At the beginning of the commercial Internet, many businesses got their start online by acquiring server software and dedicating one computer to be the Web host. Today, most SOHO and small businesses have abandoned trying to do everything themselves and purchase their hosting service for just a few dollars a month. What they’re actually buying is something called “shared hosting” or “virtual hosting.” They are one of many businesses websites running on the same physical server. At relatively low traffic and business levels, you don’t need all the performance a modern server can provide and you don’t want to spend that much money.
Things change when you are supporting a larger organization or have a popular e-commerce site with thousands or tens of thousands of visitors browsing your pages, making demands on the databases, and placing orders with expectations of snappy response times. The need for the lowest cost hosting service becomes less important when the lost revenue from a day’s or even an hour’s downtime can exceed the monthly hosting fees. You can no longer afford to be at the mercy of someone else on the same server hogging resources or somehow crashing the system and taking your site down as well as their own.
At this point, you are ready for dedicated web hosting. That means that an entire server is allocated to your exclusive use. The question is whether to buy this service or buy the equipment and support the servers in-house. Companies with substantial IT staffs may have the talent and want the level of control that comes with having everything under one roof. Some may find that renting physical space in a colocation center gives them access to lower cost bandwidth and saves considerable cost on things like backup power and physical security. It’s still your equipment and you are responsible for it. It’s just not installed at your premises.
Managed hosting servers are provided by a colocation center and managed by center personnel as well. They buy the server hardware, provide all software updates for the device, ensure the physical security of their premises, have multiple levels of power backup so that power outages won’t even be seen by the equipment, provide fire suppression in the event something goes horribly wrong in those server racks, provide redundant bandwidth connections so that individual line failures won’t make your site invisible on the Internet, and monitor server operation 24/7/365.
One well known and respected provider of managed hosting services is The Planet. They specialize in mission-critical enterprise-class hosting solutions that range from a single physical server to complex infrastructures that can support the largest operations. These are customized to your needs and come with a Service Level Agreement that includes 100% power and network availability, 1 hour hardware replacement and 15 minute critical live-person response time. Their Northstar managed hosting also includes managed backup and data protection, security and patch management, database management and optimization and regular business and capacity planning.
Have your server-based operations become essential to the operation of your business? Do you struggle with having the right level of resources available at the right time? Would you be seriously jeopardized by a server outage? If so, you may be able to benefit from managed hosting from The Planet or other high quality hosting service. Get prices and availability on managed hosting services now.