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Web Hosting Providers

Differentiating Factors

  • Reliability / Uptime (99.9%)
  • Disk space (Consider # of images)
  • Bandwidth
  • Tech Support (24/7)
  • OS (Unix vs. Windows)
  • Language/DB support (LAMP? Ruby?)
  • Installable modules (CMS, forums, e-commercE)
  • Control Panel
  • SSL
  • Email
  • Price

Hosting Types

  • Home server
  • Shared hosting
  • Virtual private server (VPS)
  • Dedicated hosting
  • Cloud hosting

Home server

A single computer in your home acting as a server.

Reliability: medium, Scalability: low, Control: high

Shared hosting

Access to a shared server, where hardware/CPU/space is shared with other domains.

Reliability: medium, Scalability: low, Control: low

VPS

A shared server which acts as a single server.

Reliability: medium, Scalability: low, Control: medium

Dedicated Hosting

Full access to a single server.

Reliability: low, Scalability: low, Control: high

Hosting Providers

Most of these offer shared hosting, and dedicated hosting, and some offer VPS:

Hosting Providers

Some companies only offer VPS solutions, targeted at developers that want a high degree of control.

Cloud Hosting

Access to multiple servers that can be brought up/down when needed.

Reliability: high, Scalability: high, Control: varies

IaaS vs. PaaS

Cloud hosting providers vary in how they work and how much control they give you over the cloud setup.

IaaS ("Infrastructure as a Service"):

Reliability: high, Scalability: high, Control: high

PaaS ("Platform as a Service"):

Joyent Node
CloudFoundry JVM/Java, Node, Ruby
Windows Azure C#, VB, C++, PHP, Java, Python, Ruby
App Engine Java/JVM, Python, Go
Heroku Node, Ruby, Java, Scala, Clojure, Python

Reliability: high, Scalability: high, Control: high