Nowadays, people are communicating and getting services over the internet in a highly efficient manner. This was totally unimaginable till a few years back! The image below shows the number of internet users across the globe, and their number has been increasing exponentially per year since 1993:

It has become possible only because of well-configured servers working for websites or applications. As per wiki, “A server is a computer program or a device that provides functionality for other programs or devices”. A server is the bare minimum necessity for any business to get online. It gives you the space and required resources to store your website files, your organization’s data, your software and it also runs your applications. Here are few other features of a web server:

  • It provides storage space for storing data of website.
  • The bandwidth that you get on your server is the basis of your website speed and the traffic that your website will be able to handle.
  • It makes your website available to the public.
  • It services the end user requests.

Right servers at the right locations provide you with various benefits to meet the growing needs of your online business like unlimited scalability, agility, accessibility from anywhere and the ability to cope with the growing security demands.

In today’s competitive era, with the availability of different types of servers, it has become difficult to choose the right type of server to fulfill all your business needs – the comparison is especially between dedicated servers, virtual private servers and cloud servers. To make this task easier, here is a fair comparison between them that’ll help you to take an informed decision:

  1. Virtual Private Server

 A virtual private server is a type of hosting service in which a number of virtual compartments are made on the same physical server through virtualization software. They are easily created, configured and comes at a much lower price than a dedicated physical server.

As per wiki, Virtual private server or VPS is simply a virtual machine sold as a service by an internet hosting service.”

 VPS hosting is like owning a condo where you share many things on a property and are liable for its maintenance and improvements. Likewise, in VPS, you share physical resources like CPU, disk space and RAM but still you get the freedom of having a private virtual server with your own control panel.

Key Features of VPS:

It allows you to administer its OS independently and you can also install any script you want, but it should be able to run on that OS. Also, VPS provides flexibility to select control panel of your choice. It is the best option for multiple domains’ hosting as with VPS, there are no issues related to operational efficiencies.

 It is also less expensive than a full dedicated hosting server. You have to pay only for what you want as VPS plans are customizable. Some providers provide semi-managed, while others provide fully managed plans. In managed VPS, your provider takes care of the server, while in unmanaged VPS, you have to take care of your server. So, you can choose from among the two VPS options as per your technical knowledge, pocket and your business. The unmanaged one is more economical and perfect for those who know how to handle the technicalities related to the server.

 With ZNetLive, all VPS plans are fully managed and come with unlimited websites, e-mail IDs, subdomains and MySQL database with dedicated support in India. The Plesk powered VPS provides you solid scalable resources on latest generation hardware that gives you the benefit of full scalability and fault tolerance for the high availability.

Limitations of VPS:

 Although you get the control on your space, applications or website, but that space is technically shared with others on board same server.

Also, some hosting providers may not provide the allocated resources completely which can be a big issue if your website uses them at peak levels.

Things to consider before choosing a VPS hosting plan:

Evaluate the current status of your business, if you think your website is going to get medium to heavy traffic, then VPS hosting is the best option for you. Next, you need to think which type of plan will best suit you. Our recommendation is- go for a customized plan, so that you can have all your resource requirements fulfilled and achieve the long-term goals with your growing business.

Most importantly, when you are getting your VPS, take care that you are getting one from a reliable provider. You can read the online reviews about their services/products and the reviews also give you an idea about its reputation in the market.

You can also search an affordable VPS hosting provider by monitoring the social media activities of different web hosts. Their Facebook page, Twitter (#webhosting) and Google search play an important role in finding them.

  1. Dedicated Server

Dedicated server is like your own bungalow in which there is no need to share anything with anyone. You can enjoy your space unconditionally.

As per wiki, “Dedicated server hosting is a type of internet hosting in which the client leases an entire server that’s not shared with anyone else.”

Key features of dedicated servers:

 Unlike VPS, with global as well as dedicated server India, you will never face any performance issues related to speed, connectivity and uptime, as all the resources are dedicated for your usage only. In terms of security too, it is a safe fortress.

You can easily manage the high volume of traffic with dedicated hosting so it is ideal for big conglomerates like an e-commerce website. You also get the full root access to install any application as per your needs and can make changes to your server’s configuration.

We recommend that you choose a provider who provides enterprise grade hardware like SATA HDDs, DDR4 RAM, NAS backups on dedicated server infrastructure for best performance of your websites and applications.

ZNetLive’s specialized dedicated server hosting can be a reliable asset for you as it features strongest security, fast speed, and 100% uptime SLA. With this, you also get 2 free Microsoft Office 365 business productivity suites and 2000 GB data storage with 24X7 ZNetLive’s NodeFirstTM support.

Limitations of dedicated servers:

Among other available options, dedicated one is more expensive. Also, if you opt for unmanaged hosting package, you need to hire technical and skilled workforce to handle the maintenance and operational issues.

Also, once a dedicated server crashes, it’s difficult to fix it and you face huge downtime.

Things to consider before choosing a dedicated hosting plan:

 As there are two operating system options – Linux and Windows, so choose accordingly as Linux is utilized for open source stack and Windows is for ASP .NET, MS SQL server. System check and server monitoring are all a part of dedicated hosting service, so ensure that your provider must have an expert dedicated team with 24×7 availability.

When it comes to Hard Disk Drives (HDDs), there are two sorts that are being used essentially now – a- days: SATA that offers economically better storage and SAS that gives high I/O virtualization limit. Go with a dedicated server that has either of these two options.

Dedicated hosting solutions are highly secure and controlled, but they should also be upgraded timely. You should take care of all these factors before finalizing a dedicated hosting plan as you are investing a lot in it.

  1. Cloud server

 Cloud is the foundation for a modern business to grow efficiently, so most of the organizations are now moving their business applications on a cloud platform. As per the 451 research, 34% of organizations will have 60% or more of their business applications on a cloud platform within coming two years.

Cloud is basically a network of multiple remote servers with load balancing feature. You get the services as per your needs via internet, on pay-as-you-go model.

As per wiki, “It is a type of internet-based computing that provides shared computer processing resources and data to computers and other devices on demand.”


Key features of cloud servers:

 With cloud server hosting, you can customize and integrate the applications the way you want. As the benefit of load balancing is there, it offers high uptime. Also, it gives you the assurance of continuity in business even after a system failure/file loss or from the risk of loss associated with hacking, fire, theft, or any other kind of disaster.

Unlike VPS, scalability with cloud can be achieved, as your cloud hosting provider allows you to add or remove the resources like storage, RAM or bandwidth with the emerging needs of your online business. The main advantage is that you can focus on your business mainly as you don’t have to maintain or upgrade the hardware/software associated with cloud hosting.

From the three deployment models of cloud, you can choose from private, public or hybrid, as per your business needs. In private cloud computing, you get high security with dedicated storage and hardware resources as they are not shared with any one. With public cloud, you get the resources and applications via the internet with the benefit of scalability. Well, the hybrid cloud, as the name implies, is the mixture of the best features of both private and public clouds. It gives you better performance as compared to other two cloud models.

Limitations of cloud servers:

With public cloud, security is the main issue as data is accessible on a public network. Also, you may face vendor lock-in and limited control over your resources, so you need to choose a reliable cloud service provider like ZNetLive, who offers various cloud services of multiple vendors.

Things to consider before choosing the cloud server hosting:

 Choose a reliable CSP who provide cloud on upgraded IT infrastructure. The other factor to consider is uptime. If your website goes down, there can be a huge loss in terms of revenue and traffic. So ensure that your provider is able to provide 99.9% uptime.

One more thing that you should consider is that your provider should be able to offer control panel per your needs, to manage your resources such as email addresses, usage statistics, and all your hosting account related billing, technical, and support stuff.

As security is the main concern, make sure that your cloud service provider offers 256-bit encryption. Once you agree upon the level of security provided, you should try and get the answers of the following questions:

  • Do they provide customer support 24X7X365?
  • What is their SLA and their refund policy?
  • Do they provide trial versions so that you will be able to judge them for what you are looking for?

A quick comparison – VPS vs Dedicated vs Cloud

Features VPS Dedicated Server Cloud Server
Cost Low as compared to dedicated. Costliest option. Provides metered services.
Scalability Limited. More than VPS. Elastic.
Security Moderate. Highest. High security with private cloud.
Suitability Websites having moderate traffic. E-commerce websites handling sensitive data. Suits all websites.

Which option is best for me?

The answer totally depends on your website and its needs. If you want a more economical and affordable option, then go for VPS. If you are a large enterprise or managing high volume of traffic, then choose dedicated server hosting. And if you want your systems to be on the latest technology with productivity enhancing tools, higher collaboration capabilities between your team members at reduced cost, then cloud hosting is the best option for you.

With ZNetLive, you get customized plan options, which can be tailored as per your growing business needs. Also, you get various solutions for account isolation, monitoring, and speed-optimization of the servers depending upon your hosting plan. With various value added services, any type of hosting with ZNetLive is going to provide you value for your money.

If you have any confusion regarding which hosting type is best for you, you can let me know through the below comment section. I will be happy to clear your doubts.

About the author: Jyotsana Gupta is the lead content crafter at ZNetLive. The engineering degree in electronics fuels her passion for technical writing, while interest in fiction fires her creative streak. Her aptness to easily explain technical topics like Domains, Web Hosting, Dedicated server and Cloud Computing has earned her few avid readers. Reach her on LinkedIn.

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