Keep firmly in your mind the sort of assets that you require to serve your site(s) when seeking a host. Cost in a VPS is important, but not as key as you might think. VPS resource availability is scalable, so the cost that needs to be looked at is comparable cost from one host to the next. Also – as cPanel revised their pricing model recently, web hosting companies across the board will have to pass those costs on to users sooner or later. You will need to consider the cost of control panel when selecting a VPS plan. Companies like ScalaHosting has developed their own control panel to mitigate this issue – so their users would have little issues with the price hike.
From the above mentioned reasons, it is clear to see why cloud servers are such a favorite amongst the VPS crowd. Not only do they offer several benefits and are more secure, stable and efficient, they are extremely economical as well which is why they are preferred especially by those who are new to the business of running websites and hence, do not have a large or flexible budget.
Essentially, here’s the criteria I would use to judge things – if your site is made up of primarily static, HTML-based content, then you probably don’t need a VPS package. However, if you have a large amount of files stored, multiple sites, dynamic content, and the possibility of major traffic from time to time, then you might consider upgrading to a VPS. It’s a powerful package that allows you to do more than you could with a shared hosting plan, but requires less investment than a dedicated server.
Be careful, though – there are some common traps many people fall into. Firstly, the promotional prices are only on offer for a month, after which you’re paying between $49.99 and $299.99/month on any of its five plans. Secondly, the 30 day, money-back guarantee is only valid for those who subscribe for a year or longer. Everyone else only has 48 hours to claim a refund.
VPS, on the other hand, is an isolated playground specifically for you. You will be able to install and use any professional software you need. It also provides more opportunities for caching the content. Imagine that you implement caching tools to provide your users with better experience and reduce the loading time of your website. Caching means that the part of requests to your website will be processed using RAM instead of a hard drive. Eventually, RAM will be filled with these requests. Since VPS deals offer more RAM then shared packages, you will get better performance using caching.
While there are many similarities between having a VPS Hosting plan and a Shared Hosting plan, you will notice that there are some additional features and functions you are provided with. For example, InMotion Hosting provides you with the WebHost Manager (WHM) which allows you to access Server Configuration, Account Information, Security, Account Functions, SSL/TLS, cPanel, and more. Keep in mind that your VPS cPanel usually doesn’t include Softaculous like most Shared Hosting cPanel implementations. If you aren’t comfortable manually installing your software applications such as WordPress, you can usually purchase a Softaculous license for easy software installs.
You also get the following benefits:
A virtual private server (VPS) is a virtual machine (something like a computer divided into many smaller machines using special software). They are often used by Internet hosting providers. Multiple VPS's run on the same machine, but they are separated as they will only share hardware resources without interfering on software level. A VPS is dedicated to the customer's needs, has the privacy of a separate physical computer, and can run server software. There are many platforms that can run a VPS. Some of them are VMWare and Xen.
If you are familiar with hosting control panels, shell commands, and you have basic server administration and troubleshooting skills, then unmanaged VPS is the way to go. Note that while you purchase self managed VPS, you should be capable of managing applications, software, services installed on your VPS. Also, you must know installation/uninstallations, resource monitoring, server performance tweaking and troubleshooting of any technical issues.
There are a few downsides to shared hosting, though, mostly because you’re sharing. For instance, if someone else on your shared server has a huge spike in traffic, that could affect your website’s performance. However, if you’re just getting your website off the ground and don’t have huge traffic volume, shared hosting is a great way to get online!
Shared hosting is cheap and allows you to install any gallery platform you wish if a hosting plan meets its requirements. But be careful and study your hosting provider’s Acceptable Use Policy thoroughly. The truth is, that even if they claim unlimited storage with their plans, they don’t want you to use much of it. On the contrary, they secretly hope that you will use less and they can host many other clients on the same server. For that reason, hosting providers usually put limitations on their policies (e.g. “no more than 10 GB for images,” etc.). So don’t be convinced that you have unlimited storage without first checking your shared hosting provider's policies or you will find your account suspended someday.
A VPS doesn’t just have more RAM, disk space, and a proprietary share of CPU than a shared account. Depending on the provider, some VPS plans offer burstable memory, which is a pool of RAM set aside for extraordinary events. This is the stuff that can help counter the so-called “Digg-effect,” that much-whispered about occurrence that’s the simultaneous hope and fear of everyone who runs a web site. When you have an unexpected high traffic event, burstable memory will call on a pool of reserved, shared memory to satisfy the needs of temporary high traffic. This is not available on shared servers and, while the necessary memory is available on a dedicated server, your site might not get the kind of traffic on a daily basis to justify the expense of a dedicated server. Again, not all VPS plans have burstable memory, so ask your provider if their VPS plans do.
Learning how to set up a VPS after upgrading from shared hosting is like leaving the kiddie pool to dive into an Olympic-sized one. You have a lot more room and features to play with, but you’ll need to find your footing before you can start having fun. Now that you know how to configure your VPS, you’ve become acquainted with the command line, which will make it a lot easier to set everything up to your liking.
As you can see, a VPS can be the perfect middle ground for many – enough flexibility and resources for those who need more access or control than on a shared server but without the cost of a dedicated server. If you need root access, you can’t get that on a shared server, but you can get it on a VPS. If your site experiences unpredictable swings memory usage, and your host provides it, then the presence of burstable memory will be attractive. And, if you’re a fan of customization, then the fact that you can customize server-level software such as PHP, MySQL, and Apache will perk your interest. In short, choosing a VPS will allow you to have many of the same characteristics of a dedicated server but in a more affordable and manageable package.