A dedicated server is a hosting solution for advanced websites and other resource-consuming web projects. It provides the maximum level of performance and security, but also comes with the highest cost. In this article, we’re going to help you find out, whether dedicated hosting is what you need, learn more about the proper server configuration for your projects, to help find the optimal dedicated hosting plan to fit the needs of your projects.
Make sure the dedicated server is exactly what you need
Dedicated hosting is a type of hosting that suggests that you get a whole physical server at your disposal. The capacities provided by it are a lot, so they often exceed the needs of medium-sized websites. To compensate for it, other hosting solutions have been developed to share the server resources. These are shared hosting and Virtual Private Server hosting.
Shared hosting consists in sharing resources between several site owners without any allocation. This means that you get no guarantee of stability and security and makes shared hosting the proper solution only for the most basic and low-consuming websites.
VPS hosting, on the contrary, is a rather safe option, because the resources shared are allocated with the help of virtualization technology. In this way, you get a fixed amount of resources and may not worry about them. The capacities provided by VPS plans have their ceiling, and if the estimated amount of resources you’re going to require exceeds it, it’s time to look for a dedicated hosting plan.
Calculate the needs of your website
Different websites require different amounts of resources, so to determine how many of them are needed in your particular case, and hence what type of hosting to choose, it’s worth taking a piece of paper and making a few calculations.
If you have already started your website on a shared or VPS hosting plan, it will be easier for you to calculate, how many resources will be required in the case of dedicated hosting.
Just write down the number of visitors a month, the number of visitors during peak hours, how much bandwidth is consumed a month, and how much CPU and RAM are required during peak hours. You can access these statistics with your control panel.
If you’re going to start with a dedicated server at once, the calculation will be a bit more difficult, as you’ll have to do research on various aspects, such as the applications you are going to run, the contents you are going to post, and the number of users you expect.
As for RAM, RAM requirements are based on your site’s applications as well as the estimated number of users.
First, how many users you’ll like to have during peak hours? Depending on the site you are going to have, its function, and your estimated target audience, you can deduce the approximate number of visitors during the peak hour. If this is, say, 200 users, you multiply this number by the amount of memory consumed per user by the application you will use.
Also, take into account the amount of RAM consumed by the background processes, like operating systems or web servers.
CPU computing power should be calculated with a similar approach.
The storage is the aspect that is a bit easier to calculate, as you are likely to already know, how much your website weighs, once it has been developed. E-commerce sites may weigh a lot, as they contain up to thousands of pages with products. So do news websites, whose content is regularly updated. Hosting huge media like videos will require a lot of disk space, too. So do video games.
Also, you’ll have to choose between the different types of storage – HDD, SSD, or NVMe. HDD is a good old technology, which is a bit outdated but still finds its usage cases. HDD drives are slower and less wear-resistant, but cheap, so they do well for storing big amounts of data that isn’t accessed too often.
SSD and NVMe drives are faster and more reliable, but more expensive, so they are good for running more intense applications.
Bandwidth won’t likely be a problem as most providers nowadays offer unmetered bandwidth, so here the main point is to find a reliable provider with good data center infrastructure.
Find a hoster with a plan to fit your needs
After your needs have been calculated, find a hoster that offers cost-efficient plans covering all of your requirements
Take into account the user reviews, and talk to the support team to clarify the aspects that you aren’t sure about. To start with, you can check out this dedicated hosting provider offering decent plans with a broad variety of locations and configurations.
Make sure to read the service level agreement and the terms of service to clarify whether the conditions offered by the provider are alright and if there are no pitfalls.
Make sure the provider offers a location that is close enough to your target audience, as it has a great effect on your site’s page loading speed.
Learn about the data centers used by the provider – whether they meet all the necessary criteria of a good data center, with the necessary maintenance equipment, cooling systems, climate control, backup power supplies, and sufficient security measures, as well as compliance with the common data center standards.
Learn about the rescaling options offered by the provider. Your calculation of required resources may stop being relevant at some point in time, so you’ll have to quickly update the number of resources.
To sum up
Starting to host a website on a dedicated server may be a bit of a challenge, by if you approach it carefully, and making scrupulous research, you’ll manage to find just the right solution for your website.
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