Virtual Web Site Hosting

Virtual web site hosting is the first step in a company or business expanding its capabilities on the Internet both for its own needs and the needs of the customers the company serves. Most companies begin with a shared web hosting plan which means that a number of companies are using the same server with the same basic services. It can be a one size fits all kind of approach to web hosting with the company having virtually no control over software changes that might need to be made. However, virtual private server hosting plans actually section off a server and dedicate all of that section to the private client. It gives the company much more flexibility in terms of its web plans and performance.

Virtual web site hosting could be compared to the dollar menu on a lot of fast food menus. A hungry person can have his/her hunger satisfied with the stuff and if health concerns aren't among the high priorities walk back to the office or wherever and save a few bucks for another brick in the stomach experience the next day. For less than ten dollars a month, a website can be hosted that includes some standard fare items such as email accounts and statistics on the number of hits the site takes. But just like the fast food, a virtual web site hosting plan never varies and you always know what it's going to taste like, so to speak. On the other hand, a virtual private server hosting plan can offer a fast growing company some twists on an old idea.

Virtual private server hosting gives a web site owner the ability to configure or reconfigure their website routinely without having to go through a number of steps that would be needed if the website were sharing the host computer. Instead of having one operating system running a number of different websites with a hosting plan, companies using a private service can make individual changes to how the site operates and responds without disturbing other sites. The most common operating system for this private plan is Linux which is an open source initiative. Unlike the virtual web site hosting plans, private users are usually given access to their root account which allows compilation of programs, changing files and directories and start services. Of course when one considers that a company choosing virtual private server hosting is using a portion of an expensive computer that could otherwise be used to house hundreds of website sharing the same machine and the same operating system, it is easy to understand that the cost per month is much higher.

In fact, the cost of using a private web server service has been rising steadily over the past several years. This can be in part to the climb in hardware costs, but perhaps just as much blame can be placed on companies not getting all the functionality they had hoped to get through a private plan, including not enough web hosting tools and multiple user management. For the customers who are doing ecommerce online specifically in the reselling of goods and have to manage large numbers of individual accounts can have difficulties with user management issues. So the company or business or organization considering giving up the more commonly used virtual web site hosting plan for a private plan has a lot to consider before making the move. "Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God..." (Philippians 4:6)

Virtual private server hosting plans typically fall under one of two types of server applications: unmanaged dedicated server plans and managed server plans. Basically, an unmanaged plan is cheaper because the customer is responsible for everything that happens on the host's machine. A company choosing that kind of private service must have highly skilled people who can instantly track down problems on the server and solve software issues that could affect ecommerce or communication facets of an enterprise. With an unmanaged dedicated plan, the system administrator or webmaster is give access to the root password. Maintenance on the web site will require someone consistently keeping track of software updates and security issues to make necessary adjustments.

On the other hand, the more expensive plans are called managed dedicated server plans and are more expensive because the web host is providing the consistent upgrades and fixes to problems that can often occur. Managed dedicated server plans may or may not provide root password or administrator access to the operating system. But in either case, a company choosing a dedicated or private server plan is getting much more than a "one size fits all" web host and if that company is growing as it should will need more and more control over its domain(s). Control is a big issue for most people. For example, about half of Americans want the government to have more control over the citizenry, and half want much less over the populace and each marriage has struggled with issues of too much control sought by one partner over the other. God has made the issue of control the paramount subject of His dealings with mankind and shows no signs of ever changing. Unless every human gives up the powerful desire to control his/her life and instead cede all authority to Jesus Christ, there can be no hope of eternal life.

Shared Hosting Services

A multitude of shared hosting services are competing for the business of individuals, entrepreneurs, and small business owners who are seeking to establish an online presence. Many individuals enjoy sharing their hobbies and interests with others, even those who may be clear on the other side of the world. This is made possible by registering a domain name and designing a website that provides resource information on the specific hobby or interest. Such websites, through forums and other interactive features, also provides a way for people with shared hobbies or interests to communicate with one another. Deep and long-lasting friendships can be made over the internet by people who may never have the opportunity to meet face-to-face. Entrepreneurs and small business owners know that it is important to have an online presence in today's competitive marketplace. However, when one is just beginning to start a business, money can be very tight. Every decision has to be made with the pocketbook in mind. Fortunately, there are many cheap shared hosting plans that provide services particularly tailored to the small business owner.

An individual who plans to establish a personal or business website presence is advised to compare the different services offered by several cheap shared hosting plans in order to make the best informed choice. Certain criteria should be a given for each hosting vendor that is being considered. For example, a vendor that does not offer some type of money-back guarantee should be immediately crossed off the list. Almost any reputable company provides at least a fourteen-day money-back guarantee, though a thirty-day money-back guarantee is more common in the industry. A company that does not offer such a feature must not have much confidence in their products or services. Another important criteria is superior customer service. A prospective vendor should include an FAQ (frequently asked questions) section on its website in order to be considered for the client's business. The individual conducting the research should decide what type of customer support is most important: email support, phone support, a live chat feature, or some combination of all three. Only those vendors who provide the kinds of support that makes the individual feel most comfortable should stay on the list of shared hosting services vendors that are being considered.

Many domain name registrars offer web design and hosting. However, no one needs to feel obliged to sign up for web hosting with the company that registered the individual's website name. People will often register a coveted domain name long before they plan to have the website up and running. Perhaps they have a great name for a business idea. The name is purchased through a domain registrar even though the business idea is still in the planning stages. When the time comes to launch the website, the owner should carefully consider if the registrar provides the needed services. Other shared hosting services may prove to be better choices. Their services often include domain name transferring. Of course, potential website owners should not make the mistake of thinking that all cheap shared hosting plans are the same or that money should be the top consideration. A budget plan may not include needed features, be unreliable, or allow dangerous security lapses. The prospective website owner needs to be sure that the vendor is legitimate and reliable before setting up an account. Luke, the physician, historian, and Gospel writer records a time when Jesus commended those who are good stewards of their resources: "And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing" (Luke 12:42-43). Saving a little money upfront may end up costing a great deal later on. Prospective website owners, particularly those who are trying to operate a business on a shoestring budget, are encouraged to be good stewards as they make important business decisions.

Reputable shared hosting services will usually allow new clients to automatically set-up accounts and have the website hosted within two to twenty-four hours. Any set-up fee will often be waived if the client signs a one-year contract. A variety of monthly or annual plans may be offered which provide discounts for longer terms of service. The ability to upgrade to a more expensive plan with additional features should be available to clients at any time during the contract period. This enables website owners to start with a lower-cost plan with basic features and then to quickly respond to expanding business opportunities. An important feature for prospective clients is the ability to access a browser-based control panel. This capability allows owners to have around-the-clock access to their websites. Through the control panel, the owner can manage email accounts, passwords, and parked domains; view disk usage and bandwidth statistics; install scripts, and access databases. Spam filters and security firewalls are other basic components that are offered by most shared hosting services.

The time may come when the hobbyist, entrepreneur, or small business owner will need more services than those offered by cheap shared hosting plans. If the hobby website grows into an association or the small business becomes a small corporation, the amount of traffic to the website may require a virtual private server hosting plan or even a dedicated server network. These options are more expensive than most shared hosting plans, but may provide additional applications and security for the website owner. Still, when first starting out, most people can begin with a domain name and a shared hosting option.





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