What is web hosting? Everything you need to know
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is an online service that enables you to publish your website or web application on the internet. When you sign up for a web hosting service, you rent some space on a physical server where you can store all the files and data needed for your website to work correctly.
A server is a physical computer that operates without any interference so that your website is open all the time for anyone who wants to see it. Your web host is accountable for maintaining that server up and running, protecting it from malicious attacks, and transferring your content such as text, images, files, etc from the server to your visitors’ browsers.
When you determine to begin a new website, you need to find a web hosting provider that will provide you with that server space. Your web host stores all your files, assets, and databases on the server. Whenever someone types your domain name into the address bar of their browser, your host transfers all the files required to serve that request.
You don’t even need any programming knowledge to perform regular site management tasks. For instance, you can upload HTML and other files to the server, install content management systems such as WordPress or Drupal, access your database, and create backups for your site with ease.
Here we’re going to explain web hosting in greater detail. So, let’s dive right in.
Types of Web Hosting
Most web hosts offer various types of hosting so that they can assist the needs of different clients — whether you want to build a simple personal blog or own a huge online business and are in desperate need of an intricate company website. Here are the most popular choices available:
- Shared hosting
- VPS hosting
- Cloud hosting
- WordPress hosting
- Dedicated hosting
It’s best to start small and when your site touches higher traffic numbers, upgrade to a more advanced type of plan.
Web hosting providers normally offer more than one plan for every type of hosting. This type of hosting is the most common answer for most web hosting requirements and it’s a great solution for most small businesses and personal blogs. With this type of hosting, you’re sharing one server with other clients. Websites hosted on the same server share all their resources, such as memory, computing power, disk space, and others.
When you’re using a Virtual Private Server — or VPS for short — you’re still sharing a server with other users. However, your web host allots an entirely separate partition for you on that server. This means you get a dedicated server space and a reserved amount of resources and memory.
VPS hosting can be excellent for medium-sized businesses with a quickly growing number of websites and traffic.
Cloud hosting is currently the most reliable solution on the market. With cloud hosting, your host provides you with a cluster of servers — your files and resources are replicated on each server.
When one of the cloud servers is busy or encounters a problem, your traffic is automatically routed to another server in the cluster. This results in little to no downtime, which is great if you own a very busy website.
WordPress hosting is particularly created for WordPress site owners. Your server is configured specially for WordPress and the site comes with pre-installed plugins for essential tasks, such as caching and security. Your site loads much faster because of the highly optimized configuration. WordPress hosting plans often incorporate additional WordPress-related features, such as pre-designed WordPress themes, drag-and-drop page builders, and precise developer tools.
Dedicated hosting provides the highest level of resource allocation, privacy, and control. So that you have unbelievable flexibility over how you want to maintain your website. You can configure your server as you prefer, choose the operating system and software you want to use, and set up the whole hosting environment according to your personal needs.
Normally, this is more oriented towards extensive online businesses that deal with heavy traffic.
Difference Between Web Hosting and a Domain Name
Before going to signup for a web hosting service, you also need to purchase a domain name. Because web hosting allows you to rent server space for your site, but the domain name works as an address of your site. When some users want to check out your site, they type the domain name into their browser’s address bar, and your server transfers the requested content. You need to purchase your domain name separately for most of the web host. If you already have a domain, you can transfer it to your current hosting provider. Alike to web hosting plans, you need to pay for your domain name annually to keep ownership of the domain.
If you want to publish a website and build an online presence then Web hosting is the type of service you need. Having a website gives additional advantages to easily reach millions of users worldwide.