large companies, the choice of the dedicated server is indisputable, but for smaller companies not having to bear too much traffic on their website, the interest of a such an investment must be carefully considered because it is not necessarily necessary.
In conclusion, the dedicated server is mainly aimed at large companies, high traffic websites and professionals with advanced technical skills. It is the ideal solution to fully administer your server. The private virtual server allows beginners to get used to the fully autonomous operation of a dedicated server. It represents a good compromise between a shared server and a dedicated server when the performance of shared hosting becomes too limited for a website, without having to pay the high price of dedicated hosting.
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