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Help Me Choose a Managed Hosting Provider

What is managed hosting, and is it right for you? And how will you find a provider? Easy. We’ll help you. That is why we’re all here, after all.

In the Old Days

Back in the dawn of time, hosting companies just handed you a dedicated server and that was pretty much where their role ended. Businesses or individuals were responsible for all the maintenance of their own sites and servers. While this choice offered lots of freedom for customized applications and such, it ended up being expensive. Emergency services were costly and unpredictable, and the demand for additional services grew. Thus emerged managed hosting.

Managed Hosting

With managed hosting, many of the general services which are required for dedicated hosting plans are included for a flat fee. Data backup, firewalls and other security features, server monitoring, and even the physical storage of your server are all taken care of by managed hosting providers. This takes the guesswork out of your IT budget, while still making sure that every possible emergency that could come up will be covered.

Dedicated Versus Cloud

If you know your capacity has grown well beyond what’s offered by shared hosting, you have two basic options for dedicated hosting: physical servers, or hosting in the cloud. Both options will provide greater bandwidth and storage, and with more options for customization than shared hosting.

Physical Servers

If you choose to manage your own servers, you’ll be able to configure them pretty much however you want. You’ll also have to store them properly, which means either keeping a suitable facility and IT on staff, or colocating your server out to another facility. The drawback of physical servers is their finite capacity; if you need more space, you’ll have to purchase more. This can lead to overspending on unneeded equipment.

Cloud Hosting

In the cloud, you have access to all the resources you need, but without any hardware concerns. You manage your services from any PC with Internet access, while the other administrative tasks are taken care of by your hosting provider. Using cloud hosting is very economical, because you only pay for what you actually use. This means extra resources are there if you need them short-term, without having to guess at what you’ll need and making a large hardware investment up front.

How Do I Choose a Provider?

Choosing a hosting provider isn't that much different from choosing anything else. Look for quality, watch out for hidden charges, and check customer reviews before signing a contract. Your provider should be someone your business can grow with, not someone who will hold you back.

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