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Definition of Shared Hosting

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Shared hosting is a service that hosting vendors offer so that you can upload your web site to the Internet.

How can people open your web site?

When you build a web site and you would like other individuals to see it, you will need to publish (or upload) it to a web hosting server. If you try to make the site available on the web by shared hosting it on your own computer, there is no way for you to keep it constantly online, which is why web hosting services came into existence.

How does shared hosting work?

Web hosting providers offer you disk drive storage space for your web site on their high-power computers (servers) and ensure constant network uptime. When somebody types your URL (for example in their browser's address bar, they will be connected to the server where they can see the content of your site.

Hosting varieties

With the growth of web technologies, different types of web hosting services have emerged to match the various needs of website owners, among them shared website hosting services, virtual web server hosting services and dedicated web server hosting services.

Shared website hosting

Shared website hosting is the most widely used type of hosting, and is also the easiest to commence with. It is a service where one web hosting server is divided between plenty of web hosting account owners who are restricted by the CPU, bandwidth and hard disk storage space quotas that they have been apportioned. This form of website hosting is usually cheaper - you don't have to purchase the whole web hosting server upfront, as it is divided among a lot of web hosting account holders, and the hosting supplier can afford to provide much lower prices. It is also easier to use - the server is pre-configured with all the necessary software and the web hosting vendor handles all server maintenance tasks and security updates on your behalf.

The negative side of the shared hosting solution is that you share the hosting server's system resources with other customers and if a given site becomes very busy it may affect (and slow down) all the other sites on that web hosting server, but most web hosting service providers, including us at PrincetonStar, have protection platforms in place that prevent that from taking place.

A definition of a website hosting service

Because shared web hosting is the most widely used form of web hosting, most hosting distributors and web hosting users simply refer to it as hosting or website hosting. As there is a considerable rivalry on the website hosting market, the majority of hosting service providers try to provide modest prices and gifts with their services. We, for example, offer different website hosting packages and two billing options - monthly and annual, depending on your finances. If you select the yearly invoicing cycle, you will obtain a bonus - one cost-free domain registration.

Virtual private servers

VPS is an acronym for Virtual Private Server. The Virtual private servers hosting solution is essentially the middle ground between the shared hosting solution and the dedicated web server hosting solution. If your web site outgrows the resources offered by your shared hosting account, a VPS web server package is a possible solution. VPS web hosting users still share the hardware resources of the physical server with other VPS hosting customers, but the disk drive is partitioned using special virtualization software so that each partition has its own guaranteed system resources and can be configured practically like a real dedicated hosting server. The upside is that the CPU and the memory on a virtual private web hosting server are not shared. What's more, the virtualization software offers you much more autonomy to configure your virtual private hosting server, but it also presupposes a higher level of technical expertise.

Dedicated Server

With the Dedicated Server solution, the customer gets an entire physical server and can use all its resources. The dedicated hosting solution is the most robust of all hosting solutions and offers a myriad of configuration options - the dedicated server hosting clients can select the hardware and software specs that will meet their needs. Dedicated system resources and guaranteed performance are two reasons why a dedicated web hosting server is an excellent choice for a content-heavy business web site, for example - you will not share the dedicated server's resources with anyone else and will acquire full server root access. You will exert complete control over the physical server, which will allow you to implement any server configuration modifications that you might require. The weakness of the dedicated hosting solution is that a higher degree of technical proficiency is required - unless you engage an Information Technology specialist, it will be your obligation to manage and configure the dedicated hosting server. The dedicated web server hosting solution is also far more costly, since the cost of the server isn't shared among any other users.

A website hosting tip for beginners

If you are just starting to develop your website and need a hosting solution to start out with, the shared hosting solution remains the most intelligent choice. If your web site grows beyond your shared hosting account's resources, you can usually upgrade. With us, for example, this is extremely easy and does not involve migration of your files, because only the parameters of your website hosting account change. You can also upgrade your website hosting package to a more powerful one at any particular time without having to worry about the number of days left before expiration. Additionally, if you finally reach the most powerful shared hosting package and still need more system resources (which is a good thing sometimes - it signifies that your site's popularity has grown!), there always is the possibility to move to a VPS server web hosting platform or a dedicated server hosting solution without having to change web hosting providers.

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