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What Is Web Hosting? What Different Types of Hosting Are There?


If you’re totally new to websites, there’s a chance that you might not know what the word HOSTING means, in website terms.

It’s important to keep several factors in mind when considering hosting.

Some of the things to keep in mind are:

  • What Type of Web Hosting Is It?
  • What Is The Reputation Of The Web Hosting Company?
  • What Is The Uptime and Reliability?
  • What Speeds Are Offered?
  • What Type Of Control Panel Are You Given Access To?

These are all important factors for several different reasons. Firstly, by “type” of web host, I mean that there are many different types of hosting services you can get. Ranging from Shared Hosting, to Virtual Private Server Hosting, to Dedicated Hosting, to Cloud Hosting.

Let’s Go Over Several Different Types Of Hosting

What Is Hosting [In General]

Hosting is where your website data is kept. You may own the Domain Name (Name of the website), but if you don’t have any sort of hosting, it will be very hard for you to get your website up and running. Unless, of course, you know someone that has a server and can spare some space on it.

What is Shared Hosting

Shared Hosting is one of the cheaper services offered by Hosting Companies. Shared Hosting is just that: Shared. Your website will be placed on a server with multiple sites, in essence, sharing the Server Resources. Hence, Shared Hosting.

Shared Hosting is usually what I recommend to people that are new to website building. The reason for this is because Shared Hosting offers enough room and bandwidth for you to get started on your website. If you ever feel that you need more features or resources, you can always upgrade.

The downside of shared hosting, is that if someone that is sharing the server with you starts draining resources, you might notice an adverse effect on your website’s performance. THIS usually is not a problem though, because Reputable Shared Hosting Providers, like Bluehost, are usually keeping an eye out for things like this, and will put a stop to it pretty quickly.

What Is Virtual Private Server (VPS) Hosting

Virtual Private Server (aka VPS) Hosting is almost like having your own Dedicated Server. With VPS Hosting, you have a server that has been divided into virtual portions, and given a share of the resources. However, UNLIKE Shared Hosting, the resources you are assigned are YOURS and the other people that have Virtual Portions of the Dedicated Server that you’re on cannot affect your performance or use your resources.

However, If you’re planning on getting a VPS Server, you will want to make sure that you know how to set up something like CPanel ($16 a month) to be able to manage your server. VPSes are not for the Average Joe; they require some knowledge of the workings of a server in order to be properly run.

What Is [a] Dedicated Hosting / Server

A Dedicated Server, Or Dedicated Hosting is when you have control of an actual physical server. Dedicated Hosting gets spendy, but is nice because you have 100% of the resources that the “box”, as they’re called, has. Dedicated Hosting is not for everyone. You will need to be able to manage and set it up yourself.

My suggestion is that if you’re running a blog or small business and are wondering what type of hosting is for you, you should be able to get by with either Shared Hosting, or a Virtual Private Server. I  usually suggest the following: up to 2k pageviews a day is fine on shared hosting, up to 10k pageviews a day is good on a VPS* (Depending on the VPS and Company, of course), and anything over 10k, you should look into a beefier VPS, or possibly a dedicated server.

What is Cloud Hosting

Cloud Hosting is a new type of hosting that allows powerful, scale-able and reliable hosting based on the demands of the user. The way that these servers are connected allows them to transfer loads and lend resources to other servers, making it one of the most stable and reliable forms of hosting.

The down side to cloud hosting is that your data might not be on any particular physical machine, and so you might not have as much control over your data as you would with, say, a Dedicated Server.


The types of hosting I will refer to in my lessons will be shared hosting. Why? Because I’m targeting my lessons at people that might not know how to set up their own VPS or Dedicated Server.

Besides, Shared Hosting is affordable even for the small business owner, whereas Dedicated Hosting and Cloud Hosting might be out of the average person’s comfort level.

Other Types Of Hosting

If you’re interested in reading up on the different types of hosting, Wikipedia has an informative article about the many different types, as well as in-depth articles on each different type of Hosting Service.

Hosting Uptime: Things To Keep In Mind

Alot of Web Hosts promise 99% Uptime, some even offer 99.9% uptime. this means that .1% of the time, the server might be down. Desn’t seem like alot, right? Well, take a look at this chart I got from Wikipedia:

Availability % Downtime per year Downtime per month* Downtime per week
90% (“one nine”) 36.5 days 72 hours 16.8 hours
95% 18.25 days 36 hours 8.4 hours
97% 10.96 days 21.6 hours 5.04 hours
98% 7.30 days 14.4 hours 3.36 hours
99% (“two nines”) 3.65 days 7.20 hours 1.68 hours
99.5% 1.83 days 3.60 hours 50.4 minutes
99.8% 17.52 hours 86.23 minutes 20.16 minutes
99.9% (“three nines”) 8.76 hours 43.2 minutes 10.1 minutes
99.95% 4.38 hours 21.56 minutes 5.04 minutes
99.99% (“four nines”) 52.56 minutes 4.32 minutes 1.01 minutes

99% Up-time means that during the entire year, your website can be down for a total of 3.65 DAYS. That’s 1.68 Hours a week!

My suggestion is that you not settle for anything under 99.9% uptime. I mean, even though 10 minutes is still a long time for your website to be down, it’s at least bearable. that makes it a little over a minute a day.

Hosting providers that offer 99.99% uptime are hard to find, but that’s why I always recommend Bluehost, at the time of me writing this post, BlueHost has had an uptime rating of 99.99% since 2005!

Thank you for reading.

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This post (and account is from the older (archived) version of By older, I mean the time back when this was a simple(r) blog without the courses and forum. I've decided to keep all the old posts simply because there is still good content in them. Having said that, I will be going through and editing some of the old posts to update them and bring them into the V2 blog. If you're seeing this message at the bottom of the post, it means that I haven't updated this post yet. Message Written on 10/1/13

One Response to “What Is Web Hosting? What Different Types of Hosting Are There?”

By Robat Johnson - 29 April 2013 Reply

This is very helpful & interesting post on web hosting. By this post a user get more knowledge on web hosting. Thanks for your post on web hosting and what are the different types of hosting.

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