What Are Virtual Private Servers?

Have you been drooling over a dedicated server plan but just can’t afford to make that step right now? A virtual private server may be your answer. Although prices for dedicated servers have dropped dramatically, they may still be out of reach for the average website owner.

A virtual private server is basically a shared server that can operate as a dedicated. Through the use of special software, each account is partioned on the server as it’s own entity, instead of a directory.

There are many benefits to having a virtual private server web hosting plan.

1. Root access. Many applications and scripts require you to have root access on your server. Most shared hosting plans do not offer this option for security reasons. If you have access to the root, you have access to all of the accounts on that particular server. If you need to use telnet or SSH on your server, root access is essential.

2. More installation options. Have you been looking at an application that could make your job as a webmaster easier, but you haven’t been able to install it on your server? A virtual private server will allow you to install this application. Since security issues are so important right now, many hosting companies will not allow you to install various applications on a shared server.

3. Higher transfer and disk space limits. If your hosting plan does not offer an adequate amount of disk transfer or space, but you are not quite ready for a dedicated, this is a great in-between option that is cost effective.

4. Starting and stopping your server. Many problems that occur on a server can be fixed by simply stopping and restarting the server. Instead of waiting for your hosting company to do this for you, this will allow you to handle this process on your own. If you do not have 24/7 technical support, it is even more important to be able to handle this on your own.

5. More control. The most common complaint of shared hosting is the lack of control over your server. Since you may have to think of the other 35 people on your server, you cannot install certain software packages or perform certain functions on a shared server. A virtual private server will give you the control you need.

6. More affordable than a dedicated solution. As we mentioned earlier, cost is one of the most common reasons people switch to a virtual private server. Dedicated servers can cost thousands of dollars every month. You can find a very nice virtual private server for less than $50 a month.

Whether you are looking to cut costs, get more control or just do more with your website, a virtual private server can provide you with an effective solution.

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Posted on 12/14/05 10:43 PM

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