How Does Web Hosting Function?
If you wish to create a site and render it accessible to the whole world, it needs to be located on a web server. This service is called website hosting.
Host your website at home or somewhere else
You could host your web site on your own personal personal computer at your house or at your workplace, on a PC which belongs to a buddy of yours, and so on. If it is a website for experimenting purposes, there would be no real reason for you to look for a more dependable website hosting solution than that. If you desire to develop an actual web site, however, which will be visible to many individuals and you desire to make it reliable, you will also require a stable server on which you will host it.
Why do you need a server for your web site?
When you have a site, it is hosted on a physical machine. That physical server has its own physical address known also as IP address. Typing the IP of the physical machine in your browser's address bar, though, is not the best and most suitable means to reach a website. That is how and why domain names appeared and why you need one for your site. Therefore, to set up your web site, you require your own domain and a hosting server to host your website on.
Hosting your web site on your own
If you are an Information Technology specialist and know how to administer a web server, you can have a web server of your own and host your site on it. This will allow you to have full control over the physical server, to make server configuration modifications and to apply software updates yourself instead of relying on the datacenter staff. The weakness, though, is that you will have to guarantee the availability of you site and to take care of all server maintenance tasks yourself. If you are utilizing a licensed OS, you will also need to invest cash in the license, which is usually more high-priced if bought for an entire hosting server.
Using a web hosting supplier
If you don't want to carry out server maintenance tasks, the best step to take is to register an account with a web hosting plans provider. These are companies that offer customers powerful web hosting servers with various hardware configurations for a given tax. The servers are stored in datacenters with special cooling and emergency power supply systems to guarantee uninterrupted website accessibility.
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Varieties of hosting services
The World Wide Web is an immense ocean and there are a multitude of web hosting vendors delivering different hosting services to the myriad of web site proprietors out there. The web hosting services range from cost-free web hosting services, where you can host plain, HTML-based web pages, to costly dedicated server web hosting services that can suck your monthly budget dry. So, what web hosting type conforms to your needs?
If you own a small or medium-size site that has a few hundred viewers max, you could safely use a shared hosting solution. Shared hosting means that plenty of web hosting user accounts and web sites are accommodated on the same web hosting server, thus reducing the price of the service. Shared accounts commonly include central processing unit, RAM memory, traffic and web hosting server hard disk storage space usage quotas to ensure that the web sites hosted on the web hosting server do not meddle with each other and do not use more system resources than they are allotted.
In case your web site is more resource-demanding, you should opt for a VPS web hosting solution, which is the middle ground between the shared hosting solution and the dedicated web hosting solution. VPS is an acronym for Virtual Private Server. It gives you full root access, which enables you to make server configuration changes - something that would be impossible on a shared hosting server. The private virtual servers also offer burstable RAM options. Separate RAM and CPU portions are assigned to each individual private virtual hosting server, without anyone else using them. Typically there are other private virtual web hosting servers beside your own that use the resources of the physical server, which could occasionally affect the overall performance, but in most circumstances it's of no concern. Should the resources of the virtual private hosting server, however, be inadequate for your needs, it is obviously time to migrate to a dedicated web server.
The dedicated web hosting server is a server that you rent, which is used only by you for your own website needs. No one else shares its resources and you get complete server root access, can choose a hardware configuration in advance, add updates at a later time and add RAM or hard disk drives. Unlike with the virtual web hosting servers where virtualization is mainly at the OS level and all containers share a single kernel, with a dedicated hosting web server you can update the kernel of the OS (usually Linux-based) too.
Find your hosting distributor
If you have an idea of what your website is going to include, or if you have only a loose idea that has not completely evolved yet, your first move towards the creation of your website should be to pick a hosting supplier. The most intelligent step to take is to find a web hosting supplier that offers an extensive range of website hosting services so that you do not need to change hosting providers in case you first use a shared hosting solution and then outgrow the shared hosting resources and need to upgrade to a VPS web hosting server solution or a dedicated web hosting server solution. My own favorite is NTCHosting, which delivers modestly priced shared website hosting plans, inexpensive OpenVZ and Virtuozzo-based VPS packages, semi-dedicated web hosting server packages with their own hosting Control Panel user interface and even dedicated web server plans. I am rather pleased with all their offerings, because they all come with free-of-cost bounties - the shared web hosting plans come with a charge-free domain if they are paid for on an annual basis, the more advanced private virtual server packages and dedicated hosting web server plans come with a free-of-cost domain reseller account and invoicing software in case you wish to utilize them for reselling purposes. Add the high-quality 24x7x365 technical support service and you have all you would normally require. You could, by all means, find other web hosting firms depending on what exactly you are looking for, by conducting an online search or by checking additional online web hosting reviews. The most intelligent option, though, is a web hosting vendor that is also a domain name registrar and has hosting servers in more than one country - both preconditions met by NTCHosting, which has servers in the US, in England, in Scandinavia and in Australia, and offers a lot of domain name extensions for registration.