Do you know enough about hosting ?

By trusting a third party to host your data, you can save your company money, time and increase work productivity. Sounds easy enough, but how will choose the right company? How will you be able to guide your way through the countless packages, which services does your company need, and  after all – what does all of it even mean?

In this day and age, trusting specialists with your data is nothing new, but never the less – it’s important to make the right choices. So, we gathered all the information you need to make your decision when it comes to hosting.

Shared or dedicated?

When talking about hosting, there are three main ways how to do it –

  •  share your server with other companies;
  • have it all to yourself; or
  •  somewhere in between.

Shared Cloud:

Sharing a server and resources with other companies is convenient for small / medium sized organizations, because of its affordability and practicality. For businesses without excessive traffic, shared hosting is an excellent choice – hosting companies are making sure that your server ”neighbors” are not impacting your application performance.

Dedicated Cloud:

With dedicated hosting, all the server space is up for your use. This choice is better for companies with high amount of transactions and/or interfaces. Dedicated hosting offers a more secure environment as yours is the only application on the server.

For companies with ample IT resources, dedicated hosting offers greater freedom with hardware specifications and custom software; something that is limited in shared hosting.

Dedicated hosting itself can function in two different ways – managed or unmanaged. The difference  is the level of server management support.
If you choose a managed hosting, the hosting provider becomes responsible for solving all issues that might raise. It also means, that host offers to support your operating system, control panel, server setup and any pre-installed applications. Often, managed hosting comes with automated backup and monitoring.

Virtual Private Server (VPS) –Hybrid Cloud

Hybrid cloud has combined parts of both worlds – it allows to use dedicated servers as well as shared cloud servers at the same time.  Companies are able to use the safety of dedicated servers, while applications with fewer security concerns, can be stored in the shared cloud.  An excellent solution for middle – sized companies.

Disk storage:

Another important value in your hosting package is disk storage. What is the volume of files and data that can be stored onto a server?
Most small and medium sized businesses usually do not require overly large disk space, but it is still an important consideration when choosing a hosting plan.
If your company has decided to use shared hosting, you should consider that ‘unlimited storage’ does not mean ‘infinite storage’. The resources are divided between the numbers of customers.

Bandwidth

The word ‘Bandwidth’ refers to the speed; how fast data can be sent across a network. In hosting plan descriptions, it refers to the amount of allowed data transfers. In most cases, the basic bandwidth offerings are appropriate, but, if you are planning to upload significant amounts of video content for instance, or have a large number of daily visitors, this is the variable you should look out for.

In the case of bandwidth, as well as with disk storage considerations, you should remember that, as with other shared resources, you are sharing it with the other customers of your host.

Uptime

Uptime measures the amount of time your applications are up and functioning without any issues. Some hosts offer an uptime guarantee, often compensating you for down time (e.g. that month’s hosting is free). Though, scheduled maintenance does not count as a down time.

Customer service:

Customer service is important, more so if this is the first time you have decided to trust your data to a hosting company

The quality of customer service will determine how easy the transition will be, how fast you are going to learn about managing your applications and how fast your issues will be solved.

Examples of questions to ask before committing include:

  • Is the customer service available only via email?
  • Is it possible to speak with a real person?
  • Is the hosting company offer 24/7 live chat option?

Another great way how to see if the host company will be a great fit for your own is to come up with some ”test questions” – after trying them out on different hosting companies, you will get the best idea of the best fit for you.

Hosting your data with a third party is often a good idea if you have the right host company.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask us.

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