Posts Tagged ‘ web hosting

Four Types of Web Hosting

Free Web Hosting Service

This is the most basic kind of Web hosting that you can get. Free Web hosting is typically advertisement-supported and offers limited features. This is the best option for those just starting out and only interested in hosting a small personal site that will be light on traffic.

Free Web hosts will give you a subdomain (yoursite.example.com) or a directory (www.example.com/~yoursite). They include a small amount of bandwidth and storage and tend to offer little to no support for MySQL, PHP, multiple e-mail addresses, and site statistics.

Shared Web Hosting Service

Shared hosting is the most popular kind of Web hosting service. Virtually all small businesses, medium to large Web sites, and professional sites see shared hosting as the perfect solution to their hosting needs. None of these entities require anywhere near all the resources of an entire Web server, not to mention the fact that it would be very costly for them to purchase and run one.

As the name suggests, shared Web hosts allow more than one site to be hosted on the same server. These hosts provide system administration, which is good for users that do not want to deal with the hassles of running a server along with a number of other users.

Although it depends on the specifics of the hosting plan, most server features will be readily available to the user, including PHP or ASP, MySQL, multiple e-mail addresses, and more bandwidth and storage than a free host. One downside is the possible security risks that are inherent with sharing a server with a number of other sites.

Dedicated Web Hosting – Unmanaged

This is a great option for users who want more bandwidth, storage, and other server features that free or shared hosting cannot offer. Having a dedicated server means that there are unlimited numbers of databases and e-mail addresses that the user can create, not to mention bigger bandwidth capabilities. Normal dedicated server plans give the user about 500 to 1,000GB of bandwidth per month, and if extra storage is required, a new hard drive can be purchased for the server.

For some users, the one big downside of having an unmanaged dedicated host is that you must be your own server administrator. If you do not know how to deal with this task, there are two options: learn about how to be a server administrator, or just go for the next Web hosting option.

Dedicated Web Hosting – Managed

So, if you want the big-time capabilities of a dedicated server but you do not want to deal with the hassle of learning about server administration, then this should be the perfect option for you.

Going this route means that you will have help in getting your server up and running, and you will have assistance readily available to you if something should ever go wrong. That being said, it is best to get a referral from a close and trustworthy person, or to at the very least do some diligent research on the Internet.

Pricing varies depending on how much reliability, security, and depth of support you want.

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4 Tips to Find the Web Host That’s Right for You

So you have finally planned to invade the magical world of Internet. All captions ready, all information gathered, all details penned down. What next?

Your next important step is finding the Web Host for your site, The Right One..

A web host is a service provider that places your web site on a computer that is connected to Internet. This then gives people who surf Internet a way to access your website.

Finding the best host for your company’s Web site is one of the most important steps when taking your business online. Not only will your host be responsible for placing your company’s site on the Internet; it will also be responsible for keeping it there and being available to potential customers.

Now, let us take a look at the steps to be followed when choosing the right web host:

1. Create an online plan for your site. What you are going to sell, number of items, methods of payment and the features of your site. Then determine the possibilities for your site’s expansion over the next six months, the next year and the next five years. Look into these factors before short-listing your probable host.

Disk Space/Storage refers to the amount of space given by a web-hosting plan for your web site’s pages, images, and any additional files. Take this into consideration when determining the total number of files you will be using for your website and their sizes. If you are planning on creating a website with a lot of video or audio files, you will need a lot of disk space. Check whether your host can meet this requirement.

Programming Languages such as ASP, PHP, Perl/CGI, JSP and ColdFusion are used to create a lot of popular scripts (software) to help your website function. Make sure your web host supports the language used by you. Also, if you are planning on selling services or products from your website, make sure the web hosting plan you choose offers some type of ecommerce solution.

2. Now that you have checked out all your requirements, pick your top five responses. Surprisingly, many of the hosts you submit a request for a proposal to won’t respond by your set deadline. Ignore them and look at the responses you receive and pick the five best.

3. Ask for references. Take your short list of hosts and ask them for the names of some of their clients — then pick up the phone and see what the host’s clients have to say. Be sure to inquire how good the host is at making the site available online.

4. Test their customer service. Pick up the phone and call customer support at 2 a.m. Drop customer support an e-mail to see how fast they respond to you. Do what it takes to feel comfortable with your service provider before you enter into any type of business relationship.

Choosing the right Web host is easier if you approach it the way you would approach any other major purchase for your business. It can mean the difference between success and failure for your online venture.

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5 Common Web Hosting Mistakes

Mistakes aren’t necessarily a bad thing, but if you can learn from other people’s mistakes it can save you from having to deal with them yourself. When it comes to web hosting, there are basically two kinds of mistakes – technical and general business.

Technical mistakes usually come up because of a misunderstanding of the internet and how it actually works. The first mistake many people make when creating a website is to cram as much information, photographs, images, etc. on each page as possible.

This makes the site take longer to download, leading to many visitors just moving on and never actually looking at the site. It also makes it more difficult to find what they’re looking for if the page is unorganized.

Another common error is creating a web site that isn’t search engine friendly. If the search engines can’t determine what your site is about, they aren’t going to be able to send you people who are searching for what you offer.

A mistake that many people make when starting out is to choose a host solely based on price. This is obviously an important factor, especially in the beginning, but if you choose the cheapest host you may be limited in your scalability as the website grows in popularity and traffic.

On the business side of things, the most common mistake is trying to be everything to everyone. You should have a plan for your website – a purpose for its existence – and build according to that plan.

Choose your target market and stick with it. Advertise in places they would see. Market in ways that would be of interest to them. Resist the urge to branch out into other areas just because something catches your eye. A site that tries to do everything usually ends up achieving nothing.

Another common business mistake is following the competition’s lead. You’ll obviously want to keep an eye on them to see what they’re up to, but if you copy everything they do you’ll always be one step behind.

Use your creativity and come up with unique ways to stand out from the rest of the websites in your market.

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Simple Steps For Choosing A Great Web Host

There are thousands of web hosts around today with thousands of plans to choose from making what was once a simple procedure seem like a daunting task for both newbie and pro alike.

Whether you’re looking for your first host or looking to move on to a better one there are 7 simple steps you must follow to succeed in choosing a great host.

1. Platform
The first and most crucial step in choosing a web host is determining the platform the web server should run, usually a choice between Unix/Linux and Windows.

Your choice is largely determined by your website and the technologies used to create it, generally a website created with Microsoft technologies (ASP, VB) will run on Windows servers while most other sites using open source technologies (PHP, Perl, Python etc) will run on Linux based systems.

2. Features
Once you’ve chosen your platform the next step is determining the features you’ll need from your web host. Take your time with this step as the feature lists of web hosts are getting longer and longer every day and while some plans may look similar on the surface, a good look at the feature lists may tell another story.

Only you can determine the specific features you’ll need, but some key things to keep an eye on are:

Disk Space
Bandwidth
Backups
Uptime
Money Back Guarantee
Domains Allowed
Databases (Number & type)
CGI, PHP, Perl, Python, SSI
Cron
Email accounts

The list goes on and on, just remember to take your time and make sure your new web host is going to provide you with everything you need.

3. Cost
Often this is the only thing people consider when choosing their first web host, funds are usually tight and on the surface most hosts look very similar. Sometimes you get lucky and choose a good host, but more often than not it turns out to be a horror story.

I can’t stress enough that choosing a web host based on price alone is asking for trouble, remember that the cost of your web hosting is more than just the monthly fee, think about the total cost of ownership. TCO includes lost sales due to downtime & slow speeds, downtime rebates, extra bandwidth charges, setup costs, extra feature costs, and your monthly fee.

Many hosts will require you to pay yearly to get the best price available though there are some that allow you to pay by the month and still get the best price, it’s really a matter of personal choice as to what payment method works best for you.

4. Customer Service
Customer service is another aspect that is often forgotten about until it is too late, something breaks and you need it fixed and those wonderfully handy sales people who were more than helpful in taking your money are now nowhere to be seen, all the while you’re losing out on sales every minute.

You shouldn’t settle for anything less than 24/7/365 service, your website needs to be running all the time so it’s no good if your hosting company doesn’t work during the holidays. Don’t take the web hosting companies word for it, they all claim 24/7 support but few back it up with consistent performance. Be sure to test them out at various times of the day and night via phone, email and live chat if they offer it.

5. Support
An extensive knowledge base or faq can be a real time saver as well as being an indication of the level of customer service support and expertise you can expect to receive. Spend some time browsing the support sections of the website and see for yourself the level of support provided.

Are questions in the knowledge base answered thoroughly? Are real solutions provided or are they just “cut and paste” replies?

6. Longevity
Do a whois on the web host’s domain name and find out the creation date, anything less than a year ago and the risk that they won’t be around next year increases. They could be a great host, but considering more then 95% of new hosts go out of business within a year that really isn’t something you should be taking a chance on.

7. Uptime
It’s a fact of life that a web host cannot be online 100% of the time, servers need to be rebooted for security and software updates and any web host that doesn’t get updated faces the increased risk of being successfully hacked.

99.9% uptime guarantees are pretty standard in the industry however a guarantee is only as good as how it is defined and the company behind it. Look for no less than a full months free hosting should they not meet their guarantee, a prorated refund based on the amount of downtime is virtually worthless. Say you pay $10 for a month of hosting and your site is down for 24 hours. They will refund you for one day of downtime which ends up being about 33 cents.

There you go, 7 simple steps for choosing a great web host. It’s not rocket science, just a little research and investigating that can save a lot of heartache in the future.

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