Hosting options for websites


You have many options available for hosting your website and it is worth ensuring you have chosen the best for your business. Options include:

  • Hosting yourself, ‘in-house’
  • Using a shared server from a hosting provider
  • Buying your own dedicated server from a hosting provider
  • Buying your own dedicated server and placing this is a secure datacentre – colocation
  • Using cloud hosting

For small non critical websites the in house option is possible but will not provide a robust solution in terms of network services, power supply and physical security. These are features that a datacentre can provide more effectively  for many servers at once.

Using a shared server is an entry level option for small business only; larger business should ensure they are on a VPS (virtual private server) or dedicated server. This means there is more control over other websites sharing your server. Cloud hosting has developed as a way of accessing a variable amount of space and in theory reduces the costs of purchasing dedicated servers.

Many datacentres allowed IT experts to install their own equipment within them and this is known as colocation. This has the advantage of control over the costs and suppliers of the hardware, and the type of software and security systems installed. But has the advantage of all the infrastructure being supplied. This will include security guards, air conditioning, extra power supply and connection to the internet highway. The amount of services provided by colocation hosting providers vary depending upon supplier. You need to check very carefully the level of redundancy, physical security and amount of access allowed.

Colocation can be chosen and as way of reducing ongoing costs, but this will rarely be the case. Ongoing maintenance with the datacentre will be less but the costs of providing in-house sufficient IT support is likely to be more.

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