Web Hosting Laid Bare
If you wish to build a site and render it available for the whole world to see, it has to be hosted on a web hosting server. This service is known as web hosting.
Host your website at home or somewhere else
You could host your site on your own PC at home or at work, on a computer which belongs to a friend of yours, etc. If it is a site for testing purposes, there would be no real reason for you to seek a more dependable website hosting solution than that. If you would like to develop an actual website, though, which will be reachable by numerous visitors and you want to make it dependable, you will also require a dependable server where you will host it.
Why do you need a web hosting server for your web site?
When you own a site, it is located on a physical machine. That physical server has its own physical address known also as Internet Protocol address. Typing the Internet Protocol address of the server in your web browser, though, is not the best and simplest means to visit a web site. That is how and why domains came into being and why you need one for your site. Thus, to establish your site, you need your own domain name and a server to host your site on.
Hosting your website on your own
If you are an Information Technology pro and know how to manage a web hosting server, you can have a server of your own and host your site on it. This will permit you to exercise full authority over the machine, to implement server configuration modifications and to install software updates yourself rather than having to rely on the datacenter staff. The negative side, however, is that you will need to guarantee the availability of you web site and to handle all server maintenance tasks yourself. If you are making use of a licensed OS, you will also need to invest money in the license, which is normally more high-priced if purchased for a whole physical server.
Using a web host
If you don't want to handle server maintenance duties, the best step to take is to sign up for an account with a hosting packages provider. These are companies that offer customers powerful servers with different hardware configurations in exchange for a certain tax. The servers are physically located in data center facilities with special cooling and UPS systems to guarantee continuous service uptime.
Kinds of web hosting services
The World Wide Web is a bottomless ocean and there are many web hosting firms delivering different website hosting services to the multitude of web site possessors out there. The hosting services range from free-of-charge hosting services, where you can host basic, HTML-based web sites, to expensive dedicated hosting services that can drain your monthly budget. So, what type of web hosting suits your needs?
If you own a small or mid-sized site that has a few hundred viewers max, you could safely avail of a shared hosting solution. Shared web hosting means that a lot of hosting clients and sites are accommodated on one and the same web hosting server, thus lowering the price of the hosting service. Shared web hosting accounts commonly have central processing unit, memory, traffic and server hard drive space usage quotas to ensure that the sites hosted on the server do not interfere with each other and do not use more system resources than they are allocated.
In case your website is more frequently visited, you should pick a private virtual web server hosting solution, which is the middle ground between the shared web hosting solution and the dedicated web server hosting solution. VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. It gives you root-level access, which allows you to implement server configuration modifications - something that would be impossible on a shared hosting server. The virtual private web servers also offer burstable RAM options. Separate RAM and central processing unit portions are allotted to each individual private virtual web server, without anyone else using them. Typically there are other virtual servers beside your own that use the system resources of the physical machine, which could occasionally influence the overall performance, but in most cases it's of no concern. Should the system resources of the private virtual server, though, be insufficient for your needs, it is clearly time to move to a dedicated hosting web server.
The dedicated hosting web server is a physical server that you rent, which is used exclusively by you for your very own web site needs. No one else shares its system resources and you are given complete root-level access, can select a hardware configuration in advance, implement upgrades later on and install RAM or hard drives. Unlike with the virtual private hosting servers where virtualization is mostly at the OS level and all containers share a single kernel, with a dedicated hosting server you can revise the kernel of the Operating System (usually Linux-based) too.
Pick your web hosting accounts provider
If you have an idea of what your site is going to consist of, or if you have just a vague idea that has not completely evolved yet, your very first move towards the creation of your web site should be to pick a web hosting provider. The most reasonable step to take is to discover a hosting solutions provider that delivers a broad range of website hosting solutions so that you do not need to change hosts in case you first use a shared website hosting solution and then outgrow the shared hosting resources and need to shift to a virtual server web hosting solution or a dedicated hosting server. My own favorite is NTCHosting, which provides inexpensive shared website hosting packages, cut-price OpenVZ and Virtuozzo-based Virtual Private Server web hosting packages, semi-dedicated hosting web server plans with their own Control Panel user interface and even dedicated web hosting packages. I am rather pleased with all their offers, because they all include charge-free gifts - the shared web hosting plans include a free-of-cost domain if they are paid for on an annual basis, the more advanced private virtual web server hosting packages and dedicated server web hosting packages come with a charge-free domain reseller account and invoicing software should you decide to utilize them for reselling purposes. Throw in the first-rate 24/7 customer service and you have all you would normally need. You could, without a doubt, discover other web hosting firms depending on what exactly you are looking for, by conducting an online search or by examining additional web hosting reviews online. The most intelligent choice, though, is a hosting distributor that is also a domain name registrar and has hosting servers in more than one country - both preconditions satisfied by NTCHosting, which has servers in North America, in England, in Sweden and in Australia, and offers loads of domain extensions for registration.