What Is Webhosting
Web hosting is a type of Internet hosting service that gives individuals, groups or businesses the opportunity to make their websites available to other people through the World Wide Web. Companies that provide web hosting on own or lease servers offer space to clients all over the world. Their servers store different types of web files - HTML, CSS, graphic files, Java scripts, etc. In order for computers to find these servers around the Internet, each server is assigned a specific IP address.
Choosing a Web Hosting Service
There are a lot of things to consider when choosing a web host. First, there are several types of web hosting services over the cyberspace, and some of them are even free. Free web hostings offer limited space and services and may be supported by revenue generating advertisements.
Paid web hosting services come down to two main types: shared and dedicated. When we say shared, a specific server with a designated IP address is used or shared by many people, rather than just by you. This type of service is cheaper compared to the dedicated one, but it has its limitations. Since other websites are sharing the server, it may not be the ideal place for a website that is gradually growing and increasing in traffic.
When a website grows (and is in need of more space and bandwidth), it is time to upgrade to a dedicated web hosting service. This means having a server that is totally dedicated to a specific website. Since the server works for a particular site, the user has to pay more cash for the service. In return, he or she gets faster traffic management, unlimited bandwidth, and more control over the server.
Choosing an Operating System
Servers run under different types of operating systems – Linux, Unix, Macintosh, Windows, etc. When it comes down to choosing, Linux and Windows are the top two choices. However, it does not mean that if your computer runs under Windows, you need to use a server running under Windows OS as well. Linux is cheap to install and therefore, it became a common choice of many users. Windows, owned by Microsoft, is usually more expensive but has become quite popular with web host clients. If you are using Microsoft-owned technologies to develop your website, then it is much better to opt for a server running under Windows.
Other Factors to Consider
It is important to understand that not all web hosts support every scripting language used today. That is why, it is essential to do some research on the scripting languages the chosen web host supports. The most common scripting languages include ASP/ASP.net, JSP, ColdFusion, PHP, Perl, and Python.
If your website needs to be updated with huge quantities of info, it will require the use of a database for info storage. Check if the website’s hosting service supports some of the most common database systems: SQL server, Oracle, MS Access, and MySQL.