VPS web hosting guide 2020.

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When it comes to web hosting, there are many different options available. Each has its own merits, functions and price points, but today we will take a closer look at VPS hosting as of 2020.

With Virtual Private Servers you can store all files and data of your website on the web space that is configured to look and feel like a stand-alone dedicated server.

Table of Contents of this VPS web hosting guide

  • What is virtual private server (VPS) hosting
  • Shared versus VPS versus dedicated hosting
  • When is the right time to switch to VPS
  • Tips for selecting the right VPS host
  • Best VPS hosting providers
  • Where can you get free VPS hosting
  • Other important things to consider

What is a Virtual Private Server (VPS)

VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. VPS hosting is a server with its own copy of the operating system and allocated server resources within a larger server.

How does VPS hosting work?

As the name suggests, the entire aspect of VPS hosting is virtual. Virtualization technology is the means by which a powerful service is subdivided into multiple virtual servers. You can see it as if you have one-piece physical hardware that functions as multiple separate servers.

Although the physical server is shared, there is the privacy element with services. The virtual server that you use is reserved for you only. You do not have to share your CPU, RAM or other data.

The biggest difference between shared and VPS hosting is the way server resources are shared.

From the user’s point of view, a VPS host means:

  • Guaranteed performance – since you will get your own special resources (CPU, RAM, storage, bandwidth, etc.);
  • Better site security – your websites are hosted in an isolated environment, what happens to your neighbor does not affect you; and
  • Full root access to the server – it’s just like web hosting on dedicated hosting.

Benefits of VPS hosting

VPS hosting is the perfect balance between price, performance, security, affordability and privacy. Some of the great benefits that you will get by using the services are;

  1. Shared service costs
  2. Fast server configuration
  3. Better server access with more control
  4. Private environment in which the VPS server works
  5. Similar services as with a dedicated server

Shared versus VPS versus Dedicated Web Hosting

Some will get a bit confused because of the multitude of choices when it comes to shared, dedicated and VPS hosting. Let’s take a look and maybe compare a bit for a better understanding.

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is like living in a room with many friends. It means that you have to fit in the same room and that you have to split the costs of different things so that it remains affordable and cheap. However, several individuals share the same space, meaning that everyone must live in a space with limited resources. You will have to use the same things (that sounds a bit unsanitary).

There are many website owners who want to use shared services for the simple reason that it is easy to manage and affordable. Hosting service providers take care of server maintenance, so that web administrators only have to concentrate on their site.

However, shared resources can sometimes have unforeseen circumstances, such as transferring a website and serving all resources on that server. This affects the performance of other websites that it hosts, until the hosting company has resolved the problem.

Shared hosting providers: Hostinger, Interserver, HostPapa, GreenGeeks and Linux Hosts Inc.

VPS Hosting

VPS hosting is like living in an apartment complex. It means that other people live in the same building, but you have your own secure apartment. You get more space and restrictions will be less compared to living in a student house. It also means that if your neighbor misbehaves, this is the problem of the owner of the building, not yours.

Similarly, in the case of VPS, there are different users who use the same server, but they are isolated from each other. This means that nobody is influenced by the amount of resources that another uses. You get the speed and safety you need without compromise. It is almost a perfect scenario because you get the benefits of a private server with shared service costs.

VPS hosting providers: InMotion Hosting, SiteGround, TMD hosting, BlueHost and Linux Hosts Ltd.

Dedicated Hosting

Dedicated server hosting is like being a homeowner. You are free to change everything in your home. However, you will have to pay for the mortgage and bills that can be expensive.

Similarly, with a real dedicated server, you pay for the entire server that is not shared with anyone else. You get full control over all services. Unfortunately, it is also the most expensive hosting option and needs some technical expertise to manage. It is often used by people with websites with specific scenarios, usually extremely high traffic and strict security requirements.

Dedicated hosting providers: A2 hosting, M3 server, Hostgator, Altus host and Linux Hosts Inc.

VPS host: when is the right time to switch?

It’s time to upgrade to VPS when …

1. You need speed

When you add more content to your website, its speed is likely to decrease after some time. This applies in particular to websites that are dependent on database-intensive operations. If you notice increasingly longer process times, it’s time to think about an upgrade in the plan.

In addition, most websites will see more traffic over time. Popular sites mean much higher traffic rates, which is great for you. However, it means that your existing plans are unlikely to be able to manage that traffic. Upgrading to VPS hosting is the next logical step for you at this point.

Some Managed VPS hosting services have additional speed functions. These VPS users can optimize their web hosting with built-in LiteSpeed ​​and LS Cache at a reasonable cost.

2. Lack of resources

For example, getting 503 server errors constantly. This means most likely that your services are also not available to visitors and customers. It means that you do not have enough memory on your server (probably also because your neighbors have used the resources). It is time to switch to VPS hosting.

Example: VPS hosting users receive special server resources for their websites. HostPapa VPS Plus users are guaranteed 1.5 GB RAM and 4 core CPU.

3. Increased security issues

If you have had the misfortune to end up on a server that has multiple attacks on another site hosted there, it can be difficult. Under this scenario, you must rely on the good graces of your host to manage the situation, or you can switch to VPS to bypass the situation.

4. Special operating system (OS)

With full root access (which usually comes with unmanaged VPS hosting plans), you can have all the software you need to optimize, install, and customize your hosting experience. This flexibility is especially valuable when you need to install a custom operating system.

Example: InterServer managed VPS hosting offers 16 operating system options; including Debian, CentOS, Ubuntu, Gentoo, Open Wall, Fedora and Slackware.

Tips for selecting the best VPS hosting provider

There are thousands of service providers available online – Choosing the best can be difficult.

Let me share some things with you before you make a decision and spend that extra money.

Consideration factor # 1: Live customer support

I have always been on the point that customer support is a make-or-break deal with any kind of service provider. Your VPS host must have at least some form of support throughout the day. It can be via live chat or a ticket system, but customers must always feel that the host is available for problems that may arise.

AltusHost – 24 × 7 technical support via live chat and social channels (visit online).

A2 Hosting – VPS users are given priority by online business experts.

Linux Hosts Inc. – All customers can count on highly expert help via email, telephone and Live Chat, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Consideration factor # 2: Costs

Take the type of assets you need to operate your site (s) into account when looking for a host. Costs in a VPS are important, but not as important as you may think. The availability of VPS resources is scalable, so the costs are comparable from one host to the next. Also – because cPanel has recently revised its pricing model, web hosting companies across the board will sooner or later have to pass on these costs to users. You must take into account the costs of the control panel when selecting a VPS plan. Companies such as Linux Hosts Inc. and Scala Hosting have developed their own control panel to reduce this problem – so that their users are not confronted with price increases.

SPanel has been developed internally by ScalaHosting and is compatible with cPanel and will save you $ 15 per month for a cPanel license. Hepsia is a Linux Hosts Inc. invention that seems to work even better than cPanel.

VPS prices: how much to pay?

VPS host CPU cores Memory Storage Dedicated IP control panel Price *
AltusHost 2 4 GB 80 GB CentOS € 39.95 / mo
BlueHost 2 4 GB 60 GB 2 cPanel / WHM $ 24.99 / mo **
DreamHost 2 4 GB 120 GB DreamHost CP $ 27.50 / month
HostPapa 4 4 GB 125 GB 2 cPanel Solo $ 78.99 / month
On the move 1 6 GB 150 GB 4 cPanel / WHM $ 29.99 / mo *
interserver 4 8 GB 120 GB Webuzo $ 24.00 / month
KnownHost 2 2 GB 50 GB 2 Direct Administrator $ 28.00 / month
Scala Hosting 1 2 GB 20 GB 1 Spanel $ 12.00 / month

** / * Introduction price. InMotion VPS subscription is extended for $ 99.99 / mo; BlueHoust VPS subscription is being extended for $ 59.99 / month. Linux Hosts Inc. currently has a promo of $1 per month for the first 3 months and after that 13.45 per month.

Consideration factor # 3: Reliability and hosting performance

Check how much uptime your host guarantees. Uptime in a shared services environment is often lower than might be expected in a VPS environment.

You pay more, so there MUST be a minimum uptime guarantee and a better server speed. Look for a host that offers 99.5% at least, although I’d rather go with someone who offers 99.9%. Search through some reviews, because there are many who have tested this.

Example: This site that you are reading is hosted by Linux Hosts Inc. Uptime records for Jan 2019 / Jan 2020 – No disruptions occurred during this period. Speed ​​test – TTFB = 171 ms.

Best VPS hosting providers to consider

1- Linux Hosts Inc.

The only web hosting provider in this list that offers a 30-day free trial without having to submit financial information such as a credit card. Also the provider with the lowest cancellation percentage: 2%. This is lower than we have ever seen.

2- InMotion Hosting

Visit: InMotionHosting.com. Price: from $ 24.99 / month.

Quick review: InMotion Hosting is highly recommended for two reasons: 1) strong server performance data (99.95% uptime, TTFB 450ms); and 2) solid customer service.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • cPanel license is free with CentOS of enterprise quality
  • The cloud infrastructure will enable real-time redundancy
  • Server management is free for updates and patches
  • SSL and SSD certificate is free for secure and fast hosting

3- A2 hosting

Visit: A2Hosting.com. Price: from $ 25.00 / month

Quick review: The best thing about A2 Hosting is speed. By proposing SSD storage, Railgun Optimizer and pre-configured server caching to its shared hosting users, A2 raises the speed standard of the entire hosting sector. In all respects, A2 Hosting is definitely worth registering if you don’t have a web host.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • cPanel available
  • Choose your Linux OS
  • Root access available
  • SSD storage

4. KnownHost

Visit: KnownHost.com. Price: from $ 28.00 / month

KnownHost managed VPS hosting service is reliable, reasonably priced and relatively easy to install. All VPS hosting plans come with full SSD storage, built-in backups and 2-specific IP addresses – making them a perfect choice for companies looking for a worry-free VPS hosting solution.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • cPanel / WHM or Direct Admin
  • Built-in backup and speed optimization
  • Root access available
  • 2 specific IP addresses included

5. HostPapa

Visit: Hostpapa.com. Price: from $ 19.99 / mo

Quick review: We love HostPapa because of the low registration fee and the extensive shared hosting plans. The expensive extension price and under 99.9% uptime is a problem for now. If for whatever reason you want your website to be hosted in Canada, HostPapa is definitely one of the best choices.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • cPanel available
  • SolusVM VPS panel
  • Root access available
  • Full SSD storage

6. AltusHost

Visit: altushost.com. Price: from € 19.95 / mo

Quick review: AltusHost is a well-known premium hosting provider based in the Netherlands. The company offers solid customer support and offers three different server locations in Europe (Bulgaria, the Netherlands and Sweden). We think AltusHost may be the right choice for small businesses and individual bloggers who want a reliable EU-based hosting solution.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • 2 to 8 GB RAM with full server root management.
  • Fast delivery time – provisioning in 2 – 24 hours.
  • DDoS (10 Gbit / s) security included.

7. SiteGround

Visit: Siteground.com. Price: from $ 80 / month

Brief review: SiteGround is a solid hosting company with innovative server functions and support of top class live chat. Their price is a little high on renewal, but you get what you pay for. We think that SiteGround is suitable for both new and experienced users who want a worry-free hosting solution.

Remarkable VPS functions

  • Scalable resources
  • 24/7 VIP support
  • Free CDN
  • Multiple locations available

Free VPS hosting: where can you find them?

Here are some free VPS hosting providers that we have found online.

Free VPS providers Storage Memory Credit card? Support?
Ohosti 25 GB 512 MB
InstaFree 5 GB 256 MB
Guhat 15 GB 512 MB

Free VPS hosting is not as powerful and reliable as the paid solution.

Security is usually a major issue when you use a free platform. Imagine renting your sites alongside spammy / obsolete / unmanaged sites – you never know when these neighbors are going to cause problems (even though you’re on VPS).

This also applies to customer support and performance. You cannot ask for high-level support and first-class server performance when you are not paying money.

But yes, these VPS plans are FREE. They meet the needs of certain web owners – especially for users who develop a web application or users who want to get to know VPS hosting before going for the paid options.

Other important things you should know about VPS hosting

1- Managed versus unmanaged VPS hosting

If you have ever used a computer yourself (yes, this may sound strange, but there is a reason for that) then you will probably know what it is like to use unmanaged VPS hosting.

In both situations you are responsible for the installation and maintenance of all programs that run on the system.

Unmanaged VPS.

With an unmanaged VPS, your hosting provider has only two responsibilities: ensuring that your VPS is active and connected to the network. As you can imagine, this may require a little technical knowledge on your part.

Managed VPS

In a Managed VPS environment you can sit back, relax and let your host know what you want. There are no security issues to worry about, no specific tasks that you need to perform. Your host will manage everything for you and solve any problems.

2- VPN vs VPS: what’s the difference?

To be honest, there is not much resemblance.

What is a VPN?

A VPN is a virtual private network (eg ExpressVPN and NordVPN) that most people use to be safe and private on the internet.

What is a VPS?

A VPS, on the other hand, is a virtual service that you can use as a dedicated server to host your website or manage other web-related tasks, such as setting up cloud storage, hosting e-mail or the like. The two are similar in acronym only.

Here it comes – I record this segment because you can use a VPN to connect to and manage a VPS server. The VPN ensures that your connection remains private and non-traceable, so that you can log in to the VPS without anyone else being aware of it.

Some VPNs offer fixed IP addresses, which is an advantage for many users, since almost all ISPs use dynamic IPs for their customers. By using a VPN with a fixed IP address, you can choose to put your IP on the white list as the only whitelisted one when managing the VPS, making it much more secure.

The Bottom Line

The average VPS is more expensive than shared hosting. However, when you consider whether you should move to a VPS host, I’d rather you to focus on whether you can manage a VPS account than to focus on the price.

Admittedly, there are some that are managed, but the required technical knowledge level differs from normal shared hosting. It is not insurmountable, but your most important company is on your website. Do you want to spend the extra time learning to manage your VPS account?

Scalability. Once you get the hang of it, VPS hosting users have an easier time in two ways. A) It is easier to scale up and there are multiple tranches, so your costs of running a website hardly increase and B) It gives you a technical advantage when your site has become so large that you have to go to a special server .

Relevant sources

We have also published a number of useful guides and hosting reviews for people looking for a web host. You can request this from us by email.

  • Full list of hosting providers that we’ve reviewed
  • Guide: Problems and solutions with cheap web hosting
  • Guide: Switching from HTTP to HTTPS (SSL)
  • How to host your corporate e-mail accounts
  • How to buy a new or existing domain name
  • How to change web host without downtime.
  • List of the best hosting services that we recommend.

I hope this VPS web hosting guide 2020 will help you in acquiring and setting up a successful VPS web server!

Good luck and feel free to comment below!

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