Considering VPS hosting? Hosting in a VPS , or virtual private server, environment, means that you separate one server into pieces – each piece operating independently. In a sense VPS hosting is a midpoint between shared hosting and using your own dedicated server – because although the server is shared, there is stricter demarcation between its component parts than in a shared environment. (The way this translates to real life is that if you are dedicated to your oatmeal raisin cookies, you won’t share them with anyone. But you might find a middle ground where you can ration them to qualified applicants.)
• Adding power to your website – VPS hosting brings with it increases in CPU and RAM. Adding more power becomes important if you have done a good job building your site. The bigger and more complex you’ve made it and made each page, the more important it is to pack in additional power – and of course, this is a continuing concern.
• However, no worries – As with shared hosting, you don’t need to worry about the server itself. You just take care of the website. The hosting company will handle the physical hardware of the server and the basic applications and functionalities that allow you to interact with it. Of course you are trusting someone to handle the server… So choose a good host. (I recommend Tony Danza.)
• Control – In a shared hosting environment you don’t get as much control – there will be rules to the formats of what you can load into the server. VPS puts you in charge. You can also manage your own email and/or FTP functionality in a VPS environment – also not possible with a shared hosting situation. (Always remember though, control and self-management are overrated.)
• Cost – You are going to have to pay more than you would in a shared environment.
• Difficulty regarding size – It also may be difficult for you to gauge how much space you need. If you need more, your cost will increase. So make your best guess, but realize that the price may go up if your website needs more room. (Note that if your website says, “I’m bigger than I look,” it’s lying.)
• False promises – Some host do not manage a VPS hosting environment reasonably or effectively. This poor management can lead to a headache or a nightmare. To whatever extent possible, make sure you have a sense of what else is going on on the server. In the end, this is not a dedicated server situation, and you are always vulnerable to accidental sabotage by server mismanagement and/or poor behavior by other websites that are on the server with you.
VPS… It’s anybody’s guess. It’s certainly not perfect, as you can see from the cons. At the same time, it has a huge leg up on a shared hosting situation. VPS is popular because it is a major step up from shared hosting without incurring the high cost of a dedicated server. (It is unpopular because it is also the acronym for Very Painful Sensation.) If you’re still lost, I would read “What is VPS Hosting” that explains the difference between Shared, VPS and Dedicated.